By Marco Giovanetti
So many of us wine lovers look forward to fall and the arrival of cooler weather. The seasonal vegetables and fruits shift to a richer and more savory flavor, and our cooking style change as well. With the slightest suggestion of a falling yellow leaf or chilly breeze, I make an excuse to put a scarf or sweater. I also find myself braising, roasting, baking, or making soups a lot more often.
Our wine choices also change, as we reach for richer, fuller-bodied styles of reds and whites. Let’s taste through a few delicious, yet affordable wines that pair perfectly with the season’s transitional weather and savory fare.
12 Wines for Fall Drinking
1. Riparosso, Iluminati 2015. ( Abruzzo, Italy) $14.95. SAQ Code: #10669787
Clean and fruity nose bringing to mind sweet and ripe cherry and raspberry with touches of licorice and tanned leather. On the mouth, full body, rustic with a good acidity and rugged tannins. A nice introduction to the Montepulciano grape of Abruzzo. Pair it with a savoury romano bean stew. 85/100
2. Nebbiolo Perbacco, Vietti 2013. ( Piedmont, Italy). $31.25. SAQ Code: 10861031
Lovely floral perfume ( roses, violets) with macerated red fruits and hints of clove and star anise. Modern and elegant with chewy tannins and a good acidity. Textbook flavors of Nebbiolo such a strawberry and tar with a long finale. Try this Nebbiolo with a roast beef and creamy mashed potatoes. 92/100
3. Syrah Le Pousseur Bonny Doon 2012. ( California, USA). $30.25. SAQ Code: 10961016
Licorice, black fruits with violets and fur game aromas. On the mouth, medium to full body with a rich texture that coats the palate. Balanced in a style of rhone meets california. Would be lovely with braised lamb shanks in red wine. 93/100
4. Lavradores de Feitoria 2013 ( Douro, Portugal). $14.80. SAQ Code: 11076764
On the nose, caramelized black fruit with rose, violets petals and nuances of blueberry yogurt. On the mouth, flavors are consistent with the nose with firm tannins, spices and a long finale. Should be quite good with merguez sausage couscous. 85/100
5. Villa Cerna Chianti-Classico 2013 ( Tuscany, Italy). $20.95. SAQ Depot: 00573519
Leather, blackcurrants and raspberry confit. Dusty nose with mocha nuances. Supple and ample on the mouth with fine and firm tannins. Pleasant subdued oaky finale. Very elegant and classic with a tuscan perssonality. Pair it with tagliatelle with ground beef and mushrooms. 92/100
6. Chanson Père & Fils Bourgogne Pinot Noir 2013 ( Burgundy, France). $25.00. SAQ Code: 11598394
Chanson has been making regal Pinot Noir since its beginnings in 1750, during the reign of King Louis XV. This elegant red shows hints of sour cherry and spice. Food-friendly, it’s perfect with grilled eggplant, veal cutlets, rotisserie chicken or rack of lamb. 92/100
7. Terra Vega Merlot 2015 ( Central Valley, Chile). $12.40. SAQ Code: 10678587.
Different tonalities of red cherry with a hint of black licorice, brown sugar and carrot cake spice. Coffe liqueur Full body with a medium acidity. Herbaceous flavors with a medium acidity. Supple tannins. A finale that brings to mind a bit of smoked prunes. 88/100
8. Château De Chamirey Mercurey 2013. ( Burgundy, France). $28.60. SAQ Code: 00962589.
This rustic Pinot Noir has a distinct forest floor and tobacco leaf shell bringing to mind a wine that has a decade’s bottle age rather a mere three years. Amazing, this Pinot Noir is both elegant and rustic, smooth yet grippy and vibrant yet refined. Even more compelling, it is ready to be enjoyed now. Pair it with a filet mignon in a porto reduction sauce. 92/100
9. Riesling, Domaine Zind-Humbrecht 2014. ( Alsace, France). $26.05. SAQ Code: 11461101
Very mineral in the nose. Smoke, rocks, naftaline with lime and white peach notes. On the mouth, very flinty with complex flavours that recall mustard seeds, brine, and golden bruised apple. A touch of residual sugar complement the atrractiveness of this wine. Pair it with pumpking creams. 95/100
10. Chardonnay Catena 2015. ( Argentina, Mendoza). $20.00. SAQ Code: 865279
Tropical fruit aromas with mango in particular. In the mouth, quite creamy with retronasal flavors of almond cream but with a saline taste that brings everything into perspective. Medium finale. 92/100
11. Sancerre, Chateau de Sancerre 2015. ( Loire, France). $26.95. SAQ Code: 164582
Crisp lemon, grapefruit with passion fruit aromas. On the mouth, medium body, good acidity. Lots of mineral and citric flavors with a round and creamy structure. Interesting flavours as well that recall vegetable bouillon with a medium finish. Quite good with oysters. 88/100
12. Luis Felipe Edwards Late Harvest Viognier / Sauvignon Blanc 2014. ( Central Valley, Chile). SAQ Code: 11904460. $13.55
On the nose delicious aromas that bring to mind tangerines, nutmeg with french toast. Full body. viscous texture. Very elegant and not too sweet. 86/100. Try it with pound cake, apple pie.
The fall is also the season of plenty of wine and gastronomical events in Montreal. There is La Grande Degustation, Mtl a Table, Montreal Passion Vin and Raspipav.
From all this event, Raspipav, the private import wine salon, is my favorite one. One of the missions of this important event is to raise awareness that not only private imports are accesible to restaurants but also to retail clients. Hard to ignore, the private importation wine business represent ⅔ of the total offer of wine and spirits
In this salon, the Quebec wine lover has the chance to taste artinasal producers not present in the SAQ. If you like natural or orange wines, Raspipav gives you the chance to get better aquainted with the styles of this wines. Even better, you have the opportunity at the salon to buy by the bottle instead of the case.
Raspipav will be held at the Bonsecours Market in the old port on Oct 29 and Oct 30 from 12:00 to 19:00. Admission is $15 with additional cost for tasting coupons. For more information you can visit www.raspipav.com or their facebook page: facebook.com/raspipav.
The Salon theme this year is all about sparkling wines. Its not secret that the the bubbly wine category is quite popular in Quebec with an increasing demand by the Quebec wine consumer. And the timing is right just before the holidays. The tasting jury of the salon have selected the best sparkling wines in private importation under 25$ and between $25 and $50.
Top 3 sparkling wines under $25
Cava 1312, Mestres, 22,96 $ Agent : Symbiose
Cava Reserva Economy Brut,Valldolina, 23,88$ . Agent : Bacchus 76
Cava Gran Reserva 2011, Maison Sumarrocca, 20,75$. Agent : Rézin
Top 3 sparkling wines between $25-$50
Champagne Charles Collin Brut, 45 $ Agent : Benedictus
Blanc de Blanc Brut Cave Spring Niagara, 34 $ Agent : Oeno
Champagne Brut Charles de Vercy, H. Blin, 45 $ Agent : Cellier des Cigales