680 NEWS wine reviews July 2830, 2006
Sogrape Vila Regia Reserve 2001
The Douro Valley in Portugal is where they've been making port since the seventeenth century. Port, of course, is a sweet fortified wine. But in the last couple of decades the Douro Valley producers have been making dry red wines from the same grapes they use to make port. The result is a series of richly flavoured, powerful red wines that are dry. New to the LCBO is Sogrape Vila Regia Reserve 2001, a very elegant wine with a concentrated blackberry and mineral flavour. An ideal wine for barbecued red meats, it costs $11.85 a bottle. That's Sogrape Vila Regia Reserve 2001 from Portugal's Douro Valley. For Post City Magazines, I'm Tony Aspler. ($11.85, LCBO #613950)
Banrock Station Unwooded Chardonnay 2005
Tetrapaks are the new black, it seems. The LCBO has been the prime mover in getting wineries to ship their products in these lightweight containers to save freight costs. But since the LCBO has a floor price, the savings aren't being passed on to the consumer. And the environmental benefits of tetrapaks are suspect, since there's plastic lining in the boxes, so they'll probably all end up in a landfill in Michigan. That being said, the product the wineries put in these boxes has to improve if the consuming public is to embrace them. The best white I've tried so far is Banrock Station Unwooded Chardonnay 2005 from Australia. It has a sweetish pear flavour and good length and comes in a 1000 mL box that costs $12.50. For Post City Magazines, I'm Tony Aspler.
($12.50 for 1000 mL, LCBO #668954)