October 1, 2016 Wine Picks

It’s time for the annual round up of Turkey-friendly wines!  In the simplest of terms  the best wine is the one you like best.  That sounds like an oversimplification but IMHO if you like Sauvignon Blanc then the best Chardonnay recommendation for your turkey dinner may not make your match-made-in-heaven.

Typical wine-wisdom would suggest that Pinot Noir is the preferred red recommendation for turkey. Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc and Riesling are traditional matches for turkey from the whites.  And…of course champagne goes with everything.

Having said all that here are my turkey dinner picks:

Turkey Whites

Novellum Chardonnay 2014

#390781  Score 92   $17.95

The tasting panel from beveragedynamics.com call this full-bodied and rich with complex fruit and mineral tinged flavours.  Novellum Chardonnay is recognized year after year as being one of the best value wines available and reviews for 2014 are promising more of the same. It is unoaked but has a rich fruitiness that will help it stand up to all those seasoning on the Thanksgiving sideboard.

Heinz Eifel Shine Riesling 2015

#467712   $13.95

This is off-dry and fruity, so it won’t be bone-dry or cloying sweet. Vintage panel describes “lime, peaches and spice with some mineral oil underpinning bother the aromas and the flavours.”

Cordero Di Montezemolo Arneis Langhe 2015

#455162   Score 90   $21.95

Apparently Arneis  is a  grape that has been resurrected in Italy and is not available that often.  It is described in various reviews as medium  to full bodied and rich with citrus, orchard and stone fruits, floral, nutty and even a hint of petrol on the nose which should develop over the next few years.  Something for everyone here folks…..  LCBO pairing suggestion is oily fish, risotto with seafood and truffles.  This is a bit of a WAG (wild ass guess) but I think the turkey gravy might stand in for the oily fish…..

Turkey Reds

Creekside Estate Queenston Road Pinot Noir 2014

#415877  $18.95

This is one of the LCBO’s recommendations ass good value and a good turkey fit.  Tasting notes indicate cherry, tart cranberry, spices, vanilla and earthy notes.  Reviews from multiple sources agree on value proposition. Many mentions of high acidity and ‘aggressiveness’ but I would guess it would stand up well to the Thanksgiving table.

Stéphane Aviron Beaujolais-Villages 2014

#468744  $15.95

Reviews are in consensus that this is a relatively light, highly drinkable wine with lots of red fruit (cherry) notes and some spice.  If you are serving a crowd you can’t beat the price and it would be pretty much guaranteed to please almost everyone at the table.


Great Value (not necessarily Turkey wines!)

Argentina just keeps on giving and giving!

Atamisque Catalpa Old Vines Malbec 2013

#194126  $19.95

This wine comes from Uco Valley in Mendoza.  I snap up Uco Valley any time I see it. We had a very interesting (blind) wine tasting a few years ago that compared Malbecs at increasing altitudes.  It was pretty much unanimous within our dozen or so tasters that the the winners correlated directly to the highest altitudes.  The average vineyard in Tupungato is apparently at 4,200 feet which means direct, intense sunlight during the day time and cool nights – great conditions for grapes.

On to the actual wine…This is a high alcohol wine at 14.8% but tasting notes indicate it is well structured so it does not overpower the nose or the palate.  Dark fruits- black cherry, plum and blackberry on the nose and palate with a savoury note on the finish. Tannins are easy-going making it full bodied and smooth.  Seems like a real win to me!

Viniterra Serie Terra Malbec 2014

#166306  $15.95

Another Argentinian full bodied and smooth!  Vintage panel notes impressive violet tones, blackberry, cherry spice and mineral. Tasters suggest it with lighter fare, BBQ etc.



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