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GRAPEVINE: Toast the end of summer with a glass of red
Fall is bound to hit the North Shore soon, replacing the sun with chilly weather and, of course, many rainy evenings.
But don’t let this get you down. It’s the perfect excuse to cuddle up inside, dust off the red wine glasses and try a few new bottles.
Picking a red can be intimidating, especially for those who prefer lighter wine to full-bodied, heavy-tannined bottles. Choosing old-world vintages from France, Spain or Italy are a good starting point because they tend to be easier to drink than wine from the United States and Australia.
And there’s nothing better than a Bordeaux event to kick off fall.
BC Liquor Stores will be releasing Bordeaux from the 2009 vintage on Sept. 29 in B.C. signature stores, including the Park Royal location.
These French wines, left to age in cellars over the last two years, have hailed from “one of the greatest years in the history of the region,” creating dark fruit aromas and sweet tannins.
Bordeaux wine is only produced in the Bordeaux region of France, the largest wine-growing area in the country, which encompasses approximately 120,000 hectares.
And finding that perfect Bordeaux will be easier on the pocketbook because even the cheapest bottles fare better than previous years due to France’s recent perfect warm and dry weather.
So, as the days start getting shorter, plan to spend an evening inside trying one of these Bordeaux wines.
When the owners bought this French vineyard it was in bad shape, but today more than 35 hectares produce wine known to be balanced and easy to drink. This medium to full-bodied wine is 60 per cent merlot and 40 per cent cabernet sauvignon. It has hints of juicy black currant and cedar, mixed with licorice and herbs.
89 points, Wine Advocate
Château Cantenac, St Émilion, $25
This wine is predominately merlot with cabernet franc and cabernet sauvignon rounding out the blend. From a vineyard well known by tourists for its tasting events, it has earthy flavours with hints of tobacco and herb and notes of vanilla and rose.
88 points, Wine Spectator
Parde de Haut-Bailly, Pessac Léognan, $35
If you’re after black cherry, plum and licorice flavours, this wine is for you. It hails from a vineyard located south of Bordeaux city, along the left bank of the Garonne River.
90 points, Wine Spectator
And for the die-hard white wine drinkers:
Caillou blanc de Château Talbot, Bordeaux, $29
This racy but friendly wine has complex marks of Havana and licorice with hints of macadamia nuts and heather.
89 points, Wine Spectator
Still not sure which Bordeaux is for you? If you’re in the area on Sept. 22, the Cambie and 39th Street BC Liquor Store is giving out samples of 2009 Bordeaux from 2 to 4 p.m.