I am not an expert, just a discerning wine lover or amateur de vin (as the French say), but everyone has a different palate, likes and dislikes so it must be understood that any of my recommendations are personal. I just hope that you find them useful or at the very least - interesting. I also hope you enjoy my photos. It is more fun sharing then keeping them backed up on a hard drive.

Friday, August 31, 2012

Yes Virginia there is something other than Malbec from Argentina

The amount of wine study I am doing is inverely proportionate to the amount of tasting and writing I am doing. Balancing work, school and social opportunities has been a challenge. But this week - even though it was exam time - I accepted an invitation because I did not want to miss the unique experience of lunch and a tasting with Gonzalo Bertelsen of Finca el Origen.

Any chance to meet a winemaker and to talk about and taste their wines is a priviledge. In this case it was even more appealling because I feel I have had very little exposure to Argentina as compared to other regions. I was interested to have a chance to learn about the Uco Valley.

We talked about weather, hazards like hail and the unique terrior in the shadow of the Andes. It is always a pleasure taste well-crafted wines and learn about their provenence. The added benefit was aside from having lovely, well-made wines, the price point was so approachable it seemed ashame not to share.


I don't even know where to start with this wine - it is sensational for the price.

On the nose - melon, white blossom with citrus notes and a slightly flinty minerality. The palate citrus-crisp with a very clean finish, but not entirely unoaked, so there is a gentle spice that lingers.

Various batches were blended and some of those saw time in oak. There was also a blend of Malolactic fermentation vs. non. This rounded the wine a little and added complexity. This single vineyard - Las Pintadas, has three blocks with distinct soils which also added to the complexity of the wine.

It is very hard to beat this cool-climate chardonnay for the price.


Also well worth the price but not available to those of us in Ontario, this wine has received accolades from many sources scoring high marks.

This wine was highly extracted in many ways; its deep red-purple hues, its intense nose of blackcurrant and clove and its spicy, full round mouth-feel with ripe tannins and just enough acid to give it great length.

The "Grand Reserva" had a little brother, "Reserva" that was an incredible QPR, and may even be available at the LCBO soon...


Quite a complex wine with black cherries and blackberries, tobacco, spice box and cedar on the nose. Rich, spicy dark fruit on the palate. Lovely balance - well integrated tannin and acid; velvety wine.


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