Archive for November, 2017

Ask Sid: Oxidization or Maderization in Wine?

November 29th, 2017
Ask your question here

difference between Oxidization or Maderization

Question: I have noticed some wine critics are using the terms oxidization and maderization together. Do they mean the same thing or are they different?

Answer: Observant by you. Yes some tasters often throw both words around with abandon. A wine can be both oxidized and maderized but not necessarily as they have different meanings. Oxidization is a fault where the wine has received at some stage too much exposure to oxygen. This can be caused in several ways either during production or through a faulty closure (cork or screwcap). More likely when a wine is older and the cork may have shrunk letting in air. Also it occurs when the wine bottle has been open too long and exposed to the air (like the browning of cut apples). Maderization also results in the oxidation of the wine but usually in a narrower sense involving some heat (like the production process for Madeira). Can happen during production but more likely through hot storage at some time either during transport or cellaring where the wine gets “cooked”. Often results in white wines looking quite brown. Use both terms where appropriate but note the different meanings.


You might also like:

 alt=

Did you know the difference between oxidization and maderization?

View Results

Loading ... Loading ...

Barolo Blind Tasting Confirms Need for Patience to Benefit From Aging

November 28th, 2017

barolo1

On November 23 a quality dinner event for 12 wine collectors was BYOB Barolo held at Luca a top Italian restaurant in Vancouver. Lovely start with some cool bubbles of classy 2004 Montagne Verzenay Grand Cru Grande Terroirs de la Montagne de Reims from Raphael & Vincent Bereche and the always entrancing low dosage Jacques Selosse Initial disgorged June 2010 blending 3 consecutive Chardonnay vintages from 3 Grand Cru villages of Avize, Cramant & Oger. Further prepared our palates for the reds with 2 Italian whites matched well for a superb opening course of chilled octopus with special smoked EVOO & limoncello: 2013 Borgo Del Tiglio Friuli of Nicola Manferrari blended white & aged rich 2007 Masciarelli Marina Cvetic Trebbiano d’Abruzzo. The piece de resistance followed of 17 nebbiolo treasures in 4 flights all served blind:

1. BAROLO 1997 BUSSIA VIGNA ROCCHE ARMANDO PARUSSO
blank
2. BAROLO 1997 MARIONDINO ARMANDO PARUSSO
blank
3. BAROLO 1997 BRUNATE AZIENDA BRICCO ROCCHE
blank
4. BAROLO 1997 MARGHERIA RISERVA LUIGI PIRA  Interesting first flight all of which seemed younger than 20 years old even though from this warmer more approachable 1997 vintage. All showed 14.5 alcohol on the label but displayed cool fruit. Bussia in Monforte d’Alba has an open lovely complex bouquet with balanced structure compared with the Mariondino vineyard in Castiglione Falleto from the same producer Parusso which is lovely much softer easy style and more forwardly. The favourite was the Brunate in La Morra that was truly classic with surprising vibrancy for a 1997. No rush. Margheria was the fullest richest texture expecting it to be the oldest of the flight. An impressive first four all from 1997 enhanced by vitello tonnato & burrata sun dried tomato dish.

IMG_2616
blank

5. BAROLO 1996 RISERVA (RED LABEL) FALLETTO BRUNO GIACOSA only 11667 bottles & 1500 magnums.
blank
6. BARBARESCO 1997 VIGNETO GALLINA LA SPINETTA
blank
7. BAROLO 1996 VIGNA CASA MATE ELIO GRASS
blank
8. BAROLO 1997 BRICCO FIASCO AZELIA
blank
9. BAROLO 1999 BRICCO FIASCO AZELIA  Disappointing start to this excellent flight with a corked bottle of what perhaps could have been the wine of the night Giacosa Falleto from that outstanding classic 1996 vintage. Barbaresco a ringer supposed to be lighter bodied region but label showed 14.5 while Casa Mate 13.5 & both Fiasco at 14. La Spinetta is a top producer and this is a lovely delicious example still with tannins from their unique Gallina. A couple more stellar 1997s in this flight both quite youthful again. Elio Grasso atypical for 1996 & Monforte d’Alba here as dry, tarry but musty so not the best clean bottle – prefer their promising exciting 2010! Both Azelia Fiasco steep vineyard in Castiglione Falleto shine but 1997 more baked while 1999 the best of this second flight with structure, texture harmony, and real depth of elegant ripe fruit that will continue to develop complexity.

IMG_2615
blank

10. BAROLO 2003 SPERSS ANGELO GAJA
blank
11. BAROLO 2001 MONPRIVATO GIUSEPPE MASCERELLO
blank
12. BAROLO 2001 GRAN BUSSIA RISERVA ALDO CONTERNO
blank
13. BAROLO 2001 CICALA ALDO CONTERNO
blank
14. BAROLO 2004 VIGNA CROERA DI LA MORRA BRUNO GIACOSA  Wonderful third flight of treasures. Unfortunately perhaps one of the best Monprivato was corked. Sperss forwardly drinking from 2003 but very distinct. Gran Bussia great plots show fresh big cherries fruit from the impressive 2001 year. Cicala also from Aldo Conterno in 2001 has superb tobacco and tar with minerals both setting a very high Barolo bar. 2004 are drinking better now but seem a step behind those structured 2001s but Giacosa always produces a bottle to be reckoned with for quality.
blank
15. BAROLO 1996 BRUNO GIACOSA
blank
16. BAROLO 1989 VIGNA GIACHINI  GIOVANNI CORINO
blank
17. BAROLO 1970 CANALE D’ALBA ENRICO SERAFINO The final oldest flight with the cheeses seemed almost an afterthought. Really admire 1996 but this one seems quite dry and still backward not singing tonight. The surprise was the refined outstanding 1989 vintage full of charm from Corino while historic 1970 was big but oxidizing probably not well stored. Also liked the 2001 Vin Santo Dei Chianti Classico from Isole e Olena with the cheese course.
A challenging and educational masterclass trying blind these 17 top Piedmont nebbiolo  wines. Impressive quality but they do benefit from time in the bottle – like 20 years of age. Don’t really like those who simplify them as similar to pinot noir. Yes they are more like pinot than other wine grapes but that doesn’t capture how truly unique and one of a kind they are. They both can have a lighter colour, complex aromas and bouquet, with prominent acid and tannin (Barolo has more of both) but a top red Burgundy & top Barolo really are quite different. Please take time to study them and appreciate their intriguing differences. Also have patience to see how they develop that hallmark “tar & roses” and other incredible complex factors on the nose and palate with cellaring. Have you tried an aged Barolo?

IMG_2611
blank


You might also like:

Have you tried an aged Barolo?

View Results

Loading ... Loading ...

10 ways to eat more Veggies

November 25th, 2017

10 ways to eat more veggies

By Joseph Temple

With a busy schedule, sometimes it’s hard to eat right.  We’re constantly on the run and may not always eat right.  Here are 10 ideas to get more healthy veggies into your diet:


veggieelements1
1. Sandwiches – replace a standard Iceberg leaf with nutrient packed watercress or sprouts

veggieelements1
2. Hearty Salads – add roasted roots to simple greens – with a sprinkle of cheese it becomes a meal

veggieelements1
3. Trendy Pickled Vegetables – not just for cucumbers any more – try beets, carrots, or peppers

veggieelements1
4. Roasted Roots – fresh herbs and natural caramelization will bring depth to any dish

veggieelements1
5. Move Over Chickpea Veggie Dip – try spinach, carrot, egg plant, or beets

veggieelements1
6. Sweet Potato & Pumpkin Pies – with a pinch of sugar and spice, everything will be nice

veggieelements1
7. Soup – a simple, but yummy meal – try any vegetable combination – with or without meat

veggieelements1
8. Juice – a great alternative when you’re running out the door

veggieelements1
9. Stir Fry – it doesn’t get any easier that this

veggieelements1
10. Kabobs – aka meal on a stick – meat and veggies


You might also like:

Ask Sid: How to attract new members to our IWFS Branch?

November 22nd, 2017
Ask your question here

Ask Sid: How to attract new members to our IWFS Branch?

Question: Would you please give me a hint as to how in your opinion it is best to attract new members to our IWFS Branch?

Answer: Friends of present members with common interests is always a most reliable source. Getting the word out about your Branch activities to people who are interested in wine and food is crucial. You can do this in many ways including your local wine shop, cooking classes, winemaker dinners etc. These days being involved in social media is a most helpful way. There is an excellent  “How to Grow” feature on your IWFS website that I recommend reading. There also is a PDF attachment manual highlighting 10 ways of attracting potential new members by getting noticed online. Check it out!


You might also like:

 alt=

Lanson – A Champagne House on the Move

November 20th, 2017

Lanson champagne

There now are lots of Champagne houses and growers producing bubbles which are somewhat difficult to score. It is good to keep in mind that there are 4 main grape growing regions: 1. La Montagne de Reims (most northerly with firmer pinot noir), 2. La Vallee de la Marne (middle slopes from Ay beyond Chateau-Thierry for all 3 grape varieties but pinot meunier is prominent), 3. La Cote des Blancs (classy chardonnay on mainly east facing slopes from Epernay to Sezanne), 4. La Cote des Bars & Mongueux (warmest most southerly area near Troyes & Aube river favouring pinot noir). However the best vineyards tend to have the highest chalk content but there is no real overall classification of all the vineyards except for rating 17 Grand Cru villages at 100% & 38 Premier Cru ones between 90-99%. Still the majority are only 80-89% so it is important to try and find out where the grapes in your Champagne bottle are being grown. More information is being supplied both on the back label and the websites but it still can be elusive to determine. There are approximately 15,000 growers averaging small holdings of only 1.5 hectares with larger co-ops also involved. Therefore it becomes most important to rely on your own nose and palate to judge the quality of the bubbles in your glass. Also there is bottle variation as there in no assemblage later on but each bottle starts out uniquely and stays as such during lots of changes throughout production and bottling.

On November 15, 2017 a Lanson Champagne dinner was held in Vancouver at the innovative Peruvian influenced Ancora restaurant with Enguerrand Baijot their personable and so knowledgeable Director for North America. The menu courses matched well the style of all 5 different Champagnes tasted. Lanson claims to be the oldest family firm plus fourth oldest Champagne house founded in 1760 by Francois Delamotte who celebrated their 250th anniversary in 2010. They pride themselves in avoiding malolactic fermentation (MLF) used by many producers to soften the malic acid and to allow the Champagne to show more forwardly. This is an important current issue as with global warming more grapes are being picked with higher Ph and lower acidity levels. Many houses now are rethinking using automatic MLF and are checking acidity levels of all incoming grapes more closely before deciding.  However Jancis Robinson in an article in vinesmag.com Annual 2017/18 tasted the 5 last vintages of Lanson Noble Cuvee Blanc de Blancs (2002-1989) and because the 1997 and more recent vintages were not yet ready noted that “A 20-year-old wine that is still a bit too tart to enjoy seems a bit of a commercial mistake to me.” Note one also could argue that it is a good sign of a quality wine with fresh balancing acidity that will reward even more complexity with further bottle aging.

IMG_2592
blank

Some brief impressions of your scribe on the wines served:

1. BLACK LABEL BRUT NV – 50% pinot noir, 35 chardonnay, and 15 pinot meunier plus 60% Grand & Premier Cru on lees for 3 years (minimum by law is 15 months) with 25-30% reserve wines (used to be only 15-20%) and lower 8 g/l dosage Brut which is 65% of their total Champagne production. Chef de Cave Herve Danton (replaced 27 year winemaker Jean-Paul Gandon in 2015) has allowed some softening MLF on his current blends of Black Label but shows still their consistent fresh clean crisp pure fruit styling.

2. CLOS LANSON 2006 BRUT – First vintage of 100% organic chardonnay blanc de blancs unique one hectare walled Clos site in Reims next to their cellars since 18th century on top of a hill facing south on very chalky soil (planted in 1960 & 1986). Warmer here so harvest grapes from older vines earlier using only the first pressing vinified partly in wooden barrels. Only 7870 bottles (and 320 magnums) produced using 7-9 years on lees with low 3 g/l dosage Brut Nature shows remarkable fine delicacy and elegance as a perfect complex aperitif on its own. Worked with a delicious lobster dish here too. Very impressive prestige Champagne indeed! No rush with that amazing Lanson balance again.

3. EXTRA AGE BLANC DE BLANCS BRUT MV – All chardonnay only from three exceptional vintage years (2003, 2004, 2005) and 100% Grand Cru & Premier Cru in this blend so qualifies as MV compared to Black Label only with NV. Long lees aging of 7-9 years of full bodied yet citrus flavours is underrated quality of excellent value. Will age further.

4. GOLD LABEL 2005 BRUT – First vintage releases are 2002 & 2005 of 51% pinot noir & 49 chardonnay. Made to age but 2005 is already quite charming. The one to cellar is their next release of 2008 (an outstanding year) which is very promising for very long aging. Could turn out like those old Red Label (no longer made) treasures like the 1969 I enjoyed so much recently. Recommend Gold Label 2008 on release.

5. ROSE LABEL BRUT – 53% pinot noir, 32 chardonnay & 15 pinot meunier with 50-60 crus and 8 g/l dosage. Pioneer of the Rose style has salmon colour with some red fruits showing with the wine added from Bouzy. Classic.

Admire the direction Lanson are going. Check them out. Have you tried their quality bubbles recently?


You might also like:

Have you ever tried Lanson Champagne?

View Results

Loading ... Loading ...
Skip to toolbar