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September 12, 2017 Comments (0) Views: 321 Good Food Culture

September Classics from Rioja, Sonoma & Napa

Le Sommelier presents three reds in the Vintages Classics Collection.

In this month’s CLASSICS catalogue, there are three incredible wines being featured.
The Señorío de P. Peciña Gran Reserva is this estate’s top bottling and is only made in exceptional vintages. 2009 is this wines fourth release, having first been produced in 1998, and then only made again in 2001 and 2003. These carefully selected grapes came from a 50 year old vineyard and spent four years in neutral American oak barrels. This is a top shelf lovers of traditionally styled Rioja, to be sure!

Californian winemaker Jeff Cohn specializes in producing small lots of single vineyard Zinfandels and Rhone centric wines from some of the most highly acclaimed vineyards in Napa and Sonoma. Wine writer Robert Parker holds Jeff Cohn in very high esteem and and wrote “one of my favorite wine producers in California is Jeff Cohn, who seems to have the Midas touch when it comes to accessing special vineyard sites and exploiting them to produce full-flavoured, pedal-to-the-metal wines.” This Zinfandel is from the amazing 2013 vintage and was grown in the Iron Hill vineyard in the Sonoma Valley, which is farmed on volcanic rock and planted in an amphitheater setting. A beautiful place, known to make beautiful wine.

For those familiar with cult California wines like Screaming Eagle, Dalla Valle, Jones Family, Grace Family to name a few, winemaker Heidi Peterson Barrett will need no introduction. Heidi is currently the winemaker for Amuse Bouche, Paradigm, Lamborn, Kenzo Estate, Au Sommet, Vin Perdu, La Sirena and Fantesca. In 2002, Heidi partnered with longtime friend John Schwartz to create Amuse Bouche, a Pomerol-inspired Merlot from Napa Valley. Another wine from Napa’s fabulous 2013 vintage, Robert Parker that Amuse Bouche “has always been one of the best Merlot-based wines in Northern California.” Yes, it’s pricey, ok, very pricey, but it will wow you in more ways than you can imagine.

Treat yourself, you’re worth it!

Sincerely,

Bernard Stramwasser

Le Sommelier
416.603.7026

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Reviews and Tasting Notes

Bodegas Hermanos Peciña
Señorío de P. Peciña Gran Reserva 2009

There is one more exceptional red with an extended aging in barrel that was only produced in 1998, 2001 and 2003, and now in this 2009 Señorío de P. Peciña Gran Reserva. It is the usual Tempranillo with 3% Garnacha and 2% Graciano, but in this case from 50-year-old vines from their Finca Iscorta vineyard in the Sonsierra zone. The wine is aged in well-seasoned American oak barrels for four years with manual and gravity racking twice per year. If the nose could somehow remind you of the 2009 Reserva, this is more open and aromatic, more nuanced, and the palate also shows a level of complexity and refinement that makes it much more enjoyable, with polished tannins and great length. While it’s not a wimp, it doesn’t overload your senses. A great and classical Gran Reserva. Drink: 2016-2024. – Score: 94, Luis Gutierrez, robertparker.com, Aug. 30, 2016

Varietals: 95% Tempranillo, 3% Graciano, 2% Garnacha

Region: Rioja, Spain

Price: $52.00 (per bottle)
LCBO#: 82164

Jeff Cohn Cellars
Zinfandel Iron Hill Sonoma 2013

The 2013 Zinfandel Iron Hill Vineyard is slightly less powerful at 15.2% alcohol. Coming from the hard volcanic solid, this wine was aged 16 months in about 30% new French oak and produced another relatively small cuvee of 206 cases from the steep hillsides of the Iron Hill Vineyard. Cohn Compared this wine to a French Côte-Rôtie, and I can see the legitimacy in his analysis. The wine has a fragrance in the nose that almost gives the sense that there are some white grapes contributing to the floral notes in the bouquet. There aren’t any, as this is 100% Zinfandel, but the color is not as dense as its predecessor. Still, the complexity and richness are endearing. This fleshy, medium to full-bodied wine displays loads of black raspberry, licorice and a touch of tapenade. This is a beauty and quite a complex offering for Zinfandel. Drink it over the next 5 years. Drink: 2016-2021. – Score: 93, Robert Parker, robertparker.com, Aug 2016

Varietal: 100% Zinfindal

Region: Sonoma, California

Price: $77.00 (per bottle)

LCBO#: 518266

Amuse Bouche
Proprietary Red Napa 2013

The flagship wine of Amuse Bouche, the 2013 Proprietary Red Blend Amuse Bouche (Merlot), 96% Merlot and 4% Cabernet Franc, has always been one of the best Merlot-based wines in Northern California. It shows loads of espresso bean, white chocolate, mocha, black cherry and blackberry fruit. The wine is soft, but structured, vibrant, juicy and full-bodied. Drink it over the next 15-20 years. Score: 94, Robert Parker, erobertparker.com, Dec. 2013

Varietals: 96% Merlot, 4% Cabernet Franc

Region: Napa Valley, California

Price: $497.00 (per bottle)
LCBO#: 362863

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