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Staff Picks

photo of staff member Ryan Almeida

Ryan Almeida

Retail Staff

The Nielluccio grape is said to be either indigenous to the island of Corsica or an identical clone of the Tuscan grape Sangiovese. Nevertheless, this particular offering from the aforementioned Mediterranean island is quite expressive with the nose reminiscent of dried flowers, sun-dried tomato, cherry and raspberry and the palate further asserting the red fruits with an added herbaceous character and a salty, brine finish. With high acidity and gripping tannins, this wine would benefit from 10-15 minutes in the fridge to obtain a moderate chill and can be paired with a number of tomato-based pasta dishes, as well as a variety of seafood!

 

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photo of staff member Martha Kelly

Martha Kelly

Retail Staff

The JF Arriezo Rueda Verdejo 2017 is a superb Spanish white from the Rueda region of Northern Spain. 100% Verdejo and grown organically. The soil in this region is rich in limestone, quite rocky and the region receives optimal sun exposure. Grapes are harvested at night to prevent oxidation and to help retain acidity and freshness. Fermented in stainless steel. In the glass: intense colour with green highlights, clean and bright. Pronounced aromatics of white fruit and a hint of stone fruit. On the palate the fruit carries with the addition of a slight herbal note of anise or fennel. The strong minerality and well balanced acidity brings a wonderful freshness to the wine. Enjoy with seafood, fish and lighter dishes such as salad or vegetables.

 

 

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photo of staff member Lucas Mader

Lucas Mader

Retail Staff

We like to think of all French wine as “rustic, country, small production” but the reality is that a large part of French wine production comes from fairly large producers making mass quantities. Regions like Sancerre are no exception; hasty pressing of the grapes, cultured yeasts to race through fermentation in big steel tanks, and rapid bottling by spring at the latest. But not with Domaine Vacheron – they farm biodynamically, hand pick in small parcels and ferment using indigenous yeasts in small oak barrels. This is not your average Sancerre, with fresh fruits leading to a powerful mineral backbone with vibrant acidity. Enjoy with fresh oysters or goats cheese.

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Gaby McCotter

Retail Staff

Rottensteiner is a winery located in Bolzano, Sud Tyrol, Italy. Hans Rottensteiner founded the estate in 1956 and demijohns of wine to Switzerland. In the 1980’s, his son Toni took over and started to bottle their wines for sale and as of 2001, Hans’s grandson Hannes is now part of the team. The winery processes grapes from the family’s 10 hectare estate as well as receiving grapes from 60 regional growers.

What a delightful wine! Pinot Blanc for Italy…not something you see everyday. This wine has lovely citrus notes with a hint of quince on the nose. It’s a refreshing wine with some good acidity. The wine can be paired with creamy sauces, smoked trout, light fish dishes and also a great aperitif wine.

 

 

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photo of staff member Jason MacPhee

Jason MacPhee

Wine Category Manager

Casa Girelli selects the grapes from specific vineyards in the Chianti region. With the utmost attention to detail, they create some of the best values you can find. Fontella Chianti is a traditional blend of Sangiovese, with some Cannaiolo blended in. Classic Chianti aromas of cherry, leather and spice. The palate reveals more savoury notes, refreshing acidity and bright fruit. The finish lasts almost as long as it is taking Manny Machado and Bryce Harper to make a decision.

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photo of staff member Tristan Gray

Tristan Gray

Retail Staff

While France isn’t the first place you would think of for gin, there is a rich history of french distilling. The Coquerel family recipe for juniper distillate dates back to 1765. Drawing upon this old recipe, and a recent trip to India for inspiration, Pierre synthesized both old and new, east and west to create Normindia Gin.

Many of the flavours are familiar: woodsy, peppery juniper, fragrant lily and zesty citrus. But there are also some unfamiliar notes: spicy ginger, toasty clove, and green apple tartness. The sum is a seamless and silky gin that is exceptionally complex and refreshing.

 

 

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photo of staff member Alanna McIntyre

Alanna McIntyre

Product Specialist

This is a classically styled organic Rioja Reserva from a family owned and operated estate.  The nose entices with notes of dried flowers, leather, sweet tobacco, vanilla bean, dried herbs with delicate red fruit hovering in the background.  There is a comforting earthiness and warming spicy quality to this wine that is extra enjoyable in the dead of winter.

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photo of staff member Jason MacLeod

Jason MacLeod

Assistant Retail Manager

Louis Chenu Pere et Filles have been producing wines for five generations. They farm their 9.5Ha following biodynamic principles. For a year in which the domaine was decimated by frost, they were still able to produce a stunning wine revealing a pretty floral nose backed up with red berry aromas.  It’s mid-weight palate is ripe and quite approachable now, but would do well hidden away for a year or two.

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photo of staff member Jenny Gammon

Jenny Gammon

Brand, Communications & Event Manager

I recently got back from a three week vacation where I explored Vietnam, Singapore and Hong Kong. Yes, I loved the cultural attractions and the beautiful landscapes, but mostly, I loved the food. Now that I’ve returned to the frigid Canadian winter, I find myself in my kitchen trying to re-create some of the incredible flavours I enjoyed. It is a delicious and humbling experience. That said, this wine seems to go with everything I try- from umami rich noodle dishes to fresh, herbaceous Vietnamese classics. This is a precise and mineral-driven wine with loads of character and bright minerality. Bone dry and complex, I’ll be enjoying this beauty all winter long.

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photo of staff member Kathryn Harding

Kathryn Harding

Sommelier and Retail Manager

The Maremma region is where the Super Tuscan wine movement was born. A group of rebels who decide to plant and blend non-indigenous varietals like Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, and Syrah with traditional Italian varietals.  The Pianirossi Solus is a less a traditional blend with no French varietals, however the blend of 45% Sangiovese, 45% Montepulciano and 10% Alicante is wine is everything I want in a great Italian wine!

With lots of forward, voluptuous fruit and a little bit of vanilla from the oak aging, plus a slight spice undertone, the nose is delicate but layered. The palate combines those flavours with lots of velvety tannins and the perfect Italian acidity. I had this with homemade pizzas last week and I can tell you that one bottle was not enough!

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