JULIAN HITNER TORONTO WINE CONSULTANT

"For love of everything that is wine"

WINES OF THE WEEK FOR SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 29, 2007

Fine Wines for Giving Thanks:

Every year, in early-October, we meet with family to celebrate togetherness and (hopefully) prosperity. Along with some turkey (normally the main staple of the feast), this yearly activity may or may not coincide with the enjoyment of fine wine, probably with family members or close friends who appreciate items of good quality.

This is where I come in. What wines ought one to have when giving thanks?

With the almighty turkey, the general rule of thumb is to drink Beaujolais or Pinot Noir. For my part, I prefer to stick with the latter rule: a good Pinot Noir is always nice with a big bird.

But what about those who would like a bit of a bigger red wine? Or, for that matter, what if somebody wants a white wine, instead?

For answers to such tough nuts, I am happy to offer some help.

RED WINES

(1) Yering Station
      -Pinot Noir
      -Yarra Valley, Australia
      -Vintage 2006
       (Drink Now or Hold)
      -PRICE: $20.00 (approx.)
       (sold through Trilogy Wine
       Merchants --- contact
       416-968-0758 for info.)
     
-8.25/10



COMMENT: For my part, I believe Australia, within just a few short years, has made remarkable strides in producing world-class Pinot Noir with a distinctive 'Aussie style.' Though very young, the latest Pinot from Yering Station (produced in the cooler-climate region of Yarra Valley) shows great promise. With light notes of berries and a bit of licorice, the wine is somewhat herbaceous right now and notably tannic. It does need time, and I think it will go great with a well-basted turkey. Note: this wine will probably eventually be released through Vintages.

PAIRING SUGGESTION: Tukey (white or dark meat) --- enjoy!

(2) Château Le Bourdillot
      -'Tentation'
      -Blend
      -Graves, Bordeaux, France

      -Vintage 2003
       (Drink Now or Hold)
      -L.C.B.O. PRICE: $21.95
      -L.C.B.O. # 43661
       (available in most larger
       L.C.B.O. outlets)

      -8.25/10



COMMENT: Released on September 15, 2007, this wine can go a long way towards giving 'good thanks.' With supple toasty notes and light earth and floral scents, the 'Tentation' is a most pleasing item. Indeed, for a 'medium-style' Bordeaux, some might say it is perhaps a bit too big to go well with turkey. In all, however, for those who would like a wine that is somewhat more fuller-bodied than a light Pinot Noir or Beaujolais, I believe this wine should go spendidly!

PAIRING SUGGESTION: Turkey (dark meat with stuffing, especially) --- enjoy!

WHITE WINES

(1) Château Labouré-Roi
      Meursault

      -'Clos des Bouches Cheres'
       (Premier Cru)
      -Meursault, Burgundy, France
      -
Chardonnay
      -Vintage 2005
       (Drink Now or Hold)
      -L.C.B.O. PRICE: $64.95
      -L.C.B.O. # 45724
       (available at most larger
       L.C.B.O. outlets)
      -8.5/10




COMMENT: Granted, this is not the cheapest of wines to enjoy on Thanksgiving (*yes, I finally mentioned the actual holiday*), but it will go a long way toward: (1) pairing beautifully with the foods of the feast; and (2) ensuring great cheer among guests! Tight at present, with 'mineral' and 'wooden' notes, this wine comes from the superb 2005 vintage. The fruit is only starting to show; and overall, the wine is very complex, soft on the mouth and delicate on the finish. An excellent Meursault!

PAIRING SUGGESTION: Turkey (white meat, especially; go easy on the gravy) --- enjoy!

(2) Weingut Dr. Unger
      -'Oberfeld Classic'
      -Kremstal, Austria
      -
Grüner Veltliner
       (grape varietal)
      -Vintage 2006
       (Drink Now or Hold)
      -L.C.B.O. PRICE: $19.95
       (available in several dozen
       stores within L.C.B.O. system)
      -L.C.B.O. # 951756
      -8.25/10




COMMENT: Do not be surprised if you have never heard of this wine! Made from the deservedly-respectful Grüner Veltliner grape, this Austrian dry white has been met with very good success among true wine enthusiasts. Carrying some very crisp overtones, along with a few lentils and 'temperate' fruit, this white from the well-regarded estate of Dr. Unger should have just the right amount of backbone to go very well with a well-cooked turkey.

PAIRING SUGGESTION: Turkey (*just going with my theme*) --- enjoy!

ANY QUESTIONS?

Email me at julianhitner@hitnerwine.com

                            OR

See Contact information for more details

Members Area

Recent Blog Entries