Want to Try More Wines from Argentina? Here’s How.

Celebrate Argentina Wines 2009There are some free tastings of Argentinean wine for those of us that live in the Vancouver, BC lower mainland.   I’m sure there will be Malbecs and Torrontes, but maybe some new ones for you, such as Bonarda, Syrah, or Pinot Grigio from Argentina.

There are 3 tastings coming up at the BCLDB flagship 39th & Cambie liquor store:

  • Friday October 4th, 2:30 – 6:30 PM
  • Saturday October 5th, 1:00 – 5:00 PM
  • Thursday October 10th, 2:30 – 6:30 PM

These are casual tastings –drop by and enjoy several wines, accompanied with traditional empanadas from Panaderia Latina Bakery (that’s located 1 block north of Joyce skytrain station BTW).

You may also want to read about my latest Argentine wine picks from the Celebrate Argentina event last week.  Here is the link to my Argentina wine picks. Enjoy!

Win Tickets to the Celebrate Argentina Tasting

Celebrate Argentina

Celebrate Argentina

On Wednesday, September 25, 2013 Wines of Argentina will host Celebrate One Night In Argentina.  With DJs, a graffiti artist and more than 30 wineries, the evening will be a lively festival of modern Argentine culture.   The event will benefit the BC Hospitality Foundation’s Tip Out To Help fundraising efforts.  Enter the MyWinePal contest for your chance to win 2 tickets to the fantastic event.

About Argentina and Their Wine

Argentina is the fifth largest producer of wine in the world and produces about four times as much wine as Chile.  Spanish colonization in 1541 brought over Vitis Vinifera vines and the first record of a vineyard dates back to 1557 in Santiago del Estero. Vines came from different sources, including Italy.

The country is known for Malbec, Bonarda, Tempranillo, Barbera, Lambrusco, Cabernet Sauvignon, Pinot Noir, Syrah and others. The most widely planted white varietals are Pedro Xeminez, Moscatel, Torrontes, Chenin Blanc, Semillon, Riesling, Chardonnay and others.

The Event: Where, When, and How Much?

Wednesday, September 25, 2013
7:00 – 9:30 pm
Jewel Ballroom
1495 West 8th Avenue (at Granville), Vancouver

Tickets $49; available through www.winesofargentina.ca
$10 discount with promotional code greatwine makes them a deal at $39

Contest to Win 2 Tickets!

Would you like to wine 2 tickets to this awesome event?  For your chance to win, do the following:

  1. Send out the tweet “I want to win 2 tickets to #CelebrateArgentina from @mywinepal”
  2. Post a comment below with your favourite wine from Argentina that you have tasted or your favourite grape from Argentina.

One pair of tickets will be randomly on September 23, 2013 from all entries, and the winner will be notified on Twitter.

BC Hospitality Foundation’s Tip Out To Help

The foundation, formed in fall 2006, was inspired by the desire to help long-time wine agent Michael Willingham with the money he needed for both a costly surgery and the rehabilitation time that would follow.

This desire to help Michael brought forward a need to establish a trust fund that could be used to help anyone within the food service, beverage, and hospitality industry who required extraordinary support due to illness or accident.

Read more here about the BC Hospitality Foundation.

Free Wines of Argentina Featured in October at BC Liquor Stores

Argentina has been producing high quality Malbecs, which we are all familiar with, but there is more to Argentina than Malbec.  Cabernet Sauvignon, Bonarda, Torrontes, Carmenere and even Riesling are being produced.  Time to try these other wines, in addition to Malbec.  Your chance to try some Argentine wines for free, is through the BC Liquor Stores in October.  The dates and announcement are below.  In addition, you have a chance to wine a prize package to Victoria’s Oak Bay Beach Hotel.  Enjoy!

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September 18, 2012 (Vancouver, BC) –Get ready to celebrate the wines of Argentina!  This October the BCLDB will host three FREE wine and food consumer events at BC Liquor Stores.  Each of the “Argentine Treasures” tastings will feature a different selection of quality wines paired with empanadas from Panaderia Latina Bakery.  In conjunction with this promotion, Wines of Argentina will also hold a draw for a luxurious prize package featuring Victoria’s Oak Bay Beach Hotel.

Argentina is one of the hottest categories on BC shelves, and the free tastings are a great way to become familiar with the amazing diversity of excellent wines produced by the South American country.

As part of the month-long celebration, Wines of Argentina is giving away a deluxe prize package including the following:

  • 2 nights’ accommodation for two in a Panoramic Ocean View Boutique Suite at the Oak Bay Beach Hotel
  • Boathouse Spa & Baths – hour-long Classic Massage (one per person)
  • Access to the Seaside Therapeutic Mineral Baths, Steam Room & Fitness Centre
  • Complimentary Valet Parking

This prize package is valued at $1,150.  You can enter online at www.winesofargentina.ca

 

Argentine Treasures Free Consumer Tastings

Saturday, October 6
Cambie Signature Store, Vancouver
2:00-6:00pm

Thursday, October 11
Alberni & Bute Signature Store, Vancouver
3:00-7:00pm

 

Friday, October 12
Park Royal Signature Store, West Vancouver
3:00-7:00pm

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About Wines of Argentina: Wines of Argentina is responsible for the promotion of the brand VINO ARGENTINO around the world. Since 1993, this organization has been promoting the image of local wines abroad and providing advice on export strategies for Argentina by studying and analyzing trends in consumer markets. Its aim is to contribute to the consolidation of Argentina as one of the main wine exporting countries in the world and to the global success of the Argentine wine industry by enhancing its positive image in the wine trade, among opinion leaders and consumers. www.winesofargentina.ca

 

About the Oak Bay Beach Hotel:  The new Oak Bay Beach Hotel is being completely rebuilt on the same spectacular oceanfront lot where the previous hotel sat for more than 80 years. It will reopen in October 2012 as a 100-room hotel with 20 luxury residences. Built to five-star standards, hotel and residential amenities include seaside mineral pools, a fitness centre, Boathouse Spa & Baths, The Snug pub, the David Foster Foundation Theatre and a fine-dining restaurant. Not only is this Victoria’s first combination full-service luxury hotel and private residence, but it is also the only commercial waterfront development in Oak Bay. www.oakbaybeachhotel.com

My Latest IVSA Wine Highlights and Recommendations

Today was the first Import Vintners & Spirits Association (IVSA) Product Salon since before summer. I was looking forward to see what range of new wines have come in over the summer, and I can tell you about, so you can enjoy some great wines with the fall and winter coming upon us. As usual there was too many wines to try in too little time, so hopefully I found a few gems to pass along to you.

Overall Gems

Dante Robino Bonarda 2009

These two wines have a great price point, and taste great too.  One is from Italy and the other from Argentina.

  • Bodega Dante Robino Bonarda, 2009, Argentina ($17.99). Bonarda is an Italian grape. It was brought to Argentina where it flourishes,but it is not so well known to the North American palate.  This wine was very deep ruby in the glass.  Wow, a very interesting nose with cloves up front and black fruit supporting from behind. Medium plus in body with a round mouthfeel.  Cloves, vanilla and black fruit with a spicy finish.  Long length. This wine has the backbone and fruit to stand up to a heavy meal.
  • Tenuta Maggiore Amphorae, 2009, Italy ($14.95). This Italian red is made from Croatina, Barbera and Shiraz grapes. Lighter ruby red in the glass. Some violets, blackberries on the nose.  Light mouthfeel, bright flavours of cherries and violets.  Quite dry.  A really different, and really nice wine!

A Tale of Two Chenins

The Winery of Good Hope and Domaine de Vaugondy Chenin Blancs

Have you heard of Vouvray, or the Loire Valley in France?  This is classic Chenin Blanc. Have you heard of Steen?  That’s the name of Chenin Blanc from South Africa.  I enjoyed a comparison of these 2 Chenins, which are both sub $20.

  • The Winery of Good Hope, Chenin Blanc, 2010, South Africa ($13.99). Fairly deep lemon coloured. Light lemony nose.  High acid right up front.  Citrus and pairs on the palate with a vanilla finish and long length.  Medium body.  Something a bit different from a chardonnay if you like a little more acidity.
  • Domaine de Vaugondy, Vouvray, 2010, France ($19.99). Pale lemon with a green tinge. A nice flowery, stone fruit nose. Really high acidity with green flavours. Really needs to be sipped along with food, or let this one age a few years and then try again.  Chenin Blancs can stand aging and get better with time.

A Few Nice French Reds

These next 3 wines range across from the West, South, and East parts of France.  All different grapes with one sure to please you.

  • Henry Fessy “St. Amour”, 2009, France ($24.99). This is a Beaujolais from the eastern part of France (south of Burgundy), made from the Gamay grape.  Pale ruby in colour.  Cherry bon bon nose. Light body and lower tannins.  Cherry flavour. Lighter in body than a Bordeaux, similar in weight to a lighter Pinot Noir. Chilled a bit and served with a cornish hen, a light curry, or some Camembert cheese.
  • Chateau Belles-Graves, 2004, Bordeaux, France ($46.58). If you want to splurge on a red wine, this one would fit the bill. Very elegant, a blend of Merlot and Cabernet Franc, coming from the right bank, in the Lalande-de-Pomerol AOC. Pale garnet in colour. Nice aromas of flowers and cherries. Light body with cherry and apple flavours up front, violets showing up mid-palate, and a bit of spice on the finish. Medium tannins with a soft finish.
  • Domaine de Fontsainte, Corbieres Rouge, 2007, France ($22.31). This is a blended wine from southern France.  Corbieres being straight east of Carcassone. The blend of grapes are Carignan, Grenache, and Syrah. Medium garnet in the glass. Stony, smoky, strawberries on the nose. Medium body, dry with cherries, raspberries and some smokiness/flintiness mid-palate. Medium acidity with softer tanning.  Long length some some black pepper on the finish.  A very well-structured wine.

Anything But Chardonnay

Neudorf Pinot Gris 2010

I know that some people really do not like Chardonnay. So if you belong in this club, OR if you want to try some exciting white wines, try these out.

Domaine Gayda Three Winds Viognier, 2010, France ($13.99). Viognier is an aromatic grape coming out of the Rhone Valley. This wine had nice flowers and peach aromas in the glass.  Spicy cinnamon and peach flavours.  Round with medium acidity. Very enjoyable with a herbal finish.

Neudorf Moutere Pinot Gris, 2010, New Zealand ($29.99). Pale lemon in colour.  Stone fruit along with a nutty/oaky nose. Light bodied, off dry with medium acidity.  Citrus and a bit of spiciness and honey flavours. Elegant.

Canepa Novisimo Sauvignon Blanc, 2o10, Chile ($11.99). This is an unreal price. The Canepa winery was named the Chilean Producer of the Year at the International Wine & Spirit Competition 2010. New to the Vancouver market. This wine has a nice nose of kiwi fruit, citrus, and a hint of oranges. Medium acidity with herbal and asparagus flavours. Light body. Make it your fun to drink, house white wine.

Juicy Red Wines

To finish off this blog article, here are 2 full fruited red wines.

Lange Twins Winery, Zinfandel, 2009, California ($23.99). The zinfandel grapes for this wine come from certified sustainable Lodi Rules, in Lodi, California. Light ruby in colour.  Ripe raspberry aromas. Lots of vanilla, raspberries and cassis on the palate. Medium body, round mouthfeel, with medium acidity makes this jammy zin easy and ready to drink now.

Santa Julia Magna, 2009, Argentina ($15.99). This wine is made by the Zuccardi family.  I’ve spoken about their “Q” series many times.  Their Santa Julia Magna is a blend of 50% Cabernet Sauvignon, 40% Malbec, and 10% Syrah. Almost opaque budy in colour. Really ripe black fruit, plums, cherries and vanilla aromas. Smooth, full body with cherries and vanilla. Drink now.

Try out one or more of these wines, and comment on this post.  Let me know what you think.  And I’ll keep you posted on the next IVSA. Enjoy!