February 22, 2010

Jackson-Triggs 2004 Proprietors' Reserve Meritage

(Re-Tasted February 2010) ... I'm not one to mince words and when it comes to plastic corks I have a real problem holding my tongue.  The guy who invented plastic corks should be taken out back and shot.  He/she has done wine no favours at all, in fact I think he single-handedly ruined a few vintages of good wine.  The other thing that drives me crazy, is when I peel back the capsule of a bottle of wine and find a piece of plastic staring back at me - the immediate thought that runs through my head is "I have been waiting x-number of years to open this bottle and now I have to worry that it has oxidized because I had no idea it was sealed with a plastic cork" - it's infuriating.
So here I am tonight with a bottle of Jackson-Triggs 2004 Meritage and plastic is what I see ... I am already predisposed to be slightly pissed off, but I push on.  The smells emanating from the glass are those of raspberry, licorice and a slightly sherried note; and with the passage of time it does not seem to be getting any better.  Taste-wise, at first there was a vanilla-caramel note surrounded by dried red fruits; alas that does not last long and the wine seems to be wilting quickly in the glass, becoming more dried and lackluster.

By the second glass fruit is gone and the smell is fishy and funky with the merest hint of dried black fruit and cedary notes.  Another 15 minutes past and I could have sworn I was drinking bilge water and that's too bad because this was a beauty in its prime.  Has it's day past?  That is a tough question, find one that wasn't sealed with plastic, or a plastic cork which has held it's seal and I think this one is ripe for the drinking - but the closure has helped age the wine faster, blast you plastic cork I still have two bottles in my collection.

February 7, 2010

Thirty-Bench Winemakers 2006 Small Lot Cabernet Franc

(Re-Tasted February 2010) ... 2006 was not a great year for Ontario reds, in fact it was pretty lean picking. That siad, this Cabernet Franc was probably one of the best reds I tried that year: loaded with concentration and fruit. Now four years from vintage date I must say it's holding up quite well. The nose has maintained a fari amount of freshness of fruit, showing primarily black raspberry, with some secondary aromas of cocoa powder and chocolate. There also seems to be an alcohol note creeping into the mix, though it isn't as prevalent as to take away from the enjoyment of the wine. Taste-wise it's still very tasty: black raspberry, cherry-tobacco and tannin-rich blackberries. Still very nice. If you have some in your cellar consider drinking this wine over the next 2-3 years for optimum flavours.

Lailey Vineyard 2002 Canadian Oak Pinot Noir

Found February 2010

I rescued this bottle from the scrap heap of annihilation - basically someone I knew was going to throw it down the drain figuring it was too old (without even trying it) - what a waste. I brought it over to share with some friends one wine soaked evening. Not exactly at it's peek this bottle was making it's slow decline - but it still had enough stuffing to keep all in attendance interested. Loads of dried fruit and tons of sour cherry, all backed by a touch of wood tanins and lots of acidity. In its prime this would have been one fantastic wine, but I think at this stage, old age was taking its toll and getting the better of this bottle. Lost & Found Rating: Tolerable but fading