Silver Lake Premium Vodka

20130224-154735.jpgLCBO#: 275263
Price: $30.95
Made in: Simcoe, ON, Canada
By: Dover Enterprises
40% ABV. (80 proof)

This premium vodka from Canada is quadruple distilled and made of rice. Never heard of this distillery from Simcoe, Ontario, but it has been running since 2004 and started out doing sake, so they know how to turn rice into alcohol. Typical vodka smell of rubbing alcohol, but milder and does not burn the nose. Hints of anise is also found. The liquid warms up as it goes down, but again, no burning. The taste is pretty grassy and herbal with some mild alcohol and spiciness. The aftertaste lingers quite nicely. This is a very nice vodka that is smooth, and highly recommended for Vodkatini (with nothing but a few olives). Up there with the Stolichnaya.

Thorn-Clarke Pinot Noir Chardonnay Brut Reserve


LCBO#: 280925
Price: $17.00
Made in: Australia
By: Thorn-Clarke Wines
Varietal: Chardonnay, Pinot Noir

The Pinot Noir grapes in this one adds a bit of colour to this South Australian sparkling. Close to looking like a Rosé. Yeast nose with hints of sweet fruits, like berries. This continues into the taste, with strawberry notes covering the yeast. Mild dryness with enough wetness to be refreshing. The yeast lingers in the aftertaste, with a little tart. An interesting Sparkling with some Pinot Noir to balance the Chardonnay. Still, a bit too much yeast for our likings. Taking over the nice fruitiness. Better colder for that reason.

Rating: 3.9/5

Thelema Mountain Red 2010


LCBO#: 222570
Price: $11.95
Made in: South Africa
By: Thelema Moutain Vineyards

This blended South African wine has 29% Shiraz, 28% Cabernet Sauvignon, 18% Grenache, 11% Merlot, 11% Petit Verdot and 3% Cabernet Franc. It’s also aged in oak barrels for 18 months. A very well-blended nose of cherries, leather, smoked meats, alcohol and red grapes. Mild dry mouthfeel with nice tannins in the finish. Same flavours found in the aromas, but a little milder. Quite a nice blended red wine with lots to offer, and worth the price for a table wine that is ready to drink.

Rating: 4.1/5

Fantinel Prosecco Extra Sec

20130217-150611.jpgLCBO#: 297812
Price: $14.95
Made in: Italy
By: Fantinel Spa

This Italian bubbly has a great nose with the grapes, yeast and notes of caramel and strawberries. Big white, almost creamy, head with better retention than most. Nice mild sweetness with a citrus sourness that covers the sugars. Yeast comes out in the aftertaste. Hints of honey eventually appear, so gets tastier with time. Not as dry as expected (as written Extra Dry). Pretty well-balanced, very fruity sparkling, that is easy to drink for all. Worth the price.

Rating: 4.1/5

Valldosera Cava Brut Nature

20130210-153737.jpgLCBO#: 311738
Price: $17.95
Made in: Spain
By: Finca Valldosera, S.A

This Spanish bubbly is well-rated in the Vintages, at the LCBO. Yeasty nose at first pour, with some light sweetness from the grapes, all well-blended with some notes of sourness and dryness. A nice balance between a wet mouthfeel and some mild dryness in the finish. Again, all nicely mixed taste between the light sweetness and sourness. Hints of oranges in the aftertaste eventually come out. So, nothing too crazy here, but a very well-balanced, all-around easy-drinking sparkling.

Rating: 3.8/5

Muga Conde De Haro Brut


LCBO#: 168559
Price: $19.95
Made in: Spain
By: Bodegas Muga S.A.

Big creamy white head that has better retention than most sparkling. Apple scent at first pour, but soft yeast eventually makes it way out. Same for the taste, with a little citrus sourness in the background. Sweetness balances everything in the aromas and flavours. Mild yeast lingers in the aftertaste. Notes of raisins and alcohol appears in the nose, as it warms up. Nothing offensive and pretty decent for those who like apples.

Rating: 3.8/5