Wine & Book Pairing
Perfume by Patrick Süskind – The Story Of Murder
In the slums of eighteenth-century France, the infant Jean-Baptiste Grenouille is born with one sublime gift–an absolute sense of smell. As a boy, he lives to decipher the odors of Paris, and apprentices himself to a prominent perfumer who teaches him the ancient art of mixing precious oils and herbs. But Grenouille’s genius is such that he is not satisfied to stop there, and he becomes obsessed with capturing the smells of objects such as brass doorknobs and fresh-cut wood. Then one day he catches a hint of a scent that will drive him on an ever-more-terrifying quest to create the “ultimate perfume”–the scent of a beautiful young virgin. Told with dazzling narrative brilliance, Perfume is a hauntingly powerful tale of murder and sensual depravity. One of my top 10 books that I have read in the last 10 years.
CASTELLO DI GABBIANO DARK KNIGHT, ITALY
Super Tuscan – A blend of Cabernet, Merlot, and Sangiovese that will please the most discerning wine lovers. Average price $22.99 + tax
BAROSSA VALLEY ESTATE GRENACHE SHIRAZ MOURVEDRE – AUSTRALIA
This wine capture the distinctive elegance, finesse and vibrant fruit flavours of one of the world’s most celebrated wine regions. Welcome to the Barossa Valley. Average price $22.99
MISSION HILL RESERVE LIMITED EDITION VIOGNIER – CANADA
Full-bodied, rich with perfumed apricot nectar, ripe peach, quince jam and a voluminous buttery texture. Average price $23.99
Happy reading & swirling!
Wine Of The Month
Pasquera Crianza, Ribera Del Duoro, Spain
In the mid-eighties, few people outside Ribera Del Duero had ever heard of the viña Pesquera wines of Alejandro Fernandez. Enter an American merchant and some influential American wine writers, one of whom compared viña Pesquera to a fine Bordeaux, ‘…and the rest, as they say, is history.’ Today, it has become one of the most prestigious bodegas in Spain, and is appreciated worldwide. Tinto Pesquera crianza is made of Tempranillo grapes. It is a dark ruby-coloured that exhibits fragrant plummy-tobaccoey, violet, cherry, and spice on the nose and palate with excellent concentration and length.
Spain’s best native red grape is grown widely over the northern and central parts of the country. Tempranillo (also known as Ull de Llebre, Cencibel, Tinta del Pais and several other synonyms) is a black grape variety widely grown to make full-bodied red wines. Tempranillo is an official variety of the DO of Ribera del Duero. Tempranillo grapes are very low in the enzymes that help to cause oxidation (browning and spoiling of juice) so the grapes are easy to handle at harvest time. The wines also keep well, and are very suitable for ageing in oak barrel.
Price: $32.99 + tax.
Find this wine at BC govt liquor stores, and selected private stores
Wine Of The Month
G.S.M. The Strapper Yalumba Barossa Valley, 2014, Australia
The Barossa Valley was formed by the North Para River and was named by Colonel William Light in 1837. The area of Barossa Valley, often referred to as the valley floor, is approximately 13 km long and 14 km wide and stretches from Williamstown in the south almost to Kapunda and Truro in the north. It averages less than 400 metres above sea level. Within Barossa Valley, there are numerous unofficial sub-regions: from north, south, east and west they include Gomersal, Williamstown, Lyndoch, Rowland Flat, Barossa foothills, Vine Vale, Light Pass, northern Barossa Valley, Greenock, Seppeltsfield and Marananga. The red brown soils in Barossa Valley are more fertile than Eden Valley, rainfall is up to 50% less and temperatures are up to 2 % warmer.
Yalumba is a winery located near the town of Angaston, South Australia in the Barossa Valley wine region. It was founded by a British brewer, Samuel Smith, who emigrated to Australia with his family from Wareham, Dorset in August 1847 aboard the ship ‘China’. Upon arriving in Australia in December, Smith built a small house on the banks of the River Torrens. He lived there less than a year before moving north to Angaston where he purchased a 30-acre (120,000 m2) block of land on the settlement’s south eastern boundary. He named his property “Yalumba” after an indigenous Australian word for “all the land around”. In 1849 Samuel Smith, along with his son Sidney, planted Yalumba’s first vineyards, beginning the Yalumba dynasty. Today Yalumba is Australia’s oldest family-owned winery. (via wikipidia)
The GSM Strapper blend is a stalwart of the Barossa. The three red varieties have been planted in the region for nearly 170 years, and in the past were commonly blended to make fortified ‘tawny port’ style wines. After World War II the same blend started to become popular in table wines. ‘Grenache Shiraz Mataro’ is a bit of a mouthful – hence the birth of the colloquial ‘GSM’.Garnet red in colour, this wine leaps from the glass with strawberry compote, potpourri, nutmeg and fennel seed. The palate has juicy raspberry, ironstone and a long savoury line that finishes with talc like tannins.
Seek & Sip!
Shelf price $23.99 +tax SKU# 354050
Available at BC liquor Stores and private stores.
Kuei Hua Chen Chiew – Feng Shou – Chinese Happy Wine
Happy Wine – Dessert Wine
A wine lover is not satisfied with drinking the same wine every day, no matter how expensive and precious it is. Variety is the spice of life! I am a wine adventurer, I like to sample products that are not main stream and that I never heard of, and sometimes you can find some unusual and surprising wines… Kuei Hua Chen Chiew Feng Shou – Chinese Happy Wine. It is a Chinese dessert wine infused with the Osmanthus flowers. It is made from the indigenous Longyan grape variety grown in the Zhuolu County in China. It has an interesting light, bright orangy/pinkish colour. The nose is fragrant with sweet apricot, peach, and a hint of flowery Jasmine , from the Osmanthus flowers, and some minerally notes. It offers a mix of sweet and bitterness mouthfeel, ripe dried apricot flavours with good acidity. It is simple, unique, enjoyable, and fun! Enjoy it chilled after the end of a nice meal. This wine is well-suited as an apéritif cocktail such as a ‘Happy Spritzer’. In a wine glass add a few ice cubes, pour 3 oz of Happy Wine and top-up with soda water, et voilà!
SKU #897397 – $10.99 + tax – Available at BC Liquor stores and selected private stores.
It is a late ripening variety; its firm pulps and steady stems mean that berries won’t fall off that easily during storage. Due to this reason, in ancient China, when the storage conditions of fresh fruits were not as satisfactory as today, Longyan was favoured by producers and consumers. Similar to Gewurztraminer, when Longyan grape matures, its skin turns red. The average weight of each berry is 7 to 8 grams (5 times heavier than that of Cabernet Sauvignon), and a good sugar and acid balance gives Longyan a pleasant taste as a table grape. As this grape is widely planted and easy to source, in 1979, China Great Wall Wine (which belongs to COFCO) chose Longyan to produce the very first dry wine in China, the ‘Great Wall Dry White’. The wine was produced in Huailai, Hebei Province, which is an important producing region for the grape. Excerpt from China Decanter emag. For more information visit ChinaDecanterMag page.
China has emerged on to the global wine scene with unprecedented speed in recent years, both in terms of production and consumption. Currently, it is one of the top 10 wine-producing countries in the world, both in terms of area under vine and of volume produced. It is a good time to explore and discover the wide range of Chinese alcoholic beverages.
Wine Of The Month
1000 Stories Zinfandel Mendocino, California
1000 Stories is made – like craft spirits and beer – in small lots, each unique and expressive of Winemaker Bob Blue’s interpretation of the fruit, vineyards and barrels whose singular qualities came together to create something new. Each batch offers an opportunity for discovery. Maturing 1000 Stories in new and used bourbon barrels from some of America’s finest bourbon distilleries lends nuance and enhances Zinfandel’s signature red fruit and spice notes. Zinfandel ultimately is a hearty red grape whose structure and flavors successfully stand up to – and riff on – the intensity of bourbon barrels. For 1000 Stories, fruit from heritage Mendocino Zinfandel vines dating to the 1880s is enhanced in the blend by Zinfandel from some of California’s most exciting emerging AVAs for the variety.
A harmonious balance of aromatic red fruit scents, and complex dark fruit flavours. A touch of Petite Syrah adds bold black and white pepper spice. Rounded out with a pleasing layer of smokiness derived from the bourbon barrel aging. Pair with pork sausage or grilled meat. It is a ‘Love At First Sip‘ kind of wine.
SKU#149636 – Shelf price $29.99 + tax ( $2 off until March 3 )
Available at BC Liquor stores, EverythingWine stores, and selected private stores.