Chateau Grange Cochard Morgon Vielles Vignes 2014

REVIEW

I am surprised that this wine has 13% alcohol as it doesn’t feel like it has that much, and it certainly doesn’t taste like it. This light bodied Red made from Gamay is juicy on the palate, fresh, and the tannins are silky smooth.

On the nose, we have aromas of violet, dark cherry, and plum with hints of black pepper, sweet spice, and milk chocolate. The juicy fruit aromas follow through on the palate as well as a touch of cloves and cinnamon.

Tasted October 2018

Score: 88

Wine-Food Pairing: Good on its own. I paired mine with tuna steak grilled on a charcoal barbecue. It was delicious! This would also pair well with roasted pork.

Wolfberger Crémant d’Alsace Brut

REVIEW

Straw coloured with delicate bubbles. Aromas of baked pear, apple pie, biscuit, and spearmint. Flavours of baked apple, biscuit, citrus, and mint with a bitter and lingering nutty finish. Medium bodied and very creamy on the palate.

Tasted October 2018

Wine-Food Pairing: Enjoyable on its own, with fried chicken, or with other salty fried food.

Score: 89

 

Bite Burger House Makes A Tasty Burger

By Melanie Lloyd

I recently had a lunch date at Bite Burger House, located at 108 Murray Street in downtown Ottawa. The ambiance was cozy and laid back. The service was friendly and the food was savoury and succulent.

I ordered the Double Bite Me, which is a juicy double beef patty served with double smoked bacon and Cheddar cheese on a fresh brioche bun.

This was quite the burger! OMG! The beef patties had a nice fresh flavour and the meat was moist and grilled to perfection. I could taste that it was made with real ingredients. It was so enjoyable!

My husband ordered the El Gringo which is a beef patty with chorizo, guacamole, pico de gallo, and cilantro sour cream.

I had a couple of bites of his burger and loved the flavour combo. It had just the right amount of spice as to not take away from the other flavours. We both paired our meal with truffle fries, so delicious!

The drink menu was compact while being versatile. I could see right away that it was well thought out, with a good selection of craft beer, cocktails, and wine.

Sometimes I go to a restaurant and find that the wine list doesn’t match the food being served in the restaurant. This was definitely not the case with Bite Burger House. There were many great choices for wine and burger pairing.

The drink menu changes from time to time. This wine list included Torres Campos Ibéricos Tempranillo 2015 from Rioja, Spain, which I ordered to pair with my burger.

On the nose, this red wine is fruit forward with aromas of tart blackberry, plum, as well as subtle red berry notes, tobacco, cigar box, dark roasted cocoa, and smoke. On the palate, there are blackberry and plum flavours with dark chocolate at the finish. This is a medium to full bodied wine with gentle tannins and fresh acidity.  

The smoke in the wine matched the smoke in my burger and the flavours of both paired well together. The wine also paired amazingly with the El Gringo burger. The spice of the burger enhanced the flavours of the wine.

If you are craving a burger, this place is totally worth checking out. The handcrafted hamburgers are very satisfying! Word of caution:  If you order the Double Bite Me, such as I did, you will likely be leaving with a doggy bag as it is a huge burger.  Bring your appetite!

Red Wine from Ottawa-Gatineau: Embracing the Uniqueness

By Melanie Lloyd 

Over the past few months, I had the opportunity to sample wine from the Ottawa-Gatineau area through a couple of tastings and a wine expo.

This  blog will focus on red wine and is simply a starting point to the many wines from the area. A special shout out goes to Donna Henhoeffer who hosted the tasting that included the bottles reviewed here. There are more wineries from the area that I look forward to writing about in the future.

Cold climate wine tends to be tarter than cool climate wine and is quite distinct on the nose and on the palate. This uniqueness is due in part to the climate and terroir found in colder regions.

It is also due to the use, in many cases, of hybrid grape varieties that are more resistant to the cold. All of the following wine contains hybrid grapes with the exception of the Pinot Noir.

Although cold climate wine is distinct, there are similarities when it comes to the aromas we typically associate with both warm and cool climate wine. Here are my observations to share:

SCHEUERMANN VINEYARD + WINERY UNFILTERED PINOT NOIR 2016

A bright pale ruby coloured Pinot Noir that is earthy with aromas of sweet tobacco, musk, and tart red berries.

On the palate, it has sour field cherry flavours. It has invigorating acidity levels and silky tannins. The flavours linger on the palate.

Wine-Food Pairing: This wine would pair well with salmon or with a cheese platter that includes Wensleydale Cranberry Cheese served with cranberry hazelnut crackers.

DOMAINE DE PONTIAC VILLAGE FIRST HARVEST RED WINE

This Red is a blend made from Frontenac Noir, Sainte-Croix, and Sabrevois, all hybrid grape varieties. On the nose, there are aromas of jalapeño and red bell pepper, earthy beets, and hints of mint.

On the palate, there are flavours of sour cherries, red field berries, and a kick of black pepper. It has subtle metallic undertones, silky tannins, and tart acidity. Overall, an enjoyable wine!

Wine-Food Pairing: A barbecued steak would pair well with this wine.

FRONTENAC NOIR DOMAINE DE LA MÉTÉORE 2014

This tart bio wine is made from Frontenac Noir, a hybrid grape that can stand the cooler climate of Western Quebec.

On the nose, there are aromas of bell pepper, strawberry, cherry, wet cedar, and hints of vanilla, sweet spice, and cocoa.

On the palate, there are flavours of sour ground cherries and a touch of bell pepper. It is light bodied with silky tannins, invigorating acidity, and a slight bitter finish. The flavours linger. I love the tartness of this wine!

Wine-Food Pairing: Pair with a charcuterie plate that includes salty dried sausage.

JABULANI MARQUETTE CABERNET SAUVIGNON 2014

This wine is made with Marquette, a hybrid grape, and with Cabernet Sauvignon. Visually, it is purple with a light blue rim.

On the nose, there are aromas of Christmas cake, dried prunes, blackstrap molasses, and hints of black licorice.

On the palate, it is very tart with flavours of dark berries, butterscotch, vanilla, and subtle notes of black licorice. The tannins are structured but well balanced by the acidity of the wine.

Wine-Food Pairing: This wine would pair well with braised beef.

SM’OAKED COLLECTION SMOKIE RIDGE VINEYARD SABREVOIS 2010

Made from Sabrevois hybrid grapes, this garnet coloured Red is meaty and fairly complex on the nose with aromas of ripe raspberry, leather, black licorice, sweet spice, truffle, and hints of vanilla and smoke.

On the palate, the tannins are well integrated with the fresh acidity and it has flavours of blackcurrant and sour cherries.

Wine-Food Pairing: A barbecued steak would pair well with this wine.

SUROÎT DOMAINE MONT-VÉZEAU FORTIFIED RED WINE 2012

This fortified Red has dried prune and date aromas as well as sweet tobacco, butterscotch, and licorice.

It is sweet on the palate with flavours of dried dates, black licorice, molasses, black pepper, and a touch of butterscotch and oak. Overall, a nice product!

Wine-Food Pairing: This wine would pair wonderfully with dark chocolate.

I look forward to writing more on the subject in the future. I will include other wineries from the area, as I am impressed by some that are not listed here. 

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