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Everything posted by ademello

  1. I think its a good descriptor, I taste both blood and iron in wines from the Rasteau, so "bloody iron" makes sense. Well, as much sense as pain grillé, dandelion dew, and sweaty leather...
  2. There is also a decent confit shank at Au Pied de Cochon. It is a little fatty and heavy though, and they tend to serve it barely warmed through.
  3. Lemme have a hit of what you're smoking... All kidding aside, make sure you check out BLT, and Kittichai at 60 Thompson in Soho. Neither of these two experiences exist anywhere in Canada that I've been. If you are a meatlover and BLT is too haute for your tastes, Peter Luger will bring you back to earth. You might want to check the NYC forum as well since this is not really Quebec-related...
  4. For Cal Wine lovers, the SAQ has now released De Loach's 2002 entry-level Zinfandel. Less extracted and less over-oaked than previous years efforts, this is a lovely fruity Zin for $18 and change. Also noticed that some of the outlets are also carrying Ravenswood's mid-level ICON - the Rhone clone from Sonoma Country. It's a 2002 Syrah (with a little Grenache and Mourvedre blended in). A steal at $25, especially if you love the winery's style of big fat fruit bombs. Finally, not sure if this has been mentioned here before but the 2002 Estancia Monterey Pinor Noir is also released, a relative bargain at $25.
  5. Sketch I've been to; a little too over the top for some people in the group. Has anyone been to Andrew Edmonds?
  6. Will be in London for 3 days later this week (Thursday-Saturday) and I'd like some advice on great places to go for lunch and dinner. Previously I've eaten at St. John, Anchor & Hope, Providores, Momo. I'm looking for something not too formal, but lively enough to be fun at the same time. Trendy is good. How is Fifteen? Levant? Andrew Edmonds? A fantastic wine list is a must for me, and price is not really an issue as long as it doesn't get out of control so as to be physicallly painful (like at Sketch). Would greatly appreciate any tips from locals.
  7. Everyone uses Eric's Levine's Cellar Tracker!: http://www.cellar-tracker.com/intro.asp There is nothing that has anywhere near the features plus its web-based and you can store/share tasting notes with the rest of the Internet wine-drinking universe. I strongly recommend against starting yet another closed Access database; unless you are planning to make it a full-time job, don't bother building a better mousetrap.
  8. Has anyone tried any of the single varietal "bulk wines" available exclusively at the SAQ Depots? Where do they come from and how much are they? Any good?
  9. Just checked their web site. This week's private import "special" is an unspecified Seghesio for $50 + tax, 92pts from WS. ← The law was amended a couple of years ago to allow licensed restaurants to deliver beer and wine along with delivered food. I would guess that applies to take-out too. I wonder whether O&G is exploiting this loophole (if so, cool). Do they require that you buy something edible along with the bottle? ← Not sure, but I'll drop by next week. Here's a list of what they have for sale right now, plus I guess the $50 Seghesio on the web site: BLANC Sancerre, Gérard Boulay, 2003 40$+tx ROSÉ Donna Marzia Rosato, Negramaro, Salento, 2004 25$+tx Couteaux du Languedoc, L'Épervier, Château Pech-Redon, 2004 25$+tx ROUGE Nero, Conti Zecca, Roso del Salento, 2004 55$+tx Montepulciano d'Abruzzo, Aldiano, 2004 25$+tx Cabernet Sauvignon, Stonegate, Napa Valley, 2000 40$+tx Barbera d'Asti Superiore, Valfieri, 2002 40$+tx
  10. Just noticed that a new 2003 Zinfandel has arrived... Rancho Zabaco Dancing Bull, at the princely sum of $15.90 no less. For some reason its only availalbe in the outlying areas, not a single store downtown has any stock...
  11. Not sure if I should be posting this lest I blow their cover... Olive & Gourmando is now selling wines they privately import RETAIL. This is the first I've heard of this happening in Quebec. To quote their newsletter: Just checked their web site. This week's private import "special" is an unspecified Seghesio for $50 + tax, 92pts from WS.
  12. They also have mixed cases of magnums of various vintages of Chateau Latour and their second label for $3295 for the more budget- and value-conscious.
  13. Good timing Maeve - I spent the day yesterday doing a walking tour of the city from the Old Port to the Plateau and back home down St. Denis st. I was amazed at how run down that area of the city is. Unfortunately, the place seems closed now. I wasn't aware that they were seeing hard times, but that entire area is a wasteland now.
  14. Thanks for the help guys. I am most interested in Pomerols. I knew about Lavinia but my sources tell me that it is a little overpriced.
  15. Hi - just wondering what the best Paris wine stores are? One of my employees is going out there for a vacation and I want him to bring back a few nice bottles of wine for me. Am looking for stuff in the 50 euro range, some nice Bordeaux. Is Les Caves Taillevent for tourists only or can good value be had? Thanks for your help.
  16. Hmm... don't know where you got that price from, the Fay regularly retails for $80 or less USD (with no discounts but plus tax) and the itself winery is selling it for $85 now, $10 more than the release price. I checked both WineZap and WineSearcher and found a few places under $70. To me the best examples of the SAQ's purchasing clout is with mid-tier Australian wines. Although its sold out now, Grant Burge's Holy Trinity sold here for $30.50. Good luck finding it in the US for under $30 USD before taxes, or even in Australia at that price. Then again, this just could be local promotional agents heavily discounting their wines assuring the ever-encroaching world domination of Australian wines. But who cares - we win in the end.
  17. Fagioli, the guy is clearly very passionate about his wine, let him have his opinions! Certainly nothing to love sleep over (from the time of your post - 5:27 AM!) Keep in mind that for an outsider looking in, the SAQ is a very bizarre entity. The only similarity I can think of in the USA is the Pennsylvania Liquor Board, which also draws an enormous amount of criticism, as well as passionate tirades from its detractors. Carswell raised a very good point. If you have a very Montreal perspective and if you have a broad interest in wine (high-end to low-end), the SAQ can vary from being an annoying fact of life, to The Evil Empire. Anyone trying to bring in wine from abroad for their own use can attest to this fact. However, I assume that if you live outside of the city or in a remote part of Quebec, the SAQ clearly does assure a certain level of quality. I've never actually been to a SAQ outside of Montreal, but the fact that the SAQ will ship anywhere in Quebec proves my point. So the folks in Rimouski can drink as well as we do. I actually enjoy the LA Cetto Petite Sirah (not a fan of the cab - they also make a chard and a zin that you can't get here) but have yet to try the 2003s. The Borsao is also a pleasant quaffer. I like the idea of using for sangria it would probably do nicely. I'd rather have those two wines appear as house wines on terrases and bistros rather than the rubbish that is usually served. Little Pengiun is what it is - a large, global monster that tastes the same from London to LA to Sydney to Toronto. It's the Miller Lite of Wine - pleasant but indistinct from any of the other juice but it serves an important role in the global wine market - to be a generic, consumer friendly wine. The Merlot is actually quite nice if nothing special. I actually like the way that Little Penguin is being marketed here. I think its good to have ads all over the place so that people are more conscious of what they are drinking. It's also cool that it will be served in bars and clubs. Create the awareness and suddenly people know more about wine, they are thinking about it more. This leads to people demanding better wines, and restaurants serving better wines. On another note, the SAQ web site is acclaiming with great fanfare the wines that they are carrying that are medal winners in something called "Sélections mondiales des vins." Some kind of wine competition I guess but I've never heard of it. There is a fair selection of wine, most under $20, a few under $15, and includes a Syrah from Greece! Taste up and post your notes for us to share.
  18. Saw it as I zipped by in a cab, didn't have a chance to catch the name. Right next door to Le Latini on Rene Levesque, they built a new building just for it. Looks quite fancy. Any idea as to its name or the food? Same owners as Le Latini?
  19. That is a certified Halal (Muslim standard, similar to Glatt Kosher) Pakistani butcher. You may think it looks filthy but I guarantee that their meat is some of the tastiest in the city. They also have great samosas for pennies apiece. There is another Halal butcher (this one is Iranian) on St. Laurent a little north of St. Catherine. They can get you goat or even mutton, which is really hard to find, and can be prepared in the ceremonial style typical for Eid, where the lamb or goat is cleaned and salted and seasoned, ready for spit-roasting whole.
  20. Who knew wine possessed such power as a soap residue solvent? "Hey, guys. Let's no longer take time to properly rinse, dry, and wipe the stemware free of spots from soap or hard water. Let's use wine to do it for us. Oh, better, yet: let's call it seasoning or priming the glass and really 'wow' our diners." ← Not so sure it's to dissolve soap residue, but rather to remove the sometimes unpleasant odor that the dishwasher detergent or rinse agent leaves in the glass.
  21. Having spent a few days in Israel earlier this month following Daniel Rogov's advice on where to drink and dine, I have to say that I was incredibly impressed with the quality and variety of Israeli wines. Even more impressive was the pride and enthusiasm exhibited by local sommeliers when talking up the local wines. While there is still a fair amount of plonk being producer (Carmel Wines being the largest culprit), many of the fine wines do an incredible job of emulating French styles (Bordeaux and Rhone primarily) while preserving the terrioir that makes in unmistakeably Israeli. Despite its current lack of favor, they are doing some incredible things with Merlot (spicy!) that breathe new life into the varietal. Tasting a good Israeli wine gave me for the first time in a long time that "Wow! This is new and interesting" vibe which is all too uncommon these days. As for value, from my limited experience you still need to be in the $20-$40 USD bracket for a good Israeli wine.
  22. ademello

    UK Wine Merchants

    Here are two great ones: BBR - AKA "Wine Merchants to the Queen" - awesome selection of fine wines; their London flagship has been trading for 300 years Bibendum - wide variety of wine from everywhere, more aggressive pricing than BBR
  23. ademello

    Australian Wines

    Some of my faves are: <UL> <LI>Anything by Peter Lehman - widely available and well-priced in the US. His higher-end offerings are astounding (Eight Songs, Mentor) <LI>Torbreck - Woodcutter's Red ($20 if you can find it) <LI>Nepenthe - The Tryst (a bizarre Zinfdandel/Temperanillo/Cabernet blend!) - 8 pounds at Oddbins in the UK <LI>RL Buller - Muscat and Tokay dessert wines, value priced ($20 for a 375) and really quite singularly special <LI>Worthy - Barossa Shiraz <LI>Grant Burge - Holy Trinity (GSM Blend, about $25) and Filsell Shiraz (has to be tasted to be believed, tastes like a super-intense Rhone) <LI>Nugan Family - Durif ($25-ish, Petite Sirah bursting with fruit, great with BBQ) <LI>Orlando - if you can find the Jacaranda Ridge and Centennary Hill you are very very lucky! Proof that Aussie wines with some bottle age are shockingly awesome <LI>Marquis Phillips - awesome if you are into overly extracted monster wines. Their $15 wines taste like $30+ <LI>Kurz Family - Boundary Row shiraz, $25-ish <LI>Paringa - cool climate Shiraz, a good reliable wine I've often seen on sale for under $20 </UL> You will be doing yourself a disservice if you write off all Aussie wines as big, syrupy fruit bombs. A lot of the cooler-climated shiraz is quite food friendly and unique, but typically doesn't get as much press as the bigger "Look at Me" wines. I think a few US wine shops are doing a good job at importing some of the smaller labels. People don't realize just how many small, excellent producers of wine there are in Australia, and the variance in climate and soil create a huge array of different types of wines. Try a cool climate shiraz, you'll be smitten!
  24. Is it just me, or does the SAQ not sell any white creme de cacao? I can't seem to find it on the web site...
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