What Jim’s Drinking: July

What Jim’s Drinking: July

Well, we haven’t really seen the hot July that we all look for, however I am still thinking a lot about Rosé wines! Rosé’s until very recently, were seen as inferior wines, or only a woman’s drink (not my thought ladies…) and made as sweet, white zinfandel-type wines. Today’s Rosé wines are none of these; they are dry, fragrant, multi-dimensional wines that are perfect for summer foods. Rosé wines are made in many ways, however most are made from red grapes; wine makers start the initial fermentation with whole, red grapes, where the grape skins provide varying degrees of pink-ness, depending on the length of the grape skin contact and the grape variety or ripeness. This is why you will often see dark salmon-coloured rose’s sitting next to a bright pink rose – the colour is visually important to us, but it usually doesn’t tell the entire story about what’s in the glass. Read more

What Jim’s Drinking: June

What Jim’s Drinking: June

The Australian wine industry has taken a few ‘knocks’ in the past few years; people were getting tired of these over-the-top shiraz with tons of alcohol and fruit that burst from the bottle. There are still a few of these wines out there but increasingly, consumers are going back to a well- balanced wine with some strength certainly, but also with elegance and finesse.

Well, I’m on top of this and very proud of Bacchus’ new association with Australia’s Wakefield Wines. They are from the Clare Valley of Australia. The regionality for these wines is important here – hot days and cool nights are the secret, as is the wind that keeps pests and rot away from vines naturally. The climate allows the grapes some respite from the heat and keeps them from becoming over ripe jam-monsters. Wines from this region of Australia really are different…in a good way. I am currently drinking my way through three of Wakefield’s most popular wines and they really are my faves this month. Read more

What Jim’s Drinking: May

What Jim’s Drinking: May

One of the most enjoyable part of the wine business is in finding those sometimes obscure, often weird and almost always wonderful wines, that no one has ever heard of! South Africa’s wines are very much like this. Most of you are familiar with the entry-level South African wines; they typically offer good value and are decent drinkers. Very few people, however, have tasted the best wines from SA; they are rarely exported and when they are, they are sent to the UK or US markets. I am fortunate enough to travel regularly to the South African wine regions and during my trip there recently, I was amazed at the quality of their top wines. We need to also put this into perspective; the top wines from California or France are easily $500 and up. For these prices, you are definitely getting a great bottle and relatively small production. With the top South African wines, you are paying $100 or so and, in my opinion, gaining the same quality level at a much lower price! This is the kind of stuff that gets me excited – tasting people on some of these jewels blind and then explaining the wine, its price and its origin.

This month, I have tried two very incredible wines from South Africa. Both are extreme limited production and both are real wines, from real wineries and are at the top in regards to the quality that South Africa can produce. Read more

What Jim’s Drinking: April Bordeaux Offer

What Jim’s Drinking: April Bordeaux Offer

I struggle at times in making the decision to place these special offers into ‘What Jim’s Drinking’, since they have appeal to a smaller sector of wine drinkers. Having said this, my very eclectic group of wine friends always surprise me with your level of interest for unique stuff.

The Bordeaux wines offered here are currently in our warehouse in Richmond and ready to deliver. All of those listed come in their original wood case and are certified by Yvon Mau, one of THE pre-eminent Bordeaux negotiants. Prices are per bottle and are pre-GST. Each of these wines had been stored at Yvon Mau’s temperature and humidity-controlled warehouse in Bordeaux, and were shipped to us with temperature controlled containers. In other words, these wines have each been treated with the respect they deserve! Read more