Weddings & Horse Heaven: New Reds for the Daily Slosh

18 Jan

pondview_2My beautiful niece’s wedding this summer was in Stratford at The Prune restaurant, which I highly recommend.  I had a 2010 Pondview Cab/Merlot (#307561 $19.15) and it is a great example of a cab blend from Niagara. Great weight, very manageable tannins and good balance. If you like a lighter meritage blend with still lots going on, this is one for you. The name of the winery summons images of blue heron, salamanders, reeds, and algae. I actually like that picture – even the algae – very David Suzuki. Drink it with that space in mind.

BorsaoTresPicos_2A less visited region in Spain is the DO Campo de Borja. That’s really a bit of a technicality actually as it sits awfully close to Rioja. This week there’s a great wine made with 100% granacha, or grenache as it’s called in France, 2010 Borsao Tres Picos Garnacha (#273748 $19.95). This is a solidly made full-bodied wine that Robert Parker says reminds him of Chateauneuf du Pape. I’m not sure that it does the same for me. What reminds me of Chateauneuf du Pape? A brand new mansion in old East York. Trying too hard? Too easy for Torontonians and difficult for the rest? Send in your answers.

We find ourselves in an awkward situation again. A mencia-based wine and no clever line? I’m still waiting for my readers to bale me out on this. Surely there’s some word play that can be salvaged. Talk amongst yourselves. Plus, I really haven’t heard from you on what you thought of the other mencia wines that I’ve recommended. Keep throwing these out there? Stop the Madness? This week, I’m recommending 2007 Solar de Sael Crianza Mencia (#311902 $15.95). There are four things about this wine that work for me:  1) it’s biodynamic which makes me feel good about myself drinking a wine from a biodynamic producer – as in, “I’m drinking my way to a healthier planet”. 2) it’s got tons going on – depth, spices, lots of stuff. 3) I can cellar it for a couple of years, or drink it in the car on the way home. 4) it’s $15.95!

DonJacobo_2Lastly, from Spain comes the 2004 Don Jacobo Reserva (#313270 $17.95). Although they say ‘medium bodied”, this wine is pretty big in my mind. Send in your humourous guesses as to who Don Jacobo was/is. The grandpere of Zorro? Dawn Jacobo’s fraternal twin? This wine would go great with something substantial and chewy. Pick up this and the one above and compare.

HorseHeaven_2Yes, it’s a Columbia Crest wine again. The 2009 Columbia Crest H3 Merlot (#209874 $19.95is on the slosh menu this time around. H3 stands for Horse Heaven Hills, an AVA (American Viticultural Area) in Washington State. Sounds idyllic, doesn’t it. Where do horses go when they die? Why Horse Heaven Hills, of course. It even rhymes a bit and had me singing the theme song from Ed, the Talking Horse. “A horse is a horse, of course….” This wine is a solid merlot with fresh swish and spit fruit. By that I mean that the fruit is there from the beginning to the end although there’s some muddling up of this with spice or smoke – can’t really discern. If you like New World merlot, pick this up! You can’t go wrong and you might have made a new best friend. This lineup (H3) is pretty bang on.

2 Responses to “Weddings & Horse Heaven: New Reds for the Daily Slosh”


  1. New World, Old World, Thanksgiving – The Red Daily Slosh | Duff's Wines - October 11, 2013

    […] In January of this year, I recommended the 2010 version of this wine. It was a “solidly made full-bodied wine” and I liked it a lot. Many of you did as well given the feedback. The 2011 version is a big wine. Now, when I say “big”, what do you think of? Tom Hanks? Chris Noth? Chocolate Bars? Noneoftheabove? What I think of is a wine that has several dimensions, has a strong mouthfeel by way of tannin, some acid and a long finish. I think power. Well, this wine is ‘big’ but not heavy or overly tannic. It brings loads of spice, red fruit by way of the 100% Garnacha, and a little jam too. But, not all was barrel aged (just half) so it ain’t woody. I think that it might be the Garnacha Of The Year. “The envelope, please.”  2011 Borsao Tres Picos Garnacha #273748 $19.95. Love this stuff! […]


  2. Previously Unexplored Wineries – Pondview Estate Winery | Duff's Wines - January 8, 2014

    […] Last summer (2012) I attended the wedding of my niece in lovely Stratford Ontario. The wedding was great – happy couple, relieved parents, happy-for-a-free-meal relatives – that’s me – and a great setting. The red wine served was one that I hadn’t heard of before – 2010 Pondview Estate Winery Cab/Merlot Reserve. It was perfect for the occasion of an afternoon wedding and a terrace lunch at The Old Prune. I even spoke about the wine in a post. […]


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