YYC Wine

2009 Quails Gate Old Vine Foch Reserve

Price: $ 45.00 estimate

Available At: Quails Gate Cellar Door

Whether we like it or not, the seasons are changing and with that comes cooler weather, falling leaves and a need for comfort food.  It was a slow cooked pot of beef stew that drew my inspiration for selecting the 2009 Quails Gate Old Vine Foch Reserve as the wine of the week.  With grapes hand harvested from 46 year old Foch vines and seeing 3 years in new American oak, the Old Vine Foch pays homage to Richard Stewart Jr who planted the vines at a time where commercial fruit trees would have been the better investment. The grape varietal Marechal Foch has a small, but dedicated following with enthusiasts seeking out its wide range of expressiveness. It was through one of these enthusiasts that this bottle came into my possession. The 2009 comes in at 15% ABV and due to its relative rarity, is restricted to sale at the Quails Gate Wine Shop. 

Eyes: Medium bodied with a ruby red core

Nose: Complex and brooding with notes of roasted coffee, herbs, pomegranate, cherry, plum and loam.  There is a leathery, meaty almost animal character showing through which is reminiscent of Rhone Syrah or South African Pinotage.

Palate: Dry with notes of cherry, butchers block with hints of herbs and cedar.  It finishes dark with an acidic pang with an austerity that begs for some animal fat to keep it in line and I would recommend this wine to be enjoyed with nibbles of cheese or a gamey protein like lamb or venison. Its tannins remain powdery and a little green which is interesting but not overwhelmingly enjoyable. Decanting assisted in calming things down and is highly recommended.  

Conclusion: This is a wine that needs time in the glass or in the decanter to settle before judgement can be passed.  The first tastes were less than ideal however with a bit of air, the rough edges softened and it became much more drinkable. Overall, a decent outcome to a wine that straight out of the bottle, could easily be written off. 

86 Points

If you liked this review, check out our coverage of the Spier Signature Series Pinotage

Filed under BC Wine Red Foch Quails Gate 2009 Reserve Canada 15% $45 86 Points

Bruno Michel Cuvee Rose Brut Champagne


Price: $66.00

Available At: Vine Styles, Bin 905, Vine Arts

As summer quickly slips away and the snow flies here in Calgary (yes, in September) we wanted to hold on to the thought of it perhaps just for a last fleeting moment. This week, we bring you an organic, grower Champagne from Bruno Michel. His Rose Brut consists of a blend of Pinot Meunier and Pinot Noir and sees a 6 to 8 hour maceration ( saignée method) to extract its light pink hue. It comes in at 12% ABV with total production from the domaine for all wine being just under 7000 cases. 


Eyes: Light pink copper color with immense amounts of bubble

Nose: Quite restrained with light notes of raspberry, lees, toast and caramel. A clean, light delicate bouquet.

Palate: Light, dry and airy on the palate with notes of pink grapefruit, strawberry and raspberry with deftly executed acid. It shows a creamy core and this carries over its lengthy elegant finish. This is a feminine and clean expression of Rose Champagne that is absolutely beautiful. 

Conclusion:  There isn’t much to conclude here other than this is a tremendous expression of Rose Champagne that is elegant, feminine and utterly superb. A glass will remind you of warmer days and its pretty much impossible to not have a successful food and wine pairing with it. Any bubble aficionado needs to try this one. Highly Recommended as a 6 pack buy.  Get a bottle before it disappears.

94 Points

Check out some additional bubble coverage with 8 Bubbly Wines for the Holidays here

Filed under Rose Champagne Bruno Michel France Bubbles Wine $66.00 12% 94 Points Grower Champagne

Devaux Grande Réserve Brut Champagne


Price: $55.00

Quick review today from a wine enjoyed on a recent trip to Las Vegas. Since proper stems were an issue at the Monte Carlo, we had to do a bit of improvising. Sometimes the best experiences are from enjoying a wine out of to go cups. We filled these before touring the Aria and Bellagio


Eyes: Gorgeous yellow gold hue with plenty of bubbles with tight perlage.(Noted with the hotel glass tumblers)

Nose: Symphony of baked apple, pear, honey, soda cracker and spice. 

Palate: A revelation with notes of sweet pear and green apple punctuated by acid just starting to release its grip and finishing with long length. Harmonious and drinking beautifully.  Wine Spectator called this austere which may have been the case on the wines release however I got absolutely zero austere characters out of this bottle. 

Conclusion: Unless you’re drinking on the house, Las Vegas can be an expensive place to imbibe. Bringing your own bottles, whether duty free of otherwise is a great way to enjoy a your preferred drink wherever your travels take you. Especially when you prefer champagne!  Highly Recommended.

93 Points  

If you liked this, check out our coverage of the travel friendly 500ml Cattier Brut

Filed under Champagne Devaux Grande Réserve Brut Las Vegas LAS 93 Points 12% Bellagio Aria BYOB