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Prices, Tastings and ‘Les Prairies’

October 20, 2006

The other day, I complimented the MLCC for dropping the price on the Red Bicyclette line. Then yesterday I see that they have raised a number of other prices across the board. My favourite French wine (the Perrin’s ‘VF’ line) went up in price to $12.53. Other old favourites also went up. I’m not begrudging their right to raise prices, it’s a fact of life. And while a $2 drop in the price of one line of wines is good, it’s worth noting only because it’s rare for the MLCC to actually reduce a price.

Anyways, enough of that.

Moving right along, I’ve done two tastings in the past week and a half, both of which went very well. One was a Pacific Northwest tasting at Mise. The wines were great (except for a skanky Oregon Gewurztraminer), the food was even better (gotta love those bison short ribs) and a good time was had by all.

The other was the first one in our Wine Basics series, which is offered every few years. I have to confess that I really enjoy running the basics tastings. I always have a lot of fun with them and the first tasting in this year’s series was really good.  

We’re trying something new with our Wine Basics course this year. In past years, I’ve done one tasting on white wines, one on red wines and one on “everything else”. That’s all fine and dandy, but an all-white tasting is a tough sell when there’s a chill in the air.

So this year, I compressed all the colours and the technical details into the first class. We covered the “Big Six” varietals, went through the details of how wine is made and grown, and finished with a nice Australian tawny port.

In my ever-so-humble opinions, the two best wines of the night were the McWilliams Riesling (Australia – $11ish) and the Laboure-Roi “Les Prairies” Pinot Noir for $11.79. Both are excellent examples of their respective varietals and both are really well priced. The “Les Prairies” was an excellent example of a good French Pinot – even better than the Lulu B.

The next class will focus on the Old World, where we’ll cover France, Germany, Spain, Portugal, Italy and either Greece or South Africa (which not technically “Old World” but I get to make the rules). I’ll work in a discussion of terroir and we’ll taste some good wines too.  The final one will cover the New World, where we will taste wines from Canada, the USA, Australia, Chile, Argentina and possibly New Zealand. And I’ll get to talk about Australian wine marketing and the rise (and apparent fall) of the critter label.

Should be fun. Check for more tasting notes next week.

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One comment

  1. I have not tried the Lulu B, but I did try the “Les Praries” Pinot Noir at the wine tasting at The Forks a week ago and I agree it was a fantastic wine. It was my second favorite wine of the show.



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