Wine Guy: Bold and beautiful reds

With the transition to fall comes three robust and comforting red wines from the Wine Guy

Province wine columnist James Nevison. Jason Payne / PROVINCE

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I’ve given in. Submitted to Autumn’s full embrace, covered up the patio furniture and bumped up the thermostat to ward off the morning chill.

Actually, it’s no real hardship. One of the amazing aspects about living in this corner of the globe is being able to enjoy all the seasons. And anyways, I’m more of a shoulder season kind of guy. On the wine front, this transition has been reflected in more bold and beautiful reds gracing my glass, robust and comforting wines like this week’s three picks.

Finca Las Moras 2016 Reserva Tannat, Argentina ($13.99, #104018)

You know this wine means business from first pour thanks to its dense ruby colour. It is Tannat, after all, the inky and powerful grape originally from southwest France that is making a name for itself in South America (particularly from Uruguay, and to a lesser extent Argentina as with this bottle from Finca Las Moras). Big plum, dark fruit, and tobacco show, with integrated oak and a smooth profile overall. This is a tongue coater of the highest order, ready to pair up with braised ribs or hearty ragù.

Bottom line: B, The cardigan of wines

Celler El Masroig 2017 Solà Fred, Spain ($18.99 on sale until October 26, #776625)

For something a little off the beaten wine path — yet just as comforting — check out Solà Fred from Celler El Masroig, a winery in the Priorat region a few hours from Barcelona. This is the Carignan grape at its purest, grown in red clay soils and left unoaked in the winery. The end result is a juicy red redolent with berries, dried herbs, and floral nuances. It’s intense and almost pungent, bringing a nice mix of fruit and an underlying savouriness before a lick of spice on a bold, balanced, and lingering finish.

Bottom line: A-, A crock pot’s best friend

Road 13 2017 Syrah Malbec, British Columbia ($32.17, available through the winery)

Big, almost chewy, this sultry Syrah and Malbec blend is ready to tango with the tastebuds! Made from grapes grown in the Similkameen Valley at Blind Creek Vineyard, each lot was fermented separately before maturation in French oak barrels. In the glass it’s a bold combo of peppery spice and lush dark berry (thanks Syrah!) alongside floral notes and dried herbs (thanks Malbec!) before a rich, warming finish. Bring on the roast lamb, wild mushroom stew, or even a fulsome, fully loaded burger. 

Bottom line: B+, Bold, beautiful, and tasty

The Swirl: Township 7 Grape Stomp

Registration is now open for Township 7’s 9th Annual Gramp Stomp. A perennial favourite at the winery’s Langley location (21152 16th Avenue, Langley), this year’s Grape Stomp takes place from 12 p.m. to 4 p.m. on October 26 and 27. Prizes will be awarded for top stomp, best costumes, and more as teams crush away with live music, food trucks, and new Fall wine releases. Teams of six must register in advance, and entry fees are $33 per person in this rain-or-shine fundraiser benefiting Ronald McDonald House B.C. For complete details head to township7.com/events/. 

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