My bro-in-law has a philosophy that if there is a wine on the shelf at the SAQ that doesn't make sense, it is probably good. Case in point - who in Montreal goes trolling around the Peruvian wine section looking for $15 Malbec/Merlot? After all, the SAQ is one of the world's largest wine buyers - it must have been good to make it onto their shelf, especially since the product profile is not an obvious sell, right?
The logic seems to fly tonight, as the 2005 Tabernero Gran Tinto Reserve (50:50 Malbec Merlot) was a pretty darn good wine, especially at this price. It started with a powerfully funky, nose - we couldn't agree on barnyardy or sour milk, but that odour blew off before we were finished the debate, and the wine opened up to reveal dark berries, black pepper, old oak and hints of vanilla. Dry, with dense berry fruit and a decent finish, it was maybe lacking acidity and almost a bit too spicy. More Malbec than Merlot, a tasty wine for my first ever Peruvian.
cork. 13% alcohol
Price: C$14.60 (SAQ)