What is a good wine?

What is a good wine?

MISE À DAY

Here are five not to be missed, including four under $20.

A good wine is relative. Everyone has their own tastes, they say. You can like it powerful, woody and full-bodied. Others prefer it light, fruity and delicate. It happens first in the nose. It is when the brain registers the smells, depending on whether we find them pleasant or not, that we imagine whether the wine will also be good or not. It's hard to want to drink a wine that gives off repulsive smells, but some can be surprising. It's about getting the mouth up to par. The wine will then have balance, its constituents (acidity, fruit, tannins and bitterness) forming a harmonious whole. If in addition it has length, it explodes, it is complex, we can add that the wine is great.

What is a bad wine, then? Quite the opposite of what you just read. It will taste bad because of certain defects: clogged, oxidized, unbalanced, etc. Should we tell you about these wines on this page? What's the point, actually? The Méchants Raisins taste an impressive number of wines in a year. However, given the limited space we have, we believe that it is better to talk to you here than about good wines. It is not only more constructive, it is above all more pleasant for you, dear readers.

Drink less. Drink better.

Alois Lageder, Riff 2021, IGP delle Venezie

★★1⁄2 | $1⁄2 | $15.65 | Italy 12.5% ​​| 1.6 g/L – Organic

SAQ code: 13897427

Excellent family estate of around fifty hectares located in the very north of Italy, in Alto Adige, where the Germanic influence is well felt. This is a pinot grigio from Veneto that has nothing to do with the often sweet and lackluster ones that are unfortunately too often found at the SAQ. Nice nose reminiscent of flower, pear and apple. Quite ample material articulated around a good acidity. Fruity and saline finish. Serve chilled.

Montgras, Pinot Noir 2020, Valle del Bio Bio

★★1⁄2 | $1⁄2 | $16.80 | Chile 13.5% | 1.5 g/L – Organic

SAQ code: 14691421

Nice surprise that this organic pinot noir from Chile comes – and this is not a pun – from the Bío Bío valley, a wine region located further south where the temperatures are cooler, which gives wines with more liveliness than in the north. Hence the interest of cultivating pinot noir, a grape variety that likes temperate climates. We guess notes of red fruits, eucalyptus and a hint of smoke. It is quite greedy, light and pleasant. Not bad for a pinot under $20. Serve chilled.

Domaine Labranche Laffont, Tradition 2018, Madiran

★★★ | $$ | $18.65 | France 14% | 1.6 g/L – Organic

SAQ code: 919100

Madiran wines are a good example of a full-bodied wine. Tannat, a robust grape variety renowned for its tannic structure, is also grown there. Here we add 30% Cabernet Franc and Cabernet Sauvignon, and we mainly use stainless steel tanks (with a little barrel), which softens the whole. Digestible and pleasant without denying its origins, it offers a bright nose of black cherry, mint, smoke and ink. Chubby and fresh material resting on a medium-bodied tannic structure and offering a beautiful aromatic finish with notes of black fruits. A wine with character!

Tenuta Argentiera, Poggio ai Ginepri 2020, Bolgheri

★★★ | $$1⁄2 | $23.55 | Italy 13.5% | 2.5 g/L

SAQ code: 11161299

Here, in this region of Tuscany with its feet in the Mediterranean, Argentiera produces a Bordeaux blend (Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Merlot and Petit Verdot) that could pass for an excellent California red. This is the magic of Bolgheri! Fermentation and maceration in stainless steel tanks with half of the wine resting in French and Hungarian oak barrels for malolactic fermentation. The result is a wine of character with tones of black fruit, leather and grilled pepper. Ample and structured, it offers a fairly rich substance and a finely spiced finish.

Château Cailloux de By 2016, Médoc

★★★ | $$ | $19.90 | France 13.5% | 1.9 g/L

SAQ code: 14351362

The perfect example of the potential of well-crafted Bordeaux “small wines”. The second wine of Château Tour de By benefits from the joy of the 2016 vintage. Without having the mention organic, the estate does not use any chemical fertilizers. A blend of equal parts Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot giving a catchy blackcurrant and finely oaked nose. Supple on the palate with abundant substance and silky tannins. Offering good persistence on the finish, it already delivers fully knowing that it can be kept for 4 or 5 years in your reserve. Great buy for under $20.

Correct ★

Good ★★

Very good ★★★

Excellent ★★★★

Exceptional ★★★★★< /p>

More stars than dollars: worth the price

As many stars as dollars: worth the price

Fewer stars than dollars: wine is expensive