Choosing the Right Red Wine

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We love our wine. Red, white or rosé all day. In honour of National Drink Wine Day (a day we are most definitely celebrating), we asked Lavelle’s sommelier Taylor Thompson to share some tips for ordering red wine with dinner.

If you’re not wine savvy you might opt for a crowd-pleasing merlot, but you don’t have to stop there. There is a vast world of wine, and experts like Taylor help us navigate that world.

If you’ve never had red before, Taylor suggests trying a Cabernet Sauvignon—a full bodied red wine that is often enjoyed with food (specifically red or dark meat) and is the perfect pairing for charcuterie.

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Wanting to offer us something special for our tasting, Taylor chose a 2006 Chateau du Moulin Noir Montagne-St.-Emilion, Bordeaux that won the Concours de Bordeaux Vins d’Aquitaine, 2008.

Wine Notes:

  • 2006 Chateau du Moulin Noir Montagne-St.-Emilion, Bordeaux.
  • An 11 year old wine by the glass! Quite rare.
  • Soft red fruit with earthy notes of mushroom and worn-in leather
  • Black pepper, with a medium to long aftertaste.

This red was so yummy and easy to drink. What made drinking it even more enjoyable was understanding the flavours in the glass and noticing them with each sip!

To help us even further, Taylor offered the following three tips to remember next time you’re browsing a wine list.

  1. The body of the wine should match the body of the food. The richer the food, the richer your wine should be.
  2. If you’re pulling an Olivia Pope and going straight for the wine, or pairing with a light snack like popcorn, Pinot Noir or Beaujolais are best.
  3. The older the bottle of red wine, the softer it is.

Oh, and get this- a screw cap doesn’t necessarily mean a wine is on the low end. There are incredibly expensive wines that have a screw cap so don’t let that fool you! But since the screw cap is new, the wines that have been aging the longest have corks. For the best wines that have screw caps, choose from Australia and New Zealand because their wineries have been doing it the longest.

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Next time you’re overwhelmed by a wine list, ask a sommelier for his or her advice. Experts like Taylor are always happy to share their wine wisdom.

Do you have a favourite wine? Or a tip for ordering wine? Leave us a comment and let us know.

Happy National Drink Wine Day!


Karen Michelle//.

Photos by: Ryan Emberley


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