Navigating a restaurant's wine list can be a challenge, especially when most of the wine names are not familiar to you. There may be numerous wines on restaurant's wine list which are available through consignment only or wine agency and not available in your local wine stores. Which is why I like to review some of these wines, since generally, few reviews are available for these wines.
This past weekend we headed out for dinner at Bottega Pizzeria on rue St-Zotique in Montréal, Québec, the wine list, an all Italian wine selection (love it) with about 60 different choices from all over Italy, including a selection of rare native Italian grapes. I selected Canonica A. Cerreto Chianti Classico Riserva 2007 to enjoy with our Pizza. This wine is a blend of 85% Sangiovese, 10% Cabernet Sauvignon and 5% Merlot, aged 18 months in French oak. Talk about beautiful sensuous aromatics here with cherry, raspberry, blackberry jam, violets, cedar and savoury aromas. On the mouthfeel, medium to full bodied with 14% Alcohol with generous burst of flavour, soft textured tannins and lively acidity. The wine finish is long with lots of savoury flavours, jammy fruit and fine grained tannins. Superb aromatics, great structure and balance, awesome wine, really enjoyable. Score 90 Points.
Now lets talk about this restaurant, started with a salad first, then our Pizza La Capricciosa (tomatoes, prosciutto, olives, artichokes, mushrooms and fresh Fior di Latte mozzarella) and a pecan tart with hazelnut gelato for dessert. Everything was so good, so fresh and I love the thin crust with crispy outside and soft inside and the dessert was to die for. The service was impeccable, food is well priced with a really good wine list. Great experience, I cannot wait to go back, strongly recommended.
The restaurant price for this wine is $60.00
Update May 27, 2012
This Chianti Classico became available here in Ontario through the LCBO New Release of April 28, 2012. I have so far enjoyed two of three bottles purchased and found both of them to be as enjoyable as when I wrote the review last December. When I think of Chianti Classico, this is the style I enjoy, more traditional, with sweet and sour fruit, good acidity and food friendly.
Now for the price, not having enjoyed this wine before, I calculated the purchase price (who doesn’t do this) at $25.00, with a restaurant price at $60.00, which would have been 2 1/2 time the purchase price, which is average. Since this wine wasn’t available at the SAQ in Québec, Bottega Pizzeria would have bought this wine through consignment and most likely at an even better price for restaurants, around $15 or $16. This makes the markup around four times the original price, which is excessive. But if you are living in Ontario and think of buying Canonica A. Cerreto Chianti Classico Riserva 2007, at $17.00 this wine is a great value. Cheers