Red, White and Champagne for Father's Day


Red, White and Champagne for Father's Day

At The Wine Rack

with Christopher Reckord

Thursday, June 14, 2018

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This coming Sunday is that time of year when many fathers are honoured by their children. Here are three great, very approachable wines with some complexity that I suggest as gifts or for you to simply buy and enjoy. I have had the amazing opportunity to visit all these producers and I have found that they make wines that appeal to a wide cross-section of wine lovers. I think these three are fitting for Father's Day.


Cline Live Oak Zinfandel, Sonoma, California

One of the first wineries I ever visited on my wine journey, between 1999-2000, was Cline Cellars in Sonoma. I guess that's why I am always ready to try anything from Cline that I see pop up in Jamaica. As a newbie at the time, I found the Zinfandel very enjoyable, so much so that I bought a few bottles only available at the winery. I laid these bottles down for about five years and was surprised how amazing they tasted when I eventually opened them. This Live Oak Zinfandel is named for Live Oak Road in Oakley, California. The vineyards run adjacent to this road and consistently produce some of the most complex, concentrated and unique lots of Zinfandel. This Zin displays notes of sweet berries, spice, and blackcurrants. The wine has a firm, balanced structure of acid and fine-grained tannins.


King Estate Pinot Gris, Willamette Valley, Oregon

King Estate is another winery that my wife and I had the opportunity to visit and taste through their wines, several years ago. I was very happy to see their Pinot Noir and, more importantly, their Pinot Gris eventually make it onto the shelves in Jamaica. While most wine drinkers are familiar with one of Italy's most popular white wine varietals Pinot Grigio, its French equivalent, Pinot Gris (pronounced 'gree') is not so well-known here. Pinot Gris is usually made in a medium-bodied crispy clean style with some complex fruit on the nose and palate. The 2016 King Estate Willamette Valley Pinot Gris is a delicious alternative for a Pinot Grigio; whenever I pour this wine, folks always want to see the bottle to take a photo. King Estate's own tasting note says it all: “The 2016 vintage is a gorgeous, mouth-watering example from another stellar Oregon growing season. This has a pale straw colour with glistening edges. Aromas of ripe pear, fresh cantaloupe and honeysuckle fill the glass. Juicy flavours of just ripe pear, wild honey and pineapple are framed by a balance of viscous texture and clean, racy acidity. This wine will age beautifully through the next decade.”


Champagne Taittinger Brut Réserve, Reims, France

Several years ago, a small group of us travelled to France to attend Vinexpo in Bordeaux. It is one of the largest exhibitions for wine and spirits professionals from all over the world. En route, we stopped in the Champagne region where we visited a number of Champagne producers, including Taittinger which put on a very special dinner party for all their visiting guests. One of the Champagnes that we thoroughly enjoyed was the Taittinger Brut Réserve which is a blend of Chardonnay (40%) and Pinot Noir and Pinot Meunier (60%) wines from over 35 different vineyards and vintages. Taittinger Brut Réserve has a fine creamy mousse showing some stone fruit, grapefruit and mineral supported by crisp acidity; a delicious and delicately balanced elegant champagne, known for its consistently excellent quality the world over. Splurge a little on Father's Day!


Wishing all you a fantastic Father's Day on Sunday.


Christopher Reckord - Information Technology Entrepreneur & Wine Enthusiast. Send your questions and comments to You can also follow me on Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, Periscope @chrisreckord and on Twitter: @Reckord

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