From the Cellar

Just because I started a website called doesn't mean it's All-Ontario-All-the-Time. When I kick back at night my mood (and sometimes my curiosity) decides my wine of choice. And the title should read, "Uncorked and Un-Screwed Tonight" ... but that just sounds wrong.

Thorn-Clarke 2012 Shotfire Quartage

15 Aug 2023

Shotfire 1


Called "Quartage" because it is made from four grapes: Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Petit Verdot, and Merlot ... wine was sealed under screw cap. When I opened it the liner stayed on top of the bottle, so I had to pull it off and the wine made a nice little pop.

The Opening ... Poured the wine into the glass: vibrant color, nice red around the edges shows little sign of bricking. Looks young and inviting.

AROMAS ...  Smells of white pepper, smoke and spice.

TASTE ... The fruit is hiding, but there is plenty of spice here. There is some subtle blackberry and cassis along with some coffee notes. But that fruit is struggling to come to the forefront.

After 1 hr ... Still very spicy on both the nose and palate ... But the alcohol is starting to show through especially in the mouth. There does not seem to be any kind of oak that is trying to exert it's will, but the spice and alcohol are muscular. The fruit seems to be in the same place it was an hour ago.

After 2 hrs ... It's okay ... That fruit still seems to be struggling to poke through, and that spice is definitely the dominant attribute. Not sure how much more I'm going to taste this evening. I'll look at it again tomorrow.

Shotfire 2Opened 24 hrs ...
Waited way too long for the follow up tasting ... This is an absolute mess. Smooth, but it has a port-like sweetness and seems almost syrupy.

Bottom Line ... Drink between the one and two hour mark, maybe there was a better moment between 2 hours and 24 hours, but I have to sleep sometime. This just never came together. Too bad because the younger versions of this are spectacular.


Masi 2009 Campofioirin

12 Aug 2023


I have a number of older bottles of Campofioirin, this is my oldest. I figured it was time to give it a taste after 14 years.

Upon Opening ... Cork comes out with no crumble. There's a little bit of wine on the end, so it has not crept up the cork. Cork is in very good condition. The wine when poured into the glass has got some brown on the edges, a little bit bricky, but still dark and dense at its coreMasi Campo 2009

NOSE ...  Aromas are slightly muted, there's a note of leather, smoke and definitely some earthiness. I'm starting to get a little worried.

TASTE ... First few sips are uneventful. Everything's muted. From the nose to the palate. Not sure this was a good wine to open.

30 mins open ... Things are beginning to look up; still leathery, smoky, acidic, earthy, with subtle woodsy characteristics. But I do see signs of life as some smoked-cherry notes are peeking around the corner; this brings a smile to my face.

1.5 hrs open ... An hour later there's still some dusty and old characteristics, but this wine is definitely not dead. It is beginning to show signs of smoothing out, but with a dusty finish and characteristics of mocha and coffee bean.

2 hrs open ... Now we're talking, smooth and silky, most of of that old dusty quality has disappeared. Everything that made this wine scary at the beginning is starting to subside. It now drinks beautifully with the tannins being well integrated, fruit is old, but not dead. Balanced and smooth. The wine tastes aged to perfection. There's even a little balsamic-cherry-strawberry kicking about. Not fresh by any means, but it's drinking absolutely wonderfully now.

3 hrs open ... Let the fall off begin.

Bottom Line ... There is about an hour and a half window, at the 1 hour and a half mark, where this wine really starts to become something wonderful; but then it starts to die off. Don't decant, let this wine open naturally. Then at an hour-and-a-half mark watch it open and stretch out. You're going to be thrilled. By 3 hours, maybe not so much. Glad to have gotten to this wine now.


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