To register, click the button below:


ALL reservations/ticket sales are FINAL





Date: Tuesday, January 19th, 2016


Time: 6 PM


Price: Members: $70
            Guests:     $90

          (includes appetizers)


Venue: Faculty Club, Univ. of Toronto,

         41 Willcocks Street
         Toronto, Ontario
         M5S 1C7  - 


Mailed Reservations
         - Tuesday, Jan. 12th, 2016
Online Payments
         - Monday, Jan. 18th, 2016


Printer Friendly Notice

Adobe Reader required to view notice



Add event to your Outlook calendar







New World Pinot Noir

Tuesday, January 19th, 2016


Guest Speaker: Anne Popoff  from Rogers Wines & Spirits.


Notes on the Wines

How the Wines Were Ranked



Does a New World Pinot Noir taste different from a Burgundian Pinot Noir?  According to Jay Youmans, Master of Wine, “Yes” there are differences.  New World winemakers tend to use cultured yeasts and inoculate their fermentations achieving clean, straightforward flavors.  Burgundians use wild or natural yeast strains for complexity of flavor. New World winemakers oak their pinot noirs more than the French and some even finish bottling with a little residual sugar (a practice not followed in Burgundy). The general results are that New World Pinots are usually more darkly pigmented with more oak on the palate, more fruit-forward, more intense in flavor and they can also be more alcoholic.  However, there are many New World winemakers who are employing traditional Burgundian winemaking techniques and we present several in our line-up in January.  From the N. Hemisphere we have 4 wines, 3 from the Willamette Valley of Oregon and 1 from Ontario. From the S. Hemisphere, we have 4 wines one each from Australia, New Zealand, S. Africa and Chile. 


Northern Hemisphere: Coyote's Run, located in Niagara-on-the-Lake produces wine in small batches from 100 percent Niagara-grown grapes, much of which are sourced from its 58-acre St. David's vineyard.  Since its first vintage in 1990, Domaine Serene has produced award winning Pinot Noirs from six vineyard estates. In April 2015, the owners purchased a Burgundy wine estate in the Côte d’Or to expand their operation of producing fine Pinots.  The Bergström Family uses biodynamic methods, and since 1999 has been a leader in the sustainable farming of wine grapes in Oregon. Argyle Winery, established in 1987, is "Grower First", focusing its attention at the source – continually improving viticulture on over 650 hillside acres sited on the very best vineyard locations in Oregon's Willamette Valley.

Southern Hemisphere: Bodega Chacra, is owned by the grandson of the creator of the famed Sassicaia winery in Italy and he’s now working in the” middle of nowhere” to produce stunning Patagonian Pinot Noir. Chacra doesn’t employ any mechanization in the production of their wines which results in their Pinots expressing the subtle, complex and finely textured tannins characteristic of very old vines. Russell Hamilton Winery is one of the most recognized S. African brands in the U.S. Their Pinot Noir is Burgundian in style, with subtle perfume, stylish texture and long, lingering, gentle flavors. A world search of the perfect conditions for viticulture, especially for Pinot Noir, brought Kai Schubert and Marion Deimling, graduates of the German Viticulture and Oenology to Wairarapa, New Zealand to start Schubert Wines. They use traditional Burgundian winemaking methods with extreme low yields, (3/4 ton per acre), extended macerations and the exclusive use of Burgundian cooperage for their Pinots.  Lastly, from Kyoong Winery situated in the cool-climate Mornington Peninsula, 80km south of Melbourne Australia, winemaker Sandro Mosele has crafted a reputation for the very best representation of Australian Pinot and Chardonnay.

This will be a wonderful opportunity to sample and compare Pinots throughout the New World and also to compare the wines from the Northern Hemisphere against the Southern.  Our evenings start with a reception wine followed by the formal, blind, sit-down tasting. Bread and light appetizers will be served with our wines.  Please refrain from wearing scented products; dress is casual business attire.


And for those in attendance, we will have a special BONUS!!  You'll have an exclusive tasting of the Femme Fatale Pinot Noir from Cloud’s Rest in Sonoma, courtesy of our reception wine supplier, Great North Imports.  Cloud's Rest is a boutique winery producing single vineyard wines. We are very grateful to Caleb Gibbons of Great North Imports for his generosity! 

For more info on the Femme Fatale Pinot Noir:




The Wines

2010 Coyote's Run - Rare Vintage (Ontario) $50
“Produced from 5 barrels of the estate’s finest Pinot Noir, this lovely wine offers rich spiced fruit aromas with hints of vanilla, dried herbs and smoke. Dry, satiny in texture, medium bodied, the palate delivers depth of red cherry/berry fruit, a nuance of smoky spice and a lovely touch of warmth on the tangy finish. There’s good depth of flavour fine balance, and structure. Purchase for mid-term cellaring or enjoy with your favorite duck recipe.”  Susan Desjardins


2009 Bergström, Cumberland Reserve (Oregon)         $49
“A blend of vineyards with Shea and De Lancellotti playing the leading roles. Dark in color for the vintage, it displays an earthy minerality, violets, cedar, black cherry, and black raspberry. Dense and rich on the palate with lots of flavor, this concentrated effort can be approached now but will evolve for 1-2 years and drink well through 2019., Wine Advocate #197, Oct 2011. Jay S Miller 92/100 Drink: 2011 - 2019


2008 Argyle Reserve (Oregon)         $55
“The 2008 Pinot Noir Reserve is darker in color with aromas of violets, incense, cinnamon, black cherry, and black raspberry. Richer and more structured than the Willamette Valley cuvee, it will evolve for 2-3 years and offer prime drinking from 2012 to 2020., Wine Advocate #191, Oct 2010. Jay S Miller, Drink: 2012 – 2020,  91/100


2008 Domaine Serene, Yamhill Cuvée (Oregon)          $49
Domaine Serene’s 2008 Pinot Noirs are outstanding across the portfolio. The 2008 Pinot Noir Yamhill Cuvee is medium ruby in color with an expressive nose of spicy red fruits and considerable terroir character. On the palate the fruit leans to the dark side of the spectrum with intense black cherry and black raspberry flavors as well as excellent grip, balance, and length. This tasty effort can be enjoyed now but has the stuffing to evolve for 2-3 years., Wine Advocate #191, Oct 2010. Jay S Miller, drink: 2010 – 2013. 91/100


2010 Schubert, Block B (New Zealand)           $50
Produced from a blend of 100% Dijon clones. The 2008 Block B cleaned up in the London England wine shows being awarded the International Trophy for best Pinot Noir at Decanter World Wine Awards and also the International Wine Challenge Trophy for Sustainability (2010).  “An astonishing nose of ripe blackberry, plum and blueberry, with evolving floral, coffee and sweet oaky notes. The complex palate is laced with morello cherries, plums and pure dark fruit flavors with hints of wild basil, truffles and tea leaves. Quiet dense but retaining Schubert's customary elegance, the Block B 2010 is perfectly balanced with great length and intensity on the palate and a sweet, mineral finish.”  Review by Lisa Perrotti-Brown, MW in October 2012 for  The 2010 Pinot Noir “Block B” – 93+ Parker Points – highest rated NZ Pinot Noir in 2010.


2011 Bodega Chacra, Cincuenta y Cinco (Argentina)    $71
“This ’11 Patagonian wine exudes pure old-vine Pinot Noir fruit, a dusting of spice, a waft of earth, but its sinuous sophistication and elegance mark it as a member of the Sassicaia family--it is to Argentina and Burgundy what Sassicaia is to Bolgheri and Bordeaux.”  “The 2011 Cincuenta y Cinco is quite balanced aromatically and expressive with nice ripeness and notes of bright cherries. The palate is light to medium-bodied (these wines all range between 12.5% and 13.5% alcohol) and is polished with very fine-grained tannins, very good balance, focused flavors and good persistence. This is ready now, but should also develop more complexity with time in bottle. 15,844 bottles were filled in January-February 2012.” #220. Aug 2015. Luis Gutierrez, Drink: 2015 - 2021 92/100


2009 Hamilton Russell Vineyards (S. Africa)  $45
“Cropped at 3.2tons/ha and raised entirely in French oak (45% new) the delectable 2009 Pinot Noir has a lifted bouquet of bright red cherries, red currant and a hint of dried blood. The palate is medium-bodied with very fine tannins and a lovely caressing texture in the mouth, fine tension and poise with crisp red-berried fruits on the shimmering finish., Wine Advocate #196, Aug. 2011. Neal Martin, Drink 2012-2017+ 93/100


2009, Kooyong Winery, Haven Vineyard (Australia)    $60
The best section of each vineyard is reserved for the Single Vineyard wines.   Of its 3 single vineyard pinot noirs, the Haven generally drinks best at a young age. “This has a deep, rich but compact raspberry-plum jam nose with fresh fine herbs, moderate oak sweetness, licorice and earth. It's medium-full bodied, very smooth but quite sour edged on the finish, with some stoniness. Tannin is refined. Quite powerful, with excellent to outstanding length. Great focus here.”, best 2014 to 2019. Tasted May 2012. David Lawrasson. 92/100



2013 Forbidden Sauvignon Blanc Mousque, 'Dutton Ranch, Shop Block', Green Valley

A mélange of harvest ripe citrus perfumed with honeysuckle is the perfect entrance for this rich sauvignon blanc that hails from the infamous shop block parcel at dutton ranch. Notes of minerality, lemon, lime, grapefruit, and honeydew melon complete this balanced beauty. Don’t be shy about quaffing this wine often and with the option for a broader range of food pairings to include grilled quail, spicy pork ribs, and roast monkfish with papaya salsa.



2013 Femme Fatale, 100% Estate, Pinot Noir, Sonoma Coast

Luscious, velvety red raspberries, ripe bing cherries, and pomegranate command your attention with first sip of this exceptionally elegant pinot noir. Flirtatious hints of baking spice accent beautifully. Fashioned from 100% estate grown fruit, aged two years in french oak, bottled for aging. This vintage is a seamless balance of aromatic dark ripe berries, low ph-naturally high acidity, volcanic minerality & soft French oak tannins.


Reception & Special Offering wines graciously provided by:

Caleb Gibbons
Great North Imports


Top of page



How The Wines Were Ranked


Name of Wine (in order poured) Group Ranking Guest Ranking
A -
2008 Argyle Reserve
5 1
B -
2008 Domaine Serene, Yamhill Cuvée
4 3
C -
2009 Bergström, Cumberland Reserve
3 5
D -
2009 Hamilton Russell Vineyards
7 6
E -
2009, Kooyong Winery, Haven Vineyard
8 4
F -
2010 Schubert, Block B
2 8
G -
2010 Coyote's Run - Rare Vintage
1 7
H -
2011 Bodega Chacra, Cincuenta y Cinco
6 2