It has been almost a month that the SAQ has allowed the direct sale of private imports directly to the you the client. How? In the form of a mixed wine case.
Simply, A mixed wine case is a composition of diverse labels in 6 or 12 bottle packs. The importer chooses according to his or her criteria and what is available in their inventory. I love this idea because you can explore a particular style or a country. Furthermore, in a mixed case, there is a very good chance that you will get special wines that normally are only reserved for the restaurants. If you are Montreal resident the importer will deliver to your home and in some cases, they will deliver off island.
Really a novel concept due to the Corona virus, it is a win-win situation for both the agent, the SAQ and the customer. As the SAQ inventory goes down, it permits the agent to order new products.
Here are some of my favourite agencies that make some of the most exciting wine cases:
Glou: The finest artisanal wines from Italy, Rhone and Rousillon. E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org, 514-978-7216
Vinealis: Andre Papineau agency specializes in biological, biodynamic and natural wines. The current mixed case selection has a predominant Austrian influence with Italian and Spanish choices. A blue chip importing agency in the Quebec wine milieu. Contact: André Papineau E-mail: email@example.com , 514.895.8835.
Bacchus76: The brainchild agency of Omar Pengue, a friend and a well respected colleague in the Quebec private import business. Bacchus76 specializes in Italian wine and have a nice mixed case selection. Recently, the company has decided to import Sake as well. Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org
Two Interesting private import wines to seek out:
Vini Scirto All’Antica IGT Terre Siciliane. 2018. Glou ( 6 pack case, $47.46)
Scirto craft cool climate wines from the northern slopes of Sicily’s epic volcano: Etna. Giuseppe Scirto and Valeria Franco grow old vines of Carricante, nerello mascalese, and nerello cappuccio planted between 1900 and 1930 in black volcanic sand and pumice soils.
This light red or dark rose ( depending on your perception) has an incredible depth on the bouquet. Beautiful tones of raspberry with elusive notes of violets and nuances of smoked meat. On the palate, quite elegant with finely woven tannins. A very long finale.
Equipo Navajos 2018 Ovni Palomino Fino. Importations Le Moine ( 12 pack case, $28.00)
Equipo Navazos is an association of winelovers who share a passion for the treasures of Jerez, Sanlúcar, El Puerto and Montilla. They collaborate along local producers to identify high quality casks of sherry with finesse and complexity which they then bottle and offer in very limited amounts. As well as crafting sherry, Equipo Navazos has collaborated with other winemakers including Dirk Niepoort and Sergi Colet to develop some intriguing and characterful wines from Jerez and sparkling wines from Penèdes.
Vintage tasted 2015: Lovely nose reminiscent of apples with saline nuances and hay. Clean and very precise with delicious oxidative notes. Very long finale. The perfect wine to welcome the warm weather to come.