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Joie 2011 A Noble Blend

Strikes a wonderful balance between the crispness of riesling, the floral aromatics of gewürztraminer and the friendly fruitiness of pinot blanc, all combining into a clean, long, expressive finish. A wine for all sorts of occasions, from simple summer sipping to accompanying grilled pork chops or fish in a cream sauce. Highly recommended..
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Palate Press Wine of the Week: 2010 Stag’s Hollow GVM

Quite an unusual wine from this Okanagan Valley winery : a field blend of grenache, viognier and marsanne, pressed together and fermented together in oak barrels, thus creating an unusual, largely blanc de noirs, white wine. Coming from a cool vintage, it has an edgy, vibrant touch, combining the aromatics of Rhône varieties with a blend of lime and tropical flavors. Crisp, it also has good weight and a fairly round mouthfeel. creating a unique profile and balance. It is, at this point, a very young wine. A year or two in bottle will round it out, and it may well have several more years of life in it. Highly Recommended. RC
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2006 Mission Hill S.L.C. Merlot

2006 was a truly exceptional season in the Okanagan Valley, with one of the earliest starts to harvest and a long back season to leave grapes hanging and gaining ripeness and complexity. The 2006 S.L.C. (Single Lot Collection) Merlot from Mission Hill is a great testimony to the quality of the vintage, with its fine dark fruit, pleasantly chocolatey and spicy notes, fine, almost powdery tannins and very good length. Winemaker John Simes’ precise work is visible in this top-tier cuvée made from selected grapes grown at the southern edge of the Okanagan Valley, creating a well-crafted, balanced wine. It’s a textbook New World merlot whose 14% alcohol doesn’t show. Mission Hill wines are available in the US and they are worth seeking out. Recommended.
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2010 Joie Pure Grape Muscat

Founded by two former sommeliers, Joie Farm is one of the most exciting producers in British Columbia’s Okanagan valley. Their Pure Grape Muscat is a great example of their fresh, clean and always controlled style of wines. Clocking in at barely over 11% alcohol, this wine made from Moscato Giallo strikes a great balance between crisp freshness and aromatic amplitude, with a dangerously high drinkability combined with all the floral and peachy aromatics of muscat. A pale, crystalline white that can pair well with oysters, sushi or some spicy Asian foods. Highly recommended.
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2007 Fairview Cellars Premier Series Cabernet Sauvignon

There’s a fair bit of oak in this premium bottling from this producer in Oliver, British Columbia, but it integrates rather nicely in a supple and ripe cabernet with fine tannins and just the tiniest herbal touch to give it an edge, along with some blackcurrant and spicy notes. Clocking in at 14.5% alcohol, it does have a tiny bit of heat on the finish, but with a lasagna at the dinner table, it drank easily and with no heaviness. My only problems with the wine are (a) the mention on the back label of “ stewed “ flavors—no need to be so hard on yourself here; maybe a bit of dried fruit, perhaps, but not stewed and, (b) that it’s defined as having “old vines” character from vines that are (at least in part) 15 years old. Let it get out of adolescence and give another 10 years before saying “old,” I say. Recommended.
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2007 Tinhorn Creek Merlot – Okanagan Valley, British Columbia

I served Tinhorn Creek’s ’07 South Okanagan Valley Merlot with our grilled hamburgers, homemade rosemary-and-olive-oil tossed chips and coleslaw. On the nose the wine was floral and fruity, with a dusty undertone. On the palate, flavors of berries, dark cherries, and a little cocoa worked well with the smoky goodness of the burgers and savory potatoes. While not terribly complex, this wine is juicy, bright and well balanced. To read more about the wines Kathleen drinks, visit her blog Between the Vines