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Anthony Gismondi on Wine
Tasting Notes

Tastings: September 2018

24 September 2018

CedarCreek Amphora Wine Project Desert Ridge Cabernet Franctext
91PTS

CedarCreek Amphora Wine Project Desert Ridge Cabernet Franc 2016

Osoyoos, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaThis is the antithesis of the MHFE Terroir Series but as different as it is they are equals in many ways. Near to Vista Edge, this special bottling comes off Desert Ridge, another Osoyoos vineyard. The fruit is naturally fermented in clay without sulphur and is unfiltered. The nose is fragrant with rich floral undertones and bits of roasted tomato, black fruits, wild blueberry, over a super soft, supple palate. Easy to drink now, the question is will it age? Only time will tell, but it should be fine through 2021. I think Treve got it right when she described it as “full-bodied, but light-footed.”Prices: BC 60.00 Producer: CedarCreek Estate Winery
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Hester Creek Block 3 Reserve Cabernet Franctext
87PTS

Hester Creek Block 3 Reserve Cabernet Franc 2015

Golden Mile Bench, Oliver, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaFrom a super warm growing season, this franc is ripe and ready to drink after spending some 12-16 months in wood, 25 percent American with 75 percent French. Block 3 is 50 years old, a factor in controlling the fruit in such a hot year. The nose and palate are mix of leaf, mocha, soft black raspberries and some spicy, savoury, oaky, tobacco, coffee notes in the finish. The winery suggests you serve it with Moroccan duck breast or a classic Provence bouillabaisse and I say, why not?Prices: BC 28.95 Producer: Hester Creek Estate Winery
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Nichol Vineyard Cabernet Franctext
91PTS

Nichol Vineyard Cabernet Franc 2016

Naramata Bench, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaJuicy, sapid and fresh, imbued with franc's intrinsic herbal duskiness, and teeming with dark plum, black raspberry, black cherry, and textured with broken stones. This has a fresh, slightly crunchy Loire-esque acidity that easily carries the fruit to a spiced finish. Tannins bone the sides with a light grip, but never overwhelm the fruit. This is classic Nichol: dusky, granitic, textural, understated. The thirteen rows of 1989 planted fruit was destemmed into open top fermenters, then basket pressed to neutral French barrique where it rested for the following year. Racked twice, this was bottled unfined and unfiltered.Prices: BC 27.00 Producer: Nichol Vineyard
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Van Westen Vineyards Vulturetext
89PTS

Van Westen Vineyards Vulture 2015

Naramata Bench, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaThere was no problem ripening fruit during the warm 2015 growing season, something evident as soon as you smell this wine in the glass. It has all the leafy, savoury sagebrush notes you could ask for, but the black raspberry and even blueberry suggest fully ripe berries were taken to the crush pad. There is still a pinch of tannin to deal with via bottle age or a rich, mushroom covered T-Bone steak. Boisterous and fun, you can enjoy this now or hold through 2020.Prices: BC 40.00 Producer: Van Westen Vineyards
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El Padre Cabernet Franctext
88PTS

El Padre Cabernet Franc 2015

Valle de Casablanca, Region de Aconcagua, ChileEl Padre has been a round for a while, gets favourable press most years and we can see why. It’s vibrant, the fruit is alive, and oh - it tastes like cabernet franc, a grape whose time has arrived. In fact, the blend is about 85 cabernet franc with some additional cabernet sauvignon and carignan from Morande’s San Bernardo estate in the Maipo Valley. The colour is bright purple and the nose vibrant with black raspberry, earthy, leafy, savoury notes that spill across the palate. It’s all the better for 18 months ageing in French oak and a further year in bottle. Simple but well made. Try this with your Thanksgiving ham.Prices: BC 29.99 Producer: Viña Morandé
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Mission Hill Terroir Collection No. 32 Vista's Edgetext
92PTS

Mission Hill Terroir Collection No. 32 Vista's Edge 2015

Osoyoos, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaThe Terroir Collection was created to showcase the Okanagan Valley's unique microclimates and diversity, and in total only represents about the top three percent of Mission Hill’s estate fruit. The franc comes off a small, west-facing slope (with a vista) on the most southerly part of eastern side of the valley. The nose and the attack are intense with sleek black cherry notes and a dusting of cocoa. The palate is equally dense and hedonistic, with ripe blackcurrants, sweet cherry and the finest savoury underbelly that balances the fruit. Complex and layered, this wine will turn heads while making a compelling case for varietal cabernet franc. It’s aged for 17 months in French oak, of which one third is new. Bordelais in style but with better fruit. Stock up collectors.Prices: BC 50.00 Producer: Mission Hill Family Estate
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21 September 2018

Blue Mountain Pinot Noirtext
90PTS

Blue Mountain Pinot Noir 2016

Okanagan Falls, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaThis recipe is nailed now, as it is one of Blue Mountain's flagship wines. Estate vines from 10 to 32 years, and across six clones, make up this wine, one destemmed before native fermentation and time in French oak before being bottled unfiltered the following spring. Give this young wine a little time to breathe in the glass to reveal soft deep plum, black raspberry, all tinged with light pipe tobacco and seasoned with whispers of pink peppercorn. Tannins are slight, to match the slighter, softer palate. Though drinking well know, this deserves time in bottlePrices: BC 30.00 AB 30.00 ON 30.00 QC 30.00 Producer: Blue Mountain Vineyard & Cellars
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Tinhorn Creek Pinot Noirtext
88PTS

Tinhorn Creek Pinot Noir 2016

Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaSweet, soft potpourri perfume pervades this Golden Mile estate pinot noir. Native fermented, fifteen percent whole cluster, this was aged in oak (small percent new) for a year prior to this release. Plum, blackberry, damson plum is swirled with a bitter edge that helps hold tension, an important element in a 14 degree pinot. Tannins are black tea astringent, and autumnal spices linger on the finish. Drink this now with duck or richer pork dishes.Prices: BC 23.99 Producer: Tinhorn Creek Vineyards
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JoieFarm En Famille Reserve Pinot Noirtext
90PTS

JoieFarm En Famille Reserve Pinot Noir 2016

Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaThis year's Reserve is a blend of Naramata and Summerland fruit, and a mix of ten clones. The destemmed fruit was fermented in small lots, macerated for a week, gently pressed and then aged for eight months in barrel (40 percent new) for eight months. Dark and dusky, with wild blackberry, plum, black raspberry, cherry, blueberry all swirled with fine smoke and exotic peppercorn spicing that warms up the finish. Though potent and up front, this still is filled with graceful, pretty charm. This structured, youthful wine is all packed into a tidy 13.4 degree package, muscular like a Boston Terrier. Impressive, and will benefit with time in cellar.Prices: BC 40.00 Producer: JoieFarm
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Unsworth Vineyards Pinot Noirtext
90PTS

Unsworth Vineyards Pinot Noir 2016

Cowichan Valley, Vancouver Island, British Columbia, CanadaImbued with the Island's coastal freshness, the 2016 pinot noir walks very well that fine line of pinot poise. Dark cherry, loganberry, rose petals, crushed stones are framed with bitter cocoa tannins, dusting the sides to a grippy finish. This comes from a nearby vineyard in North Cowichan, and three clones of pinot noir. Post fermentation in tank, this spends 15 months in barrel. I prefer and recommend this with a slight chill, accentuating the bright fruit and freshness.Prices: BC 26.00 Producer: Unsworth Vineyards
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19 September 2018

Summerhill Pyramid Winery Alive Organic Whitetext
87PTS

Summerhill Pyramid Winery Alive Organic White 2017

Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaCan’t say enough about the improvement in this aromatic vegan wine and label. It’s barely off-dry, blending kerner, pinot gris and gewürztraminer with a pinch of chardonnay and riesling. There’s a subtle note of orange propping up fresh orchard fruits in this clean, bright, uncomplicated and food-friendly white. Just abut any vegetarian dish will be happy to be in the company of this modest 11 percent alcohol wine. Well done.Prices: BC 18.50 Producer: Summerhill Pyramid Winery
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Silver Lining Estate Whitetext
88PTS

Silver Lining Estate White 2017

Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaThis wine over delivers for an aromatic white blend, in this case a mix gewürztraminer, riesling and ehrenfelser. Look for bright, juicy watery stone fruit flavours that jump from the glass. The attack is floral with hints of litchi fruit but all balanced by a crisp acidity. In a sea full of ordinary, aromatic whites this stands out. Winery direct or private wine shops.Prices: BC 16.95 Producer: The View Winery & Vineyard
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Hester Creek Character Pinot Gris Gewurztraminertext
87PTS

Hester Creek Character Pinot Gris Gewurztraminer 2017

Golden Mile Bench, Oliver, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaLove the makeover here and the freshness brought into this wine. There is plenty of juicy yellow apple, pear bolstered by a citrus/gooseberry undercurrent. It’s off-dry, so spicy foods are the ticket, but why not dry this out a bit next vintage and let it tell the story of its desert origins.Prices: BC 17.95 Producer: Hester Creek Estate Winery
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JP Azeitāo Moscatel Graúdo Fernāo Pirestext
85PTS

JP Azeitāo Moscatel Graúdo Fernāo Pires 2017

Alentejo, Central and Southern Portugal, PortugalClassic simple summer sipper from Portugal. The moscatel provides the perfume and a bit of mouthfeel, while the pires brings the freshness and lift to the palate. Serve well chilled as an apéritif for best effect.Prices: MB 10.50 AB 12.00 BC 10.79 Producer: Bacalhôa Vinhos de Portugal S.A.
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Fitzpatrick Runabout Whitetext
88PTS

Fitzpatrick Runabout White 2017

Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaFrom the winery's Greata Ranch estate, this year's Runabout White is a blend of 43/31/19/7 chardonnay/gewurztraminer/pinot blanc/riesling, fermented in stainless. Yellow apples, white peach, Asian pear drives this lightly off-dry blend, one that thankfully relies more on snappy, bright fruit and fine spices rather than sugar. Lovely crispness and tightness here, and welcome for cracking now with mussels, clams or south Asian flavours.Prices: BC 17.00 Producer: Fitzpatrick Family Vineyards
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Black Hills Aliastext
87PTS

Black Hills Alias 2017

Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaThis is an aromatic white blend built around perfumed, off dry, orchard fruit, led by white peach, pear and kissed with lime peel and ginger spicing. The grapes are a bit of an Okanagan fruit salad.The ripeness and RS tugs this medium bodied wine down a bit; best enjoyed well chilled and with a papaya salad or prawn curry.Prices: BC 24.00 Producer: Black Hills Estate Winery
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18 September 2018

Château du Hureau Les Fevettestext
89PTS

Château du Hureau Les Fevettes 2014

Saumur, Loire, FranceLes Fevettes is from the estate's oldest cabernet franc vineyard, planted in 1943 on deep clay and sand, and has been vinified separately since 1989. Organically farmed, this macerated on skins for approximately one month before spending two years in foudres and being bottled unfined and unfiltered. Satisfyingly alluring with savoury cured meats, baking spices, sultry five spice, dried violets with downy, soft clad tannins. Mulberry, dusky plum, perfumed cassis lingers on the finely textured finish.Prices: BC 35.00 Producer: Chateau du Hureau
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Quinta Ferreira Cabernet Franctext
88PTS

Quinta Ferreira Cabernet Franc 2013

Oliver, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaAt five years old this wine is showing little age after spending 19 months in oak and considerably more time in bottle. The styling is Euro and drier, which gives it its own charm, but there is a fine thread of black cherry fruit and cedar throughout. There are still tannins to be dispersed but you can open this now with roasted meats, venison, strong cheeses, or cellar through 2022.Prices: BC 30.00 Producer: Quinta Ferreira
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Bartier Bros. Cabernet Franc Cerqueira Vineyardtext
87PTS

Bartier Bros. Cabernet Franc Cerqueira Vineyard 2017

Oliver, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaThis cabernet franc, from Black Sage Terrace's Cerqueira Vineyard, is splashed with 12 percent merlot, native fermented, on skins for 24 days and bottled unfined and unfiltered after a year in French oak. Ripe, soft and plush with plump blackberries, black plum, pipe tobacco and franc's characteristic herbaceousness. Tannins are velveteen, cushioning the sunbaked fruit to a warm, baking spice finish. If you like your big reds on the softer side, crack this.Prices: BC 25.99 AB 21.99 Producer: Bartier Bros.
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CedarCreek Amphora Wine Project Desert Ridge Cabernet Franctext
89PTS

CedarCreek Amphora Wine Project Desert Ridge Cabernet Franc 2016

Osoyoos, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaSoftly textured, yet with pixelated spices, this year's Amphora Wine Project is entirely cabernet franc, from the scrabbly soils of Desert Ridge vineyard in Osoyoos. This was native fermented, hand plunged and topped up with more of the same wine before it was sealed in a neutral, unlined clay amphora and left to sleep for eight months - no inputs or outtakes. Dusky dark cocoa, black raspberry, wild blueberry, mint, on a soft, downy and supple palate. Full bodied, but light footed, this is best when decanted and allowed space to open and stretch. Looking forward to more Projects from CC.Prices: BC 60.00 Producer: CedarCreek Estate Winery
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Narrative Cabernet Franc by Okanagan Crush Padtext
88PTS

Narrative Cabernet Franc by Okanagan Crush Pad 2016

Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaRetasted six months along. This was organic fruit sourced from Osoyoos and Golden Mile Bench, and was fermented and aged in concrete for nine months prior to bottling. Thorny, dusky plum, black raspberry, dark plum, wild thorns with lovely, lively peppery spice. Beauty shades of purple here, with lightly grippy tannins. Acidity lifts all. Lovely hands-off approach to cabernet franc.Prices: BC 21.99 Producer: Okanagan Crush Pad Winery
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The Hatch Cabernet Franctext
86PTS

The Hatch Cabernet Franc 2016

Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaThe 2016 franc is not as captivating as the 2015, although the acidity is fresher. Just on the edge of lifted, the black raspberry fruit melds with a resinous backdrop flecked with pepper and dried tomato leaf. Funky to the finish, but ready to drink. Try this with grilled sausages.Prices: BC 33.60 Producer: The Hatch
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Tinhorn Creek Oldfield Reserve Cabernet Franctext
89PTS

Tinhorn Creek Oldfield Reserve Cabernet Franc 2015

Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaThe Tinhorn Cabernet Franc comes with an addition of 15 percent merlot, the two main red grapes at the winery. The ’15 is dark and the attack is weighty and dense with vanilla, spice, licorice, black fruit and sagebrush notes. The palate is soft, and the wine tends to spill north and south as well as east and west spreading, chocolate, coffee, figgy fruit and spices everywhere. At three years of age it is only just beginning to find itself. Certainly, you could cellar this through 2021. The wine is fermented naturally, with extraction as needed over the thirty days of skin contact. All French oak (30 percent new) assures this wine will hold your interest. Serve now with Texas-style barbecue ribs.Prices: BC 31.99 Producer: Tinhorn Creek Vineyards
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Harper's Trail Thadd Springs Vineyard Cabernet Franctext
89PTS

Harper's Trail Thadd Springs Vineyard Cabernet Franc 2016

Kamloops, British Columbia, CanadaThis wine opens with an attractive, vibrant palate of mostly red fruits with a pleasant, savoury, undercurrent. The tone is floral raspberry with tobacco and dark cherries, all in a medium sized package that delivers. A non-blockbuster that is easy to like. Serve this with a veal chop for best results.Prices: BC 29.90 Producer: Harper's Trail Estate Winery
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Little Farm Winery Pied de Cuve Cabernet Franctext
85PTS

Little Farm Winery Pied de Cuve Cabernet Franc 2017

Similkameen Valley, British Columbia, CanadaSourced from Similkameen's Blind Creek Vineyard, this was foot trodden and left on the skins for a native ferment for a couple of weeks before gentle pressing into stainless, where it remained for the following year. Brown tinged, cloudy, and balsamic imbued, this natural wine is not for everyone. In fact, the first time I tried it, at room temp, I promptly popped it in the fridge. A few hours later, improved, but still cloudy with brown spices, nutmeg, worn wood, wormwood, twinged with green and lingering with earthiness. Unlike Little Farm; will try another bottle in future.Prices: BC 31.00 Producer: Little Farm Winery
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Grizzli Cabernet Franctext
88PTS

Grizzli Cabernet Franc 2014

Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaThis wine is at least as big as its overweight, monster bottle. The fruit is super ripe giving it a sweet nose of plums and blackberries. The palate is similar with smoky sweet black fruits dusted with brown spices and a savoury, dried herb, mineral undercurrent. Big and blowsy, this will appeal to a certain set that loves their reds ripe and rich. It's ready to drink, and the match would a roasted leg of lamb.Prices: BC 92.00 Producer: Grizzli Winery
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Rust Wine Co. Cabernet Franctext
87PTS

Rust Wine Co. Cabernet Franc 2016

Okanagan Falls, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaRust Wine Co. opened a year ago, taking over what was Rustico Farm and Cellars for their tasting room, and focused on making small lot, single vineyard wines from across the Okanagan. This is from Okanagan Falls' Lost Horn Vineyard, and clone 01. Ripe, dense and full, with smoked tobacco, big black fruit and wood spice, reflective of the 13 months in French oak (20 percent of which is new). A ripe sweetness lingers on the sweetness, as does ragged / wooden tannins. This is a giant wine, with ample potency, but lacking finesse. Pair with grilled meats.Prices: BC 25.00 Producer: Rust Wine Co.
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Blasted Church Cabernet Franctext
87PTS

Blasted Church Cabernet Franc 2016

Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaThese grapes were hand harvested from the Ashe Vineyard in Osoyoos and the Suncrest Vineyard in Oliver, and underwent a five-day cold soak prior to fermentation. The skin contact lasted some 21 days before the wine was aged in a mix of 55/45 neutral French and American oak barrels for 18 months. Look for an open, expressive nose of earth and red berries with bits of sage and chocolate on this massive wine. The attack is soft and round with vanilla, black raspberry, cinnamon and dry crushed leaf notes. Shy, this most certainly is not, and boozy it certainly feels. Best with braised or grilled meats or any mushroom dish.Prices: BC 0.00 Producer: Blasted Church Vineyards
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17 September 2018

Bartier Bros. Sauvignon Blanctext
88PTS

Bartier Bros. Sauvignon Blanc 2017

Summerland, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaFrom Oliver's Black Sage Terrace and its sandy loam on granite, this savvy was whole cluster pressed before five months in stainless steel and on lees. The lees work is evident here, pillowing the lemon, green apple, white peach, grapefruit to a zesty finish. This reminds me of coastal Chilean savvy, combining the sun-warmed ripeness of fruit with the freshness of the soils and site.Prices: BC 21.99 Producer: Bartier Bros.
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Haywire Free Form Natural and Unfiltered Whitetext
90PTS

Haywire Free Form Natural and Unfiltered White 2016

Summerland, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaTasted again a half year along. This is an orange wine (skin contact white) from Summerland's Waters & Banks Vineyard, fermented native in stainless, where it remained on the skins for nine months before being persuaded left to rest for two months prior to bottling. Medicinal orange, tangerine, hops, white cherry are expressed along the textural and grippy palate, tied with herbal citrus oils and lingering with ample spices, flake salts. This has really come together in the past few months, showing once again that Matt Dumayne's textural wines benefit from time in bottle.Prices: BC 34.90 Producer: Okanagan Crush Pad Winery
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Singletree Winery Sauvignon Blanctext
87PTS

Singletree Winery Sauvignon Blanc 2017

Fraser Valley, British Columbia, CanadaThe latest iteration of Singletree sauvignon is fermented in stainless steel giving it a much fresher style with plenty of zippy citrus notes. The nose is a touch tropical with ripe melon notes mixed with grass and a skiff of green pepper. A nice upgrade in refreshing lightness that we didn’t see in the barrel fermented ’15. This would be perfect with pasta and butter clams or simple fish tacos or fish cakes to deal with the dry finish.Prices: BC 20.00 Producer: Singletree Winery
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Blue Mountain Sauvignon Blanctext
89PTS

Blue Mountain Sauvignon Blanc 2017

Okanagan Falls, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaA blend of 10 and 11-year-old vines, and two French clones, this estate wine was whole cluster pressed and settled overnight before native fermentation in a mix of stainless and French oak. Post ferment, this remained on partial lees (the stainless lees was removed and reserved) for five months, and included time spent in stainless, foudre and puncheons. Always polished, this brings lemon curd, white blossoms, Asian pear, white peach to a finely spiced finish. There's a cut of bitter lemon that holds this 12 degrees wine to attention.Prices: BC 18.90 AB 24.95 Producer: Blue Mountain Vineyard & Cellars
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River Stone Sauvignon Blanctext
89PTS

River Stone Sauvignon Blanc 2017

Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaLove the way they weave ripeness of fruit into this sauvignon without making it simple. The grapes are grown just North of Oliver on the west side of the valley on sandy loam deposited during the last glaciation. Melon, passionfruit, guava and grapefruit carry the day in a very stylish rendition of this mineral stony sauvignon. Bravo. Try this with a favourite squid dish or steamed mussels.Prices: BC 21.90 Producer: River Stone Estate Winery
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Blue Mountain Sauvignon Blanctext
89PTS

Blue Mountain Sauvignon Blanc 2017

Okanagan Falls, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaThe vines, a mix of tow French clones are now ten+ years old and settling into the site and the wine just fine. The fermentation is with native yeast in a mix of stainless and French oak, the latter adding some weight and mouthfeel if clipping some freshness. Five months in stainless steel, foudre and puncheons builds intensity and richness mixing pears, citrus, white peaches all with a dash of spice. There’s just enough acid to take on fatter seafood dishes or at least those served with a butter sauce.Prices: BC 18.90 AB 24.95 Producer: Blue Mountain Vineyard & Cellars
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Allan Scott Family Winemakers Sauvignon Blanctext
89PTS

Allan Scott Family Winemakers Sauvignon Blanc 2017

Marlborough, South Island, New ZealandThis is classic Marlborough from the super bright, mouthwatering citrus overtones to the jalapeno, nettle, gooseberry aromas. The attack is follows the same path with dry, juicy, crisp, grapefruit, lemongrass and passion fruit flavours that persist through the finish. The fruit comes off a mix of Marlborough sites and its used to build a full palate of flavours. Most any shellfish work here, as well as creamy pasta sauces. Good value for the style.Prices: BC 19.49 NB 18.75 NS 24.79 Producer: Allan Scott Wines & Estate Ltd.
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Blasted Church Sauvignon Blanctext
88PTS

Blasted Church Sauvignon Blanc 2017

Okanagan Falls, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaFeaturing their new labels, the 2017 sauvignon blanc is from their estate, picked in two separate picks. The first was whole cluster pressed before being racked to French oak barrels (23 percent new) for fermentation and lees aging for seven months. The second lot was destemmed before being pressed and fermented in stainless steel. These were then blended and bottled. Bracing, tight, lemony acidity, passionfruit, nettles is buffered a touch with some of that lees and oak, though still shines through to the end. Pithy citrus and guava lingers on the snappy finish. Reminiscent of Kiwi or Chile savvy, but distinctly BC, especially with the label of the naked angel sunning on Vancouver's Wreck Beach.Prices: BC 24.00 Producer: Blasted Church Vineyards
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Emiliana Adobe Sauvignon Blanc Reserva Orgánicotext
87PTS

Emiliana Adobe Sauvignon Blanc Reserva Orgánico 2018

Valle de Casablanca, Region de Aconcagua, ChileAlways fresh and showy it’s difficult to find fault with a wine that is so inexpensive. Expect a clean, bright, fruity, organic sauvignon with a dash of ripeness. The attack is all citrus and grass, with a lick of jalapeno and passionfruit. There is superb value here in a sauvignon blanc that should terrify Kiwi producers selling the equivalent or less at twice the price.Prices: AB 12.99 ON 13.15 NB 12.79 Producer: Vinedos Emiliana
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Blasted Church Sauvignon Blanctext
90PTS

Blasted Church Sauvignon Blanc 2017

Okanagan Falls, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaAn impressive effort in what turned out to be a warm 2017 vintage after a cool rainy start, remember the floods. The harvest is down twice: a September 20 pick that was whole cluster pressed into 23 percent French oak barrels and left on the lees for seven months. The second pick took place on September 28. The fruit was destemmed, pressed and fermented in stainless steel. There a some sémillon in the mix grown along the Northern shores of Osoyoos Lake adding richness and texture. This must be ranked among the top sauvignons made in BC now. Fresh, bright, herbal with bits of tropical fruit that carry through the guava, citrus lengthy finish. Mussels are a must but most any shellfish will taste better with this wine.Prices: BC 24.00 Producer: Blasted Church Vineyards
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Dog Point Vineyard Sauvignon Blanctext
91PTS

Dog Point Vineyard Sauvignon Blanc 2017

Marlborough, South Island, New ZealandDog Point is made in a more reductive, Burgundian style that gives this kiwi sauvignon a distinct perspective from its Marlborough peers. The nose is a moody, smoky, mix of juicy lime and lemongrass that spreads across the palate with medium weight and a very creamy texture. The finish is equally beguiling with a touch of nettle, yeast and minerality. Food friendly if you can wait for the food to get to the table. Drink or hold, there is no rush to drink this fine white under screwcap.Prices: BC 31.99 AB 30.25 SK 38.00 MB 36.00 ON 26.95 Producer: Dog Point Vineyard Ltd.
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14 September 2018

Sette Ponti Crognolotext
91PTS

Sette Ponti Crognolo 2015

Tuscany, ItalyAnother rich sangiovese. This one with ten percent merlot is barrique-aged and from the acclaimed 2015 vintage, needs another five years to settle into itself. Despite the tannin and austerity there is a tangy freshness with spicy, cherry, earthy, tobacco notes that should ensure cellar time. A wild look at sangiovese you could serve now with grilled meats and mushrooms, but three to five years ageing would be a good plan too.Prices: BC 39.99 ON 34.95 AB 37.50 QC 30.00 MB 45.99 SK 40.99 Producer: Tenuta Sette Ponti
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Argiano Solengotext
94PTS

Argiano Solengo 2015

Montalcino, Siena, Tuscany, ItalyThe 2015 vintage gets the buy sign across Tuscany, and Argiano built in 1858 on a hilltop just southwest of Montalcino, is no exception. Solengo is a Super Tuscan blend of 50/30/15/5 cabernet sauvignon, petit verdot, merlot and sangiovese, packed full of power but still offering a certain amount of Tuscan restraint in a California-meets-Tuscany style. That said, 2015 is an in-your-face vintage and bursting with savoury, ripe, black fruit and spicy, tobacco notes. This wine continues to show constant improvement over the last decade and is certainly a candidate for five to seven more years in the cellar. Serve now with rustic meat dishes.Prices: BC 93.57 AB 91.47 SK 95.00 MB 95.00 Producer: Argiano
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Francis Ford Coppola Diamond Collection Black Label Claret Cabernet Sauvignontext
86PTS

Francis Ford Coppola Diamond Collection Black Label Claret Cabernet Sauvignon 2016

California, United StatesThis aptly name Claret is light in style with the emphasis on plums and blueberries and a touch of licorice and floral notes in the finish. The blend has evolved to cabernet sauvignon, petit verdot and petit sirah, the later two, challenging the claret designation. One year in French oak brings structure, but like last year, the overall impression is of a simple, light, fruity red that is ready to drink now.Prices: BC 29.99 AB 30.00 SK 32.32 MB 35.99 Producer: Francis Ford Coppola Presents
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Joseph Phelps Cabernet Sauvignontext
92PTS

Joseph Phelps Cabernet Sauvignon 2015

Napa Valley, California, United StatesAnother stellar vintage in Napa Valley gives us this delicious 78/15/3/2/2 mix of cabernet sauvignon, merlot, petit verdot, malbec and cabernet franc from Phelps vineyards in South Napa, Oak Knoll District, St. Helena, Rutherford, and Stags Leap District. It seems to easily soak up the 40 percent new oak, leaving a dark, inky red with intense, sweet, black fruit. You taste the small berries and loose cluster intensity, yielding sweet mulberries, plums, anise and dense, rich, soft tannins. It’s the layers and complexity that sets this apart from the norm, and what you pay the premium for. An impressive young cabernet that will only get better. If you must drink it now the match is rare T-bone steak.Prices: BC 116.99 AB 121.95 SK 106.94 MB 151.99 ON 125.00 Producer: Joseph Phelps Vineyards
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Montes Alpha Cabernet Sauvignontext
88PTS

Montes Alpha Cabernet Sauvignon 2015

Region del Valle Central, ChileExpect a vibrant, fruity nose of blueberry, blackberry and blackcurrant, with pipe tobacco and savoury boldo the latter being the South American version of garrigue. This 2015 is much more refined than previous outings, led by the wood fading into the background, and an alcohol level capped at a respectable 14 degrees. The fruit is a mix of Rapel and Colchagua Valleys, with 10 percent merlot to soften the edges. Only 55 percent of the wine was aged in older French oak for one year. Still firm and with tannins to disperse but nothing a steak won’t deal with. Modern and fresh, this is a good one and getting better in the bottle.Prices: BC 23.99 AB 27.00 MB 23.02 NS 22.00 SK 28.00 Producer: Montes Wines
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Parés Baltà Indigena Garnatxatext
90PTS

Parés Baltà Indigena Garnatxa 2015

Penedès, Catalunya (Catalonia Cataluña), SpainIf you don’t like wine, this wine is not for you. That should spell it out. The Indigena Garnatxa (or garnacha, or grenache), begins its story with organic fruit. After a simple ferment it goes into seasoned French oak for a short time to allow the wine to breathe and the fruit to sing. The result is a juicy, wild fruit nose that carries on to a medium-weight palate and right through the finish. It’s both floral and mineral and super easy to drink. Whole roasted chicken seems right here.Prices: BC 29.91 AB 27.61 SK 30.00 MB 30.00 QC 21.95 NS 27.95 Producer: Parés Baltà
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Pirramimma Ironstone Petit Verdottext
92PTS

Pirramimma Ironstone Petit Verdot 2015

McLaren Vale, South Australia, AustraliaThis is an absolute giant of a red wine from the Fleurieu District in McLaren Vale. It's entirely petit verdot, a variety that used to ripen in Bordeaux once a decade, but that obviously has no issues with achieving ripeness in McLaren Vale, especially at Pirramimma where they have a great feeling for this variety. The wine spends 24 months in a mix of French and American oak that seems to have little effect on the boisterous, spicy, blackberry, boysenberry and black olive flavours that swarm your palate. As big as it is, the tannins are dense and rich with polished edges. It needs a decade for the patient, but I can see folks grilling steaks and washing it all down with this blockbuster this weekend.Prices: BC 59.99 AB 61.53 SK 62.00 MB 65.00 Producer: Pirramimma
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Poplar Grove The Legacytext
91PTS

Poplar Grove The Legacy 2014

Naramata Bench, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaThis is an excellent follow up to the 2013, and the best tannin-managed Legacy yet. It’s never a powerhouse, which is a plus in my estimation, but the challenge is to get more than just a hedonistic bent because its the layering and complexity that will take this to another level, and closer to its asking price. The blend is dominated by cabernet franc at 44 percent with 24/24/4/4 cabernet sauvignon, merlot, malbec, merlot, and petit verdot in turn. It’s at its savoury best in 2014 with an almost voluptuous entry of black fruit, dried leaves, licorice and sagebrush. A stylish red that just leaves me only wanting more in the finish. Drink now or hold three to five years.Prices: BC 60.00 AB 56.99 SK 47.99 Producer: Poplar Grove Winery
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Sokol Blosser Dundee Hills Estate Pinot Noirtext
90PTS

Sokol Blosser Dundee Hills Estate Pinot Noir 2015

Willamette Valley, Oregon, United StatesSokol Blosser is family owned and operated now by the second-generation Alex and Alison Sokol Blosser. The estate pinot is tasty mix of fresh ripe raspberries, black cherries with a dusting of white pepper, cedar and black tea. The tannins are in line with silky texture but suggest this will age three-to-five years in the bottle. Wild salmon is the match but Ahi tuna, duck and or pork will all work according to the family.Prices: BC 39.99 AB 39.00 SK 39.99 MB 39.99 Producer: Sokol Blosser Winery
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Bodegas Vetus Flor de Vetus Verdejotext
88PTS

Bodegas Vetus Flor de Vetus Verdejo 2016

Rueda, Castilla-Leon, SpainThis verdejo come out of the DOs of Toro and Rueda, and from old bushvines grown at 800-930 metres above sea level in sandy soils. Simple winemaking and stainless-steel tanks lead to a fresh, intense nose of citrus fruits that persists from the front of the palate to the back. A perfect mid-week seafood wine for clams, oysters or mussels.Prices: BC 27.00 AB 20.66 Producer: Bodegas Vetus
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Tinhorn Creek The Creektext
89PTS

Tinhorn Creek The Creek 2014

Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaIt took 23 years to release a flagship red at Tinhorn Creek, The Creek, but CEO and former winemaker Sandra Oldfield decided 2014 would be the year. The blend is a mix of vines from six to twenty years, grown on the home Golden Mile Vineyard site and across the valley at Black Sage. The mix is 53/19/17/9/2 cabernet sauvignon, merlot, cabernet franc, malbec and petit verdot. The cabernet sauvignon dominated red is partially wild fermented and aged for two years in French and Hungarian barrels. Global warming has inspired winemaker Andrew Windsor to take a chance on the later ripening cabernet sauvignon to give The Creek a strong, linear edge which, has been achieved with 2014. The soft entry devolves into a mineral, salty, nutty, blueberry fruit-laden palate. A touch softer and more approachable than the complex 2015 sample I tasted, but it is still a solid start. For now, roasted meats or a grilled steak is you best bet, or simply wait five years for the final outcome.Prices: BC 55.99 AB 75.00 SK 75.00 MB 75.00 Producer: Tinhorn Creek Vineyards
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Catena Malbec High Mountain Vinestext
88PTS

Catena Malbec High Mountain Vines 2016

Mendoza, ArgentinaThis malbec is a blend of four High Mountain Estate Vineyards from 920 meters to 1450 meters, overseen by Laura Catena and chief winemaker, Alejandro Vigil. Over the years Catena has shed some oak in favour of fruit and it looks good on this wine. In 2016, a short season plagued with rain brought many challenges, although a crop load that was half the normal kept quality in check and the cool weather in the end may be a blessing. At a mere 13 percent alcohol it's a blast from the past, albeit a light one. The palate is a mix of floral (violet) hints and red plums. It’s a midweight year you can drink already, and that should be well suited to restaurants.Prices: BC 23.99 AB 23.63 ON 19.95 NS 24.00 NB 23.29 PEI 24.00 SK 25.99 NF 23.90 MB 23.00 Producer: Bodega Catena Zapata
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13 September 2018

Wolf Blass Yellow Label Chardonnaytext
87PTS

Wolf Blass Yellow Label Chardonnay 2016

Padthaway, South Australia, AustraliaA lot has been said about brands and some of it well deserved but not all brands are equal, and you can experience it with this Wolf Blass Yellow Label Chardonnay. It’s not your parents chardonnay but rather a much fresher, more focused version that reflects many of the changes that have been going on in Australian chardonnay. Less oak, bright green apple fruit with a swath of orange and even a pinch of minerality is about all you can ask for $15.95. Try this with a fish or chicken burger.Prices: BC 15.49 AB 16.00 SK 17.00 MB 16.00 ON 15.00 QC 16.45 NS 18.00 Producer: Wolf Blass Pty Ltd
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Meyer Chardonnaytext
88PTS

Meyer Chardonnay 2017

Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaThe Meyer Chardonnay is a blend of estate fruit from McLean Creek Road (planted 1994) in Okanagan Falls and Old Main Road (1996) in Naramata, as well as a vineyard on Anarchist Mountain. Sixty percent of this saw time in stainless, with the remainder in neutral French oak for four months. Rich and buttery (full MLF), leading cream, lemon curd, pear, lime blossom. Ripe, rich, and full, this is a bit plumper than the rest of their snappy, tidy, progressive portfolio.Prices: BC 20.00 Producer: Meyer Family Vineyards
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Harper's Trail Chardonnay Thad Springs Vineyardtext
86PTS

Harper's Trail Chardonnay Thad Springs Vineyard 2016

Kamloops, British Columbia, CanadaExpect a fresh, vibrant nose with a riot of tropical fruits including pineapple, mango, and guava. There is a crispness here and a lick of garlic lees to fight off the ripe, sweet fruit that flattens out the wine in the back end. A drier version would be perfect. A fun sipper you can serve with a spicy sushi roll.Prices: BC 17.90 Producer: Harper's Trail Estate Winery
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Little Farm New-ish Oak Chardonnaytext
90PTS

Little Farm New-ish Oak Chardonnay 2016

Cawston, Similkameen Valley, British Columbia, CanadaRound and generous mid, but with a snap of focused acidity, this well highlights the calcium carbonate laced soils of Cawston's Mulberry Tree Vineyard, the organic home property of Little Farm Winery. Lemon, lees, verbena is stretched along a long palate, buffered by time in wood, but aloft with that aforementioned acidity, lemon pixellated and intense. The wood will be better integrated with time, though this was tasting lovely on the day after opening now. A cuvée to keep an eye on in future.Prices: BC 45.00 Producer: Little Farm Winery
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Meyer Family Vineyards Chardonnay Stevens Block Old Main Road Vineyardtext
91PTS

Meyer Family Vineyards Chardonnay Stevens Block Old Main Road Vineyard 2017

Naramata Bench, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaFrom one of BC's top Chardonnay producers, this single vineyard, Naramata Bench white has a ripe and generous mid, with searing lemon, chalk, heady pear, and downy, cloud-plush lees. There's a lick of reduction that works to counter the ripe fruit sweetness to welcome effect. Give this youthful wine time to breath now, or better yet, cellar for a couple of years. This from the coolest part of the Old Main Road vineyard in Naramata, around 350m and planted to Wente 4 and 5, and on alluvial deposits / silt loam overlaying clay. This spent four months on fine lees in stainless, and with full MLF.Prices: BC 28.00 Producer: Meyer Family Vineyards
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12 September 2018

Villa Locatelli Friulanotext
87PTS

Villa Locatelli Friulano 2016

Gorizia, Friuli-Venezia Giulia, ItalyFriulano is a signature varietal from the region that in the glass the locals affectionately call “tajut”. The colour is a touch yellow, the nose a mix of wild flowers and grass with hints of almond. The palate is smooth and medium bodied with waxy, honey, ripe melon, yellow apple, and ripe nectarine fruit interrupted by an herbal and light almond bitterness on the finish. A rare wine that works with light soups, or more normally, rustic charcuterie plates.Prices: BC 17.79 Producer: Tenuta di Angoris
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Tyrrell's HVD Single Vineyard Hunter Semillontext
92PTS

Tyrrell's HVD Single Vineyard Hunter Semillon 2010

Pokolbin, Hunter, New South Wales, AustraliaWhat’s not to admire here from the nutty, mineral, grassy, grapefruit, quince nose to its crisp, delicate, passion fruit, grapefruit, nectarine, lime, nutty flavours. It’s still youthful and showing fine delicacy and freshness but there are hints of lanolin and cashew not far off preparing to take over for the next 30 to 40 years. The texture is building across the palate and the food possibilities are endless. Bravo.Prices: BC 36.99 Producer: Tyrrell's Wines Pty., Ltd.
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Summerhill Pyramid Winery Gruner Veltlinertext
87PTS

Summerhill Pyramid Winery Gruner Veltliner 2017

Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaYou don’t see lot of grüner veltliner in BC but it’s coming in dribs and drabs and I have little doubt it will establish itself as a curiosity at the least, if not a rarity, worth tracking down. This biodynamically certified white has a deeper colour than I would like but its naturally made and I’m guessing with little to no sulphur. Expect a richer entry with cloudy notes of salt and pepper, citrus and minerality. The palate is dry and weighty with an Italian almond-like bitter finish. Its unique and for a first try worth investigating. One thing is for sure this is the real thing not a lot of intervention. Sablefish might be the best match.Prices: BC 28.00 Producer: Summerhill Pyramid Winery
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Singletree Winery Sieggietext
86PTS

Singletree Winery Sieggie 2017

Fraser Valley, British Columbia, CanadaFruity and floral, this off-dry, Fraser Valley grown siegerrebe is a fruit salad of peaches, pears, apricots and limes on a light (11.5 degree) with a spritzy palate. Acidity is almost bright enough to hold the sweetness, ample as it is. Refreshing for brunch or lighter fruit desserts. Chill well.Prices: BC 18.50 Producer: Singletree Winery
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Hester Creek Old Vines Block 16 Trebbianotext
89PTS

Hester Creek Old Vines Block 16 Trebbiano 2017

Golden Mile Bench, Oliver, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaThe sole trebbiano from the Okanagan Valley, the 2017 Hester Creek Old Vines comes off a vineyard that is now 50-years-old. This one is similar to the 2016, richer and expressive, but still pinned with a bright string of acidity and textural spices and layers from these old vines. Whole-bunch pressed, cool settled and fermented in stainless at cool temperatures for four months. Light honeysuckle tickles yellow pear, Asian pear, melon and citrus, all layered with downy lees to a lingering, spiced finish. Best enjoyed at slightly warmer temperature, when it can really show off in the glass. Richer in mouthfeel, like Rhone whites, but with the citrus snap of trebbiano, this is unique in the world.Prices: BC 23.95 Producer: Hester Creek Estate Winery
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Mission Hill Terroir Collection No. 29 Bluebird Passage Viogniertext
88PTS

Mission Hill Terroir Collection No. 29 Bluebird Passage Viognier 2017

Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaA pair of viognier clones combine to makes this unoaked version of Viognier. It has a light juicy quality that attracts, especially if you prefer that over the big rich perfumed oak-fermented and aged versions of viognier. Look for a fresh, stony, orchard fruit nose and palate with a light-ish peachy tangerine undercurrent with a ginger ale finish. The fruit comes off the cooler western area of Osoyoos and the wine is ready to drink. Try this with Pad Thai.Prices: BC 30.00 Producer: Mission Hill Family Estate
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Life Cycle of a Hobotext
89PTS

Life Cycle of a Hobo 2017

East Kelowna, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaWe thought this wine was impressive last year and its nothing less in 2017. Made from thirty-year-old müller-thurgau from a single vineyard in East Kelowna it captures the essence of this early-ripening perfumed varietal that was planted in favour of riesling back in the day when many thought riesling wouldn’t ripen. Love the bright crisp fruit here that frames the wines and keeps it from wandering off at the edges. Peach, apricot and green fruit all combine to give this white considerable intensity before a dry finish. Fun with food too.Prices: BC 26.00 Producer: The Hatch
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Meyer Gewurztraminertext
89PTS

Meyer Gewurztraminer 2017

Okanagan Falls, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaThis is always a leaner, streamlined gew, welcomed in a region that can easily sun-bloat the grape’s inherent expansiveness. Thanks to their estate 1994 plantings (with German cuttings) and gravel/sandy soils, this remains one of the more interesting expressions in Canada. This was picked numerous times: the first was whole bunch pressed, and the latter picks destemmed, lightly crushed and left on skins for a full day before pressing. All were combined and underwent a long (5 week), cool native ferment in stainless and older French oak. The wine rested three months on lees before bottling. Gooseberry, rambutan, cantaloupe, apricot and fine rasp ginger spice quickly fill the medium-bodied frame, one plumped by lees time. I wish more BC folks treated gew with the attention MFV does.Prices: BC 18.00 Producer: Meyer Family Vineyards
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Black Tower Rivanertext
85PTS

Black Tower Rivaner 2017

GermanyThis Rivaner or Müller-Thurgau is cool fermented to bring out its fresh fruit flavours. The nose is aromatic with notes of almonds and pears. The palate is all about citrus and passionfruit with a touch of orange. Simple clean and just off-dry it offers fair value and it’s ready to drink.Prices: BC 13.49 AB 12.00 NLL 13.87 Producer: Reh-Kendermann
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Surrau Branu Vermentinotext
89PTS

Surrau Branu Vermentino 2016

Sardinia, ItalyWhen you look at the light, yellow hues you think this wine is past its due date but of course it’s not even close. It sweeps across the palate both with authority and intensity signaling a quality version of this versatile grape. The plate is mix of citrus, white pepper, green apple floral notes with salty mineral undercurrents with just a slight bitter hint of almond. Delicate, refreshing but substantial enough to stand up to a variety of seafood and complex vegetarian dishes.Prices: BC 26.00 ON 21.95 Producer: Surani
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Mt. Boucherie Gewürztraminertext
88PTS

Mt. Boucherie Gewürztraminer 2017

Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaThe 2017 is a fresher brighter version made with fruit that comes off the South Okanagan’s Golden Mile Bench paired with a small portion of fruit picked near Cawston in the Similkameen Valley. The style is just off-dry but with enough freshness to keep from wandering off the job. Look for a mix of litchi, rose petals, ginger, orange notes in a cleaner style that we applaud. This is a fun wine to serve with turkey or spicy appetizers.Prices: BC 18.00 Producer: Mt. Boucherie Estate Winery
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Laughing Stock Vineyards Viognier +10/10text
89PTS

Laughing Stock Vineyards Viognier +10/10 2017

Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaThe LS viognier has always been a rich, open, blousy style and the 2017 is no exception. This wine is all about rich, peach flavours dotted with melon and orange. Barriques and concrete eggs have given it plentiful texture that soaks up a bit of the fruit richness and alcohol lending it a sense of balance that you might not expect. The finish is long and persistent with bits of ginger ale and candied orange. Perfect for a favourite curry.Prices: BC 24.99 Producer: Laughing Stock Vineyards
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Fitzpatrick Family Vineyards Interloper Gewurztraminertext
89PTS

Fitzpatrick Family Vineyards Interloper Gewurztraminer 2017

Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaPlanted in 1996 on the south field of the home Greata Ranch estate, this had an extended hang time before fermenting long, slow and cool over 25 days. Filled with apricot, white peach, pear and a garden of pink florals. Grapefruit laced acidity balances the sun-built RS, and holds through a spicy gingersnap finish. Lovely, varietally-pure, without heft, gew.Prices: BC 24.50 Producer: Fitzpatrick Family Vineyards
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JoieFarm En Famille Reserve Gewurztraminertext
89PTS

JoieFarm En Famille Reserve Gewurztraminer 2016

Naramata Bench, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaThis is an estate gew, from JoieFarm's Naramata Bench vineyard, and planted to clones 643 and 47. Styled by Alsace, but distinctly orchard bench, this was destemmed, gently crushed and soaked in the press for six hours before activation. A higher must ferment temperature was used to draw as much of the rose petal and ginger possible from the grapes. Fermentation was stopped cold before the wine went totally dry, and the wine was then stored on fine lees on stainless for ten months. As with all the reserve tier wines, this spent an additional year in bottle before release. Full and expansive with said roses and ginger, cold cream, lush peach, marmalade and sultry mandarin blossoms, but all the while threaded with a wire of acidity. This is certainly a richer, fuller style, and fully embracing it, winningly.Prices: BC 27.90 Producer: JoieFarm
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Black Hills Viogniertext
88PTS

Black Hills Viognier 2017

Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaRich, ripe and round, plumped with ginger ale, pear, honey and apricot. There is acidity here, thankfully, to meet viognier's inherent generosity. The finish is snappy with lime pith, holding all tight and encouraging another glass. Great typicity of grape and place this year; well done.Prices: BC 24.90 Producer: Black Hills Estate Winery
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Van Westen Vineyards Viogniertext
88PTS

Van Westen Vineyards Viognier 2017

Naramata Bench, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaThe Van Westen viognier vines are closing in on 15 years at both the Orlando and Granite Ridge Vineyards along the Naramata Bench. The winery barrel ferments the fruit in six to ten-year-old neutral French oak barrels for five months. The result is a fuller, lush, style with plenty of peach and apricot fruit with a touch of lime. Near the end some mineral, floral honeysuckle notes linger. Despite the ripe fruit the style is tightening up offering more restraint. Try this with lamb tagine with apricots.Prices: BC 25.00 Producer: Van Westen Vineyards
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Colognola Via Condotto Verdicchio dei Castelli di Jesitext
90PTS

Colognola Via Condotto Verdicchio dei Castelli di Jesi 2017

Marche, ItalyWe love verdicchio in a general sense but when I see one under screwcap, well it's hard ot resist. Cardboard free and ready to sing this Verdicchio dei Castelli di Jesi is a perfect example of the genre from its straw yellow colour to its bright, fresh, floral nose. The palate is vaguely herbal with a mix of stony, fresh orchard and yellow fruits flecked with green figs and citrus. Taut enough to work with food but rich enough to take on most flavours it’s a dinner table winner. Chill, twist, and serve with a favourite vegetarian dish or local shellfish. Real wine and solid value too. Delicious.Prices: BC 19.99 Producer: Tenuta Musone
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10 September 2018

Paul Jaboulet Ainé Hermitage La Chapelletext
97PTS

Paul Jaboulet Ainé Hermitage La Chapelle 2015

Hermitage, Northern Rhone, Rhone Valley, FranceI’ve been lucky to taste some great bottles of Hermitage La Chapelle over my lifetime, including the 1961, 1978, 1990, 2009 and the 2010, but it is clear the 2015 will easily rank among the best some twenty years from now. This syrah comes with all the pedigree of its outstanding site on the top of the hill of Hermitage. The tannins are rich, firm and dense but with some polish, suggesting they will age gracefully, allowing collectors to open a bottle or two along the way to measure the wine's progress. It’s concentrated but with a streak of acidity/minerality/stones to keep it taut and focused. Floral black fruits, pepper, black olive, all in a spare manner. Understatement, freshness and length add up to a wine that will be worth the wait a decade or two from now. Try to find a way to put a couple of bottles down today.Prices: BC 335.99 Producer: Domaines Paul Jaboulet Ainé
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Paul Jaboulet Ainé Crozes-Hermitage Domaine de Thalaberttext
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Paul Jaboulet Ainé Crozes-Hermitage Domaine de Thalabert 2015

Crozes Hermitage, Northern Rhone, Rhone Valley, FrancePaul Jaboulet purchased the 40 hectare Thalabert site, the oldest single vineyard of the appellation, in 1834. Over the ages it has proven to be an excellent syrah site and I can attest from my cellar it has a great ability to age in bottle. Today the pebbly terraces that support the 60 to 80-year-old-vines are farmed biodynamically and the yields are impressively low, at the best of times in the 25/30 hl/ha range. The modern Thalabert sees only 20 percent new oak and most years it’s a wine for collectors. The 2015 is a very fine bottle and should not be missed. Many have compared it to the stellar 2010 but I feel the structure is even more enticing, and the wine more pure. I don’t know if we can do this in BC but we should try to get this form. The blackcurrant fruit, the earthy truffle notes, the seamless structure and dusty, floral, chalky finish scream class. Great with roast turkey, or mushroom risotto.Prices: BC 56.99 Producer: Domaines Paul Jaboulet Ainé
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Paul Jaboulet Ainé Crozes-Hermitage Les Jaletstext
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Paul Jaboulet Ainé Crozes-Hermitage Les Jalets 2015

Crozes Hermitage, Northern Rhone, Rhone Valley, FranceThe name ‘Jalets’ derives from ‘galets’, the Old French for the pebbles left behind by the glaciers that sit below the 25 to 35-year-old vines. The fruit is approximately 30 percent domain (including 10 percent from the single-vineyard Les Jalets and 20 percent from Domaine de Thalabert). It’s all aged in 15,000-liter, tronconique vats and upright neutral barrels. Opening with a meaty, earthy, salty cranberry nose, the attack is soft with simple, red fruit flavours. It an easy-sipping, early drinking style. Best with a savoury roasted chicken.Prices: BC 38.99 AB 26.99 MB 26.99 ON 26.95 QC 27.85 Producer: Domaines Paul Jaboulet Ainé
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Bartier Bros. Syrah Cerqueira Vineyardtext
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Bartier Bros. Syrah Cerqueira Vineyard 2016

Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaFrom Black Sage Terrace's Cerqueira Vineyard, this deep, dusky syrah was ten percent whole cluster, native ferment in neutral French oak barrels. After 14 months in wood, this was bottled unfined and unfiltered. Blueberry, blackberry, black cherry jam is infiltrated with thorns, pipe tobacco, peppery spicing, perfumed musk and dried violets. There's a lovely hint of feldspar, manganese throughout this wine. Tannins are plush, as is the full body, finishing with a flush of warmth.Prices: BC 30.34 Producer: Bartier Bros.
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Moon Curser Syrahtext
86PTS

Moon Curser Syrah 2015

Osoyoos, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaSmoked meats, dried violets, potent black licorice fills the palate of this Osoyoos syrah, entirely from Bartsch Vineyard. Sun-ripened sweetness dominates, followed by hard pressed tannins, reflective of fermentation in oak and stainless, followed by aging in mostly Hungarian oak. That eastern European spiciness is evident throughout, as are the rustic edges not nearly filled out by the perfumed violets and vanilla that stick on the pasty finish. Overt and potent, from a hot year.Prices: BC 23.39 Producer: Moon Curser
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Dirty Laundry Kay - Syrahtext
87PTS

Dirty Laundry Kay - Syrah 2016

Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaPerfumed violet, meaty, musk notes fill this full-bodied syrah, propped up with cloves, mince, and pepper. The palate is a soft pillow of blackberry jam, cassis, sweet salami, milk chocolate and lingering pink peppercorn, tugged in at the sides with light tannins. It's cofermented with five percent viognier skins to add some perfumed notes to this ample red.Prices: BC 25.99 Producer: Dirty Laundry
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Hillside Syrahtext
89PTS

Hillside Syrah 2015

Naramata Bench, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaThe 2015 Hillside Syrah is from Hidden Valley Vineyard in Naramata, expressing attractive black raspberry and cinnamon spiked with a touch of espresso. There is an elegance here in a warm year that has ripened the fruit but only yielded 13 percent alcohol. There is seven percent viognier in the mix to add some floral tones to a red that spends nine months in used and new (only 26 percent) French oak barrels. Blanced, silky and supple, it is a perfect accompaniment to grilled lamb, sausages and powerful cheeses.Prices: BC 26.00 Producer: Hillside Winery
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Volcanic Hills Syrahtext
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Volcanic Hills Syrah 2014

Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaThis is a solid effort made in the juicy, red fruit style. The nose and palate are all about light, smoky, earthy, meaty, cherry fruit with a touch of twang in the finish. There’s some dry notes and touch of coffee in the back end, but nothing that grilled lamb chops or a beef stir fry can’t deal with. Solid.Prices: BC 26.00 Producer: Volcanic Hills Winery
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Laughing Stock Vineyards Syrah +11/10text
89PTS

Laughing Stock Vineyards Syrah +11/10 2016

Osoyoos, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaFrom their Perfect Hedge vineyard in southern Osoyoos, this stylish wine blends 95% Syrah with 5% Viognier, to classic affect. This gives the nose a floral lift and softens the warming pepper note ever so slightly before a sweet salami, violet, plush blackberry core. Tannins are sticky, and the fruit potent, sticking the lingering finish with traces of pipe tobacco. Nearly one quarter of this wine was fermented in French oak, and all of it was aged in French oak (36 percent new) for 16 months. Big wine, matched by big beef dishes now.Prices: BC 36.00 Producer: Laughing Stock Vineyards
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Mission Hill Terroir Collection No. 23 Crosswinds Syrahtext
93PTS

Mission Hill Terroir Collection No. 23 Crosswinds Syrah 2014

Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaThe Terroir Collection is all about meso-climate and place, and the top three percent of estate fruit as hand-selected by winemaker Darryl Brooker. This syrah is named after the crosswinds that pass across the lakes and up and down the valley as well as the crossing of the high desert and lakes. Elegance and power describe this delicious wine available to Mission Hill Wine Club members. Black cherries and sagebrush with pepper and olive tapenade stuff this wine full of flavour and density but with a sense of elegance. Love the tannin management, and the potential here to go long. Very impressive refinement, capturing the site and the power but with all the elegance. Cellar through 2024 with ease.Prices: BC 50.00 Producer: Mission Hill Family Estate
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Black Hills Syrahtext
88PTS

Black Hills Syrah 2016

Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaThe 2016 growing season got off to a great start under record heat, but eventually temperatures subsided, and the season lengthened to the advantage of the syrah. Less bacon fat and more white pepper is the story in 2016, making this wine more fun to drink for syrah aficionados. Floral black and blue fruits greet the nose while soft, supple tannins carry the flavours on a long ride to the back of the palate. Still more hedonistic than complex, there is an acidic twang in the back end than needs to be fully integrated into the wine with three to five more years of bottle age. Love the 13.9 percent alcohol that doesn’t dominate the wine.Prices: BC 39.90 Producer: Black Hills Estate Winery
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Sunrock Vineyard Shiraztext
88PTS

Sunrock Vineyard Shiraz 2015

Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaFrom a warm site in a warm year, this has been well handled. The attack has a sense of freshness along with a signature savoury, peppercorn nose. It spends a year in French and American oak adding some extra weight and tannins, that at this point present a touch hard. The attack is rich in black fruit, be it cherries or raspberries with some nervous acidity poking through the back end. Not as rich as you might expect, this will need time to shed some tannins before it's fully ready to drink. Lamb would be a good choice if you must open it early.Prices: BC 27.35 Producer: Arterra Wines
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Le Vieux Pin Syrah Cuvée Violettetext
90PTS

Le Vieux Pin Syrah Cuvée Violette 2016

Oliver, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaAmply floral, as the name suggests, with perfumed violet, blackberry, potpourri, baked plum, and black peppery spicing. Cofermenting this mix of 11-16 year old Golden Mile Bench, Black Sage Bench, North Oliver fruit with 2.6 percent viognier just ups the perfume power. The mouthfeel is plush and the tannins silky smooth, with just a sense of black peppery grip. This spent 14 months in French oak, 15 percent of which was new, and it was bottled unfined and lightly filtered. This year feels softer and rounder than the previous edition.Prices: BC 26.99 Producer: Le Vieux Pin
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Mission Hill Reserve Shiraztext
90PTS

Mission Hill Reserve Shiraz 2015

Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaIn some ways Mission Hill reminds me a bit of Robert Mondavi back in the day. They don’t make any mistakes at the winery, as exemplified by this reserve shiraz made in the Australian spirit: dense, rich and showy. The nose is open and bright, the style rich and hedonistic with pepper, blackberries, sweet plums and even some light floral notes. Weighty and dense, this requires a powerful menu item to match the richness and length. Can’t wait to see this in 2025. For now, barbecue pork.Prices: BC 25.99 AB 28.00 ON 27.00 QC 28.00 SK 27.00 Producer: Mission Hill Family Estate
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Road 13 Syrah Malbectext
88PTS

Road 13 Syrah Malbec 2016

British Columbia, CanadaThe grippy, pepperiness, of this syrah is tempered with the fruity lushness and blue lift of malbec. This year's vintage is also seasoned with 11.5 percent petit verdot, and 2 percent viognier, primarily sourced from Similkameen's Blind Creek Vineyard, with a smaller fraction from their estate Okanagan vineyards. Sweet blueberry, violets are threaded through the cassis and wild blackberry fruit, ripely lush on the palate and propped by soft tannins. The finish is pastille sweetened espresso. I believe that less is more, whereas this is still in the more is more camp.Prices: BC 32.00 Producer: Road 13
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Nichol Vineyard Syrah Nate's Vineyardtext
90PTS

Nichol Vineyard Syrah Nate's Vineyard 2016

Naramata Bench, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaNate's Syrah is Nichol's younger vine estate syrah, named for the owners' son, and planted in 2010 on granite bedrock and glacial till. This is a fresh, jubilant, savoury wine for drinking now while you hold the Old Vines Syrah in your cellar. After destemming the fruit, half was pressed after a five day cold soak while the remainder fermented on the skins. Both lots aged in neutral French barrique until the following spring, when it was bottled unfined and unfiltered. Shepherds pie and wild black cherry are structured with herbal detailing and scented with dusky floral violets to a persistent fine peppery note on the lengthy, perfumed finish. A charmer.Prices: BC 28.00 Producer: Nichol Vineyard
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Nichol Vineyard Old Vines Syrahtext
92PTS

Nichol Vineyard Old Vines Syrah 2015

Naramata Bench, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaSavoury, structural, singluar with wild blackberry, thorns, peppercorns and a lick of anise, all interwoven with Nichol's characteristic duskiness, unhurried palate and understated charm. Tannins are firm, but sueded, housing the pure black fruit but never overwheming it. A swell of medicinal tobacco cherry lingers on the lengthy finish. This is the oldest syrah in Canada, planted in 1990/91 on granite bedrock at the end of the Naramata Bench. After destemming, this fermented on skins in large open top fermenters before being basket pressed to neutral French barrique. After aging time in neutral barrique and puncheons, this was bottled unfined and unfiltered. In youth now, this is a quiet wine that will reward with cellaring.Prices: BC 40.00 Producer: Nichol Vineyard
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Rust Wine Co. Syrahtext
86PTS

Rust Wine Co. Syrah 2016

Oliver, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaRust Wine Co. opened a year ago, taking over what was Rustico Farm and Cellars for their tasting room, and making small lot, single vineyard wines from around the Okanagan. Roast meats meets lavender potpourri in this giant red, grown on the Black Sage Bench. Restrained this is not, rather going for a big, punchy, earthy, rooty, herbal red, floated by coffee, creamed corn, and pitch to a warm finish. Though I appreciate waxed tops on some wines, not when I have to spend a while chipping off a thick cap of soft wax only to find another wax-tipped topped cork underneath. Not so user-friendly, unless you need a big bruiser red to partner with your grilled beef.Prices: Producer: Rust Wine Co.
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Langmeil Shiraz Valley Floortext
89PTS

Langmeil Shiraz Valley Floor 2015

Barossa Valley, South Australia, AustraliaThree months down the road there is a touch more pepper creeping into this rich and sweet-scented oak aged shiraz from the Barossa. Six generations of farming give us fleshy, silky, valley floor shiraz that packed full of potent black fruit and sweet blueberries lined with cracked pepper to the finish. It’s an older style with some acidity poking through the back end, but it’s still admired by many. Smoky, charred meat from the grill is the match here to take on the alcohol and weight of the Barossa fruit.Prices: BC 33.99 AB 30.00 MB 35.99 SK 33.00 QC 27.50 Producer: Langmeil Winery
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Pirramimma Low Trellis Ironstone Shiraztext
91PTS

Pirramimma Low Trellis Ironstone Shiraz 2015

McLaren Vale, South Australia, AustraliaThe Oz style is all about fruit and softness. In this case, it's rich red plums and sassy mulberry fruit with a dusting of vanilla. On the palate the wine is expansive but vibrant with more dark plums, blackberries, and flecks of milk chocolate. The finish is substantial, with soft spice and a very light pepper tone, compared to Rhone or BC. A hedonistic style of shiraz with balance, this will age for a decade. Some 40 percent of this shiraz spends 28 months in new French oak and American oak, but thanks to the high fruit factor the tannins are kept well in check. A roast leg of lamb would be the ticket here.Prices: BC 59.99 Producer: Pirramimma
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Laughing Stock Vineyards Syrah +11/10text
91PTS

Laughing Stock Vineyards Syrah +11/10 2016

Osoyoos, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaAlways consistent, the 2016 LS syrah is something special. The fruit is all out of the Perfect Hedge vineyard in Osoyoos, and the style, they say, “is inspired by Côte Rôtie in Northern Rhone.” The blend is 95/5 syrah/viognier although you doesn’t feel much of the viognier in 2016. Some 22 percent is fermented and aged in French oak puncheons adding lush, silky tones to this boisterous red. Look for ripe blueberry, Bing cherry and black raspberry with a dusting of white pepper and minerals. This needs a decade of cellaring to reach perfection, but don’t worry, there is plenty of fruit for the journey.Prices: BC 36.00 Producer: Laughing Stock Vineyards
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Bartier Bros. Syrah Cerqueira Vineyardtext
89PTS

Bartier Bros. Syrah Cerqueira Vineyard 2016

Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaGrown on the Black Sage Terrace's Cerqueira Vineyard, this deep, moody, juicy, syrah was fermented with ten percent whole clusters, on native yeast in neutral French oak barrels. The result is a vibrancy of fruit flavours including blueberry, black cherry and even some wild blackberry flecked with savoury, peppery tobacco notes. The finish is floral and mineral just adding to its drinkability factor. Drink or hold; you can do both with this elegant edition.Prices: BC 30.34 Producer: Bartier Bros.
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Nk'Mip Cellars Qwam Qwmt Syrahtext
90PTS

Nk'Mip Cellars Qwam Qwmt Syrah 2015

Osoyoos, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaThe Qwam Qwmt (reserve) syrah continues to impress as the vines age and the winemaking is refined. There is plenty of heft but with a certain unexpected elegance, through rich, savoury, black fruit and pepper, to the sagebrush scented finish. The textures and tannins are rounded to allow for early-drinking, but this wine is built to age another decade and it will only get better.Prices: BC 54.95 Producer: Nk'Mip Cellars
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07 September 2018

Feudo Maccari Nero d'Avolatext
89PTS

Feudo Maccari Nero d'Avola 2016

Sicily, ItalyA savoury, soft red-fruited red with an appealing nose and an even more appealing texture. The fruit is from 17 to 39-year-old bush vines that grow little more than a kilometer from the Mediterranean. The attack is round, juicy and fresh with ripe cherry fruit flecked with liquorice and dried herbs and a perfect amount of acidity. Think lamb stew or chops or a favourite pork dish. Killer value here.Prices: BC 19.99 AB 19.00 MB 15.92 Producer: Feudo Maccari
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G.D. Vajra Barbera d'Albatext
90PTS

G.D. Vajra Barbera d'Alba 2016

Piedmont, ItalyG.D. Vajra was established in 1972 and named after Aldo Vaira's father, Giuseppe Domenico Vajra. Aldo's wines are all about pristine flavours. The fruit grows at some 400 metres above sea level in the village of Vergne in the commune of Barolo. Considered a traditionalist, Vaira balances old-style winemaking methods with modern techniques, namely temperature-controlled ferments. Vajra Barbera d’Alba comes from a variety of Vajra estate vineyards, belonging to three different geological ages: Tortonian, Serravallian and Messinian. Each parcel is individually fermented for an average time of 15 to 20 days with atypical gentle punch downs and cap rinsing for longer periods. It’s aged a minimum of 12 months, mostly in stainless steel vats, with a minimum contribution aged in French oak between five to ten percent. Violets rule the roost of this spicy, almost rich red berry fruit wine that spills across the palate with elegance. Drink now with classic steak tartare or cellar there to five years.Prices: BC 32.99 Producer: G. D. Vajra
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Lungarotti Ilbiotext
91PTS

Lungarotti Ilbio 2015

Umbria, ItalyIlbio is an organic red made with sagrantino grapes, but outside of the Montefalco DOCG it is known as an Umbria IGT Rosso. The vines are high density over a medium, clay mixture with a light amount of stones. It spends ten months in 30 Hl casks followed by six months in bottle, and the result is sensational. Juicy and vibrant, its silky textures spill across the palate packed full of liquorice, cinnamon, pipe tobacco and delicious vibrant, jammy balsamic fruit. Love the balance and elegance of this rich red, one with ageing potential. A perfect wine for richer mushroom dishes.Prices: BC 31.99 Producer: Cantine Lungarotti
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Donatella Cinelli Colombini Il Drago e le 8 Colombetext
90PTS

Donatella Cinelli Colombini Il Drago e le 8 Colombe 2014

Montalcino, Siena, Tuscany, ItalyThe 2014 is all about elegance, from its moderate alcohol of 14 percent to its early drinkability. Cool nights extended the growing season, lending an aromatic edge to this “Super Tuscan,” 60/20/20 blend of sangiovese, merlot and sagrantino. It’s grown at 400 metres above sea level in Trequanda, Fattoria del Collea, on hilly limestone, sandstone and sea sand soils. Look for spicy, vibrant red fruits with a firm, acid tannin balance and a long dry finish suggesting it can take on a variety of rich dishes or easily spend a decade more in the cellar. A rare bargain in BC.Prices: US 40.00 BC 37.00 Producer: Donatella Cinelli Colombini
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06 September 2018

Fitzpatrick Family Vineyards The Lookout Rieslingtext
88PTS

Fitzpatrick Family Vineyards The Lookout Riesling 2017

Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaThis blends estate Greata Ranch grown fruit from Block 8, along with grapes from Kelowna's Mannhardt Vineyard. This plays the line between sweet and sour very well, offsetting zesty limey acidity with potent yellow apple, Asian pear, honeyed pear and a super juicy, ripe core. This has a long, cool 30+ day fermentation in stainless to preserve fruit purity. A lovely, quenching, medium-bodied, off-dry style to enjoy now.Prices: BC 24.50 Producer: Fitzpatrick Family Vineyards
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Tantalus Rieslingtext
90PTS

Tantalus Riesling 2017

East Kelowna, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaTantalus makes two table wine rieslings annually: this, the juicy younger, lip-smaking and imminently likable riesling sourced from a variety of estate blocks, and the Old Vines Riesling, which is a more savoury, serious, structural model. This is off-dry and jubilantly so, with lime pulp, pear pulp, apricot on a seriously quenching, medium bodied palate. Acidity is electric, and able to easy carry the 16.5 g/L RS. Lovely, expressive, energetic riesling for drinking now or over the short term. En Pointe, Tantalus.Prices: BC 19.91 Producer: Tantalus Vineyards
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Tantalus Old Vines Rieslingtext
93PTS

Tantalus Old Vines Riesling 2015

Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaWow. Tantalus has made a name for itself for their rieslings, both the jubilant and joyous young vines, and this, the stately, structural and savoury Old Vines Riesling, from 1978 estate plantings. This is not about fruit, but about place. Savoury is an understatement, with broken stones, pear skin, apricot kernel and ample texture, bracketed by lime pith and currents of acidity. This was fermented to near dry, leaving 8 g/l RS to counter the high acidity. Drinking so well now, but this wine was built for 10+ years. Cellar.Prices: BC 30.35 Producer: Tantalus Vineyards
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JoieFarm En Famille Reserve Rieslingtext
88PTS

JoieFarm En Famille Reserve Riesling 2016

Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaJuicy and mouthwatering, this year's riesling is from the old block of St. Hubertus Vineyard in Kelowna, planted in 1978. After a cool, two-week ferment in stainless, this was left on the lees in stainless for six months before bottling. The RS is offset by a lacey, lemon/lime sherbet acidity, sharpening pear flesh, ripe apricot, white peach on a cold-cream coated palate. Mid-sweet, this finishes with a lingering spice.Prices: BC 27.90 Producer: JoieFarm
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Quails' Gate Riesling B.M.V.text
90PTS

Quails' Gate Riesling B.M.V. 2017

Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaOne of Quails' Gate's small-lot Collector Series, the BMV signifies Boucherie Mountain Vineyard, the location of their historic BC estate. This wine, however, mixes estate riesling clone 21B with clone 49 grown in East Kelowna. Native fermented for two months in neutral oak barrels, this off-dry wine snaps with green apple acidity, drawing pear, quince, gooseberry, on a narrow palate, bedded with a slick of RS. Big jump up in complexity from their standard riesling, and hopefully a trend the winery will continue following.Prices: BC 29.99 Producer: Quails' Gate Vineyards Estate Winery
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05 September 2018

CedarCreek Rieslingtext
88PTS

CedarCreek Riesling 2017

Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaWinemaker Taylor Whelan is not looking for the piercing acidity that some of his competitors are going after, but he is embracing a softer, more enticing style. The 2017 is ‘Spatlese-like’ made from fully ripe riesling grapes. Most of the fruit, all clone 21B, comes off the young Home Block vineyard, Block 1, planted in 2013, but some 25 percent is of the fruit is over 30 years old. Some nine percent is aged in oak for a bit of texture and weight. Expect an open floral, citrus nose. The attack is intense with a long showy bead of limey acidity tempered by the residual sugar. An intense, long, and mouthwatering bargain. Thai curries, vegetarian dishes or a sunny patio all work here.Prices: BC 18.99 Producer: CedarCreek Estate Winery
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CedarCreek Platinum Block 3 Rieslingtext
91PTS

CedarCreek Platinum Block 3 Riesling 2017

Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaHistorically, the Platinum Block Riesling gets two picks. In 2017 there were three in an ‘Platinum’ attempt to create a complexity of flavours and acidities in the wine. The fruit is 100 percent own-rooted, and the clone remains a mystery from its big bunches to its loose bundles of grapes. It gets 8-12 hours of skin contact, 50 percent stems, and is naturally fermented in a mix of stainless steel tanks, stainless steel barrels, neutral oak barrels and ceramic balls. Post ferment the juice spends a minimum five months on its lees to shape its creamy palate. The style is tighter and leaner than the regular riesling with a pronounced peach, orange, ginger nose and a delicious, floral, mouthwatering finish. Everything in balance here with a clean, mineral undercurrent to add a dash of complexity. Drink or hold.Prices: BC 22.99 Producer: CedarCreek Estate Winery
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CedarCreek Meritagetext
90PTS

CedarCreek Meritage 2015

Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, CanadaThe heart of this 38/37/20/5/ blend of malbec, merlot, cabernet sauvignon and cabernet franc is the super warm Haynes Creek vineyard in Osoyoos. Winemaker Whelan loves the jammy, blueberry notes the desert malbec brings to this black fruit scented red. The attack is riot of floral, cedar, tobacco notes with a touch of stony minerality to keep it linear. The tannins stretch out in fine-grained fashion adding depth and complexity without dryness. Love the fruit, spice and persistence in what is a youthful wine. I’m told there will be a package change and this fine wine is a good example why it’s needed. Best with grilled meats or mushroom dishes for the moment but I would wait three years for the real show.Prices: BC 24.99 Producer: CedarCreek Estate Winery
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