Sunday 12 September 2010

It’s Time to Drink Some Wine!

As you can see all of my posts so far have been about wine collecting; you may even wonder if I ever drink wine, or if I just keep buying it and filling every nook and cranny in my home. Fortunately I have a relatively small home so I’m limited in that respect; and yes, I do drink wine! This weekend we had a couple lovely bottles from some of BC’s most well-known wineries: Jackson-Triggs and Sumac Ridge. Some might argue they are one winery, because both are fully owned by Vincor (along with Inniskillin, Osoyoos Larose, Nk’Mip, and See Ya Later), but let’s not get into that – let’s just appreciate good wine for what it is.

Jackson Triggs 2007 Proprietor’s Grand Reserve White Meritage: In 2008 Jackson-Triggs Okanagan was named Winery of the Year at the Canadian Wine Awards. This white meritage was the third-highest-ranked white wine that year (after Wild Goose Pinot Gris, and an Ontario Riesling from Flat Rock). In fact, the only two Gold Medals for White Blends were given to this wine and its older brother from 2006! The blend itself is a traditional Bordeaux mix of Sauvignon Blanc (75%) and Semillon (25%), partially aged in mostly French oak. We enjoyed this soft, smooth wine with a simple potato, leek, celery, and white bean soup. The citrus aromas and subtle oak seemed to go well with the meal, and I was happy to finally consume this wine that I’ve had for a couple years in a suitable forum.

Sumac Ridge 2006 White Pinnacle: I should have opened this wine a while ago, but there never seemed to be a good time to do so – always something else that was more appropriate to the meal or occasion. The 2007 vintage has already been released (in October 2008), and for all I know the 2008 and 2009 should be out already if they’ve continued the series – Sumac is extremely lax at updating their website with new wines and tasting notes. This white blend is a mix of just about everything, ranging from 25% Gewurztraminer, to 2% Semillon. Even more surprising is that the blend has been fermented and aged for 7 months in oak – not something you often see in off-dry, aromatic varietals like Gewurztraminer, Ehrenfelser, and Muscat (all of which are contained within). Sumac recommended drinking it by 2009, and that makes sense, as the oak has clearly begun to dominate the tropical fruit aromas; my apologies to the winemaker for not following your advice with sufficient haste. Nevertheless, we still enjoyed this wine after dinner; it was a fun challenge to pick out the different varietals, and the oak left a comforting toasty aftertaste. I would love to try a newer vintage of this wine to better experience the fresh fruit; I imagine it will be a wholly different wine if consumed shortly after release.

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