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Garden Wine


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I wanted to catch the last days of good weather in the garden, so I arranged a BYOB and food event with some wines served blind and some not.

2005 Kettle Valley Gewurztraminer – one of the most promising producers of this varietal in BC and this was perhaps their best yet. Slight pink tinge, nice varietal nose, excellent acidity and balance and a dry finish.

2004 Ricasoli Torricella Chardonnay – hard one to nail as to country. Waxy sort of nose, smooth in the middle, ending with a slightly sweet rich finish.

1999 Ch. de Malle Sauternes – (in case you were wondering, we had this with several variations of foie gras). Best de Malle I think I have ever had. Lovely light straw colour, huge sweet nose, perhaps a tad hot, and sufficient acidity top balance.

2003 Dom. de Beaumalric Muscat de Beaumes de Venise – interesting counterpoint to the Sauternes. Not a typical Muscat nose – this one was all about apples. It was only slightly sweet but worked well with the foie gras.

2004 Monte Fiorentine “ca Rugate” Soave da uve Garganega – a really interesting wine as few of us drink much Soave these days. Clean lemon and vanilla nose, almost chardonnay-like, and similarly clean and medium bodied in the mouth.

1998 Kettle Valley Hayman Pinot Noir – single vineyard BC Pinot showing a very slightly stinky nose, also slightly hot, with good flavour concentration and length but none of the secondary characteristics that a mature French pinot develops.

2000 Quinta do Crasto Riserva – this Portuguese wine has been going from triumph to triumph in terms of vintages – and this is probably the best dry wine they have made so far. Spice featured in the nose, the wine was still young, dark, and fairly tannic, but the fruit level was excellent as was the acidity. Needs time! I’m glad I can’t remember where my case rests in the cellar or I’d be tempted.

2003 Bishop Peak Edna Valley Syrah – dark wine with big ripe fruit, and an enjoyable spiciness on palate!

1999 Castello di Ama Chianti Classico – nice mushroomy nose, good acidity and excellent with the mushroom risotto we ate at that point.

1999 Howell Mountain Vineyard Napa Zinfandel – I am a big Zin fan, and this was good, but in the ‘overpower-me-with-fruit’ style that isn’t my favourite. Sweet nose, very sweet entry and smooth long (you guessed it….) sweet finish.

1993 Plaisir de Merle Cabernet Sauvignon – this growers co-op in the Cape makes some wonderfully consistent wines and this was their first vintage. It was showing a hint of green in the nose, along with coffee and cocoa, and was soft and at peak for drinking.

1982 Beaulieu Vineyards George de Latour Cabernet – much more ripeness in the nose than I recalled on this wine, warm on palate and with a decently long somewhat pruny finish. Delightful way to end the evening.

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