Gold Medal Plate wines: 17 wines from BC, Canada

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Gold Medal Plate wines: 17 wines from BC, Canada

BC wines canada

This afternoon I was a judge in the Victoria version of Gold Medal Plates here on Vancouver Island. We tasted the following wines, and these are my personal notes.

Pipe Dreams Gruner Veltliner 2014 Okanagan Valley, Canada
From Oliver. Dense and quite oily with powerful pear and quince fruit. Intensely flavoured with some pithy bitterness on the finish. A very rich style but it lacks finesse. 85/100

Culmina Decora Riesling 2015 Okanagan Valley, Canada
This Riesling is floral, fine and expressive with a hint of white pepper, some nice pithy grapefruit character and lovely fine-grained texture. There’s real concentration here. A dry style with lovely poise and finesse. High acid is really well integrated. 92/100

Tantalus Chardonnay 2014 Okanagan Valley, Canada
From Kelowna. Fresh and detailed with white peach and citrus fruit, and a fair whack of oak, although it’s elegant, refined oak, contributing some cream, toast and spice notes. Fresh, lemony and expressive, this wine needs more time to settle down and integrate the oak characters, when it will likely score higher. 89/100

Liquidity Chardonnay 2014 Okanagan Valley, Canada
13.5% alcohol. Clone 76, planted in 1994 and 2009, Okanagan Falls. Lively with lots of flavour: there are nuts, bread, some toast, plus dense pear and citrus fruit. It’s fresh and appealing with good acidity underpinning the rich fruit. Oak is in the background. Bright finish. 90/100

Tightrope Viognier 2014 Okanagan Valley, Canada
From Naramata Bench. Concentrated flavours of pear, white peach and melon, together with some really vivid apricot aromas. It has a lot of promise on the nose, but the palate has a pronounced sweetness and some intrusive pithy notes. It finishes with a bitter character. Just a little big and clumsy, although there’s some Viognier character here. 87/100

Stag’s Hollow Viognier 2014 Okanagan Valley, Canada
From the Hearle vineyard. Beautiful nose of apricot and peach is really varietally true. There’s a subtle almond note, as well. The palate is fresh and expressive with lovely purity and balance. It’s a ripe but fresh Viognier that’s very pretty and detailed. Lovely wine. 91/100

Time Estate Meritage 2014 Okanagan Valley, Canada
13.9% alcohol. From the Sundial Vineyard in the Black Sage Bench. 68% Sauvignon Blanc and 32% Semillon. Very smooth and richly textured, this shows fat white peach and pear fruit with some sweet, spicy detail. Concentrated, lush and with a very fat mid-palate, this a ripe interpretation of the white Bordeaux style that could probably do with some tightening up. There’s a touch of fudge and honeycomb on the finish. 88/100

Calliope Figure 8 Blanc 2014 British Columbia, Canada
13.5% alcohol. Pinot Gris, Chardonnay, Gewürztraminer. Distinctive stuff. Ripe and generous with some grapey richness, and floral, spicy aromatics with lychee, peach and yellow plums. A rich, easy, fruity style, but there’s a tiny bit of pithy bitterness on the finish. 87/100

Sea Star Blanc de Noir Rosé 2015 Pender Island, BC, Canada
12.7% alcohol. Pinot Noir. Fresh, lively, juicy and sappy with lovely leafy spicy red cherry fruit. Lively and bright, this is really fresh and focused. Pretty, in a dry style. Highly food compatible. 90/100

Haywire Pinot Noir Canyonview Vineyard 2013 Okanagan Valley, Canada
13.5% alcohol. Raised in concrete. Lifted, warm, smooth cherry fruit with a touch of stewed plum character. Has softness of textured and some complexing herb and undergrowth characters. Finishes savoury. A warm, soft, satisfying style with lots of interest. 91/100

The Hatch Black Swift Vineyards The Long Road Pinot Noir 2014 Okanagan Valley, Canada
13.8% alcohol. From Kelowna. Slightly lifted cherry and spice nose leads to a structured but quite fine palate with taut raspberry and cherry fruit. There’s freshness and finesse here: it’s a grown up Pinot with some appeal, although the cedary oak isn’t quite integrated yet. 89/100

Burrowing Owl Pinot Noir 2013 Okanagan Valley, Canada
14.5% alcohol. Ripe, sweet, spicy and tarry with lush berry fruits. Very ripe style that has generosity and an easy-going nature, but it also has sweet fruit and ripe oak that get in the way of site and varietal expression. 86/100

Black Sage Vineyard Cabernet Franc 2014 Okanagan Valley, Canada
13.5% alcohol. South Okanagan, aged in French and American oak. Sweet, lush, ripe and creamy with seamless cherry and berry fruits with a bit of blackcurrant. There’s some chalkiness, too. Ripe and seductive, this has lovely purity. Very well crafted in a new world style. 89/100

Calliope Figure 8 Cabernet Merlot 2014 British Columbia, Canada
14% alcohol. Very sweet, supple and easy with soft blackberry and blackcurrant fruit. Has an easy texture. A generous crowd-pleaser of a wine. 86/100

Tinhorn Creek Oldfield Series Cabernet Franc 2012 Okanagan Valley, Canada
14.6% alcohol. Supple and bright with refreshing green-tinged blackcurrant fruit. Midweight and digestible, this is juicy and tasty. Subtle tar and spice notes. Quite savoury. 88/100

Stag’s Hollow Heritage Block 2013 Okanagan Valley, Canada
14.2% alcohol. Bordeaux-style blend from the South Okanagan. Lively herb-tinged, midweight berry fruits. There’s an attractive texture with appealing blackberry notes and some tar and herb spiciness. This has warmth to it. There’s quite a bit going on here: ripe but detailed. 89/100

Quails’ Gate Merlot 2014 Okanagan Valley, Canada
14.5% alcohol. Ripe but elegantly textured with concentrated, smooth red berry and blackcurrant fruit. Nicely structured with sweet, dense fruit, this is an attractive, stylish new world style Merlot with lush but fresh fruit. Very ripe but well made. 90/100

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1 Comment on Gold Medal Plate wines: 17 wines from BC, CanadaTagged
wine journalist and flavour obsessive

One thought on “Gold Medal Plate wines: 17 wines from BC, Canada

  1. Great to read about all these wines from next door!
    The word on Culmina hereabouts is that the prices are way too high..obscene in fact.

    Bob Edmonton.

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