Thursday, May 27, 2010

Best of BC: White Blends

Why pay a bit more for an exotic blend than a familiar, go-to single varietal wine? The ultra-slick harmony that develops when one balances the appropriate amount of complimentary varietals together resulting in a wine that, when blended, is greater than its individual parts.

$20 and below:

Blasted Church Vineyards 2010 Hatfield's Fuse - $18
This blend of aromatic varietals with Gewurztraminer, Pinot Gris and Pinot Blanc in the lead, offers a truly gorgeous, floral nose with light citrus and orchard fruit aromas.
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Stoneboat Vineyards 2010 Chorus - $18
Consumption of this beauty need not be restricted to sunny patios, but it is recommended. Pairs well with a fennel and Mandarin orange spinach salad.
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Young and Wyse Collection 2010 Amber - $20
The balance is ever-so-slightly "hot", but the richness on the palate generally masks the alcohol. Crisp citrus acidity, in turn, balances the fullness on the palate resulting in a very tasty wine with a moderate-plus finish and excellent texture. Where to buy: Direct from winery and VQA stores.
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Herder Winery and Vineyards 2010 Three Sisters - $20
A lovely blend of Pinot Gris, Chardonnay and Viognier that may not possess the most expressive nose but who's sumptuous orchard fruit, tangy citrus and lush passion fruit-filled palate more than makes up for the muted first impression.
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$30 and below:

Bartier-Scholefield 2010 White Table Wine - $22
A blend of Pinot Gris, Pinot Blanc, Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc with impressive balance and concentration for a wine produced with minimal intervention in mind. If you were to make a "serious" wine out of Honest John's White from Road 13 Vineyards, where Michael Bartier was the head winemaker for many years, this would be the wine.
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Tinhorn Creek Vineyards 2011 Oldfield Series 2Bench White - $23
Both opulent, with rich orchard fruit by the bushel, and light with delicate, aromatic notes'a'plenty. Melon, grapefruit and minerals round out the flavour profile with a touch of lingering spice on the long finish.
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JoieFarm 2011 A Noble Blend - $24
The final blend is 38% Riesling, 33% Gewurztraminer, 14% Pinot Blanc, 11% Pinot Auxerrois and 4% Schoenberger, yet the key ingredient is the balance of acid to residual sugar that JoieFarm pulls-off consistently each year no matter which varieties are used or from where they are sourced.
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Stag's Hollow Winery 2010 GVM - $28
With its exotic character, refined palate and long, long finish, the GVM is certainly greater than its parts and should be sought out by BC wine lovers who can see past the lack of a universally adopted varietal identity and who specifically appreciate the relative freedom afforded the winemakers in our New World wine region. Where to buy: Direct from winery.
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