Friday, September 10, 2010

Best of BC: Viognier

Viognier is growing in popularity each year in BC with rising sales and expanding acreage. One must only look at the BC Wine Growers Association's classified section to see that more wineries are looking to purchase the grape to get in on the action.

Along with its Rhone Valley red cousin, Syrah, the Okanagan Valley offers many excellent growing areas for Viognier, which needs to fully ripen in order for its tropical fruit and rich characters to shine. Many plots in the Southern parts of the valley offer the ideal conditions. The future is bright for Viognier in the Okanagan Valley.

$20 and below:

Jackson-Triggs Vintners 2010 Silver Series Viognier - $16
A relatively simple Viognier missing the tropical fruit characters of some of the valley's more complex versions, yet, well balanced with solid pear, apple and peach fruit aromas and pleasant mineral flavours on the chewy, off-dry palate.
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Cassini Cellars 2010 Viognier - $19
The concentration is great and the finish is long, as with most Cassini wines, leaving your mouth with plenty of evidence with which to ponder the lingering flavours.
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$30 and below:

Stag's Hollow Winery 2010 Viognier - $22
A textured, rich and creamy example of the Rhone Valley varietal resulting from French oak barrel fermentation and extensive lees contact.
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La Frenz Winery 2011 Viognier - $22
A perennial favourite. Always rich and full-bodied with excellent concentration of fruit flavours and aromas. Nose has classic tropical fruit aromas with orange blossom notes.
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Sandhill 2010 Small Lots Program Viognier - $25
Good concentration on the fruity nose and mineral-filled, dry palate. The finish is very long with lingering orchard fruit and mineral flavours.
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$40 and below:

Le Vieux Pin 2011 Ava - $35
The "Ava", a blend of 78% Viognier, 11% Marsanne and 11% Roussanne offers a slightly muted nose but, there's lost to like with peach and apricot fruit aromas adding to the pleasant, aromatic bouquet.
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 - Liam Carrier ©copyright 2013

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