For the 2nd year in a row we will attempt to predict the must-try BC wines that are expected to be released in 2013. But first, a quick look back at the wines we featured last year.
Cassini Cellars 2009 Nobilus - Not Tasted
This wine has either yet to surface or was never produced.
Crooked Post Vineyard 2010 Pinot Noir - Delivered
An ever improving Pinot Noir that became the #1 searched wine on our sister site IconScores.ca.
Fairview Cellars 2011 Sauvignon Blanc - Delivered
This wine delivered as expected despite the sizable increase in production on previous vintages. SB proved to be a star grape of the cool 2011 vintage, it will be interesting to compare with the warmer 2012 vintage which will arrive in May.
Howling Bluff Estate Winery 2010 Summa Quies Pinot Noir - Not Tasted
Sadly we never got our hands on this wine and it has long since sold-out.
JoieFarm 2010 Reserve Chardonnay - Over-Delivered
This wine never disappoints, but the 2010 over-delivered cementing its reputation as one of a few premier Chards produced each year in BC.
La Frenz Winery 2009 Grand Total Reserve - Not Tasted
With no samples for critics and minimal need for distribution, La Frenz wines can be hard to get hold of unless you order direct or visit the winery. Sadly, we missed out on this one.
Stoneboat Vineyards 2010 Pinot Noir - Delivered
Uber-consistent producer of Pinot did not disappoint and remains the best-valued Pinot Noir produced in BC. This wine will be distributed more widely in 2013 and much easier to find.
Tinhorn Creek Vineyards 2009 Oldfield Series 2Bench Red - Over-Delivered
Just missed out being the Icon Wine of the Year for 2012 and over achieved on the expectations front. Easily the most affordable "premium" blend on the BC market today.
Our Most Anticipated wines for 2013...
Burrowing Owl Estate Winery 2012 Pinot Gris
With the style of Pinot Gris produced at Burrowing Owl, a medium-to-full bodied and lightly oaked crowd pleaser, we think the warmer 2012 vintage may be the best fit in years for this cult favourite.
Fairview Cellars 2011 Red Table Wine
This wine may not be released under the Fairview Cellars banner as it is the result of an experienced winemaker deciding that the quality from the difficult 2011 vintage may not be worthy of the winery's well-known labels like "Two Hoots", "Mad Cap Red", "The Bear" and "Bucket of Blood". A tank sample tasting last year of the expected components suggests the finished wine should still be well-received as an entry-level red blend.
Fort Berens 2011 Pinot Noir
We're not 100% sure this wine exists, but we sure hope it does. Pinot Noir is grown in the home vineyard of this Lillooet-based winery and a large portion of the local grapes could make it into a single varietal release of the heartbreak grape. A similarly blended Riesling from 2011 was unique and delicious, so we're hoping that Pinot Noir has received the same treatment.
Painted Rock Estate Winery 2010 Red Icon
The estate winery is about to reach its 5000 case limit as the vines mature and produce a consistently high quality crop. Early indication is that the 2010 Red Icon will be less New World and more Old World Bordeaux with its specs (12-13% alcohol) and flavour profile. Proof will be in the tasting, of course, and we're looking forward to that first sip.
River Stone Estate Winery 2010 Corner Stone Merlot
There is something about the River Stone home vineyard that adds a great deal of spice to the Merlot grapes and the Cabernet Franc grown on the property is sublime. Add some Black Sage Bench Cabernet Sauvignon and a splash of Malbec and you have the makings for a tempting, new World, Bordeaux blend.
Sumac Ridge Estate Winery 2012 Private Reserve Gewurztraminer
Seems out-of-place among the other boutique winery fare on the list, but we have an inkling that this mass-produced, yet, well-made Gewurztraminer may benefit greatly from the warmer 2012 vintage and over-deliver for the price ($12-14).
Tinhorn Creek Vineyards 2009 Oldfield Series Pinot Noir
The new Pinot Noir program has already paid dividends for the Golden Mile Bench winery by alloying their single-varietal and premier releases more time to age in the bottle. This year they will unveil their 4 year old reserve-level Pinot from the warm 2009 vintage to much anticipated acclaim.
- Liam Carrier ©copyright 2013 IconWines.ca