The last Vintages wine release on Saturday is one of the largest I have seen for Ontario wine this year.
It runs the gamut from exciting sparkling wines and top Rieslings to finessed Pinots and a selection of well-aged reds that are being released to grab the attention of gift buyers looking for ready-to-drink wines from the very hot and ripe 2007 vintage.
It was difficult to come up with just three WIN wines of the week from this large release, but have chosen with Christmas in mind.
Here are the WIN wines of the week:
Flat Rock Cellars Riesling Reserve 2009
($30, 92 points)
This remarkable reserve Riesling from Flat Rock is sourced from a small lot within the estate vineyards.
This is the first vintage for the new “red label” reserve wines. The wine uses a mix of wild and cultured yeasts and went through partial malolactic fermentation.
It’s a weighty, powerful Riesling done in the Alsatian style with vibrant citrus, developing petrol notes and wet stone minerality.
It’s complex, bold and has wonderful length on the finish.
A real treat that will develop beautifully in the cellar for 10 years or more. It’s a perfect bottle (or two) to give to the wine collector on your holiday shopping list.
Inniskillin Legacy Pinot Gris 2009
($35, 91 points)
Winemaker Bruce Nicholson chooses his limited Legacy series wines carefully before he decides to put his signature on the gold label series.
This is another winner. Such a great nose of hazelnuts, vanilla, toast, creamy peach and added tropical fruits chiming in.
It’s honied and layered on the palate in an off-dry, elegant and concentrated style that shows oak, vanilla, nuts and gorgeous fruit from beginning to end.
A lovely Pinot Gris done in a style that’s a showcase for Niagara fruit.
Quarry Road is in the Vinemount Ridge appellation and the vineyard is farmed biodynamically.
The nose shows sweet oak, cherry-raspberry fruit, violets and a lovely perfumed note.
It is like silk on the palate with woodsy-earthy flavours and red plums, red fruits and anise.
It has length and persistence and the flavours reveal themselves in layers. Another one for the cellar.
Rick Vansickle is a veteran journalist, wine reviewer and publisher of Wines in Niagara. His reviews appear each Friday in Bullet News. Previous reviews are archived under “Grapevine” tab on the Bullet News home page, under Wines in Niagara. Rick can be found on the web at www.winesinniagara.com.
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