Without a doubt the most vaunted land in the entire wine world, Burgundy wine is as complex as it is delicious. With intricate geology, cool northern climate, and daunting appellation system, it can take a lifetime to understand the spiritual home of Pinot Noir and Chardonnay. Our quartet of bottles provides a rare liquid lesson in terroir, allowing you to compare producer and vintage, and two differing quality levels. Burgundy’s magnificent limestone/marl/chalk terroir is the point here, and the appellation system (regional Burgundy, village Burgundy, Premier Cru Burgundy and Grand Cru Burgundy) is based on the calibre of soils and slope, and the grapes’ ability to transmit and translate the vineyard conditions through the wines. Both Henri Boillot and Henri Gouges are distinguished Burgundy domaines (domaine = estate) deeply admired for their long-lived, elegant and precise bottlings. This curated pack is a true rarity. Burgundy is scarce (and ultra expensive) to begin with, and having such brilliant specimens to compare in the glass is seldom possible. Yes, this is a high-ticket wine collection, but the vintage is stunning, the producers are peerless, and the knowledge opportunity is priceless.
Rugged, individual, pioneering, and wind-battered are words that evoke the remarkable Similkameen Valley. This striking region lies to the west of the southern Okanagan Valley; the Richter Pass connects them, and it’s a truly jaw-dropping drive. A narrow valley with low rainfall, hot summers, cold nights, a whistling daily wind, and mineral-rich soils imprints Similkameen wines a unique identity.
Gorgeously ripened fruit, high-pitched acidity and salty mineral complexity can be found in each of these six superstars. A trio of whites bring you an ultra-dry, limey-stony Riesling, Chasselas with a caress of oak, and streamlined, pristine Chardonnay. Red grapes love the Similkameen’s stony terraces and strong sunshine. You’ll want your biggest glasses for these handsome reds: a peppery and savoury Syrah, a Merlot that melts in the mouth, and a majestic five-grape Bordeaux-styled blend.
We all love Cabernet Sauvignon. After all, it’s the world’s most planted red wine grape. Cab gives us dark fruit and chocolate flavours, muscular tannins and luscious, full body. Our fresh look at Cabernet Sauvignon takes us to six countries where this grape makes highly distinctive wines.
Bordeaux is the archetype for this grape, and Chateau Tour Saint Bonnet is an earthy Cab-Merlot blend from one of the greatest vintages of all time. Showing complex development, it definitely deserves a prime steak. You’ll be dazzled by the potency and suave texture of Clos des Fous - did you know Chile is nicknamed the Bordeaux of South America? Howard Park’s Miamup Cab is mint chocolate with melting tannins; Crossfork Creek is lush and ripe from all that Yakima Valley sunshine; and Hendry’s supple beauty is from the year Napa was rocked by a powerful earthquake. And Cabernet Sauvignon would not exist without its parent, Cabernet Franc - look for the same blackcurrant fruit and firm structure in Naramata’s Upper Bench Cabernet Franc, plus the added stamp of Okanagan sagebrush fragrance. Start the grill, set out the big-bowled glasses and get your Cab on!
These are the six wines I am pouring alongside dinner at home. Like you I love wine, and find the greatest pleasure in a broad range of flavours and styles. There is a powerfully spicy dry Gewurztraminer from Bartier Bros. that I love to pair with pâté, and a zesty, succulent blend from Clos du Soleil in the rugged Similkameen Valley that's killer with goat's cheese.
The third white in my 6-pack is Le Vieux Pin's Ava, a Rhone-styled blend of Viognier, Roussanne and Marsanne. Full-bodied, fragrant and botanical, it's what I crave with free-range roasted chicken. When it is time for light and juicy red, JoieFarm's PTG - an unusual duo of Gamay and Pinot Noir - will be in my oversized glass; and to pair with crispy duck breast, I'll choose an earthy, gutsy, ripe Pinot Noir from Naramata's Moraine made by a winemaker who, like me, has a black belt. And finally, a grape I think is one of the best fits for the Okanagan, Cabernet Franc. This edition from Nichol is a marvel of herbal sagebrush and dark savoury fruit, made from just 13 rows of vines planted in 1989.
I hope you find these six authentic B.C. wines as refreshing and exciting as I do.
It’s rare and extremely limited. Never before have six of B.C.’s most coveted ultra-premium wines been collected together, sharing the same handsome white pine case, ready to be decanted for a fine dinner, or stored in your cellar. New District has done the audacious and curated two white wines and four reds, all of them exceptional, and all of them age-worthy. Think of them as Grand Cru wines from British Columbia. There are just 12 of these one-of-a-kind cases available. Clos du Soleil Estate White 2014 is a sumptuous oaked blend from the Similkameen Valley; Checkmate Artisanal Winery Attack Chardonnay 2014 offers a brilliant new paradigm for the grape; Painted Rock Red Icon 2014 showcases the superb terroir of Skaha bench; Black Hills Nota Bene 2014 is the seventeenth vintage of a distinguished classic; La Stella Maestoso 2011 may be the pinnacle of Okanagan Merlot; and Mission Hill Family Vineyards Oculus 2012 is a majestic and cellar-worthy titan from one of our pioneering wineries.
Pinot Noir is wine's Holy Grail. Both farmers and winemakers often become obsessed with this most noble and venerable grape. From the Burgundy region in France, Pinot Noir is a great fit in the cooler parts of B.C. like Naramata or Vancouver island. Emandare and Unsworth are both Cowichan Valley Pinot Noirs, ethereal yet ripe and juicy.
Meyer and Liquidity from Okanagan Falls offer intense cherry and spice. Tightrope's Naramata version is pure and earthy, while across the lake in Summerland, Tyler Harlton's TH Pinot Noir is suave and woodsy. This curated case spotlights the excellent 2014 vintage where the growing season was steady and warm. Mushroom risotto, baked salmon, or simple grilled lamb sausages will complement with ease.
This deluxe (and handsomely tissue-wrapped) mixed 6-pack showcases some of B.C.'s most distinguished red wines. From fragrant Pinot Noir to ultra-ripe Cab blends and a smokey Syrah, these stunning reds are drinking beautifully now, or can age a few more years. Pour some of the most iconic local heros for the rest of the summer, give as a wedding gift, or hoard in your cellar for the future.
Don’t miss this limited edition collection of six fine wines from the famed Naramata region. Poised near Penticton on the eastern side of Okanagan Lake, vines dig into ancient soils, bathe in warm sunshine and are kept fresh by desert-cooled nights. Two streamlined whites, a couple of diverse Pinot Noirs, one pioneering Syrah and a thoroughbred red blend represent powerful expressions of Naramata's elite terroir.
The wine world is seeing pink. Sales of Rosé are outpacing every other style, and with a general move away from the syrupy, simple juice of the past, Rosé has emphatically shed its reputation as just a flirty summer sipper. Rosé is a versatile, all-season style of wine that appeals to a broad spectrum of palates, partly because it has the structure and grip of a red but maintains the level-headed freshness of a white. Our BC trio includes a dry-yet-juicy Pinot Noir pink, an easy-sipping Rosé blend, and – from the Similkameen Valley – a blushing Cabernet Sauvignon. Amazing with spot prawns, crab, or charcuterie.
These wines over-deliver on flavour and fruit-forward BC warmth. A juicy white for sipping in the sun, a serious rosé for crabcakes and a cheery Pinot Noir that deserves a brief chill and a grilled burger. A wine for every mood and food.
Compare and contrast. This pair of polar opposites offers a crash course on Okanagan regional diversity. Tantalus' juicy Pinot Noir shows off Kelowna's cool-climate sangfroid, while La Stella's Fortissimo blend is full of bursting, ripe fruit – an Osoyoos heatwave in a bottle. Grab your notebook. This is one class you won't want to skip.