It was my pleasure to have a serious sit down tasting of the wines from D’Angelo Estate Winery. I’ve tasted their wines before at various tastings, the latest being the Naramata Bench “Simply Red” tasting in September. Sal D’Angelo has been making wine for nearly 25 years. He started with a winery in Amherstburg, ON in 1984, and in 2007 he opened a winery in the Naramata Bench area in the Okanagan.
I tasted four wines from D’Angelo:
– D’Angelo Pinot Noir 2006
– D’Angelo Tempranillo 2007
– D’Angelo Merlot Cabernet 2006
– D’Angelo Sette Coppa 2005
I did my tasting of these four wines in two stages. I started by tasting each wine after pouring from the bottle and swirling the wine to let it get some exposure to the air. Then, one day later, I re-tasted each wine to see how one day of being open and exposed to air in the bottle changed the flavour or aroma profile of each wine. I then compared the notes from both days. Overall I may say that these wines are all restrained, elegant wines. Do not look for big fruity wines with no structure. These are well-made wines.
The D’Angelo Pinot Noir 2006 is aged for 18 months in French and Hungarian Oak. It has won a Bronze Medal at the 2009 Canadian Wine Awards. It is a pale garnet in colour and starting to show a slight brickish colour, which comes with age. It has a light aroma of strawberries, red fruit, cinnamon, roses and vanilla. It is dry on the palate with low tannins and acidity. It is between a light and medium body on your palate. Flavours of red cherry, strawberry, tea leaves, roses and vanilla. Medium length. I did not notice a big change in my tasting notes between the two dates. A delicate wine to enjoy with delicate foods. Drink now.
The D’Angelo Tempranillo 2007 is the latest release of this wine. Their 2006 vintage is sold out. Tempranillo is a Spanish grape. In Spain it is an early ripening grape with flavours of plum, cherry, and strawberry. Here in BC, the temperature is not quite as warm as Spain, so this grape takes much longer to ripen. This wine was deep garnet coloured in my glass. It had aromas of black fruit, black berry, black cherry, earthiness and vanilla. On the second day of tasting the earthiness had disappeared. On the palate it has medium acidity and tannins. Medium body overall. Flavours of black fruit, black berry, cherry, cloves and vanilla. Medium plus length with oak and sweet cherry on the finish. I think that this wine is ready to drink now, but could age a year or two also.
The D’Angelo Merlot Cabernet 2006 is aged for 18 months in a mixture of French, Hungarian and American Oak. It is a blend of Merlot and Cabernet Franc. I like Cabernet Franc. It is a nice grape on it’s own as well as well as in a blend, and doesn’t get enough recognition. This wine is medium garnet in colour. It has a complex developing nose. There are aromas of black currant, tea leaves, soil, minerality,and vanilla. This wine has medium body tannins and acidity. On the palate there was flavours of red fruit, dried fruit, red cherry, plum, tea leaves, roses, cinnamon and oak. Lots of flavours to enjoy. It has firm yet soft tannins on the finish with a bit of spice and sweet cherry. I did not notice any major changes in my tasting notes between the two dates.
Sette Coppa 2005 won a Silver medal at the 2008 Canadian Wine Awards. This is a blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Merlot, Petite Verdot, and Malbec. It is primarily Cabernet Franc and Merlot, with lesser amounts of the other grape varieties. From my tasting of this wine at the Simply Red event, I had the following notes: “Light garnet in the glass. Tarry, cassis and black cherry aromas. Cassis, cherry, chocolate and vanilla on the palate with some spiciness. Medium length with firm tannins kicking in on the finish. Enjoy with some grilled meat.”
What did I note in my latest tasting? This wine is deep garnet in colour. Pronounced aromas in the glass of dried fruit, black fruit, red cherry, a hint of cedar, sweet spice and vanilla. This wine has firm yet soft tannins. Dry on the palate with medium to full body. Flavours of black fruit, black cherry, strawberry, sweet spice, vanilla, and a hint of chocolate. This wine is ready to drink now, but could age a year to let the tannins soften a bit more. Overall a very nice wine.
I hope you have a chance to try the red wines of D’Angelo Estate Winery. I think that they are very food friendly wines, and I look forward to trying future releases.