My last visit to Lotusland Vineyard in the Abbotsford area, Fraser Valley, was September 2010. I thought coming up to September 2012 that I should make another visit and see what is new at Lotusland. The lady at the winery I met today poured me their Enigma 2004, Merlot 2003, and 2 Cabs. All wines are under screwcap.
When I came home I checked my September 2010 tasting and at that time I sampled their Merlot 2004. I find it quite interesting that today I tried a wine that was made one year earlier and was not opened till 2 years after the other wine. All the wines are produced organically from vineyards in the Fraser Valley, which is nice. Gives you a feel of the terroir of the area.
The Wines I Sampled
Lotusland Merlot 2003. 2003 was an exceptionally hot year around the world, with the result that many bigger, fruit-forward wines were produced. This wine was medium garnet with a dark core. Flowers, perfume and red cherry aromas followed by vanilla. Medium body with softer tannins. Spicy with red cherry and oak flavour, and dark plums underneath. Medium-plus acidity with spice on the finish. Very enjoyable. I think that this wine could work well with many different dishes, poultry or beef.
Lotusland Enigma 2004. The Engima is a red blend made from Gamay Noir and Pinot Meunier. I find the use of Pinot Meunier very interesting for 2 reasons. One, this red grape is usually used in Blanc de Noir champagne to add fruit flavour and acidity, and two, I don’t know of other wineries in BC growing Pinot Meunier, although I am sure there are probably some (let me know if you know which other wineries produce wines from Pinot Meunier). This wine was translucent medium garnet in colour. Very aromatic in the glass. Its aromas reaching my nose before I even began to swirl the glass. Sweet berries and vanilla aromas but also a very slight hint of capsicum. Light to medium body, with juicy, jammy purple fruit, cherries and cranberries. Medium tannins. Oaky finish and a bit hot on the tongue. An interesting wine, or shall we say an enigma!
2 Cabs, non-vintage (NV). Another interesting wine for me to try today. This is a red blend of Cabernet Libre and Cabernet Franc. Cabernet Libre is a (Valentin) Blattner hybrid. There are many hybrids by Valentin Blattner, meant to be disease resistant and will ripen here on our wet West Coast. This wine was medium garnet in colour but had a very dark core that extended almost to the rim. Sweet vanilla, ripe plums and red delicious apple aromas. Medium body, soft mouthfeel with light tannins and medium minus acidity. On the palate, you really get a lot of red delicious apples, followed by red cherries and oak. Dry with a medium plus length. Also leaves you with spiciness on the right and left edges of your tongue. I might try this wine with grilled pork chops.
One thing that I noticed for all of the wines was that they were all very aromatic, with lots of fruit, some floweriness and vanilla. I can feel the hand of the winemaker, guiding the wines to this style. It is interesting because many times when I go to taste wines at a winery, the wines tend to be more different from each other, as opposed to having a very similar aroma profile. Or could it be the terroir of the Fraser Valley greeting me in the glass? Interesting.