Terry Nicholas Threlfall was announced as the 2012 Sommelier of the Year here in Vancouver, and with that a very interesting perk; to work with Okanagan Crush Pad to produce a limited production wine using whichever grape variety they want. For Terry it was Chardonnay, with a view back to Burgundy. The resulting wine, “TNT”, is the third wine release from the winery’s Okanagan Wine Campus program. Terry’s Chardonnay is named TNT after the initials of his name, but it also conjures ideas of explosions and danger. There is nothing though to be afraid of with this wine.
My Tasting Notes
TNT Chardonnay 2012 ($22.90) – Very light intensity nose of citrus. There is an unoaked wine. It has medium weight on the palate, with minerality and acidity running through the wine. Acidity and minerality both help to make a white wine refreshing and exciting on the palate, besides fruit of course. Citrus with a bit of peach blossom and stone fruit on the palate, and an edge of greeness on the finish. Burgundian in style. A very nice wine. It was recently bottled, so not as expressive yet, but let it rest for a few months and you should be rewarded.
Besides the TNT Chardonnay, I also tried two other wines from Okanagan Crush Pad.
Bartier Scholefield Sauvignon Blanc 2012 ($22.90) – Light herbal nose with gooseberry aroma. Medium minus mouthfeel, dry with higher acidity. Nice gooseberry flavour, but not as intense as you can get from a New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc. It has a good level of acidity and does not make you pucker up. Should be excellent with some fresh seafood.
Haywire Pinot Noir 2012 – Translucent medium ruby in the glass. Nice nose with spices and plums and dark cherries. Very tasty. Dry, medium minus body, with red and black cherries, dark fruit, really ripe raspberries, and spice. Later on you get some vanilla from the oak barrel aging. Nice acidity, not over the top. Fine tannins that do not leave your mouth too dry. Another really enjoyable wine.
What is the Okanagan Wine Campus?
Okanagan Wine Campus was created in 2011 by Okanagan Crush Pad to be a mentorship program that provides the person named Vancouver’s Sommelier of the Year a chance to make a small lot wine using the grape variety and style of wine they wish. In 2012 Vancouver Magazine, Vancouver International Wine Festival, and California’s Sunset Magazine each named Terry their Sommelier of the Year. So when harvest 2012 occurred, Threlfall visited Okanagan Crush Pad in Summerland and worked alongside chief winemaker Michael Bartier to create the wine.
The proceeds from the sale of TNT Chardonnay will be given to the BC Hospitality Foundation wine scholarship fund to support students who are pursuing their higher level wine education certification. To date, $10,000 has been awarded to 11 individuals with further scholarships to come. OWC projects to date include Kurtis Kolt (2010), Owen Knowlton (2011), Terry Threlfall (2012), and Samantha Rahn (2013).
TNT Chardonnay is available by contacting the OCP order desk at 250-494-4445 ext 2 or emailing email@example.com.
I interviewed Terry about his TNT Chardonnay, and you can watch the interview here on youtube.