The clock is ticking and the end of 2018 is near. I have a few more wines that I have received in December that I would like to review for you. I have 3 wines from Road 13 Vineyards in Oliver, BC. I visited Road 13 Vineyards in the summer and had a great talk with Mick Luckhurst. You can read that review at this link. The three wines below I tasted are all very good quality and good choices for holiday get-togethers.
My Road 13 Vineyard Tasting Notes
Road 13 Blind Creek Viognier 2017 – The grapes for this wine come from the cooler Similkameen Valley. I mention that it is cooler due to the breezes that blow through the Similkameen Valley (Keremeos), making it a cooler climate area, compared to the Oliver area in the Okanagan Valley, which about the same latitude. The wine is a medium-plus, bright lemon in colour. A lighter nose with interesting aromatics; light spearmint, ripe tropical fruit and grape stem. With decanting the nose changed to more pine needles, peaches and white flowers. I prefer the non-decanted aromas. The wine, on the palate, is dry and round, with a thicker mouthfeel. Lots of deep, ripe tropical fruits plus pears and a hint of apricot flavours. It has medium acidity to keep the wine refreshing. The wine gets peppery toward the mid-palate and finish. On the finish, you get some lime skin, together with the tropical fruit and pepper. With a little swirling in the glass, not extended decanting, you also get pine needles and white peach flavours. With longer decanting there is less tropical fruit and peach flavours, and more green fruits and pepper, and some bitter grape stem. I prefer the non-decanted flavours more.
Rating: – A round, thick intense wine with tropical fruits on the nose and palate. Don’t decant; open and enjoy.
Road 13 Jackpot Syrah 2016 – As Mick mentioned to me on my visit to their winery, the name Jackpot comes from the name of a gold mine in the area, when there was a mini gold rush in the south Okanagan. The Jackpot designation is meant for their top quality wines. This wine is opaque garnet with a hint of ruby in colour. A lighter nose with a captivating scent that reminded me of buttered cinnamon toast with raisins. Besides those sweet spice notes, there was also vanilla, ripe, dark fruit and blackcurrant aromas as well. With decanting the cinnamon toast aroma had disappeared. There was still ripe dark fruit flavours, but now a more vegetal tone as well. I prefer the non-decanted nose. The wine on the palate was dry, full-bodied, round and soft. Light acidity and tannins. Ripe cassis, red and black fruits, and light floral flavours; very seductive. There was also ripe plums and raspberries, cinnamon, and a touch of oak. Some minerality mid-palate. The wine had a medium-plus length finishing with sweet ripe fruit, light nutmeg, and black pepper. Quality.
Rating: – Smooth, round, and full-bodied with a nice mix of ripe cassis, black fruit and sweet spice. No need to decant this wine.
Road 13 Seventy-Four K 2017 – If you were to line up their vineyard rows end to end and walk, you would walk 74km. This wine is dedicated to their vineyard workers who walk this 74km distance at least once, if not more than once every year. This wine is a blend, primarily made from Merlot, with lesser amounts of Syrah, Viognier, Malbec, Cabernet Franc, and Gamay Noir. It has a very deep garnet & ruby colour in the glass. Lighter nose, with mingled aromas of smoke, bramble, spiced sausage, sweet spices, ripe raspberries, red fruit, and touches of nutmeg and cinnamon. I quite enjoyed the aromatics of this wine. With decanting the aromas were not quite as strong. The wine is slightly off-dry, soft and round with medium acidity and tannins. A mix of rich, ripe sweet red and black fruits, as well as some tart red fruits. Nutmeg and cinnamon spice and a hint of minerality. Bramble berries and leaves. Integrated oak. Dark chocolate toward the finish. A longer length, finishing with light pepper & vanilla, and firmer tannins. The fruit flavours linger for a while. With decanting the tannins feel stronger and the sweet spices are more subdued. No need to decant.
Rating: – A lot of nice red fruit and spices on the nose and palate to entice you. No need to decant.