Wine agencies attend various trade events where they show their wines alongside other agencies. But to be able to better tell their story about these wines these agencies usually have a portfolio tasting once a year where various winery principals from around the world are invited to attend to tell us their wine story. I was fortunate to attend the Trialto Portfolio Tasting recently and sample wines from around the world. Below are a few of the wines that I really enjoyed. I am happy to show you that there are several BC wines that I ranked highly along with the rest of the world, with many countries having hundreds of years more experience than us. I also enjoyed speaking with the winery principals.
Canada – BC
Coolshanagh Chardonnay, Naramata Bench, 2016 ($25.99) – Light vegetal nose. Medium body round with a thick mouthfeel. Very flavourful showing tropical fruit and sweet spices as well as some apple. Lighter acidity. –
Coolshanagh Pinot Noir, Naramata Bench, 2017 ($25.99) – pale translucent garnet in the glass. Tea leaves and red fruits on the nose. Tea leaves, red fruits, sweet spices and pepperiness on the palate. The wine is dry with medium body / acidity / tannins. Very good.
Coolshanagh Pinot Noir, Naramata Bench, 2016 (not known) – Light translucent garnet colour. Very floral and red fruit aromas. Roses, raspberries and other red fruits on the palate. The wine is dry with a light body and also has a touch of pepperiness. Very good. –
Poplar Grove Syrah, Naramata Bench, 2015 ($25.99) – Deep garnet colour. This wine has a light intensity nose showing red fruits and sausage. It has a medium-plus body and a round mouthfeel. Floral, cassis, vanilla and pepperiness on the palate. Fine tannins.
Poplar Grove The Legacy, Naramata Bench, 2015 ($55.99) – A blend of 36% Cabernet Sauvignon, 29% Merlot, 19% Malbec, 14% Cabernet Franc, and 2% Petit Verdot. It is a medium-plus garnet in colour. Ripe blackberry fruit, floral and cassis aromas, which continue to the palate. The wine is off-dry, medium-bodied with a round mouthfeel. Sweet ripe fruit flavours overall. Soft tannins and medium acidity.
Alexana Chardonnay ‘Terroir Series’, Willamette Valley, Oregon, 2016 ($43.99) – A biodynamic wine. It has a light vanilla and citrus nose. Lighter bodied dry with a light mouthfeel. Butterscotch, apples, and vanilla flavours along with some pepperiness. Elegant.
Alexana Pinot Noir ‘Terroir Series’, Willamette Valley, Oregon, 2016 ($49.99) – Medium translucent garnet in colour. It is very aromatic showing lots of raspberries. It has a medium-plus body and acidity. It is dry with red fruits, some floral and pepperiness. Fine tannins. Good quality.
L’Ecole No. 41 Semillon, Columbia Valley, Washington, 2016 ($27.29) – This Semillon does have 15% Sauvignon Blanc blended into it. It has a light bright lemon colour. Light stonefruit and lemon aromas. Dry with a medium body and acidity. Roast apples, toast, and some bitterness. –
Cave de Visan Grand Reserve, Cotes du Rhone-Villages, 2016 ($25.99) – a GSM blend. This one is medium intensity translucent garnet. Light smoky and red fruit nose. Medium body, with mineral smoky and red fruit flavours. Dry with medium acidity and fine tannins.
Cave de Rasteau Prestige Rouge, Cotes du Rhone-Villages, 2013 ($24.99) – A deeper translucent garnet colour. Light intensity dark fruit nose. Medium-plus body, dry and smooth on the palate. Dar fruit flavours. Fine tannins. –
Champagne Bollinger Special Cuvee, NV ($87.99) – has a toasty apple nose. It is dry, medium body with high acidity. Toast and roasted apples followed by crisp apples on the palate.
Feudo Maccari Olli Grillo, Sicily, 2017 ($21.99) – A real unexpected find and a wine you should try, made from the Grillo grape. This wine has a medium intensity bright lemon colour. Honey and orange marmalade nose. Medium-plus body, round with a nice acidic edge. Thicker mouthfeel. Ripe stonefruit and either toast or flint, honey and green fruit flavours. Very nice.
Tenuta Sette Ponti Crognolo, Tuscany, 2016 ($39.99) – Medium translucent mix of garnet and ruby colours in the glass. It has a light, bright red berry nose. It is light-bodied with a soft mouthfeel Mineral. Nice red fruit flavours. Soft fine tannins that firm up on the finish. Elegant.
Podere Orma ‘Orma’, Tuscany, 2015 ($89.99) – Deep garnet in colour. Cassis, vanilla and sweet spices on the nose. Medium-plus body, round, soft and fruity. Cassis fruit along with light oak. Fine tannins.
Tenuta Sette Ponti Oreno, Tuscany, 2016 ($99.99) – Medium-plus ruby and garnet coloured. It has a ripe cassis nose. More cassis on the palate together with black fruits and vanilla. Medium acidity and light tannins.
Bodegas Finca Villacreces Pruno, Ribera del Duero ($29.99) – a blend of Tempranillo with 10% Cabernet Sauvignon. It is almost opaque ruby in colour. Deep meaty, dark fruit nose with a hint of floral. Full body, dry with higher acidity and some minerality. Dark fruit and cassis flavours; some pepperiness and finishes with a hint of vegetal note. Medium tannins with a tart fruit finish.
Where Can I Buy These Wines?
Retailer: Marquis Wine Cellars, Legacy Liquor Store
Coolshanagh Pinot Noir
- only available winery direct.
Cave de Rasteau La Domeliere
Retailer: BC Liquor Stores
Cave De Rasteau Prestige Rouge, Côtes du Rhône-Villages
Retailer: Marquis Wine Cellars, Liberty Wine Merchants Granville Island, Everything Wine
Cave de Visan
not yet available.
Retailer: BC Liquor Stores, Marquis Wine Cellars, Kits Wine Cellar, Everything Wine
Restaurant: Blue Water Café, Elisa, Provence
Retailer: Marquis Wine Cellars, Kits Wine Cellar, Everything Wine
Restaurant: Cin Cin
Retailer: BC Liquor Stores, Everything Wine, Marquis Wine Cellars, Kits Wine Cellar
Restaurant: Gusto di Quattro, Hapa Izakaya – Coal Harbour
Retailer: BC Liquor Stores, Everything Wine, Marquis Wine Cellars
Bodegas Finca Villacreses Pruno
Retailer: BC Liquor Stores, Kits Wine Cellar
Restaurant: Bodega on Main, Parlour
- not yet available in BC, only in AB.
- There is a very small allocation of Alexana and it just arrived in the market.
L’Ecole No. 41. Semillon
Retailer: Marquis Wine Cellar, Dollarton
Restaurant: Fairmont Empress Victoria, Farmer’s Daughter (Victoria)