Ramification Cellars vineyard (Image courtesy Ramification Cellars)
It was nice to have a long weekend to celebrate with family or friends. Pinot Noir makes wines that are food-friendly, as they typically are not overpowering with fruit, oak, and tannins. Red fruit aromas and flavours, light tannins and bright acidity are a good formula for many food pairings. I have two Pinot Noir wines from Ramification Cellars, who are located along Vaseux Lake in the south Okanagan. I am anticipating that the coolness of the lake helped the slow maturation of the grapes, giving us ripe red fruit flavours and bright acidity.
As I mentioned in my previous article, they have only 6 acres, 4 acres planted, undertake biodynamic farming, and use only estate fruit, and are very small production. Their wines should sell out fast once more BC wine lovers find out about this winery.
The 2 Pinot Noirs I tasted were:
- Ramification Cellars Verification Pinot Noir 2018
- Ramification Cellars The Assurance Reserve Pinot Noir 2017
My Wine Tasting Notes
Ramification Cellars Verification Pinot Noir 2018 (BC $30)
Select parcels of estate-grown fruit are used to produce this wine. Only 370 cases of this wine were produced.
Appearance: A medium intensity garnet in the glass, approximately 70% translucent to the core.
Nose: Medium-minus intensity nose, showing red fruit, red cherries, light oak and sweet spices. The aromas after decanting are about the same, other than the red fruit maybe a bit sweeter.
Palate: This wine is dry, lighter-bodied, semi-round and smooth. You get raspberries, red cherries and a touch of floral. There is also some oak and pepperiness toward the finish. With swirling you get some toasty flavours. Very light fine-grained tannins. With decanting the wine has a smoky/flinty flavour, along with red cherries and a touch of leather and toastiness. The other red fruits and cherries persist. The floral component disappears.
Finish: A medium length finishing with light red fruits, pepperiness, oak and sweet spices. A delicate finish. The wine is a bit more peppery and a little astringent on the finish with decanting.
A delicate red fruit scented and flavoured Pinot Noir. Light bodied with a smooth mouthfeel. A touch of floral on the palate. Very light fine tannins. Touches of oak and pepperiness on the finish.
Ramification Cellars Verification Pinot Noir 2018 and The Assurance Reserve Pinot Noir 2017 with wines in glasses
Ramification Cellars The Assurance Reserve Pinot Noir 2017 (BC $45)
Hand-picked grapes are fermented with multiple yeast strains, then aged 21 months in French oak barrels. A mere 111 cases of this wine were produced.
Appearance: Medium intensity garnet with slight bricking. 70% translucent to the core.
Nose: A more complex nose than the Verification. Light red fruit, sweet spices, cedar, vanilla and red cherry aromas. Some red plums with swirling. After decanting this wine is a little less aromatic, with fewer red fruit flavours. There are still sweet spices, cedar and vanilla, and you can add candied cherries.
Palate: Dry, with a medium-plus body and flavour intensity. A thicker, rounder mouthfeel. Juicy raspberry, raspberry/berry jam, red cherries and cranberry flavours. High toned red fruit flavours. Light, fine tannins that get stronger toward the finish. With decanting the wine is more silky and round on the palate, with riper red fruit flavours; less high toned flavours.
Finish: A medium plus length finishing with red fruit and cinnamon flavours, and firmer tannins. The tannins soften a bit with decanting.
I tried this wine with my turkey dinner with mashed potatoes and gravy, and it was a perfect pairing.
Complex aromas of red fruit, spices, cedar and cherries. Medium-plus body with a rounder mouthfeel. High toned red fruits, raspberry and cherry flavours upon opening, plus some raspberry jam. Light oak and sweet spices, and firmer tannins on the finish.
Where Can I Buy These Wines?
You can purchase these two wines through their website. These private wine shops carry the Pinot Noirs:
Lighthouse LRS (Sechelt)
Castle Beer Wine and Spirits (Sooke)
Red Beard Cafe (Kamloops)
Murrayville LRS (Langley)
Sunshine Hill LRS (Delta)
Salmon Arm LRS
Setters LRS (Salmon Arm)
Public Liquor (Kelowna)
Creekside LRS (Kelowna)
Sunshine Hill LRS (Delta)
North Shore LRS (Vancouver)
New District (Vancouver)
High Point (Vancouver)