Back to Bordeaux-style wines from the Okanagan. Two bottles I have been looking forward to opening are the Roche Wines Chateau 2017 and their Nuances 2018. The Chateau is under cork and the Nuances uses a screw cap. Both wines use Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, and Cabernet Franc, but in different proportions. I tasted their Nuances 2017 vintage and now have the 2018 vintage to sample and compare for you. This is the second vintage of their Chateau wine. I was fortunate to be able to taste this vintage in January, so let’s see how things have changed in the bottle over the last 5 months.
My Wine Tasting Notes
Roche Wines Chateau 2017 (BC $49.90)
A blend of 54% Cabernet Sauvignon, 36% Merlot, and 10% Cabernet Franc. This is the second vintage of a new tradition of their Grand Vin. Aged 14 months in 50% new French oak. Unfined and unfiltered.
Appearance: A deep garnet, about 85% opaque.
Nose: Light intensity nose, with aromas of red and black fruit, candied cherries, baby powder, and touches of cedar, violets, and cocoa. With decanting the aromas were more black fruit, with cedar, floral, and candied cherries lighter in support.
Palate: A dry wine that is lighter bodied, soft, and silky. Not quite round upon first opening but gets rounder with swirling. Very fine light tannins. Red fruit, raspberries, black cherries, bramble berries, and touches of cocoa, vanilla, violets, and sweet spices. There is a light level of pepperiness on the mid-palate that continues to the finish. A much rounder and softer wine plus weightier mouthfeel with decanting. Nutmeg, black cherries, ripe black fruit, and touches of vanilla, cocoa, violets, and nutmeg flavours.
Length: A medium-minus length finishing with red fruit and light pepperiness, and touches of vanilla and cedar. Medium intensity tannins.
Decanting really helps opening up this wine. Do it!
Rating: with decanting. A light nose with red fruit, candied cherries, and touches of baby powder, violets, cedar and cocoa aromas. Decanting promotes black fruit aromas. Dry, soft and silky with a lighter body, and gets bigger, rounder and softer with decanting. Red fruits, brambleberries, and black cherry flavours, with touches of violets, chocolate, cedar, and vanilla. Very light tannins with some pepperiness on the finish.
Roche Wines Nuances 2018 (BC $32.90)
A blend of 58% Merlot, 24% Cabernet Franc, and 18% Cabernet Sauvignon. Aged 12 months in 10% new French oak.
Appearance: Deep garnet in colour, about 75% opaque.
Nose: A medium intensity nose showing sweet ripe red fruit, black cherries, sweet spices, and touches of capsicum (with air), cedar, oak and vanilla. If you give the wine some swirls you get black fruit plus some chocolate aromas. Same aromas with decanting, but the black fruit aromas become stronger.
Palate: Dry, lighter-bodied, with medium acidity and fine light tannins. The wine starts off with a linear mouthfeel but gets rounder with air. Red fruit, plums, blackberries, black cherries, and a touch of vanilla, capsicum, and chocolate flavours. A pleasant mineral edge as well. With decanting, the wine becomes rounder, you get a mix of red and black fruits, and raspberries. You still get the minerality and pepperiness.
Length: A medium-plus length finishing with red fruits, some pepperiness and cedar flavours, and very light tannins. More black fruit and some capsicum on the finish with decanting, along with the other mentioned flavours.
Decanting or not is OK for this wine.
Rating: – A medium intensity nose with ripe red fruit, sweet spices, and black cherry aromas. Dry with a light body. Red fruits, black cherry, and plum flavours, with a touch of chocolate.
Chateau Tasting Notes From January 2021
Roche Wines Chateau 2017 (BC $49.90)
Where Can I Buy These Wines?
These wines are available to order from their website.
Thank you to Roche Wines for providing me these wines to review.