By choice or by fate, I cannot escape Pinot Noir. I was born in Oregon and returned to its wine industry. Our traipse through the extreme wines of Vancouver Island have gone from bad to worse to decent, usually faltering with noble grapes like Chardonnay (here), Gamay (here), but succeeding with weird hybrids like Savignette (read here). Can this warm pocket in the Northernmost fringes of winemaker pull off the queen of grapes: Pinot Noir? Continue reading
Posted in Pinot Noir, Uncategorized
Tagged Burgundy, Canada, Canadian wine, drink, Oregon, pinot noir, travel, Vancouver, Vancouver Island, wine
OK! Ok! So our venture into wines from Vancouver Island VQA’s has drawn up bracingly tart Chardonnay (read here) and wild Gamay (read here). They have been real, reflective, but not great.
Maybe cool climate Burgundy and Beaujolais are not harsh enough models. Let us look to Champagne, to bubbly, to where fizz makes high acid wine magical. Continue reading
Posted in Sparkling, Uncategorized
Tagged Averill Creek, bubbly, Canada, Champagne, drinks, Pinot Gris, pinot noir, Sparkling wine, Vancouver BC, Vancouver Island
Last post (read here), we gave Vancouver Island VQA a stab at Chardonnay, and they squeaked by with a passable but tart and wild one. Time for to raise the bar with a red grape: Gamay Noir. This grape can handle the cold, short seasons of Beaujolais. Why not the Northern edge of civilization: Continue reading
Check here over the next few weeks, I am touring Vancouver Island’s wines, ciders, and beer.
Wife, kid, and I (sounds like a musical) have driven a day to Victoria, British Columbia, Canada. And yes, they grow enough grapes here to claim a Vancouver Island appellation or VQA. Sure, vines only started in 1992, today boasting 432 planted acres and 32 wineries (even Oregon’s tiny Willamette Valley claims 19,000 acres and over 500 wineries). But what that youth and extremely small scale means, however, is focus: most wineries are estate only, often organic, and handled by families from vineyard to bottle. Continue reading
Posted in Chardonnay, Uncategorized
Tagged Canada, chardonnay, Cheese, Food, grapes, travel, trips, Vancouver, Vancouver Island, wine, Wolff Estate
I woke up this morning, checked my inbox, and was shocked into silence. Jancis Robinson, the Jancis Robinson, goddess of wine writing, had published on her Purple Pages my entry of my seminal wine experience. The winner gets a set … Continue reading