Wayward Wine continues to ply the uncharted wines of Vancouver Island. It has been rough, but we found some decent Pinot Noir (read here). This marginal-in-the-best-of-times climate manages to counter its Northern latitude by bottling any warmth it can from the eastern straights with its western mountains. The best example: the Butchart Gardens utopia that traps tourists with its improbably lush gardens… Continue reading
Posted in Vancouver Island, WINERIES WANDERED
Tagged british columbia, Canada, Canadian wine, distillery, gin, grapes, Grüner Veltliner, marechal Foch, pinot blanc, pinot noir, spirit, travel, Vancouver Island, vermouth, wine
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! Vancouver Island wines have given us challenging results. Maybe, the standard grapes Chardonnay (review here), Gamay (here), even Sparkling pinot (here) provide little more than acidity, edge, reflecting regional limits. Maybe a more climate-friendly hybrid grape might work.
Sauvignette. Continue reading
Posted in Vancouver Island, White wine
Tagged Cabernet Sauvignon, Canada, drink, grapes, lees, Oak, Sauvignette, Sauvignon blanc, travel, 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
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