There’s a pretty decent crop of Niagara wines being released at Vintages on Aug. 20. Here are reviews for most them:
Stratus Petit Verdot 2007 ($38, 92 points) — A wonderful nose of red fruits and spice. In the mouth, the fruits are ripe with firm tannins and bright acidity. This is a perfect candidate for the cellar or to enjoy now with your favourite red meat.
Henry of Pelham Reserve Pinot Noir 2007 ($25, 91 points) — Such nice aromatics. Mocha, cloves, leather, cherry, blueberry, spice and cedar hedge gets this wonderful Pinot off to a good start. It’s delicious on the palate with sweet-sour cherry, spice, ripe tannins and vibrant. Not as over-done as some 07 reds.
Tawse Quarry Road Vineyard Gewurztraminer 2010 ($25, 89 points) — A lychee, rose petal, pear nose with underlying musk aromas. It’s fresh and lightly spiced with grapefruit and lychee flavours in the mouth. This is a certified organic-biodynamic wine.
Cattail Creek Estate Riesling 2009 ($16, 88 points) — This Niagara-on-the-Lake winery has put together an interesting portfolio of Rieslings using the three main clones —Clone 49, 21B and 239 — planted on the property. Cattail bottled four special “clonal” Rieslings in 2009 plus a special “clonal” blend, sold as a package for $120 or $30 each. This Riesling is a house blend of all the property’s various lots. The nose is quite nice with quince, lemon-lime, pear and soft minerals. In the mouth, the flavours range from melon and pear to muted citrus and a touch of ginger spice.
Vintage Ink Rite of Passage Chardonnay ($17, 87 points) — From the Vincor group of wineries comes this debut standalone label, a 100% VQA Chardonnay made from a blend of three different Niagara vineyards. The nose shows pear, vanilla, tropical fruits and creamy notes. It’s lightly oaked and reveals creamy pear fruit, nice texture and soft, fruit-forward flavours.
Other Niagara wines released but not reviewed:
Mike Weir Rose 2010 ($15)
FrogPond Farm Gamay Noir 2009 ($15)
Southbrook Triomphe Cabernet-Merlot 2007 ($23)