Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Late Harvest wine in the Spring?

There is a movement across the world to become as zero-impact as possible, even in the wine industry. Leading the pack in BC would be the fine people at Tinhorn Creek. Not only are they committed to Land Stewardship, but are adamant subscribers to maintaining a healthy balance with their local environment. As an example, not only do they use up to 50% recycled glass in their bottles, but the same bottles are made within 500km of the winery. For those of you not from Canada, that is a relatively short distance for us.
Tinhorn Creek winery is south of Oliver, on the "Golden Mile" which others will know as the Black Sage Bench. Many of you have had the chance to visit I hope as there are a myriad of delightful wineries there, and much to tantalize your palates. This wine in particular was meant to be an icewine, but the cold came too late in the season and so they ended up harvesting it as a "Late Harvest" and my oh my but what a wonderful mouthful it is... made in the Alsatian style I'm told.
clear visual;
  • pale lemon centre
  • pale watery rim
  • moderate legs (alcohol 12%+)

clean nose; moderate- intense notes of

  • stonefruit
  • light citrus notes including pink grapefruit
  • some mild exotics (pineapple & banana)

clean palate; 2 sweetness, moderate++ acids, 0 tannin, moderate++ flavors of

  • apples (golden delicious & Gala) and pear (ripe Anjou)
  • meyer lemon
  • vanilla
  • pineapple fresh from the tree & young guava (not quite ripe)

moderate+ body, moderate+ alcohol (13.5% but quite smooth), very long structure

A touch unbalanced still in it's youth (IMHO), and with a structure like this I would personally let it sit for a few years. The citrus notes are a tad overpronounced & might mellow enough in the coming years to allow more of that brilliant floral to shine through & balance completely. Still, an excellent price & a wonderful value. I will buy this again - what better praise to give?!

2008 Late Harvest Kerner (Tinhorn Creek) Black Sage Bench, BC

Sandra Oldfield - winemaker

1 comment:

  1. Just a note... the Golden Mile and Black Sage Benches are two different areas. Both are in Oliver, but the Golden Mile is on the west side of the Valley and the Black Sage Bench is on the east side of the Valley. They are very different in their terroir.