I think it interesting that nothing in the Painted Rock website ( http://www.paintedrock.ca/ )talks about it’s owner and founder, John Skinner. Indeed, it’s almost puzzling after meeting the man because he’s just such a character... a man with a history in the financial world, and little (he says) to do with wine earlier in his life except in it’s consumption. It must have been a long and flavorful road that lead him to the Naramata Bench. Someday, I hope to hear that story in detail. Until that day, however, let me tell you the story (as I tasted it) of some of John’s wines.
13.8% ABV, $30 *EXCELLENT VALUE*
- Visual: ultra pale core with golden rim and slight green highlights
- Nose: moderate+ intense of fresh hay, summer field floweres & golden apples, with a stony soil background and a finish of slightly hot alcohol
- Palate: 0 dryness, moderate+ crisp lemon and green apple acids, moderate+ rich, velvety body, moderate+ to fully intense flavors that mimick the nose perfectly, moderate+ to full length. Very well constructed wine that will do well for the next several years (at least)
- Pairs with: honey bruleed duck breast, or, is rich enough in flavor to pair with grilled BC Albacore tuna marinated in savory herbs
14% ABV, $40 *EXCELLENT VALUE*
- Visual: moderate+ ruby center with a light cherry rim
- Nose: moderate++(full) intense completely unique bouquet; perfumed layers of exotic flowers, black stonefruit (a diverse array of plums), rich peppery finish
- Pairs with: such a variety of aromas and flavors allow for diverse food pairings; from Argentinean style grilled beef chimmichurrie, to roast prime rib with a chevre demi-glaçe, to Portobello mushroom Wellington with blue cheese!
2008 Cabernet Sauvignon
14% ABV, $40 *EXCELLENT VALUE*
- Visual: fully intense ruby center with slight cherry-brick rim
- Nose: fully intense aromas of dried fruit, fruit & terrior driven wine with long lingering levels of baie rouges such as black raspberries, dark cherries, baie noir such as Saskatoons, almost a cocoa finish
- Palate: 0 dryness, moderate++ (almost fully intense) green apple acids, fully intense fine silty tannins, moderate body, moderate+ intense flavors mimicking the nose perfectly, excellent structure and a long finish. An excellent wine with a promising future, I want to taste this wine in 6 months, 12 months, 24 months to watch the progression from slightly awkward youth into a stunningly mature wine.
- Pairs with: at first I thought the braised unctiousness of a great bolognaise, but then I reverted to thinking like a good Frenchman and am convinced that in it’s youth, this wine pairs best with a classic Boeuf Bourguignon... the cream balancing acids, the beef and wild mushrooms against the fine tannins and the savory herbs nuancing the levels in the wine
|John Skinner at Monk McQueens|
And perhaps the same is true of people. I thoroughly enjoyed meeting John Skinner, though I had little idea what I may have in common with someone from the finiancial markets. It turns out that we have a great deal in common, and more then just a passion for excellence whether it is excellence in land, or excellence in the bottle. I very much look forward to the future of Painted Rock Winery and will be one of the many savvy people who lines up for the next tasting.