Wine Reviews  

Mt. Boucherie 2018 Mandaray white blend

2018 Mandaray white blend

Wine: Mandaray (white blend), 2018

Winery:  Mt. Boucherie, West Kelowna

Why drink it? A collaboration with Save On, this white blend also has a partner red under the relatively new “white label”. The 2019 is available now; the 2018 is a blend of Riesling, Gewürztraminer, Chardonnay, Muscat, and Pinot Gris. Aromatic notes are driving by the first three – honey, light jasmine and spice notes, and some lime zest. A well-chilled sip brings a little more of the citrusy chard to the forefront, and the finish is refreshing with a hint of Muscat sweetness and stone fruits. Unoaked, there is pleasant acidity to this easy drinker.

Pair with: An uncomplicated afternoon of binge watching the latest trending series on your favourite streaming service, with a selection of snacks from kettle chips and Ritz crackers and a couple of Boursin cheeses as an alternative to chip dip.

Price: $16

Music pairing: Ray of Light, Madonna


2018 CedarCreek Pinot Noir Clonal Series

Pinot Noir Clonal Series

Wine: Pinot Noir Clonal Series, 2018

Winery: CedarCreek, Kelowna

Why drink it? Why not have three bottles of Pinot Noir instead of one? CedarCreek has put together three pinots from three different clones – 115, 667, 777 – for the wine geek in all of us, or those wanting to try some casual wine education at home this fall. Clones may be the same varietal, but each clone has different elements, making each wine unique. Clone 115 has more floral flecks on the nose; 667 brings out dark fruits and plums on the palate; 777 leans toward bolder cherry and currant flavours and has more weight than its siblings. All are reminiscent of French pinots with an Okanagan twist.

Pair with: A good selection of charcuterie so you can try each wine with different meats, cheeses, nuts, and dried fruits to see which bottle pairs best with different bites, and which item on the plate brings out your favourite character of each wine. Have a good Zoom debate with fellow wine pals.

Price: $135 (three bottles)

Music pairing: Knock Three Times, Tony Orlando and Dawn

Wine Review: 2017 Fourth Dimension red blend

2017 Fourth Dimension

Wine: Fourth Dimension (red blend), 2017

Why drink it? Four varietals go into this bottle, hence the name – Merlot, Syrah, Cabernet Franc, and Cabernet Sauvignon, with the “Dimension” a nod to the concept of time, of course. On the nose you’ll find many red berries, cherry trees, bits of black pepper and spices. While younger vintages are available letting this rest for as few years will let the elements soften together as the oak notes and tannins take a short journey together. Time in the bottle will add more depth and smoothness to the blend, though opening a bottle now on a cooler evening would be pleasant.

Pair with: Meatloaf is making a comeback as a comfort food, find a recipe with a nice spice blend, with a side potato salad on a warm night, or garlicky and buttery mashed taters when it’s cooler. Also pairs well with dark chocolate cherries for dessert.

Price: $35

Music pairing: Let the Sunshine In, The 5th Dimension



2017 Red Blend Screaming Frenzy Meritage

Screaming Frenzy Meritage

Wine: Screaming Frenzy Meritage (red blend), 2017

Winery: Black Swift Vineyards, West Kelowna

Why drink it? If there ever was a perfect red wine to define a year, such as the one we continue to endure, this is it – at least in the name. A red blend dominated by Merlot with support from Cabernet Sauvignon, Petit Verdot, and Malbec, the winery has had serious fun with it, from the label to the “Dinojuice” description. Rich on the nose with blackberries and star anise, with intense flavours of currants and cassis on the taste buds, plus hints of nutmeg. Deep, dark fruit leads to a lengthy finish, with a definite “go big or go home” attitude.

Pair with: Bring out a bottle simply so you can say, “Let’s have as screaming frenzy!” the next time you have a virtual happy hour. Bake a meaty lasagna or try your hand at lamb Bolognese over pasta. A pepperoni pizza will do the trick too.

Price: $26

Music pairing: Scream, Usher

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