Saturday, June 25, 2005

2 Whites: Canada Meritage, Chardonnay

SUMAC RIDGE WHITE MERITAGE 2002, Summerland, BC, Canada, 13.8% XD, #434977 $14.95

Vintages says: "Sumac Ridge's Meritage White is a blend of Sauvignon Blanc (80%) and Semillon (20%). Jurgen Gothe, writing in The Georgia State in 2002, said generally about this wine: 'If there is a better white wine made in BC, or in Canada, I haven't tasted it.' " The label says: "... typical of the great white wines of Bordeaux. A crisp, clean wine imparting hints of gooseberry balanced with light vanilla oak finish. Excellent with salmon, etc. A big wine to say the least! " My notes: Not the 'Private Reserve 2003' (rated 90 by Gord Stimmell) but five dollars less and perhaps worth a taste. The nose is soft yeast and melon. A light blonde colour leaving legs on the glass. Medium-bodied and light flavours of melon, citrus, oak and some honey. A dry sipper better with mild cheeses or broiled or creamed mild seafood dishes. A persistent smooth finish. Must have peaked in 2003, now, not value. Vintages released on August 7, 2004.

UNITY CHARDONNAY 2001, Niagara, Canada, 13.5% XD, #606608 $19.95

Vintages says: "The motto of Vincor's new venture - 'Two regions. One wine.' - is quite apt, as it represents the first deliberate attempt to meld the best fruit of Niagara in Ontario with the best of the Okanagan Valley in British Columbia. Before a final blend took place, the Niagara wines were fermented and aged for 12 months in a combination of new and seasoned French barriques. The BC wines were partially whole cluster pressed while the remainder was crushed and destemmed. Fermented in stainless steel, the wines were then aged on their lees for 13 months in new American oak. The wines were also allowed to go through full acid-softening malolactic fermentation." Gord Stimmell rates it 90. My notes: The same blond colour as above with an atypical soft spicy nose as the glass is warmed slightly in the hand. A light oak note to firm creamy melon flavours well past peak (IMHO). A smooth finish with warmth. . A reasonable social sipper or pair with light bouillibaise, cold soups, white fish dishes with a sliced fruit side dish. Vintages release June 12, 2004.

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