Saturday, January 30, 2010

Stone Boats in the Fog

336. 2007 Stoneboat Nebbia (Okanagan Valley)

Stoneboat Vineyards is yet another of the relatively new wineries that have appeared in the BC firmament over the last so many years. A family owned and run operation, the Martiniuk's started their sojourn on the Black Sage Road as fruit growers. Father, Lanny, garnered a fine reputation for both fruit and the propagation of vines in the Okanagan - particularly for some uncommon varietals that were planted for trial purposes.

In 2005, they expanded their efforts beyond just the vineyard and offered up their first vintage of wines. Despite Martiniuk's exposure to a full expanse of varietals, he focused his own vineyards on the Pinot family of grapes as he found they were best suited to the family's property. Nebbia is a white blend where the backbone of the wine is Pinot Gris and Pinot Blanc but it was the Martiniuk's way of showcasing some of the old vine Gemanic varietals that had been planted many years back. So, you'll also find the more uncommon but highly aromatic profile of Kerner, Schonburger, and Muller Thurgau in the wine.

What you likely won't find is more Nebbia on the shelves of your local wine shop. It appears that the family grew tired of explaining the story behind the name of the wine. "Nebbia" is Italian for "fog" and, in the Fall, the Stoneboat vineyards experience a mist that drifts up into their old vines vineyard from the neighbouring Okanagan River. As of the 2008 vintage, the wine has been re-branded as Chorus.

I partially grabbed the bottle because the addition of the Kerner and Schonberger would give me another two varietals to add to my Wine Century Club efforts. But, for our first try of a Stoneboat wine, both Boo and I were pleasantly surprised. I'm finding that these Pinot/Germanic blends are nice fits with curries and soups with a bit of spice.

I think we'll see a bit more of the Stoneboat.

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