Tuesday, February 16, 2010

1st Canadian Gold on Home Soil

After some nervous navel-gazing and national angst, we Canadians got to celebrate the fact that we are no longer the only nation to have hosted an Olympic Games and never won a gold medal on home soil. Everyone "knew" that it would only be a matter of time before one of our athletes would win in Vancouver, but when our first medals were a silver and a bronze (marvelous feats in themselves), there was still this cloud of anxiety that we needed to be relieved of - the sooner the better.

Alexandre Bilodeau's gold medal in the Men's Moguls Sunday night was just the tonic that the country needed to really get the party started. Despite the fact that France won two gold medals and Germany won another that day, for me, it was a no-brainer that tonight's wine was going to be Canadian.

365. 2006 Meyer Family Tribute Series - Emily Carr - Chardonnay (Naramata Bench - BC)

Meyer Family Vineyards is another of the next generation of Okanagan boutique wineries. It seems like it's been a whirlwind for the Meyer's over the last few years. They started with the purchase of a small vineyard on the Naramata Bench in 2006 and had their Chardonnays made at another of the Okanagan's wineries. That led to the purchase of a "bankrupt" winery in Okanagan Falls and the hiring of a winemaker in 2008.

Quite the fast pace - particularly when their first vintages were lauded as the "best dry white wines that I have ever tasted from Canada" by noted European wine writer and consultant, Steven Spurrier.

The Naramata Bench is only 3 1/2 acres big; so, it doesn't produce an awful lot of fruit. With the 2006 vintage, only 515 cases of this Tribute Series Chardonnay was produced. With each vintage, the winery intends to celebrate the accomplishments of a Western Canadian. This bottling is dedicated to Emily Carr and I understand that the next two vintages were named for Bill Reid and Steve Yzerman.

It only seems fitting that we opened this bottle to celebrate Alexandre Bilodeau's gold medal performance. Maybe the Meyer's should consider naming the 2009 vintage after him. Hopefully, we'll get the chance to drink a lot more Canadian wines in tribute of our athletes' medal performances.

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