Sunday, April 11, 2010

Wine Islands - What?

Tonight was to be an easy night at home with some grilled chicken and some TV. So, I figured a lighter red might be the route. Once again, it wasn't until after the bottle was long gone that I found out anything about the wine that I'd picked.

The bottle's label had no indication of its source except to say that it was from "The Wine Islands." It also referred to "Glenorah-Koksilah" but that meant nothing to me. Seeing that it was a blend of Gamay Noir and Marechal Foch, I figured it was a Canadian wine, but I really thought it was an Ontario wine when I opened it. Nothing sounded familiar to me and I have a pretty good idea of BC wineries - especially when I'm buying their wines.

Lo and behold, in this case, "The Wine Islands" are Vancouver Island and surrounds and this is a small winery in the Cowichan Valley. Funny thing is, I don't even remember picking up the bottle. I wonder if it was a leftover from a party. Once in awhile (maybe a blue moon or something similarly rare), there is a bottle or two left after a get-together. Who knows?

406. Godfrey Brownell - William Maltman's Double Red (Cowichan Valley - Vancouver Island)

Even after a quick review of the winery website and a read of John Schreiner's Wineries of British Columbia, I can't claim to know much about this wine. I get a feeling that the owner, David Godfrey, may be a bit of character. His was a circuitous route to Cowichan - Saskatchewan to Ontario to Vancouver Island - but Godfrey is the only winery owner in BC to have won a Governor General's Award for Fiction (Canada's biggest literary awards).

I do like the fact that he described the Valley's weather as an "unusual climate area - a rain-shadow rain forest." Sounds pretty cool climate to me.

This blend is apparently the winery's most popular red wine. I couldn't find a reference to the blend for this vintage; however, the website did say that the 2002/2003 Double Red was 70% Foch and 30% Gamay.

I've mentioned before that we don't see a lot of Island wines over here on the Mainland and the wines that we do see are more often than not white varietals. I'm just not sure that the "rain forest" is up to producing fully ripe reds. The wine was palatable with our meal, but we found this to be a tad acidic without the food. Not necessarily a wine that a fruit-lover like me would run back to quickly.

I did like the fact, however, that we got to try yet another Island wine and check out a blend that we don't see very often. And, perchance we meet again, I shall know from whence the wine hath come.

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