Thursday, February 17, 2011

Viognier Fit For the Lieutenant Governor

Looks like are a couple white Sandhill wines that need to opened sooner or later as well. It might as well be sooner. This makes three Sandhill wines in less than three weeks. Oh well, I suppose there are worse things in life to have to deal with.

728. 2006 Sandhill Small Lots Osprey Ridge Viognier (VQA (Okanagan Valley)

We tend to drink Sandhill's red wines more than the whites; however, that being said, this is the third vintage of the Small Lots Viognier that I'm adding to The List. We've already enjoyed the 2007 vintage (at # 292) and the 2008 (at #348) but that will be due in part to the pedigree that this wine seems to have developed for winemaker, Howard Soon, and the winery.

As previously noted in this blog, the 2008 vintage was named the Best White Wine of the Year in Canada by Wine Access magazine, while the 2007 had to settle for a Silver Medal at the Canadian Wine Awards. This 2006 vintage got things rolling for the subsequent years when it was awarded a Lieutenant Governor's Award of Excellence as one of the very best VQA wines produced in British Columbia in any given year - one of only ten wines to be given the prestigious prize in 2007.

Viognier is still really establishing itself as a grape of choice in the province. When Sandhill put out its first vintage in 2004, there were only 93 cases produced. This bottle was from one of 279 cases. Not exactly the easiest bottle to get your hands on.

I'm still out with the jury on whether viognier is going to ultimately be a go to varietal for my cup of tea - or glass of wine, as the case may be. There was still a robust nose on the wine but the full body and taste of tree fruit still hasn't completely convinced me.

If the newer vintages continue to rack up the trophies, I'm sure I'll be back to try another.

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