Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Bring On The Sharks

Seems like we've been waiting a long time for these Western Conference Finals - whether you're looking at the week that's passed since the Canucks' last game against the Nashville Predators or going back to the 17 years it's been since the Canucks made it to the conference Finals. The week that's passed since the Nashville series has given the boys some time to recuperate and mend their injuries. That same time has given me a chance to figure out which winery should be matched up with the games in this next series.

I've decided to go with Jackson-Triggs. If there's a BC winery that has a tradition of winning trophies and awards - worthy of a run to the Stanley Cup - it's J-T. Wine Access has named it Canadian Winery of the Year on four separate occasions - most recently in 2008 - and the magazine's awards haven't been around for much more than a decade.

I took a look at the wines we have in our "cellar" and we have a few Jackson-Triggs wines that should be coming into their own now. This round of the playoffs is as good a time as any to pull those corks and throw a little BC muscle into our glasses.

804. 2006 Jackson-Triggs SunRock Shiraz (VQA Okanagan Valley)

I figured I might as well start the series off with a bang. So, I retrieved a bottle of one of J-T's premium, single vineyard designated SunRock wines. I certainly knew that Shiraz has become a bit of a showcase varietal for Jackson-Triggs. Since the winery's first release of a Shiraz wine, back with the 2001 vintage - where it was named Best in Class at the Canadian Wine Awards - J-T has continued to win all sorts of awards for its Shiraz. Perhaps the most prestigious of all these prizes was when their 2004 Proprietor's Grand Reserve became the first North American wine to be awarded the Rosemount Estate Trophy for Best Shiraz/Syrah at the International Wine and Spirits Competition in London, England.

That's kind of like winning the Stanley Cup of the wine world.

Tonight's bottle doesn't have quite that pedigree; however, I certainly hadn't realized, when I quickly grabbed it, that the 2006 RunRock Shiraz was named Best Red Wine of the Year at the 2008 Wine Access Canadian Wine Awards. That's got to be worthy of a toast to the Conference Finals.

I'd be the last person to pretend that I have the palate or the knowledge to know what made this the best red wine that the country produced, but I can say that it held its own in terms of structure, body and integration. All things that this Canucks team is going to have to sport in spades. I know that having glass in hand, helped get this fan through a couple of gaffes in the defensive zone that had our boys down a goal heading into the third period. I can also tell you that I would have needed more than a little wine to get over the funk that would have set in had the Canucks not pulled this game out of the fire.

The Canucks looked good overall though and the wine was clearly up to the task. Here's to one wine and one win to the good.

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