Monday, January 2, 2012

O Joie! A PTG.

For me, tonight's wine is quite an intriguing wine for having come out of the Okanagan. Not that you could never find it being made elsewhere. But it plays homage to a heritage that is actually a take on a classic Burgundian wine - and is a neat indication of a route that is eminently possible in the Okanagan.

1039. 2009 JoieFarm PTG (Naramata Bench - Okanagan Valley)

PTG is an abbreviation for the little known Burgundy blend, Passetoutgrain. Burgundy may best be known as the home of Pinot Noir and Chardonnay, but there are a couple of other wines that still fall under appellation dictates. The Passetoutgrain is an AOC of its own and, while most Burgundy wines are primarily produced from single varietals, the PTG must be a blend - although it can be a blend from fruit grown anywhere in the entire Burgundy region.

JoieFarm's version is 63% Pinot Noir blended with 37% Gamay Noir and the grapes are sourced from five different vineyards on the Naramata Bench. This version veers from the more traditional Burgundy wines in that it is heavy on the Pinot Noir. In Burgundy, the roles are usually reversed as the Gamay grape is less expensive and the PTG is produced primarily as an easy drinker, made for early, casual drinking. I would hardly call this PTG a "casual" wine though. It's a serious player that offers up some bright Okanagan fruit from the Pinot Noir and accents it with some spicier notes from the Gamay.

The Burgundy version is also allowed to contain Chardonnay, Pinot Blanc and Pinot Gris; however, those white varietals must encompass no more than 15% of the blend. Interestingly, JoieFarm has access to Chardonnay and Pinot Gris as well but the varietals haven't made it into the PTG - at least not yet.

We picked up this bottle after tasting the wine some months back at Chef Meets Grape. Both Boo and I marked it down as one of our favourites from the evening. Too bad it's not the easiest wine to find. Fewer than a thousand cases were made; so, I'm glad I happened upon a bottle when we were in the Okanagan for the Red Rooster Adopt-A-Row weekend.

Discussions have it that 2009 wasn't the kindest vintage for BC's big red wines. Finding a few more lighter reds might make up for the vintage - if they're anything like this. I rather think the bottle started us off on a great note for 2012.

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