Apricot Dessert Wine 2009 – Elephant Island Winery (Naramata, BC, Canada)

  • My Rating: [C+]

TL:DR – “rounded apricot-plum flavour, but tangy sourness sweetness tires the palate”


Apricot Dessert Wine 2009, 9% ABV – 375 ml., (Naramata, British Columbia, Canada) (*local BC fruit wine*


  • Style: (Apricot) Dessert fruit wine
  • Taste:
  • Where I got it : Newport Liquor / Port Moody
  • How much: $23 CAD –375 ml., May 2010
  • Do I love this enough to drink it again: No
  • Recommended: no
  • What made an impression: huge fruity sourness

Visual: (cellared for 9 years). Pours slightly hazy dull copper brown, a few bubbles along the perimeter.

Nose:  (lvl-2)-pungency

Attack: big sour, medium tart, juicy entry

Mid-palate: rich sour apricot, japanese plum, controlled (lvl-7-sweetness), tangy-soft acidic sour

Finish: residual sugars and tang

Summary: Lots of sourness and tanginess in this one, medium bodied with decent complexity. The flavour is mostly clean but after sipping this without a meal, the sourness becomes a bit harsh and the sweetness too candy-like. A bit above average.

Blackcurrant Wine – Canada Berries (Richmond, BC, Canada)

  • My Rating: [B-]

TL:DR – “multifaceted blackcurrant flavour, solid”


Blackcurrant Wine (NV) – Sanduz Estate Winery (aka Canada Berries), 11% ABV, 750 ml., (Richmond, BC, Canada) (*local BC fruit wine*)


on the back label:

“This bold, intense wine with its unique flavor and aroma. It shows both the sweetness and the tart acidity of fruit grown on select small acreages in the Fraser Valley…”


  • Style: (blackcurrant) Fruit Wine
  • Taste: tangy tart rich blackcurrant slight alcoholic medium acidic soft sour
  • Where I got it : @Winery / Richmond
  • How much: $19 CAD – 750 ml., October 2014
  • Do I love this enough to drink it again: No
  • Recommended: sure
  • What made an impression: sufficiently rich blackcurrant flavour

Visual: (cellared for 3.5 years). Pours deep dark magenta with a few bubbles along the perimeter.

Nose: mild alcoholic, blackcurrant winey (lvl-3)-pungency.

Attack: tangy-tart fruity, deep berry

Mid-palate: medium acidic tang, soft dissipating sour, (lvl-4-sweetness), rich blackcurrant w/ tangy depth

Finish: residual tart and tangy dark berry

Summary: Must drink chilled; too unbalanced with tart-tanginess as it warms. Otherwise, solid blackcurrant flavour that goes well with a meal, or in a cocktail with Sprite.

Plum Fruit Wine 2009 – Rustic Roots Winery (Cawston, BC, Canada)

  • My Rating: [C+]

TL:DR – “Just an okay plum flavour, too sour-tart without backup depth”


Plum Fruit Wine 2009 – Rustic Roots Winery, 12.0% ABV, 750 ml., (Cawston, BC, Canada) (*local BC fruit wine*)


  • Style: (plum) Fruit Wine
  • Taste: Sour tangy soft plum light cherry cloying tartness
  • Where I got it : Bottle Jockey / N.Bby
  • How much: $27 CAD – 750 ml., sometime in 2010
  • Do I love this enough to drink it again: No
  • Recommended: nah
  • What made an impression: big sour-tangy cloying acidity

Visual: (cellared for 9 years). Pours dark magenta with thick sediment at the bottom of the bottle.

Nose: sour plum, hints of cherry (lvl-5)-pungency.

Attack: tart-dense fruity

Mid-palate: alcohol laced-sour tangy plum, cloying tart acidity, (lvl-3-sweetness)

Finish: residual tangy sour acidity

Summary: Okay plum flavour, but an overly aggressive sour-tangy-tart component accompanied by a readily detectable alcohol presence.

Cranberry Wine – Sanduz Estate Wines (Richmond, BC, Canada) 

  • My Rating: [B]

Cranberry Wine (NV)- Sanduz Estate Winery (now named Canada Berries), 11% ABV, 750 ml., (Richmond, BC, Canada) (*local BC wine*)


on the back label:

“Cranberries from Richmond, B.C. One of the world most unique areas for growing this fruit. Harvested, then gently pressed to yield a rich colorful juice. Cool fermented to yield this wonderful sweet tart wine…”

(back)


  • Style: (Cranberry) Fruit Wine
  • Taste: Big fruity balanced tangy soft cranberry light raspberry juicy
  • Where I got it : @Winery / Richmond
  • How much: $19 CAD, October 2014
  • Do I love this enough to drink it again: no
  • Recommended: yes
  • What made an impression: easy fruity drinking

Visual: (cellared for 3 years). Real cork, intact. Pours clear pale scarlet with barely visible suspended micro sediment.

Nose: candied cranberry juice with perfumey nuances. Quite appealing. (lvl-8)-pungency

Attack: tangy tart fruity

Mid-palate: (lvl-5-sweetness), big tangy fruity acidity, juicy cranberry juice, controlled alcoholic tang,

Finish: hints of raspberry & cinnamon, residual tart fruit cranberry

Summary: A very, very drinkable and approachable fruit wine that is rounded enough on its own in addition to being a good meal companion. The acidity and tartness does get somewhat cloying after a glass or two, but still recommended.

Raspberry Dessert Wine 2011 – Isabella Winery (Richmond, BC, Canada)

  • My Rating: B

Raspberry Dessert Wine 2011 – Isabella Winery, 11% ABV – 375 ml., (Richmond, BC, Canada) (*local BC fruit wine*)


on the back label:

“This raspberry dessert wine displays intoxicating aromas of fresh picked raspberries and a little plum pudding. On the palate it is richly layered with fresh picked raspberries and a little plum tart. It has just enough sweetness and acidity not to make it tiresome to the palate and the delicate fresh stays in the mouth for minutes after you sip it. Enjoy it with black forest cake, blueberry tart or just by itself.”

(back)


  • Style: (Raspberry) Dessert Wine
  • Taste: Tangy authentic raspberry light sour tangy slight cloying
  • Where I got it : @Winery
  • How much: $17 (after 15% off) – 375 ml., January 2013
  • Do I love this enough to drink it again: no
  • Recommendable: yes
  • What made an impression: rich raspberry

Visual: (cellared for 4.5 years). Pours dirty dark magenta with runny legs.

Nose: tangy raspberry juice (lvl-4)-pungency

Attack: rich fruity, zingy subdued alcohol

Mid-palate: (lvl-6-sweetness), big tangy, juicy tart authentic raspberry, firm sour acidity, slight jammy cloying

Finish: raspberry juice exhale

Summary: Finally after almost 10 misses, an above average and enjoyable dessert wine from Isabella Winery that has flavourful depth and a drinkable balance.

Blueberry off-dry Dessert Wine 2011 – Isabella Winery (Richmond, BC, Canada)

  • My Rating: FAIL

Blueberry off-dry Dessert Wine 2011 – Isabella Winery, 11% ABV – 375 ml., (Richmond, BC, Canada) (*local BC fruit wine*)


on the back label:

“Overlooking the historic Fraser River in the heart of blueberry country, Isabella Winery balances blueberry characteristics in this off-dry dessert wine. Delicious drizzled over vanilla ice cream” (same description as their Blueberry Dessert Wine [C+])

(back)


  • Style: (Blueberry) Dessert Wine
  • Taste: Sour tangy acidic muddled short blueberry vinegar cloying rough tannic
  • Where I got it : @Winery
  • How much: $17 (after 15% off) – 375 ml., January 2013
  • Do I love this enough to drink it again: no
  • Would I recommend this to dessert wine aficionados: you’re joking
  • What made an impression: crap quality

Visual: (cellared for 4.5 years). Pours deep dark purple, suspended large bits of sediment.

Nose:  (lvl-6)-pungency

Attack: big sour, medium acidic cloying

Mid-palate: (lvl-1-sweetness), tannic rough, tangy blueberry juice, berry vinegar,

Finish: tart rough palate, dry

Summary: It is way too sour acidic-vinegary and lacks counterbalancing sugars to make it enjoyable as a dessert wine; Total waste of time and money, not recommended at all.

(a “why would anyone drink this?” moment…)

Red Salmonberry Wine – Kermode Wild Berry Wines (Dewdney, BC, Canada)

  • My Rating: [A-]

Red Salmonberry Wine – Kermode Wild Berry Wines, 12% ABV, 375 ml., (Dewdney, BC, Canada) (*local BC Wine*)


on the back label:

“Red Salmonberry (Rubus spectabilis). Sweet Flavour, exceptional color and a truly lovely bouquet, are the signatures of this delicate wine. Salmonberries are harvested from the south coast of BC to as far North as the mystic Queen Charlottle Islands. These berries turn from a fun childhood treat found on walks in the woods into a very grown-up dessert wine perfect for sharing with that special someone.”

(back)


  • Style: (fruit – Red Salmonberry) Dessert Wine
  • Taste: Cherry-cranberry-pomegranate red fruity controlled sugars short tangy clean sippable
  • Where I got it : Liquor Depot @Cambie / Vancouver
  • How much: $25 CAD – 375 ml., sometime in ’11-’12
  • Do I love this enough to drink it again: yes
  • Would I recommend this to fruit wine aficionados: yes!
  • What was most impressionable: big depth of berry flavour

Visual: (cellared for at least 5 years). Pours clear dark plum, a few bubbles in the glass.

Nose: fruity tart grape-raspberry, alcoholic backdrop. (lvl-5)-pungency

Attack: fruity sweet impression

Mid-palate: controlled (lvl-6-sweetness), cherry-cranberry-pomegranate blend, light tart, tangy short acidity

Finish: residual fruity sugars, mild alcohol warmth

Summary: Super red fruity while having a solid depth, controlled sugars and acidity, and a pleasant and clean finish. Supremely sippable. This would do wonders in a cocktail. I would buy another bottle if I ever see it again.