Ruby Blues Winery – Riesling (Penticton, BC, Canada)

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  • My Rating: C+

Riesling 2010 – Ruby Blues Winery, 12.0% ABV – 750ml, (Penticton, BC, Canada)

On the front side label:

“’Goodbye Ruby Tuesday… catch your dreams before they slip away…’ The shoes represent the dreams we all have…This wonderful painting was created by our friend and brilliant artist Jennifer Grant. The grapes for this Riesling are exclusively from the Naramata Bench. Handpicked Oct.26/2010. This Riesling shows GREEN APPLES, CITRUS and MINERAL FLAVOURS. A wonderful compliment to chicken and various cheeses.”

  • Style: (white wine) Riesling
  • Taste Profile: medium sweet apple -> green apple/tart/lime/mineral -> sour/tangy/semi-sweet cloying apple finish
  • Where I got it: Legacy
  • How much: $23 (after 10% off), May 2012
  • Do I love this enough to drink it again: no
  • Would I recommend this to white wine aficionados: no, not outstanding enough

Visual: I like the colour matching of the dark red screwcap and blood-red background on the label. Pours standard white wine light yellow, with what appear to be micro-sized bubbles at the bottom of the glass – cool.

Nose: tangy green apple with medium acidity and a hint of lemon/lime

Attack: escalating 7/10-sweetness,

Mid-palate: green apple + tartness, hints of lime, minerality

Finish: medium acidic sourness, tangy, semi-sweet light cloying apple finish.

Summary: Decent body and drinkability, though not particularly complex or remarkable.

Hainle Vineyards Riesling 2003 (BC, Canada)

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  • My Rating: C (average)

Hainle Vineyards (Organic) Riesling 2003, 12.5% ABV – 750ml, (Peachland, BC, Canada)

(Note: Hainle is North America’s first ever ice wine producer)

on the back of the bottle:

Gold medal Grand Cru-Long Beach, CA, Gold medal, Grand Rapids International Wine Competition, MI,

Our Riesling was made with grapes grown in some of the best -suited vineyard sites, in Lakeview Heights, Penticton, and our own, organically managed Peachland location. Citrus, apricot and mineral aromas are followed by crisp, spicy flavours. This wine is a versatile match with all kinds of seafood, chicken, Midterranean, and Asian cuisine.”

  • Style: (white wine) Riesling
  • Taste Profile:
  • Where I got it : Liquor Depot Hastings
  • How much: $36 (after 5% off), January 2012
  • Do I love this enough to drink it again: no
  • Would I recommend this to white wine aficionados: can’t say; I don’t like it but you might

Visual: Wow this wine is over a decade old and it is STILL available for sale via their website. If wines are good, don’t they sell out…? Anyhow, cracking open a bottle of anything over a decade old is quite exciting. Pours clear light lemon yellow as you might expect.

Nose: Red apple juice on the nose, not much else

Attack: incoming acidity, 8/10-sourness

Mid-palate: predominantly sour/tangy green apple, hints of stone fruit

Finish: sour/mild-tart, off-dry puckery acidic finish.

Summary:  Big bold fruity green apple up front but I don’t appreciate the sour/puckeriness of the mid to finish. Just average for me, not something I would drink again, recommend, or give a gold medal to.

Chateau des Charmes Riesling 2007 (Ontario, Canada)

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  • My Rating: C+

Château des Charmes 2007 Riesling, 12.5% ABV – 750ml, (Niagara-on-the-lake, Ontario, Canada)

On back label:

“This estate bottled dry Riesling was sourced from grapes grown exclusively on our own vineyards. Bright, light gold colour with pronounced lemon and lime aromas, fine acidity and minerality on a clean, lingering finish. 18,360 bottles were produced. This is one of the finest dry Rieslings produced in Canada.”

  • Style: (dry) Riesling
  • Taste Profile: semi-sweet -> apple/lime/stonefruit/sour -> tangy/tart finish
  • How much: $22 (after 10% off) BUT ($13 from winery website), May 2012
  • Do I love this enough to drink it again: no
  • Would I recommend this to white wine aficionados: yes

Visual: (another 2007, 6 years old!) screw-cap. Pours clear light yellow, zero sediment.

Nose: green apples, lemon & lime, white nectarine

Attack: dense 4/10-sweetness *definitely not dry*

Mid-palate: white stonefruit (peach/nectarine), green apple, lime, medium sourness

Finish: light warmth, medium tang, med-high tart crispness

The body is round and the flavours are pleasant. The acidity and denseness get heavy as the wine warms up though.

Tantalus Riesling (Canada)

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1) Old Vines Riesling 2008 – Tantalus, 12.1% ABV – 750ml, (Kelowna, BC, Canada)

  • My Rating: C
  • Style: Riesling (picked from vines planted in 1978)
  • Taste Profile: heavy richness -> pineapple/lemon/melon/med acidity -> heavy tang/tart/puckery/sticky finish
  • Where I got it : Firefly
  • How much: $34 (after 10% off) , May 2012
  • Do I love this enough to drink it again: no
  • Would I recommend this to casual wine drinkers: no, it doesn’t grab my attention

Tasting notes: Just checked their online ordering availability on their website and everything but their Pinot Noir is sold out! Hmm.. high expectations for this wine. Well then. Pours standard white wine yellow with a few countable bubbles in the glass. Strong pineapple and lemon citrus aromas on the nose.

Attack: strong intensity-high density richness, 3/10-sweetness,

Mid-palate: cuts dry, pineapple, lemon/lime, melon, light minerality, medium acidity

Finish: med-heavy tartness, heavy tang, very cloying, medium puckery, thick sticky finish with phlegm build-up

Although there are rave reviews on this wine, it’s not my cup of tea. It’s too dense and aggressive without having the playful brightness I like in Rieslings. I respect the body on it but not really session sippable.

2) Riesling 2010 – Tantalus, 12.2% ABV – 750ml, (Kelowna, BC, Canada)

  • My Rating: B-
  • Style: Riesling
  • Taste Profile: dense sugars -> apple/pineapple/lime -> tang/sourness/balanced finish.
  • Where I got it : Firefly
  • How much: $25 (after 10% off) , May 2012
  • Do I love this enough to drink it again: no
  • Would I recommend this to casual wine drinkers: 50/50

Tasting notes: pours a clear very light yellow. Very bright fruity apple/pineapple nose.

Attack: dense sugars that gradually dissipate, 6/10-sweetness

Mid-palate: apple, pineapple, lime, medium acidity

Finish: light-med cloying, medium tang, medium-light sourness.

Good playfulness, balance and drinkability. I definitely like the Riesling more than the Old Vines.

Mission Hill Riesling 2007 (Canada)

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  • My Rating: D+

Reserve 2007 Riesling – Mission Hill Winery,13.0% ABV – 750ml, (Okanagan Valley, BC, Canada)

On back label:

“This is a rich, plus and refined wine. Subtle notes of white peach and verbena combine gracefully with a hint of nutmeg. Perfect integration and balance are completed with terrific length.”

  • Style: Riesling
  • Taste Profile: Fruity acidity -> nasty salty/sour/citrus/peach -> alcohol/salty/rough finish.
  • Where I got it: at the winery
  • How much: ~$19, Summer 2009
  • Do I love this enough to drink it again: NO
  • Would I recommend this to white wine aficionados: NO

Tasting notes: 2007! and it’s already 2013 so I figure I should drink it. Anyways, pours clear light yellow. Fruity citrus with hints of peach on the nose. Drinks with 6/10-heavy acidity, almost SALTY, medium tang/sourness, transitions into 5/10-sweetness, mild citrus, hints of peach and nutmeg (I guess…), all with alcohol in the background, finishing with that lingering SALTINESS. Man I can’t get past that dense salt-like flavour. Maybe it’s because I’m eating it with chow mein which isn’t all that salty btw. Finish is jagged and not all that clean. Cannot recommend and do not like.

Silkscarf Riesling-Muscat 2009 (Canada)

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Silkscarf Riesling-Muscat 2009, 12% ABV – 750ml, (Summerland, BC, Canada)

On the back label:

“The Riesling and the Muscat grapes have been crushed and fermented together to produce a well-unified body. This wine nicely combines the dominant Riesling mineral flavour with the Muscat’s typical honey aroma. Melon and mango notes add a soft finishing trace to the Muscat fruity flavour.”

  • Style: (Riesling-Muscat) White Wine
  • My Rating: C+
  • Taste Profile:  bright sweet/tart  -> green apple/pear -> tart/cloying finish.
  • Where I got it: Purchased @Winery
  • How much: $20, Summer 2010
  • Do I love this enough to drink it again: no
  • Would I recommend this to white wine aficionados: no

Tasting notes: pours clear light golden yellow. Strong pear/apple/white grape. Drinks with a bright dense 7/10-sweetness, med-heavy tartness, medium acidity, sour green apple, pear, stone fruit, finishing med-tart/cloying. Low-med complexity, okay transitions, okay carry, okay drinkability. 1st 1/3rd is okay, gets kinda boring afterward.

La Frenz Riesling 2009 (Canada)

La Frenz Riesling 2009, 11.0% ABV – 750ml, (Penticton, BC, Canada)

from the La Frenz website:

“This variety should be delicate and elegant in structure which can only be achieved with super gentle fruit handling in the winery. The hallmark of great riesling are flavors of honey, lime, and even green apple: this vintage is loaded with fruit concentration. The palate is just off dry with just enough residual sugar to balance the natural acidity of the variety. This wine was recently compared in style to the great rieslings of Eden Valley, Australia, and given the wine’s track record I tend to agree!”

  • Style: (Vintage) Riesling
  • My Rating: C+
  • Taste Profile: Fruity apple/lime/pear -> sour/tang -> clean med-deep finish.
  • Where I got it: Direct website order
  • How much: $19, Aug 2010
  • Do I love this enough to drink it again: no
  • Would I recommend this to white wine aficionados: 50/50

Tasting notes: pours clear light golden yellow wit ha few bubbles hugging the glass. Inviting lime-pear-apple on the nose. Drinks with a straight-forward fruitiness up front, red and green apple, lime, pear, transitioning into medium acidity, 4/10-sweetness, bright tang, med-deep sour, clean finish. Definitely goes down much easier with food to coat the mouth, otherwise the acidity(6)/(sweetness(4) balance is off for me.