A friend recently requested a monthly recap of wines that are exciting me the most as of late (mostly so he can go buy them and drink them too) - and so this new series was birthed. You can purchase online from their sites, which I have linked for you.
I met Jordan and Tyler recently where they graciously took me on a tour of their organically farmed property. They embody an incredibly romantic ideal of how wine can be produced - made as a family, including Jordan's Dad, in a garage, overlooking Okanagan Lake. They're also some of the most down to earth, laid back people I've met in the industry. They've recently started making bubbles, unrolling a new program they'll be continually adding to. This brut was doughy, vibrant and super cheerful. You can join three different tiers of their wine club, of which one is exclusively devoted to sparkling.
Rhys Evans Single barrel Cabernet Sauvignon
I've known Rhys since I first moved back to the Okanagan in 2016 - we actually matched on Tinder. While the dating app is a funny story to regale, what resulted was a great friendship that happened in tandem with us becoming coworkers at Township 7 from 2017 - 2018. Shortly before my stint with the winery ended, Rhys had come upon some fruit he wanted to buy. He was determined to make a low intervention expression of cabernet sauvignon - something you don't generally encounter all that often. The resulting wine is so fun - the tannins are soft and it has this amazing herbal quality - it's so crushable. The best part? He only made 1 barrel. If you're interested in buying some, please email me directly.
I had the opportunity to taste through the Orofino portfolio recently with the proprietor and winemaker, John Weber. His ethos - do as little as possible and allow the wine to speak for itself. He describes this ideology as "devolving" - a notion I find incredibly humble. While he makes it clear he is not a chemist, the calibre of his wines have come by virtue of tireless hours spent in the vineyard for the last 17 years. This Pinot Noir is plush, soft, and unbelievably captivating.
Tyler Thrussell is one of the sons of the proprietors of Sage Hills. He recently released his own project using organic grapes - adding nothing and taking nothing away - not even sulphites. His argument while we were chatting over email recently: "if you start with healthy grapes and pick at the right time, there's no need to add sulphites." This is some of the funnest juice I've had in awhile - but be warned - this wine is so smashable it will disappear almost instantly. It'll take you back to hazy, warm afternoons of your childhood while gorging on sour watermelon 5 cent candies, curbside, bicycles strewn haphazardly at sunset. This wine clocks in at a mere 9.5% ABV.
I had the opportunity to meet with Wendy and Jay Drysdale recently - the effortlessly low key couple behind the wildly successful brand of Bella Wines. We sat down to a lunch of tourtière - comprised of pork raised on their land - harvested and butchered themselves. Their ethos: eat and drink consciously. This means they don't eat or drink products unless they know where they're sourced. I was lucky to have helped disgorge some of their new 2018 releases - the resulting wines are nothing short of stunning. This gamay was reminiscent of drinking fuzzy peach fizz.
I have written about Michal before and for good reason - he is a kind and soulful man - it's impossible not to love him. His wines show this same character. His newest vintage of rosé is thrilling, made from cabernet franc and syrah. It has a super pretty nose of peaches, cream and nectarine. The palate is fleshy, pulpy and juicy. Get it while it lasts!