Wine Pairing Dinner
7:00pm, Monday February 18th, 2013
Nuit Blanche, usually means ‘All nighter”. No, we don’t expect you to stay all night savouring the wines and Mathew’s pairings. Though it might be a great idea , what we are trying to convey is a Night of Whites.
This Tasting Dinner features a selection of White Wines from the Naramata Bench.
Many of the Bench’s wineries are close during the winter months. Fortunately, Peter Wille, one of the principles of Paradise Ranch, was kind enough to open the BENCH1775 tasting room so I could sample the Paradise Ranch Sauvignon Blanc Ice Wine. BTW, Peter, a one-time Vernon resident, is no stranger to Silver Star.
Peter began our tasting with their Bench1775 2011 Sauvignon Blanc. I was impressed. At $17.90 it is very under-valued, so impressed that I chose it for our first wine of the night. The Ice ice was also spectacular and was chosen as our last wine of the evening. But more on that later.
The wine is a classic Sauvingon Blanc, lots of citrus on the nose, lemon zest and grapefruit on the palate. At $17.95 in is very undervalued.
Pairing: Oysters 2 ways, Asian mignonette,with wakame salad and torched mirin aioli.
Next on my list of must see wineries was Van Westen Vineyards. This is a small family run winery that makes exceptional wines. Robert Van Westen, the owner/winemaker was kind enough to interrupt his pruning to give me a tour of his operation as well as a tasting of his Vionier.
The vines are nestled below a rock bluff providing a unique microclimate, creating intense Viognier aromas of apricot, mango, jasmine and peach with some honey, ginger and mandarin orange notes. The palate is rich yet fresh with ripe apricot, honey, pear, hints of allspice, and crisp acidity.. A truly remarkable wine.
Robert had just bottle his 2009 Bordeaux style wine. He makes his wine the proper way. He does not rush it. I have put a bottle or two in my cellar and am looking forward to savouring itm in a couple of years from now.
Pairing: Qualicum Bay scallop ceviche with grapefruit and chive snipits.
JoieFarm is located just next door to Van Westen and is owned and operated mi Heidi Nobel and Michael Dinn.
It too is a family run winery with a limited production of wines. I was fortunate enough to be able to procure their Muscat at the VQA Wine Info Center in Penticton.
This wine exhibits aromas of white pepper and freesia, with an underlying peach tone. The palate, the grape flavour is balanced with lemon, line and tangerine. Thus wine is off-dry with mouth-watering acidity.
Pairing: Pan seared quail with greek style quinoi and citrus olives confit tomato infused with orange.
Our next wine is a 2010 Chardonais from Lake Breeze.
This is a premium Chardonnay is barrel fermented in new French oak and then aged a further six months in barrel, while 30% of the blend remained in stainless steel. The result is a beautifully balanced wine with rich, ripe tropical fruit flavours.
Though the vineyard is sold-oout of the 2010, I was again able to procure tonights selection at the VQA Info Center in Penticton.
Pairing: Sweet corn chowder with local buffalo bacon, thyme, crisp parsnip a Gorts gouda biscuit.
Last but not least is the 2011 Paradise Ranch Sauvignon Blanc Icewine. This is an exquisite icewine.
No overly sweet, complex and lush on the palate. Beautifully balanced citrus flavours accompanied by gooseberry , , apricot and honey notes. The finish is smooth, with just the right amount of vicosity.
Mathew really enjoyed this wine and has come up with a creation that is as exceptional as it is unconventional. Enjoy!
Pairing: Poppyseed Pound cake fried in brown butter with with candied citrus and goat cheese chantilly.