Posts tagged ‘John Schreiner’

August 15, 2017

Sea Star Ortega, 2016

Yesterday we blogged about an overpriced red.  Today we’re posting about a reasonably priced white.  Ah Sea Star.  Ooh la la.  We have blogged pretty much the entire vineyard and gone ga ga over most of the bottles but now it’s time to part: Sea Star has become too popular.  You simply can’t get a hold of it.  Unless you’re in a restaurant.

 

Luckily, at one of the lesser known cafes in the province, on Saturna Island, chef Hubertus Surm serves a beautiful dinner Saturday nights where he stocks a La Frenz red and a Sea Star white; it’s one or the other or go dry.  That pretty much sums up, in a vinous sense, the southern Gulf Islands in a sentence, LF and SS.

 

A Siegerrebe Muller-Thurgau blend, the Ortega is definitely the most perfumed and aromatic of Sea Star’s table whites.  There are potent honeyed notes with distinct herbal tangents, like oregano in bloom and a whiff of lavender.  The mouth is gorgeously full and overall the wine is superbly food friendly.  Schreiner (and a few others online) write of the grapefruit, but I found the acidity smooth and the citrus gentler, like ugli fruit or tangelo.  There is a linear infusion of tropical flavours, pineapple guava punch, and a long finish.  As we say over and over again about Sea Star, they are producing the right white wines for the climate and soil and they are doing a helluva job.

 

Price: $20 at the vineyard, $30 at the Saturna café (kudos to the SC for a less than 100% markup).

 

Market Liquidity: What joy to drink a drinkable local wine at a decent price.  Hallelujah.

Chef Hubertus Surm turns out a beautiful summer salad at the Saturna Cafe

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December 31, 2016

Seven Stones Speaking Rock Cabernet Franc, 2013

seven-stones-speaking-rock-cabernet-franc-2013

Another “Big BC Red” hauled out for the season.  Think of an air-horn, the kaboom in a Road Runner explosion, a thud and thump of Cabernet Franc so ridiculously assertive it nearly deafens.  Far from our favorite amongst Seven Stones many fine reds, this is still wonderful, if unsettling.  Of a different vintage John Schreiner wrote that the SS CF is a “swashbuckling” example of the varietal.  That and then some.  The deepness of the berry flavour is immediate and lasting, mitigated by a coarseness that is not so much aromatic as dead weight.

 

If you’re new to SS this shouldn’t be your first bottle.  But if you like their wines, which are grown in the Similkameen Valley in a place as near to heaven as BC gets (please, no federal park, please, no dam on the US side of the border), this is must for a sense of how much can be done on the north slopes of the valley, especially up against e.g., their Meritage or Syrah.

 

Price: $30 at the vineyard (although not that hard to source in private shops for around $36-$40).

 

Market Liquidity: An Okanagan heavyweight without the deftness or broad appeal found elsewhere in the Seven Stones catalog.