Friday, May 30, 2008

Marynissen Estate 2002 Cabernet Franc

Found – May 2008

Whoa Nelly, what a wine we have here. The initial pour and sniff was one of oaky-black fruit and the taste showed the same, but there was something else in there that was hiding in and amongst that heavy wood – I was determined to draw it out. That meant getting out the decanter to give it some air. A small Riedel “Merlot” decanter, along with a diffuser and screen (for filtering) were used, and there was plenty of inky tarry black gunk on the filter. But the difference, in both taste and smell, was night and day – now smoother and more approachable, the nose was still oaky and black fruit driven, but now with vanilla and cinnamon sprinkled on top … there is also some black raspberry on both the nose and tongue. Looking at the colour it was still quite dark, showing great extraction, deep and dark right through the middle of the glass and there was still a good red rim with little to no signs of bricking (change of colour from red/purple to red brick-like colour). Taste is smooth and luscious, the black fruit remains, but plumminess, sweet tobacco and black cherry oak were now added to the mix. Even decanted there was still fine grit in the bottom of the glass. Both powerful and wonderful, with each sip I was in awe. This wine just further proves to me that Cabernet Franc is Ontario’s red grape. A beautiful year like 2002 really shows what our wineries can do and how they can make beautiful, age-worthy wines with this variety. This one still has plenty of life left in the bottle – it’s delicious now, give it another few years and I can only imagine how good this’ll be. I seem to have one bottle left – I’m going to lay it down to see what happens. Lost & Found rating: Major Treasure … still hasn’t peaked.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Southbrook 2001 Triomphe Cabernet Franc – Watson Vineyard

(Found – May 2008)

Here’s a wine that was started by Derek Barnett and finished by Colin Camp
bell … Derek, now with Lailey, is known for making great Cabernet Franc, so I suspect Colin probably just had to wait the prerequisite 12-18 months, that Triomphe wines traditionally received, before bottling this sucker (though it is still a reflection of the winemaker's taste and intuition). The nose is fresh green pepper and a bit cedary … mouth-wise, right from the bottle, it’s pleasant and smooth with a little tannins and good flavours: soft green pepper, blackberries and cedar. But, when you throw this one into a decanter you’ll watch it bloom: black fruit flavours galour, like cassis, black cherry and tobacco leaps into both the mouth and nose. An excellent wine with still a few years left to go. It’s wines like this that make me wonder (and hope) if Southbrook’s future will be as bright as their past – form my pen to bacchus’ eyes – I’ll drink to that. Lost & Found rating: Treasure.