Cornucopia’s Crush Grand Gala was held November 8-9, 2013 in the always beautiful Whistler Village in Canada. This was a great opportunity to taste wines of the region as well as imports made available by local distributors. We compiled a list the top wines that, for us, really crushed it. In no particular order, they are:
Salvatore Molettieri Taurasi Riserva 2006 (Italy)
Well structured wine with pronounced tannins and acidity. Lovely flavors of violets, cherries, plums and baking spices, undertones of liquorice, tobacco and smoke. Complex and intriguing wine that can age well, it’s beginning to be enjoyable now, but will reward those who wait another 5-10 years. With only 300 cases made, this wine made from 100 % Aglianico grapes is a rarity.
The Salvatore Molettieri estate is located in Montemarano, long regarded as one of the most prestigious zones for Aglianico.
Fort Berens Cabernet Franc 2011 (Canada)
This long-time favorite keeps getting better every year. The 2011 vintage is 65% estate grown grapes in Lilloeet, and the rest of the grapes were sourced from Black Sage Bench in the Okanagan Valley. This wine delivers bold flavors and structure. The palate is chock-full black berries, black cherries and smoky fattiness, really long finish with lovely herbaceous notes.
The Fort Berens vineyard in Lillooet are at the foot of the mountains in the Fraser Canyon and deep in what was the heart of gold mining country, 140 kilometers east of Whistler.
Marchese Antinori Il Bruciato 2010 (Italy)
From the Bolgheri DOC comes this amazing value wine from the famed Antinori family. Composed of 50% Cabernet Sauvignon, 30% Merlot and 20% Syrah, it is bursting with velvety flavors of black plums, cassis, tobacco and sort earthiness.
Blue Mountain Gold Label Brut NV (Canada)
This is a traditional style sparkling wine perfect for any occasion. Soft bubbles and creamy mouth feel, flavors start toasty and yeasty, moving towards peach and yellow apples, finishing with fresh citrus notes.
The Blue Mountain winery is in Okanagan Falls, in the Okanagan Valley. The winery uses 100% estate-grown grapes, and in the burgeoning industry of the Okanagan Valley, they can make the rare claim of 42 years of continuous grape production by one family.
Henry Fessy Chiroubles 2010 (France)
This is a Cru Beaujolais with amazing complexity. Full bodied and luscious, this 100% Gamay (this is Beaujolais, after all) delivers flavors of cranberries, cherries, raspberries and toasty vanilla with smoky oakiness.
Chiroubles is a small Cru du Beaujolais area located in the foothills of the Monts du Beaujolais, with the vineyards lying at the highest altitudes of the entire Beaujolais region. The grapes for this wine in particular are grown on the higher slopes of the appellation on thin, feeble soils of granite sand, from vines that are, on average, 50 years old.