It is a true and unfortunate fact that I very rarely spend my hard-earned dollars on Canadian wine. Often this is due to the fact that I can find superior value from the wines of Spain, France’s Rhone Valley, etc.
I was however greeted with a pleasant surprise yesterday upon opening a bottle of 2008 Cabernet Franc from Vineland winery in the Niagara Peninsula. I was intrigued at first by the bottle, which shuns the traditional Bordeaux style that most red wines are bottled in and instead uses a long, slender bottle similar to many of the great Cabernet Franc based wines from the Loire Valley in France (home to some of the world’s great Cabernet Franc). I was also quite happy to see the very moderate alcohol level, which at 12% is a refreshing departure from many of the heavy, high alcohol red wines on the market.
At under $20, this is an outstanding value in Canadian wine! The nose is bright and lively, delivering aromas of spice, strawberry, raspberry and just a hint of green pepper. The palate is refreshing and brimming with juicy red fruit, cinnamon, clove and again a hint of bell pepper that in this case is quite pleasant (and not overpowering).
This is a stellar food wine and would be extremely yummy with anything from a cedar planked salmon to a simple hamburger.
Keep your eyes open for this little gem…it’s a winner!