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Deborah Podurgiel

Deborah Podurgiel

Similkameen Valley / South Okanagan

Similkameen Valley / South Okanagan Road 13 5th Element, V.Q.A. 2013

Similkameen Valley / South Okanagan, Canada
14 days ago

Deborah scored this wine: 97/100

Wow factor 9! From the first line on the back of the label of this very fine wine, “Earth, wind, water, fire and wine: the five elements required to sustain a happy life.” If I had more of this wine, I would have a very happy life indeed. Road 13 Vineyard’s 5th Element 2013 is very impressive, right from the first sniff out of the glass. A deep and rich red wine blend of 45% Merlot, 19% Cabernet Sauvignon, 18% Syrah, 13% Cab Franc and 5% Petit Verdot, there are roasted herbs, liquid dark cherry, black and red currant, purple plum jam on the nose. Then, it opens up into burnt orange peel, black tea and dried, fragrant, spicy tobacco leaf. Dry, polished, elegant, rich and full on the palate with more rich dark cherry – almost Amarone-like, black tea, tobacco leaf and soft savoury spice on the palate finishing with blood orange zest. Tannins are rounded, elegant and there is good acidity in this wine for food. Most of the wine grapes for the 2013 Fifth Element were sourced from Blind Creek Vineyard in the Similkameen valley with the balance from the Road 13 Castle Vineyard in the Okanagan Valley. The wine was matured in a combination of new and older French oak barrels. Assemblage of the blend was in August 2015. Drink now or hold for three to five years. Pair with a roast leg of lamb or prime rib. We paired it with a venison filet mignon. This vintage was awarded Gold in the 2018 National Wine Awards of Canada, and the 2018 Pacific Rim International Wine Competition.

Road 13 Vineyards Roussanne 2016

Oliver, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia BC V.Q.A., Canada
14 days ago

Deborah scored this wine: 90/100

It's not easy to produce a perfect Roussanne from one of the Rhone Valley’s most popular white wine grapes, but Road 13 Vineyards has with their Roussanne 2016 (98% Roussanne, 2% Viognier). Golden in the glass, the nose is pronounced with dried pineapple, apricot, peach and soft orange. On the palate, it is dry, delicious, mouth-filling, weighty but not heavy, with ripe tropical fruit, stone fruit and orange marmalade flavours finishing with a kiss of vanilla, honeyed citrus zest and an incredible vibrancy for food. In fact, it has all the vibrancy of a Sauvignon Blanc matched by Roussanne's power, poise and elegance. The initial fermentation took place in older French oak barrels, then concrete eggs and stainless-steel tank with monthly lees stirring giving this wine its rich and round texture. Pair with rich seafood dishes and buttered lobster. We paired it a fresh, pan-fried B.C. Sablefish. Drinking great now but could easily hold for three years. This vintage won Platinum at the 2018 - National Wine Awards of Canada.

21 days ago

Deborah scored this wine: 90/100

This is a blockbuster estate Carmenère from South Okanagan, Osoyoos wine country. The winery is about as far south as you can go in BC without entering the United States -- and a great place to grow this heat-loving grape. This deep red wine is bottled unfined and unfiltered and is full-bodied and mouth-filling with flavours of ripe dark cherries, plum, dried thyme, fried bacon and a smooth and long savoury spice finish. Tannins are fine. So good with a garlic roast pork.

Vancouver Island

Vancouver Island Unsworth Vineyards Allegro 2017

Vancouver Island, Canada
21 days ago

Deborah scored this wine: 90/100

Allegro is a musical term referring to a cheerful, playful and lively tempo, and so Unsworth’s “Allegro” 2017 is aptly named. This is a dry (2 g/l res. sugar) 50% Sauvignette and Petit Milo white wine blend with vivacious acidity. Fermentation took place in controlled-temperature, stainless-steel tank with extended lees contact. On the nose, Allegro is soft and lightly floral with light grassy and citrus notes. The palate is fresh with soft tropical fruits, ripe peach, floral honey, zesty lemon-lime citrus and light herbal flavours lingering on the finish. Excellent seafood wine. Chill and enjoy with grilled shellfish and rich seafood dishes.

21 days ago

Deborah scored this wine: 97/100

Unfortunately, the 2017 vintage of River Stone's Estate Winery Malbec Rosé is sold out at the winery. But this one is worth a beg, borrow or steal from a friend who might have one or two in their cellar. This is simply a fantastic, dry rosé, weighty and mouth filling on the palate with tight-rope balanced fruit to acidity. On the nose there is crushed raspberries, fresh rhubarb, fragrant rose petals and savoury herbs with more of the same on the palate, finishing zesty with a clean minerality. The Malbec wine grapes for this vintage were hand-harvested and destemmed with 60% of the grapes left whole, uncrushed and then cold soaked from 24 to 48 hours. The clarified wine juice was fermented in cool temperature-controlled stainless-steel tank and aged on its lees for three months. Chill and enjoy on its own, but it does have great acidity for food. I paired it with a charcuterie and cheese board of venison carpaccio and a variety of creamy, mature cheeses. This vintage was awarded Gold at the 2018 All Canadian Wine Awards.

Deborah Podurgiel

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