Mascota Vineyards 2013 Cabernet Sauvignon - 85pts

Mascota Vineyards 2013 Cabernet Sauvignon (Maipú District) Mendoza - Argentina

Availability
: BCLDB Stores
Cost: $16.99 + taxes
Alcohol: 14%

Date Tasted: June 22nd, 2017

Tasting Notes: The appealing nose of ripe cassis, brambly cherries and spiced oak is a little let down by the slightly, unbalanced palate, which, although finishes dry, is top-heavy with intense, wild berry acidity used to off-set the residual sugar perceptible upon entry. 
Drink now-2017.
 - Liam Carrier ©copyright 2017 IconWines.ca

Stag's Hollow Winery 2016 Tragically Vidal - 88pts

Stag's Hollow Winery 2016 Tragically Vidal (Okanagan Falls) Okanagan Valley - BC

Availability
: Direct from the winery here
Cost: $17 + taxes
Alcohol: 12.7%
Date Tasted: June 21st, 2017

@Stagshollow

Tasting Notes: One of BC's best off-dry Summer sippers, Tragically Vidal is sourced from two Okanagan Falls sites and blended with 14% Orange Muscat to create an aromatic and vibrant wine with orange blossom, sweet peach, lychee and exotic aromas, palate-cleansing, ripe citrus acidity and flavours of fresh peaches, lime and tropical fruit. Finish is moderately long and balanced with tingling, citrus peel and spice notes lingering.
 Drink now-2018.
 - Liam Carrier ©copyright 2017 IconWines.ca

Sperling Vineyards 2015 Market White - 87pts

Sperling Vineyards 2015 Market White (East Kelowna) Okanagan Valley - BC

Availability: Direct from the winery here and VQA stores
Cost: $19
Alcohol: 11.2%
Date Tasted: June 18th, 2017

Tasting Notes: A lean, clean blend of Bacchus, Pinot Blanc and Riesling (percentages not available) with white peach, pear, lime rind, herbaceous and vegetal aromas and flavours. Finishes dry with plenty of citrus acidity and cool mineral notes. Pair with spicy noodle dishes and enjoy this wine in its youth. 
Drink now-2019.
 - Liam Carrier ©copyright 2017 IconWines.ca

Blasted Church Vineyards 2015 Hatfield's Fuse - 88pts

Blasted Church Vineyards 2015 Hatfield's Fuse (Skaha Bench) Okanagan Valley - BC

Availability: Direct from the winery here. BCLDB stores
Cost: $18.75 + taxes
Alcohol: 13%
Production: 6300 cases
Date Tasted: June 17th, 2017

Tasting Notes: Hatfield's Fuse is an off-dry, mouth-watering blend of 10 white varieties with Gewurztraminer (22%), Pinot Gris (21%) and Viognier (20%) making up the bulk of the blend and flavour profile; a mixture of exotic and orchard fruits with fresh aromatics, herbaceous and citrus notes. The residual sugar and bright acidity are well-balanced, finishing tart with lingering citrus peel and a touch of spice. A solid contribution to the Summer-sipper, white blend category. 
Ready to go now. Drink 2017-2019.
 - Liam Carrier ©copyright 2017 IconWines.ca

Black Hills Estate Winery 2015 Cellar Hand Punch Down Red - 90pts

Black Hills Estate Winery 2015 Cellar Hand Red (Black Sage Bench) Okanagan Valley - BC

Availability: Widely available at BCLDB stores and direct from the winery here
Cost: $24.90 + taxes
Alcohol: 14.1%
Date Tasted: June 15th, 2017

Tasting Notes: This is the best vintage of Black Hills' Cellar Hand Red to date. The 2015 edition is a traditional, Meritage-style blend of Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet Franc (percentages withheld) which benefited from a long and dry growing season, producing excellent ripeness and intensely flavourful fruit. 


This intensity is on display throughout the Cellar Hand Red: dark fruit, violets, toasted oak, licorice, vanilla, coffee grinds and a hint of eucalyptus grace the generous nose and the lip-smacking, fine-tannin palate where spice and blood orange notes linger on the memorable finish. Ready to go now, though, this over-achiever should hold beautifully for a few years while you wait for your Nota Bene to mature. Drink now-2020.
 - Liam Carrier ©copyright 2017 IconWines.ca

SpierHead Winery 2016 Pinot Gris - 89pts

SpierHead Winery 2016 Pinot Gris (Summerland) Okanagan Valley - BC

Availability
: Direct from winery here and select VQA stores
Cost: $19
Alcohol: 13.5%
Production: 1117 cases
Date Tasted: June 15th, 2017

Tasting Notes: This well-made, mouth-watering Pinot Gris offers both clean, orchard fruit and rich, leesy-brioche aromas and flavours, combining nicely to deliver good complexity and texture on the intense nose and the tart, touch-of-RS* palate. 


Finish is long and balanced with lingering citrus peel and light spice notes. A very consistent wine, vintage-to-vintage. To be enjoyed in its youth. Drink now-2019.
  - Liam Carrier ©copyright 2017 IconWines.ca

*RS = Residual Sugar

Sperling Vineyards 2015 Pinot Noir Rosé - 87pts

Sperling Vineyards 2015 Pinot Noir Rosé (East Kelowna) Okanagan Valley - BC

Availability: Direct from the winery here and VQA stores
Cost: $20
Alcohol: 12.2%
Date Tasted: June 14th, 2017

Tasting Notes: When chilled, as most people prefer their Ros
é to be, this pinky-salmon hued, 100% Pinot Noir blush opens with a muted nose of light, strawberry-kiwi and white raspberry aromas. At first sip, the palate seems just as muted, then, slowly begins to blossom offering a lively texture, crisp acidity and more perceptible, red fruit, citrus and light mineral flavours. Drink now-2019.
 - Liam Carrier ©copyright 2017 IconWines.ca

LaStella 2014 Maestoso "Solo" Merlot - 92+pts

LaStella 2014 Maestoso "Solo" Merlot (Osoyoos Lake Bench) Okanagan Valley - BC

Availability: Direct from the winery here
Cost: $89.99 + taxes
Alcohol: 14.9%
Production: 217 cases
Date Tasted: June 10th, 2017

@LaStellaWinery

Tasting Notes: Can Okanagan Merlot perform as a solo act? LaStella's Maestoso certainly suggests it can, in the right circumstance. The 2014 edition is quite masculine and incredibly dense with concentrated blackberry purée and kirsch aromas and flavours and plenty of supporting notes from extended French oak contact and from the vineyard sites themselves: fine, grippy tannins, vanilla, licorice, charred oak, spices, herbs and a touch of minerals. 


This full-bodied, hedonistic wine should age gracefully, therefore, ideally, give it another 2-3 years of bottle age prior to opening. Drink 2019-2024+.
 - Liam Carrier ©copyright 2017 IconWines.ca

Black Hills Estate Winery 2016 Rosé - 89pts

Black Hills Estate Winery 2016 Rosé (Black Sage Bench) Okanagan Valley - BC

Availability
: Exclusive to the winery store
Cost: $25
Alcohol: 12.7%
Date Tasted: June 11th, 2017

Tasting Notes: The first vintage of Black Hills' Ros
é suggests the Southern Okanagan winery did its homework before joining the trend, producing a beautiful, 100% Pinot Noir blush with an attractive, watermelon-pink hue and offering a range of strawberry-citrus and rhubarb-herb aromas and flavours. This is a crisp, vibrant, dry Rosé with good length and texture. Pair it with almost everything. Drink now-2018.
 - Liam Carrier ©copyright 2017 IconWines.ca

Rutini Wines 2015 Trupeter Malbec - 88-89pts

Rutini Wines 2015 Trupeter Malbec (Tupungato) Mendoza - Argentina

Availability
: Special order, private wine stores
Cost: $20.78 + taxes
Alcohol: 13.5%
Date Tasted: June 10th, 2017

Tasting Notes: A graceful, approachable Malbec with evenly matched fruit and savoury characters: blackberry, cherry, charred oak, sweet spice, licorice and fig. Full-ish, with good texture and smooth, smokey tannins. Shows potential for further development over the next 2-3 years. 
Drink now-2021.
 - Liam Carrier ©copyright 2017 IconWines.ca

Bodegas Santa Ana 2014 Reserve Malbec-Syrah - 84pts

Bodegas Santa Ana 2014 Reserve Malbec-Syrah (Mendoza) Argentina

Availability
: BCLDB stores
Cost: $13.49 + taxes
Alcohol: 13.5%
Date Tasted: June 9th, 2017

Tasting Notes: A (roughly) 70-30 split of Malbec and Syrah sourced from multiple Mendoza sites and aged for 12 months in a combination of American and French oak barrels producing a fruit-forward, uncomplicated, somewhat unbalanced wine with blackberry, black plum and light, savoury notes of vanilla, spice and rubber.
 Drink now-2018.
 - Liam Carrier ©copyright 2017 IconWines.ca

LaStella Winery 2016 Moscato d'Osoyoos - 91pts

LaStella Winery 2016 Moscato d'Osoyoos (Osoyoos) Okanagan Valley - BC

Availability: Direct from the winery here and restaurants
Cost: $19.99 + taxes (500ml)
Alcohol: 9.7%
Production: 859 cases
Date Tasted: June 3rd, 2017

@LaStellaWinery

Tasting Notes: An effervescent elixir with delicate, apricot and nectarine aromas and flavours on the elegant nose and fully off-dry palate. Perfume and floral notes add to the opulence, with hints of minerals and peach skins contributing a touch of masculinity to the wine. Marketed as a go-to wine for brunches or spicy fish curries, and it's hard to argue with that. Drink 2017-2019.
 - Liam Carrier ©copyright 2017 IconWines.ca

Blasted Church Vineyards 2015 Big Bang Theory - 89pts

Blasted Church Vineyards 2015 Big Bang Theory (Skaha Bench) Okanagan Valley - BC

Availability: Direct from the winery here. BCLDB stores
Cost: $21.50 + taxes
Alcohol: 13%
Production: 4500 cases
Date Tasted: June 1st, 2017

Tasting Notes: Blasted Church's Big Bang Theory is a slightly off-dry blend of 
50% Merlot, 15% Malbec, 10% Cabernet Sauvignon, 10% Pinot Noir, 9% Lemberger and 6% Syrah which have created an approachable, easy-to-love, unique wine with both expected, ripe blackberry and cassis aromas and flavours, and unexpected notes of cranberry, balsamic and spices which help this wine stand-out from the other >$25 reds in the market. Ready to go now. Drink 2017-2019.
 - Liam Carrier ©copyright 2017 IconWines.ca

Tinhorn Creek Vineyards 2016 Oldfield Reserve Rosé - 90pts

Tinhorn Creek Vineyards 2016 Oldfield Reserve Rosé (Black Sage Bench) Okanagan Valley - BC

Availability
: Direct from winery here and VQA stores
Cost: $19.99 + taxes
Alcohol: 13%

Production: 1100 cases
Date Tasted: May 31st, 2017

Tasting Notes: A very attractive 
rosé made with 100% Cabernet Franc, with a gentle, orange-salmon hue, a joyful, berry and sweet herb scented nose and a well-balanced, off-dry and mouth watering palate where tangy, rhubarb and citrus characters blend, effortlessly, with ripe strawberry fruit and watermelon Jolly Rancher candy flavours. Texture is both creamy and vibrant thanks to the lingering citrus peel notes on the lightly-spiced finish. Enjoy this blush in its youth. Drink now-2019.
 - Liam Carrier ©copyright 2017 IconWines.ca