Sunday, November 24, 2013

Black Friday, and Black Hills

OK that was a pretty lame reference I'll admit.

Catching up on notes I've made at a few recent tastings, today's blog features Black Hills Estate Winery. Regular readers will recognize that name as the makers of Nota Bene, a BC cult-wine favorite. My blog on the vertical tasting of Nota Bene was by far the most viewed entry in my wine blog.

If you missed it, catch up here:

We are such a fan of their big red wines, including the above, we recently joined their wine club. In fact, as I type this, there is a half case of their 2011 Syrah waiting for us to pick up at the post office.

In April, we get a half case of the 2012 Nota Bene. In June, along comes a half case of their Carmenere, which is basically impossible to find unless you are in their club. I've never even tasted the Carmenere, I'm just going to assume it's as terrific as their other reds.

For this tasting, though, we were focused more on their whites, plus a couple wines from their "entry-level" label, Cellar Hand.

Cellar Hand 2011 Free Run White

A blend of six grapes, mostly Pinot Blanc and Chardonnay. Fruity nose, with a very tart green apple. Very dry. At $15.89, certainly a good value, especially if you are a fan of dry, tart whites.

Rating: 74

Black Hills 2011 Viognier

I'm yet to be "wowed" by a Viognier and this one is no different, although it's certainly drinkable. Slight notes of apricot on the nose, with peachy undertones on the palate. Would be an excellent pair with seafood. $24.89.

Rating: 74

Black Hills 2011 Chardonnay

Very lightly oaked which appeals to many; however as I've said many times, I like my Chardonnay to be big, bold and buttery, and that usually comes from oak. This one has light buttery undertones, and is refreshing. It features a long, elegant finish.

Rating: 74

Cellar Hand 2011 Punch Down Red

Cherry and blackberry on the nose, bringing hints of black cherry and a tiny amount of spice on the palate.

Rating; 81

All good wines, but not close to their big reds which we are anxiously awaiting from the wine club. We've never visited this winery but it's on our list of "must-dos" for our next wine tour.

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