Sunday, April 19, 2015

Brunch and lots of extras

Last Sunday we were fortunate enough to be invited over to the home of some new friends, also wine-rs, for brunch.

The food was universally excellent, as they served the sort of stuff you might expect at brunch. Oh, and there was bacon.




Six days later I am still not totally recovered from the bacon coma.

So we brought some wine along, and they had some nice stuff as well.

But what DO you bring to brunch? We started at 11 AM. Who drinks wine at 11 AM?

Well, we do. Now at least.

It reminds me of something I recently saw on Facebook; one of those road signs outside a bar that read:

"Go ahead and have a drink at 9 AM, because the Beastie Boys fought for that sort of thing".


So a few years ago, we were touring the Okanagan and came across Arrowleaf Cellars, and tasted their Late Harvest Vidal. We were told by the very knowledgeable guide that the perfect pairing for that wine was Belgian Waffles.
Wine with Belgian Waffles?

So since we were going for brunch, we brought that. We didn't expect them to actually serve Belgian Waffles, but it seemed appropriate.

2013 Arrowleaf Late Harvest Vidal ($24.95)

Intense notes of honey, apricot and caramel. Sweet but not icewine-sweet, with very balanced acidity.

We originally sampled this with the pancakes with maple syrup (lovely), then with some pineapple (still nice, but totally different) and then with some semi-sweet chocolate with maple syrup (also nice, but my least favorite of the three). Anyway, it was very good and paired beautifully with brunch. 89.

We consumed so much wine I am not sure I can even remember exactly what we had, but below are some notes on what I can remember.

2012 The View Distraction Frizzante ($19.90)

Aromas of cranberry and strawberry. Lots of strawberry and pomegranate on the palate. Frizzante is not always my thing, but this was a lovely way to start the day. 86.

Inniskillin 2008 Discovery Series Sangiovese

Previously reviewed here.

Gehringer Brothers 2013 Desert Sun ($13.99)

An odd blend of just about every variety of white wine you could grow in BC. Lots of fruit like gooseberry, strawberry and pears. Citrus notes join in on the end. A very versatile white which goes with anything and is a real steal at this price. 86.

Tinhorn Creek 2013 Chardonnay ($16.99)

Fruity and crisp, spending just enough time in oak to give it a touch of a buttery flavor without overwhelming the fruit. A bargain at that price. 87.

Church & State Lost Inhibitions Red ($22.99)

If you don`t know the story behind this wine yet, here is an interesting article about it.

Last year this was called `Trebella Red`and although they slightly changed the blend, it`s the same basic wine. Fruity and delicious. Finishes long and smooth. 87.

Brunch (and wine) was so good we were there for hours. It almost turned into Dinner. Nice to spend some time with people who enjoy wine like we do.

On the way home, since we had clearly not enjoyed enough wine, we stopped at our usual haunt as they were tasting a handful of new releases.

Arrowleaf 2014 Bacchus ($15.95)

Notes of flowers, lemon, grapefruit and peach. Citrus dominates the palate. Off-dry but not sweet. Always a big seller. Another really good value. 86.

My wife would undoubtedly give it a bump of a point or two, she is a bigger fan than I am.

Quails' Gate 2014 Chasselas Pinot Blanc Pinot Gris ($19.99)

Slightly off-dry (IMO, very slightly), featuring aromas of pear and citrus. Apple and lemon on the palate with fresh minerality. This is the winery's best selling wine, which is saying something given the other wines they produce. 89.

My wife had been fairly unimpressed with this wine in the past, but she loved this one. Finally she is letting me buy some :-)

50th Parallel 2014 Pinot Noir Rose ($19.99)

Some strawberry and a lot of grapefruit on the nose and palate. Very crisp and very dry. A little more grapefruit than I like but if you are a fan of grapefuity wines, you will probably enjoy this. 83.

This winery is one to watch, as Grant Stanley of Quails' Gate fame is heavily involved which almost guarantees quality.

Sandhill 2012 Small Lots One ($38.99)

Cherry, plums and a hint of vanilla on the nose. Finishes long and smooth. It's still young and I'd be interested to taste it after a long decant or a few years of aging. This, along with their "TWO" and "THREE" releases, is a well-received wine but it has not knocked me over yet. It's not bad, but maybe it just needs time to really develop. 87-89.

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