Of course they are on fire, they were built on a volcano!
This was our second trip to Volcanic Hills. My memories of the first visit were positive; I recall it being a pleasant tasting experience, with a large selection of tasty and well-priced wine. I remember that we bought a Merlot, aged it for about a year and a half, and enjoyed it sometime in the last 6-7 months.
What would our second visit be like?
Well, it was a pleasant tasting experience, with a large selection of tasty and well-priced wine. If it seems like I just copied and pasted that line from the above paragraph, it's because I did! This is another winery, like Mt. Boucherie, that probably doesn't get the respect it deserves for delivering quality wine at reasonable prices (listed below are including taxes).
Volcanic Hills 2012 Magma White ($16.00)
An aromatic blend of Chardonnay, Gewurztraminer, Pinot Gris, Viognier and Riesling. Layers of pineapple, slate, peaches and other tropical fruits. A touch of spice and minerality on the palate. Lovely as a summer patio sipper or to pair with white fish or poultry. Drinking well now. 87.
Volcanic Hills 2012 Reserve Chardonnay ($25.00)
Notes of citrus, light oak, and vanilla on the nose. The palate might notice that the citrus shines through here, with a touch of pineapple. Another Chardonnay that is trending away from the big, bold, buttery Chards that we love; but it's still very tasty. 88.
Volcanic Hills 2013 Gewurztraminer ($18.00)
Slightly floral nose, also featuring the traditional citrus, spice and lychee. Citrus and peaches on the palate, slightly off-dry. 88.
Volcanic Hills 2013 Single Vineyard Gewurztraminer ($21.00)
Pale straw in colour with a less prominent nose than it's above cousin. Peaches, apples and a hint of ginger on the palate. Ever-so-slightly sweeter than the above. 88.
Volcanic Hills 2013 Gamay Noir ($15.00)
Red fruits, cinnamon and notes of earthiness on the nose. Cherry and raspberry on the palate. Very light-bodied. Finishes with a touch of pepper. 87.
Volcanic Hills 2012 Magma Red ($17.00)
Here's a unique blend; and before anyone jumps on me for using the word "unique" as a substitute for "rare"....no, I mean unique. I can't prove it, but I challenge anyone to find another wine with 32% Zweigelt, 31% Pinot Noir, 22% Gamay, 10% Foch and 5% Merlot.
Lots of fruit on the nose with a touch of spice. Cherries and black plums on the palate. If you like strange blends, this might be for you. 86.
Volcanic Hills 2012 Pinot Noir ($20.00)
Cherry, raspberry and plum on the nose and palate. A touch of vanilla joins the party. Finishes quite long. A real bargain Pinot at this price point. 88.
Volcanic Hills 2012 Merlot ($25.00)
Cherries and blueberries on the nose. The palate is rich and luscious, with some vanilla and chocolate mingling with the fruit. Finishes long. Tannins are still a bit firm, so we did the same thing we did during our last visit here; purchased one of these for aging, and I suspect it will reach greater heights than it has already achieved with a bit of nappy time in the bottle. 88-91.
Volcanic Hills 2011 Chardonnay Icewine ($30.00)
Honey, apricot and caramel on the nose and palate. Finishes with just a touch of tartness, like a hint of lemon meringue pie. 90.
Volcanic Hills 2013 Late Harvest Zweigelt ($20.00)
Strawberries, peaches and slight notes of raisins on the nose and the palate. Some nectarines on the palate as well. Perfect for those of you who enjoy a dessert wine but don't want the sweetness of your average icewine. 88.
Volcanic Hills 2012 Zweigelt Icewine ($46.10)
Peaches and raisins on the nose, Figs and strawberries join in on the palate which is dominated by the flavors of raisins. If you love raisins, you will love this. 87.
Volcanic Hills 2013 Riesling Icewine ($37.00)
I can't find anything about this wine on the website, so maybe I dreamed this tasting. No, I remember one thing about it: lemon. Strong notes of lemon and a touch of orange peel on the palate as well. Usually Riesling is my favorite of any multi-dessert wine tasting, but this time it was not. 86.
Volcanic Hills 2009 Pinot Noir Icewine ($45.00)
Some raisins, apricots, caramel and butterscotch on the nose. Flavors of caramel, brown sugar and dried strawberries. Rich and luscious and terrific. 90.
A very enjoyable experience, with friendly and efficient customer service. Volcanic Hills features a HUGE tasting room, with tons of interesting books and trinkets to look at. I definitely recommend you don't miss this one on your next trip to Kelowna.
We left with just the Merlot, but honestly probably would have bought more if we weren't already experiencing a significant crunch for bottle space in the car!
Next up: A brand new winery, open for about three weeks when we visited, called The Hatch! You don't want to miss this one!