A friend of mine put me on to a wine club that is a little different than the other 11 I belong to (YIKES...11? When you write it down it seems real!!). It's called the Okanagan Wine Club and it's different because you join and you don't have to buy anything - ever.
Of course, if you don't buy anything you don't get any wine. But you could still consider yourself a member, and get the weekly newsletter.
Once you buy one pack, you become a "VIP" Member for life, and you are invited to join the Private VIP Facebook group, if that is your thing.
My friend and I recently purchased the pack that the club was offering, and split it (3 bottles each). The winery was Tightrope, a Naramata winery that neither of us were familiar with. We've tasted two of the three bottles so far, and my thoughts are below.
If you want to read more about the club, go here.
On to the wine!
Tightrope 2015 Viognier ($21.65)
Attractive aromas of orange rind, citrus and just a hint of spice. Rich and full mouthfeel and flavors of apricot, vanilla and spice join in with the citrus that carries through. Really nice. 89.
Tightrope 2014 Pinot Noir ($30.35)
Absolutely beautiful nose of black cherry, black currant, tobacco and plum. The cherries turn red on the palate, and there are hints of chocolate and spice. This is one of those wines where the palate didn't live up to the spectacular bouquet. 86.
Here are thoughts on a few wines from wine clubs of the more traditional variety. First, from Quails' Gate's Barrel Club:
Quails' Gate 2012 Cabernet Sauvignon ($31.15)
Blackberry, mint, black plum, mushroom and cigar box on the nose. Palate has a chalky mouthfeel, with flavors of dark chocolate, black cherry and forest floor. Long, pleasant finish and the flavors improved when paired with some hard cheese. 89.
And, from the first US-based wine club we joined:
Joseph Phelps 2013 Freestone Vineyard Pinot Noir ($55 USD**)
Intoxicating bouquet of black fruit, dark pum, herbs and pine. The palate is rich and generous, flavors of red cherry, blackberry, blueberry, tea leaves and cinnamon. A true example of a terrific Pinot Noir that would certainly improve with more aging but is so approachable now. 92.
Joseph Phelps 2013 Quarter Moon Vineyard Pinot Noir ($75 USD**)
Alluring aromas of red licorice, rose petals, ripe strawberry and dark cherry. Cherries continue through to the palate, with some notes of tobacco leaf, herbs and mint. Drinking right now, I actually preferred the one above, but I think this one has the legs to go long and really be spectacular with some patient cellaring. 91-94.
** This would be the non-club members price; we get a discount for being in the club, but of course when you take into the FX and duties that the government charges, well it's obviously considerably more expensive than stated. But so worth it.
That's it for today. Next up, I will post the report on the food and wine we enjoyed last weekend during our "O, Canada" theme night!