Saturday, November 28, 2015

Township 7 releases show off two good vintages

Photo: Township 7 winemaker Mary McDermott

With these releases, Township 7 Vineyards & Winery shows off two strong vintages just in time for holiday buying.

Both of the firm’s wineries conveniently have seasonal open houses.

The 2014 Gewürztraminer, available just to the wine club members, was made by Mary McDermott, the winemaker who joined Township 7 that year from Ontario.

The 2013 wines were made by Brad Cooper, the former winemaker. However, Mary had a major hand in finishing and blending the reds, in effect giving those wines two parents.

Well, the quality is such that there is plenty of credit to go around.

With the exception of the Merlot, the volumes of these wines are relatively limited. They are available on line and also at Township 7’s wineries near Penticton and in Langley District.

The Naramata Bench winery offers visitors a Dickens-inspired Christmas on December 5, with live music, mulled wine and hot chocolate for the children.

The Langley winery has a Christmas open house on December 12 and 13. This is a charity event for Ronald McDonald House.

Here are notes on the wines.

Township 7 Gewürztraminer 2014 ($17.97  for 278 cases). The wine begins with aromas of ginger, orange peel and lychee. It presents intensely on the palate, with flavours of citrus. The finish is dry, punctuated emphatically with spice. 90.

Township 7 Merlot 2013 ($22.60 for 1,178 cases). The wine begins with aromas of plum, black cherry and vanilla. On the palate, there are flavours of black currant, tobacco and chocolate. Full in texture thanks to the 15% Cabernet Sauvignon in the blend, the wine has long ripe tannins, with a lingering finish of Christmas spices. 90.

Township 7 Cabernet Sauvignon 2013 ($23.47 for 478 cases). The grapes for this are from the Blue Terrace Vineyard at Oliver, a long-time grower for Township 7. This wine has 15% Merlot in the blend to enrich the texture and mid-palate. The wine begins with aromas of black cherry and vanilla mingled with spice and cassis. On the palate, there are flavours of black cherry, vanilla, tobacco and chocolate, with a spine of minerality. The long ripe tannins give the wine a polished texture. It is drinking well now but the patient consumer who cellars this for another five years will be well rewarded. 92.

Township 7 Cabernet Franc 2013 ($27.97 for 278 cases; wine club only). The grapes for this are from the Rock Pocket Vineyard, also near Oliver. The wine begins with almost perfumed aromas of blackberry and black cherry. On the palate, there are flavours of spicy cherry with hints of cigar box on the finish. The tannins are firm. The wine needs to be decanted for immediate consumption but it will develop spectacularly in bottle over the next five or six years. 92.

Township 7 Reserve 7 2013 ($32.97 for 468 cases). This blend is 60% Merlot, 35% Cabernet Sauvignon, 3% Cabernet Franc and one percent each Malbec and Petit Verdot. This wine begins with aromas of black cherry cassis and vanilla; the later reflects the 24 months of aging on French and American oak barrels. The wine is harmonious and full on the palate, with flavours of cassis, chocolate, tobacco and cedar. The ripe tannins allow for drinking this now, with decanting, but the wise choice would be to cellar the wine for five more years and let it blossom in the bottle. 92.


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