Tuesday, December 10, 2019

Bordertown's quartet of big reds

 Photo: Bordertown's Mohan Gill

Located immediately north of Osoyoos, Bordertown Vineyards & Estate Winery has a such a substantial presence (6,500 square feet) beside the highway that it cannot be overlooked.

A recent release of four reds confirms that it is just not the winery that is big. So are the wines.

The winery brochure provides a quick bit of background on the winery: “For Mohan Gill and his family, the opening of Bordertown … in May 2015 was the culmination of a lifetime dream. The Gills built their reputation with over 20 years experience as growers, supplying some of the Okanagan’s best fruit to a select few wineries and winemakers.”

Bordertown’s Osoyoos vineyards occupy choice terroir just north of the community. The expansive tasting room looks out over some of those vineyards since the winery sits at a high point beside the highway.

The Gills grow all of the mainstream Okanagan grapes, along with a few – like Grüner Veltliner – that are less familiar in the valley.

The current releases include several limited production reds – meaning about 100 cases of each variety in the series.  The wines are made with fruit from select vineyard parcels and vines with a disciplined crop load. The objective: “robust, intense, rich luxurious reds.”

It is worth noting that these wines still are more reasonably priced than many limited production wines from Bordertown’s peers. Mohan Gill is treating his customers well.

Here are notes on four recently released reds.

Bordertown Malbec 2017 ($26.50 for 129 cases). This wine begins with intense aromas of black currant and raspberry, leading to dark fruits on the rich and robust palate. 91.

Bordertown Syrah 2017 ($26.50 for 113 cases). This wine, aged in American oak barrels, begins with delicatessen aromas (meat and spice and pepper). The palate is full, with flavours of fig and plum. Earthy notes on the finish underline the robust character of this Syrah. 92.

Bordertown Cabernet Sauvignon 2017 ($35). The wine begins with appealing aromas of cherry, black currant and mint. The palate delivers flavours of black currant and blackberry with the note of mint so classic with this varietal. The wine will benefit from being decanted. 92.

Bordertown Living Desert Red 2016 ($27). This is a blend of 60% Cabernet Franc, 30% Merlot and 10% Cabernet Sauvignon. The wine was aged in French oak. It begins with aromas of dark cherry and fig mingled with chocolate and raspberry jam. On the palate, the dark fruits mingle with herbs and cedar, leading to a savoury finish. 93.

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