Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Stratus White 2005

Another Canadian wine here (I brought this and the Peller sparkling to a tasting yesterday, and I know these aren't readily available in the UK but I like to keep a record of Canadian wines for myself).

This is a blend of Sauvignon Blanc, Chadonnay, Riesling, Gewurztraminer, Semillon and Viognier. Sounds a bit ambitious doesn't it?

When I opened the bottle, I noticed the colour was alarmingly yellow, and it had strong aromas of oxidation about it. I was afraid it was over the hill. However, once I tasted it I realized my fears were unfounded.

This is a stunningly complex wine. As it unravelled in the glass, it changed. Each time I took a sniff, it had a different aroma signature. First it was aromatic (perhaps due to the Alsatian varieties), next it was citrusy (Viognier), and finally it settled on a nutty, caramel, and vanilla theme (bottle aged Chardonnay). I was struggling to come up with a food match, but eventually I settled on an orange marmalade duck liver paté, which really brought out the citrus notes.

Our only sticking point at the tasting was we thought it was maybe slightly (only slightly) past its best. Although it was mega-complex and had wonderful characters of bottle age, we were wondering if it could have been a bit fresher. This could just be personal preference though, for example the oxidized nose could put some people off (although it did seem to disappear with time).

White 2005 VQA
Niagra, Ontario, Canada
$45 CDN

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