Tasted a range of Trail Estate wines from Prince County.
Trail Estate Red Pét Nat 2018 (55% Baco Noir, 45% Cabernet Franc, bottled part way through a wild yeast ferment to retain bubbles): Hazy, light ruby colour; slightly reductive nose of red berries; light-bodied, effervescent, dry, raspberry and cranberry flavours with just a touch of sweetness kept in check by lively acidity. Chill and drink now. (Note: open the crown cap cautiously.) (89)
Trail Estate Skin Fermented Riesling 2017 (grapes from Hughes Vineyard, Lincoln Lakeshore): Bright, pale straw colour; lightly floral, petrol nose of grapefruit; light-bodied, crisply dry, lime flavour with a long, lingering finish. Drink now but will cellar for several years. (89)
Trail Estate Chardonnay Vintage Two Unfiltered 2017: Pale lemon in colour; smoky, minerally, citrus nose with toasty oak notes. Very Burgundian in style; medium-bodied, dry, lightly reductive, lemon and green apple flavours; beautifully balanced with a lovely mouth-feel with green pineapple and green peach flavours. Drink now or through 2020. (92)
Trail Estate Gewürztraminer 2016: Pale golden straw colour; fragrant, lychee and rose petal nose; light to medium-bodied, dry, cardamom and lychee flavours with refreshing acidity. Rich and full on the palate. Drink now or hold 2–3 years. (90)
Trail Estate Baco Noir 2016 (Unfiltered): Opaque, glass-staining purple-ruby in colour; spicy, blackberry bouquet with vanilla oak notes; medium-bodied, dry, fruity, plum and sour cherry flavours carried on zesty acidity. A well-balanced. wine. Drink now or hold 1–2 years. (89)
Trail Estate Cabernet Franc Unfiltered 2016 (Wingfield Vineyard, Twenty Mile Bench, Niagara Peninsula): Deep ruby colour; cedary, brambleberry and dark chocolate nose with a light floral top note; medium-bodied, dry, richly extracted, mulberry flavour rounded out with oak spice. Rich and full on the palate, well-structured with a firm but ripe tannic finish. Drink now or hold 3–4 years. (90).
Other wines tasted:
Les Vignerons du Castelas Côtes du Rhône Blanc 2017 (Rhône): A serviceable blend of 50% White Grenache, 30% Roussanne, 20% Clairette. Shining white gold colour; minerally, lemony nose with a note of white blossoms; medium to full-bodied, dry, elegant, grapefruit and pear flavours. Great value. ($15.95, Vintages #142125)
Lustau Solera Riserva Amontillado Los Arcos Dry Sherry (Jerez): Deep amber in colour; caramel and toasted nut nose; medium-bodied, dry, nutty, toasty, rich and full on the palate, lingering with an orange peel note on the finish. ($16.95, Vintages #375097)
Flat Rock Cellars Pinot Noir 2018 (Niagara Peninsula): Ruby in colour; high toned, raspberry nose; medium-bodied, dry, well-extracted cherry fruit carried on lively acidity; finishing firmly with ripe tannins with oak spice notes. Will reward cellaring for 1–2 years. ($21.95, Vintages Essential #1545)
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