Wine Recommendation
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Wine Recommendation

Wine:La Frenz Winery 2006 Viognier  (Okanagan Valley)

La Frenz Winery

2006 Viognier
(Okanagan Valley)

Australian Jeff Martin was headhunted away from McWilliams in 1994 to make the wines at Quails’ Gate in the Okanagan, the first in a growing number of Australians who have come to make wine in Canada. With his wife, Niva, Jeff opened La Frenz in 2000 on Naramata Road, the hottest address for wine touring in the Okanagan. La Frenz is not an allusion to the boys quaffing too much Foster’s but rather is an old family name on the maternal side of Martin’s family.

The winery has acquired a cult following for several of its wines, including Viognier, an old French variety not widely planted in the Okanagan, in part because it is tricky to grow. The biggest trick seems to be letting the grapes get fully ripe; only then do the variety’s rich flavours express themselves. Martin, familiar with Viognier in Australia, grows it well.

This is a big, rich wine, with aromas of apricots and flavours that include apricot, ripe pineapples and melons. The finish is long, luscious and dry, with just a hint of tannin – characteristic of Viognier – that gives the wine a cleanly defined grip on the palate. 88 points.

Reviewed July 25, 2007 by John Schreiner.

Other reviewed wines from La Frenz Winery


The Wine

Winery: La Frenz Winery
Vintage: 2006
Wine: Viognier
Appellation: Okanagan Valley
Grape: Viognier
Price: 750ml $20.00

Review Date: 7/25/2007

The Reviewer

John Schreiner

John Schreiner has been covering the wines of British Columbia for the past 30 years and has written 10 books on the wines of Canada and BC. He has judged at major competitions and is currently a panel member for the Lieutenant Governor’s Awards of Excellence in Wine. Both as a judge and as a wine critic, he approaches each wine not to find fault, but to find excellence. That he now finds the latter more often than the former testifies to the dramatic improvement shown by BC winemaking in the past decade.