Wine Recommendation
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Wine Recommendation

Peller Estates (BC) 2006 Cabernet-Merlot Heritage Series  (British Columbia)

Peller Estates (BC)

2006 Cabernet-Merlot Heritage Series
(British Columbia)

Andrew Peller Ltd. is the largest Canadian-owned wine producer and takes advantage of its economies of scale to make wines priced to go head to head with imports. A few vintages back, it was arguable whether the wines had the quality to handle the competition. However, there have been big changes in how Peller manages it Okanagan growers since 2005, when the company absorbed a first-rate winemaking staff when it took over Calona Vineyards. Stephanie Leinemann, the Peller winemaker in British Columbia, was a gold medal graduating winemaker from Brock University’s wine school.

The big gains in quality have begun to show up with the 2006 vintage. This wine, which has a handful of medals from international competitions, has nice ripe flavours – lots of spicy cherry and raspberry notes from the Cabernet Franc and from subtle barrel work. There are notes of cedar and raspberry on the nose, with a smoky aroma that develops with time. On the palate, the wine is full, with soft, even silky tannins. The wine is remarkably approachable for a red so young, reflecting the full malolactic fermentation that was permitted. This is not a red for long-term cellaring because Peller aims its Heritage Series wines at the vast majority who want to enjoy wines now. Mission accomplished here. 87 points.

Reviewed February 22, 2008 by John Schreiner.

The Wine

Winery: Peller Estates (BC)
Vintage: 2006
Wine: Cabernet-Merlot Heritage Series
Appellation: British Columbia
Grapes: Cabernet Franc (75%), Merlot (25%)
Price: 750ml $14.49

Review Date: 2/22/2008

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.