Fork In The Road Vineyards2005 Oliver Block 249 Red
Fork In The Road is another of those virtual wineries that Mission Hill Family Estates has created under a subsidiary called Artisan Wine Company. There are several strategic reasons for this; the main one appears to be to occupy more space on restaurant wine lists and wine store shelves.
Unlike some of the other labels under Artisan, Fork In The Road has a physical home in the Black Sage Road vineyards that Mission Hill has operated since the mid-1990s. The grapes for this wine are from what is identified as Block 249 in the vineyard while a companion white is from Block 212. Both wines are packaged under screw caps, which suits the fruit-driven style.
Dark in colour and rich in flavour, this wine clearly benefited from prolonged maceration on the skins to wrest out all the flavour. The wine begins with room-filling aromas of ripe fruit, leading on to luscious flavours of blackberries, chocolate and vanilla. The latter can be attributed to the 14 months the wine spent in French oak. The Syrah makes its presence felt with notes of leather and earth and with a peppery note on the finish. 88 points.
Reviewed February 22, 2008 by 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.