Vineland Estates Winery2005 "Elevation" Cabernet-Merlot VQA
(Niagara Escarpment (ON))
Vineland Estates has an enviable reputation for its Riesling but winemaker Brian Schmidt is also adept with Bordeaux varieties. This blend is 90 percent Cabernet Sauvignon and 10 percent Merlot, a mix that would have allowed him to label the wine a Cabernet Sauvignon (under VQA regulations at least 85 percent of a given varietal can be labeled as such).
Positioned high on the Niagara Escarpment, this section of the St. Urban Vineyard is the highest point on the property. The soil here is primarily limestone based which imparts a real sense of minerality to the wine. Deep ruby in colour, the initial impression of the nose is a petit château Bordeaux but the fruit is more vibrant, backed by vanilla oak and that characteristic cedar note of Cabernet Sauvignon. Medium-bodied and supple, the wine is remarkably elegant with its ripe fruit, firm acidic spine and a lavender note in mid-palate. The tannins are ripe and unobtrusive. The wine is 12.5 percent alcohol with 2 g/l residual sugar and a Total Acidity of 6 g/l. Nineteen hundred cases were produced.
Reviewed September 12, 2008 by Tony Aspler.
Other reviewed wines from Vineland Estates Winery
Tony Aspler has been reviewing wines since 1975 and will continue doing so until he gets it right. Although his license plate is CLARET, he enjoys all wines except sparkling Retsina. He says he’s not a wine critic but a wine evangelist because he wants to turn readers onto wine rather than turn them off. His style is telegraphic rather than poetic because there are only so many ways to say ‘mellow tannins’.