Columbia Gardens Vineyard & Winery2004 Marechal Foch Private Reserve
Opened in 2001, Columbia Gardens is currently the only winery in British Columbia’s Kootenay Region. This is well off the beaten path for wine tourism but the winery thrives with local consumers, including those in nearby Trail, the historic lead and zinc smelter city on the Columbia River. Tom Bryden and his winemaker son-in-law, Lawrence Wallace, planted about six acres of vines on the Bryden family farm. The varieties grown include Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, Gewürztraminer, Auxerrois, along with several aromatic whites and, of course, that serviceable workhorse of challenging vineyards, Maréchal Foch.
In 2004, Columbia Gardens pulled off a big, bold red with Foch. The wine begins with appealing blackberry aromas, leading to flavours of blackberry and spiced plums, nicely framed with oak. There even is a note of chocolate here. Commendably, there is no trace of the bitterness sometimes found on the finish with this variety. The soft tannins give the wine a rich, generous texture, although, with the softness of structure, this is a red for drinking now, not cellaring. 86 points.
Reviewed August 21, 2006 by John Schreiner.
Other reviewed wines from Columbia Gardens Vineyard & Winery
Columbia Gardens Vineyard & Winery
2005 Pinot Gris, Skimmerhorn Vineyard
(British Columbia)John Schreiner 8/21/2006
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.