Wine Reviews  

Frind Sparkling Brut

Wine: Brut (sparkling), NV

Winery: Frind, West Kelowna

Why drink it? A medal winner in several international competitions, this is good value for a sparkling wine. A blend of Riesling and Chardonnay, this lively bottle of bubbles begins with aromas of green apples, lime, and touches of green melon. The citrus notes continue on the palate, with the addition of just picked Okanagan stone fruits. The Riesling does give it a very slight sweetness, particularly on the finish, but the residual sugars balance out with the mild zippy elements. This is not a complicated nor challenging bottle, but one to simply enjoy. Keep a bottle on hand for spontaneous celebrations.

Pair with: Take a bottle with you on a first/blind date (or order it off the wine list). The label is Instagram worthy next to some candlelight if you want to capture a moment, and the wine will pair nicely with almost any selection of appetizers to kick off the evening.

Price: $25


2017 Time Winery McWatters Brut

2017 McWatters Brut

Wine: McWatters Brut (sparkling), 2017

Winery: Time, Penticton

Why drink it? From the McWatters collection, a tribute to B.C. wine pioneer Harry McWatters, the first element to note: the elegant, minimalist design of the label, evoking an “ooh, where is this from?” thought. A blend of Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, and Pinot Blanc made in the traditional method, the nose is a mix of pineapple and freshly baked bread, with bits of citrus. The latter is expressed on the palate through bright lemon notes that are paired with freshly buttered biscuits, sliced green apples, and a persistent fine bubble. A dry and refreshing finish.

Pair with: The winery suggests truffle French fries, but if you’re feeling fun on snack night, truffle salt on buttered popcorn is also perfect. A rich and creamy risotto, a lemon tart with buttery pastry, or a stellar fried chicken sandwich on a brioche bun.

Price: $65

Music pairing: Unstoppable, The Score

Township 7 Rigel Sparkling

Township 7 Sparkling

Wine: Rigel (sparkling), 2019

Winery: Township 7, Langley/Penticton

Why drink it? Buzz continues to grow for this winery’s sparkling wines, each named for a specific star, and most bottles allocated to its club members – as this one is. Rigel is a single vineyard sparkling Riesling made in the traditional method, the grapes handled gently to preserve the bright lime, citrus, and white peach aromas. A heady fizz springs up as the cork comes out, then eases to elegant bubbles in the glass. Bread notes blend in with stone fruits and green apples on the palate, a touch of sweetness, with a fruity, zesty finish. Can’t get this bottle? Seek out another in the Seven Stars portfolio.

Pair with: Bubbly is always just fine on its own, but you can enjoy this one with a citrusy fruit salad and buttermilk waffles for brunch, a crab cake eggs benny, or slightly melted Camembert. Fresh oysters, if you’re so inclined, or many types of sushi.

Price: $34

Music pairing: Space Cowboy, Steve Miller Band


Nk’Mip 2020 Qwam Qwmt Riesling Icewine

Nk'Mip Riesling Icewine

Wine: Qwam Qwmt Riesling Icewine, 2020

Winery: Nk’Mip, Osoyoos

Why drink it? It’s time for some indulgence. A platinum award winner from Wine Align, the grapes were harvested at a crisp -11 degrees Celsius from a 30-year-old block of Riesling grapes, and fermented to a nicely balanced icewine. Beautifully aromatic with aromas of freshly baked apple pie, apricot jam, and some tropicality. Not meant for large pours, but scintillating sips. Sweet, yes, but also finely balanced between the fruit, alcohol, and sugar for a rich experience on the palate that finishes with some citrus notes and cleansing acidity so you’re ready for another taste.

Pair with: Often served as a digestif after dinner, consider pouring as an aperitif for happy hour, alongside a pungent cheese or two for contrast, with roasted nuts on the side. Enjoy with fresh fruit desserts, but nothing overly sweet.

Price: $75

Music pairing: Cold Weather Blues, Muddy Waters

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