Tuesday, August 21, 2007

2005 Bonterra Viognier

So, a few Joe Firsts here - my first Mendocino wine and my first organically grown wine (at least that I know of). It is also the first Viognier in a while, and sooooo worth the wait.

The 2005 Bonterra Viognier is actually 85% Viognier, with the balance other Rhone varietals (Marsanne 10%, Rousanne 3%) and a touch of Muscat - all organically grown grapes. Greenish-gold in the glass, the wine showed a very attractive nose, starting with hay, green grass and lemon peel, evolving to show some papaya, white flowers, oak, subtle vanilla, and a key-lime pie sort of finish. Bravo! On the palate this medium-bodied white was very well balanced, with an appealing honey (but not sweet) flavour, fresh limes, and a nice lingering aftertaste. It was an excellent match for rigatoni with home made alfredo and fresh summer (organic) vegetables. Note the experts are not big fans of this wine. I disagree - the balance is excellent, and it needs to warm up and air a little to express its complexity - something a power tasting might miss.
13.9% alcohol
Score: 17.5/20
Price: C$23.85 (SAQ)

9 comments:

Marcus said...

Ah-hah! First review of yours I read and get to picture you keenly analyzing the wine.

I have to say about the warming up component: very important. When we tasted we didn't stop to talk temperature and I kind of wish we did.

In any case, your note reminded me that the white Bordeaux blend I was drinking last night actually said serve at 13 degrees, which astonished me since it's mainly Sauvignon.

I think I want a pocket thermometer for Christmas.

Joe said...

Yes, the new image is perhaps a bit scarier than your previous image - Homer Simpson-esqe?
Yeah, I guess should have talked temperature, but I think Bill had that covered off as he was chilling some of the wines when we arrived. Never had a white at 13 - seems hot. You definitely need the thermometer.

Stacy Nelson said...

It's been a long time since I've had a Viogner. You may have just inspired me to go wine shopping - not that it takes a lot. Thanks!

Joe said...

Stacy - Glad to be an inspiration! Let me know if you find any good viognier...

Marcus said...

I had a thermometer and it snapped. But even without officially tasting what 13 degrees is, it does seem awfully warm for SB - isn't that cellar temperature?

I wanted to talk temperature more because I wondered how to best set myself up for a similar type of grand-scale event.

Joe, you are much younger-looking than I imagined.

Joe said...

Snapped? Oh, so many bad jokes coming into my mind....
Temperature is important, but tough to manage with a big tasting/group.
Who said I was old? Still 30-something. With your picture on every comment, there were no surprises meeting the Dok!

Marcus said...

Hey if you come across the Gazette this weekend you should pick up the Weekend Life section. Bill's picking up this thread and talking temperature.

Erin said...

I'm a bit edgy on Bonterra in general. Recently had a Cab Sauv that was dirty as all snot and can't seem to shake it. I do love Viognier as a rule though, mind you I'd like to see a 100% varietal bottle out of Cali just for interest's sake.

Joe said...

Hi Marcus - I had my paper held for delivery for my return Monday. I will check it out then. Temperature could be the subject of an entire blog!
Hi Erin - I have had bad experiences with the Bonterra before, so this selection was just as you mentioned - for interest's sake. Turned out to be very nice - I can't comment on the rest of the product line or other vintages, but at least they got my attention on this one.