13 June 2017
2017 June Newsletter
The BIG news since our spring newsletter is the outstanding results at the Dan Berger International Wine Competition in Santa Rosa, California.
This is an international wine competition with a prestigious 36 year history. We were thrilled to be awarded 17 medals including golds, silvers and Best of class awards. I couldn’t say it better than the recent headline of U.S. wine writer Andy Perdue (Great North West Wine) “LA FRENZ winery in Naramata dominates top California competition”.
These medals resulted in LA FRENZ being awarded, for an unprecedented third time, the 2017 Small Winery of the Year. I am extremely proud of the recognition not only for LA FRENZ but also for the Canadian Wine Industry.
It takes a great team to make great wine and for this I have to give credit to our very own dream team. Raul Garcia, Roberto Ramirez and Miguel Vazquez who head up the vineyard crew with a combined 20 years’ experience meticulously tending the four vineyards of LA FRENZ.
Winemaker Dom McCosker does a masterful job in the winery along with our daughter Elise and new intern Kathy Nichols. All have international winery experience, great palates and know just what it takes to make world class wines.
June Release Wines June 16th,2017
Pre order your wines at the Wine Shop or online at http://www.lafrenzwinery.com/
All but one of these wines are from the warmer 2015 vintage which provided great viscosity, colour and concentration. They have received 8 to 10 months bottle ageing prior to release.
2015 Ensemble: –This is a blend of 70% Sauvignon Blanc and 30% Semillon that was barrel fermented in mostly neutral barrels and aged on their yeast lees for added creaminess. This wine shows honeyed warmth throughout with a rich almost oily texture. A complex wine brimming with marzipan, marmalade, and super ripe papaya, finishing with a straw or dried hay character that is so typical of aged Semillon. The 2014 Ensemble received gold at the 6 nations challenge in Australia last August and this 2015 vintage has been invited to compete this year.
2015 Reserve Chardonnay: –This wine was 100% barrel fermented in French oak for added complexity but using only 30% new for just a hint of barrel toast throughout. This wine is so complex and yet everything is so integrated. It exhibits beautiful lemon yellow colour, the aromatics brimming with crème brulée, melon, cashews and fig with just a hint of complexing flint notes. The palate is very rich, honeyed and textural.
2015 Vivant: – This is our Rhone style blend of 56% Viognier, 22% Chardonnay and 22% Rousanne. A complex melange of authentic spicy Turkish delight, poached pear and ripe tropical fruits over a rich, round lingering palate structure, simply delicious. Awarded Gold at the recent Dan Berger International competition.
2015 Reserve Pinot Noir: – After years of fine tuning our Pinot Noir program I am ecstatic about this wine!! A deep red colour especially for the variety, it opens with the full spectrum of pungent red to dark fruits overlaid with complexing notes of freshly turned earth, sappiness and just a hint of barrel toast. The palate weight is dense and round, loaded with glycerol and mouthfeel.
This wine exemplifies the adage often used to describe classic Pinot Noir “a clenched fist in a silk glove“.
We are ecstatic about the continued international recognition received for our Pinot Noir and are proud to be selected as a featured winery at this year’s International Pinot Noir Celebration in Oregon. Equally rewarding is our invitation to participate in the 6 Nations Challenge in Sydney, Australia.
2014 Grand Total Reserve: – Comprising 42% Merlot, 33% Cabernet Sauvignon and 25% Cabernet Franc aged in 72 % new French barriques for 22 months followed by a further 10 months bottle aging.
Tasting this wine really is an OMG moment, big, seamless and integrated with layer upon layer of flavour, a stunning Bordeaux blend.
Extremely dark and dense in colour with aromas of eucalypt, menthol and dark chocolate .The palate has flavours of cassis, leather and prunes over dense superfine tannins. The density and structure ensures this wine has ageability but is just so drinkable now.
Our three Fortified Wines are also now available. Our traditional solera system that was started 18 years ago now ensures our blends are well over 10 years average age, resulting in incredible depth and complexity. These wines are perpetual gold medal winners.
NV Liqueur Muscat: – Each year our Muscat grapes are allowed to raisin for as long as possible before harvest. The resulting blend is as sweet and luscious as possible yet balanced by a firm drying tannin structure on the finish. Brimming with flavors of raisins, caramelized brown sugar, cinnamon and hints of earl grey tea, it really is dessert in a glass. There is not another wine like it in North America and should be in everyone’s cellar, simply delicious.
Nv Tawny Port: – Dense brown in colour it brims with dates, prunes, walnuts and molasses. A medium sweetness level that finishes dry, it lingers on the palate endlessly, a superb example of the style.
2016 Vintage Port Style: – This wine is made only from selected vineyard lots that can achieve very high ripeness levels. The grapes are fermented on skins to extract the necessary colour and tannins then fortified with our 12 year old custom brandy spirit. This wine style is aged in bottle rather than barrel, any oak character is purely from the brandy spirit.This wine is deep purple in colour, the aroma is reminiscent of rich dark fruitcake overlaid with blue fruits and that wonderful brandy spirit. The palate shows sweet ripe upfront fruit but is dense and chewy in structure ensuring the wine will improve with bottle aging over the next decade assuming you can wait that long.
For the last couple of months our Reserve wines have had limited availability or were just sold out. We are pleased to announce the Reserve Tasting Flight will be now available with all the new releases on our patio throughout the season or until they are gone. Don’t miss out in this incredible opportunity and visit us for a memorable seated tasting experience at our Wine Shop.
Some benchmark wines to choose from, enjoy!
Cellaring and Ageing Wines
Please see our website for our recommendations regarding the correct cellaring procedures and timelines for each of our wines. It is important to note that all wine is a living entity and its development is not unlike a bell curve. Many of our wines will age 10 years and beyond but I highly recommend that if you have bought multiples of one wine that you try a bottle from time to time to determine how the wine is progressing, is it ready to enjoy and to your personal taste. I also highly recommend decanting any cellared wine into a carafe a few hours before enjoying as aeration really opens up an aged wine for the best experience.
If you are contemplating coming to the Okanagan during the summer months, do not miss the following events:
The 31st Annual International Pinot Noir Celebration will take place from July 28th-30th, 2017 at Linfield College in McMinnville, Oregon. We are the only BC winery that was selected to participate in this event along with the world’s top Pinot Noir producers. Please have a look at the following link for more information and tickets: http://ipnc.org/ Cheers!
Come and try our Pinot Noir’s at the BC Pinot Noir Celebration to be held on August 19th, 2017. This wonderful event is a showcasing of BC wineries producing great Pinot Noir and a “must do” for local ‘pinotphiles’. Do not miss out on this unique opportunity. Tickets are on sale now at http://www.bcpinotnoir.ca/
The Naramata Tailgate Party will be held on September 9th, 2017 at D’Angelo Estate Winery (979 Lochore Road, Penticton, BC) from 6:30 pm until 9 pm. This initiative from the Naramata Bench Wineries Association gathers together its 28 members plus local chef’s cuisine and live music to celebrate harvest. Join us for a fabulous evening of wine, food, live music, celebration and camaraderie as the sun sets over Okanagan Lake. Tickets are available online at http://tinyurl.com/Naramatatailgate2017 or by phone at 1-800-656-0713 (Ask Operator for “Naramata Tailgate Party 2017″). Looking forward to seeing you then!