June 22, 2018
2018 Reserve Wines Release
We are very proud to announce the release of our wonderful Reserve wines from our 2015 & 2016 harvests.
2016 was a roller coaster ride. The growing season started with budburst a full week ahead of the record breaking 2015 season. This had everyone nervous about a possible freeze throughout April which could have been devastating to the tender young shoots. The early start and warm spring continued into record temperatures throughout June. This had the makings of one of the earliest harvests ever in the Okanagan, which then raised concerns about grape ripening and harvest taking place when temperatures are too warm, and grapes don’t accumulate the cool climate flavours we strive for.
As if on cue September was a very cool month which appeared to stall ripening for days at a time. This resulted in the longer “hang times” on the vine and enabled the development of superb flavours. October was seasonally warm allowing further ripening and the winery to cherry pick each variety and vineyard block at perfect ripeness.
2015 was a record breaking year in accumulated heat units and probably the best year for BC reds in my 23 years in Canada, wines that can sit on the table alongside the best from anywhere in the world.
Last year, our Reserve wines sold out in a couple of months, some immediately! These wines will sell out quickly and are not to be missed!
2016 Ensemble - This is a blend of 71% Sauvignon Blanc and 29% Semillon that was fermented in both neutral barrels and cement eggs. The wine then matured in barrels for a total of 10 months on their yeast lees for added creaminess. This wine shows floral (lilac) honeyed warmth throughout with a rich almost oily texture. A complex wine brimming with jasmine, pomelo, tangerine and dried apricot, finishing with a golden hay character that is so typical of aged Semillon. The past two vintages were each awarded Gold at the prestigious Six Nations Wine Challenge in Sydney, Australia and this vintage has also been invited to enter this “Best of the Best” in the New World.
2016 Chardonnay Reserve - This wine was fermented in cement eggs (20%) and French oak (80%) for added complexity but using only 25% new oak for just a hint of barrel toast throughout. The majority of this wine underwent slow fermentations by native yeasts for added complexity and integration. It exhibits beautiful aromatics brimming with salted caramel, golden sultanas, melon, pineapple, walnuts and poached pears with a hint of cardamom and wet river stone notes. The palate is very rich, honeyed and textural.
2016 Vivant - This is our Rhone style blend of 50% Viognier, 36% Roussanne and 14% Chardonnay, fermented in a combination of neutral French oak and cement eggs to create a complex textured wine. A kaleidoscope of peaches, grilled apricots, marmalade, manuka honey and orange oil, all over a rich, round palate lingering with hints of tarragon and cinnamon, simply delicious.
2016 Pinot Noir Reserve - This wine is a hand selection of single barrels representing a blend of our favourite parcels of fruit from the Desperation Hill vineyard. Predominately clones 115, 667 and 777, all ferments are conducted in small 1-2 ton batches and then matured for a further 15 months in French oak, 30% new. This wine has, as all great Pinots should, layers upon layers of flavours, continually expressing more of its nuances as it opens in the glass. Aromatics of rainforest floor, raspberry bushes and strawberry jam leads to black forest cake, bramble, mushrooms and black olives. This wine has a wonderful mouth filling density, fine silky tannins whilst still showing the elegance of Pinot Noir. A long lingering finish with notes of cloves, all spice and umami flavours leave you wanting more! We are ecstatic about the continued international recognition received for our Pinot Noir wines. The past three vintages, our Reserve has won numerous Gold, Double Gold and Platinum medals consistently placing in the top echelon for Pinot Noir in the toughest of international competitions.
2015 Grand Total Reserve - Comprising 61% Merlot, 22% Cabernet Franc and 17% Cabernet Sauvignon and aged in 83% new French barriques for 22 months followed by a further 10 months bottle aging. Blending allows us to use the very best characteristics of these varieties to consistently produce this Reserve style. This big and brooding wine teems with aromas of espresso beans, dark chocolate, tobacco leaves and dusty earth. The palate has a rich concentration of dates, cassis, leather, eucalypt, and venison. The super fine tannins provide great structure to the wine and notes of cigar box, caraway seeds, nutmeg and brazil nuts add to the long lingering finish. A wine that will reward when cellared, it also is very enjoyable right now!
We are pleased to offer tastings of our Reserve wines starting on Friday June 22nd with all the new releases on our patio throughout the season or until they are gone. Don’t miss out on this incredible opportunity and visit us for a memorable seated tasting experience at our Wine Shop.
Our fortified wines are perpetual Gold and Platinum medal winners, with a tally that is second to none. We started laying the foundation for these wines nearly 20 years ago so that today when we now assemble a blend to achieve an average age of 15 years. The quality we can achieve in these blends can only be reached with time. These wines have me shaking my head in disbelief that they weren’t made in the Upper Duoro or Rutherglen, Australia, simply superb after dinner wines.
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.
Pre order your wines online at http://www.lafrenzwinery.com/ or through the Wine Club, or visit us in the Wine Shop.
Some benchmark wines to choose from, enjoy!
Winemakers’ dinner at LAFRENZ Winery – SOLD OUT! For the first time we will be hosting a Winemaker’s dinner on site on June 22nd, 2018 from 6 to 10 pm. It will be a night to celebrate our newly released Reserve wines paired wonderfully with local food, created by Joy Road Catering, and live music. Join Jeff, Niva & Dom in an incredible evening celebrating the best of LAFRENZ! As it is an intimate setting, we have limited availability. Stay tuned for next year’s events!
Location: 1525 Randolph Road, Penticton, BC, V2A 8T5 (Wine Shop)
The Naramata Tailgate Party will be held on September 8th, 2018 at the Naramata Heritage Inn 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 fun in the heart of Naramata. This year’s theme is “Bootleg Bash” celebrating the building of the Naramata Heritage Inn and the founding of Naramata in the early 1900’s. Tickets are $125 (plus tax + fee) and they are available online at https://tinyurl.com/NBWATailgate2018 or by calling 1-800-656-0713. Looking forward to seeing you then!
Location: Naramata Heritage Inn, 3625 – 1st Street, Naramata, BC, V0H 1N0.