Are you 19 years of age or older?
Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Merlot, Malbec, Petit Verdot
J.L. Groux / Dean Stoyka
675 days in French Oak | 20% new
2020 was a remarkable year for weather and wine in Ontario. Warmer than average winter months led to a cool dry April and May. The approach of summer brought a return of the hot weather with low precipitation and humidity. Similar conditions continued through August with only short, isolated, but intense thunderstorms. While temperatures began to naturally cool, sunshine remained throughout the autumn. The dry, sunny conditions were ideal for the full and complete maturation of grapes and contributed to a smooth harvest. Across the region, unseasonably warm weather delayed the icewine harvest resulting in a loss of tonnage. These temperature conditions postponed picking into the last week of January. While the overall grape crop was low, quality across all varieties was exceptional
"A new premium range from Stratus, the 'White Label' series is the culmination of 20 years of experience getting to know the 55 acres of estate vineyards, say winemakers J.L. Groux and Dean Stoyka, and 2020 was surely the year to launch the series, a sublime, 'once-in-every fifteen-years-vintage', according to Groux, arguably the best for Bordeaux varieties in the history of Ontario when also factoring in mounting vine age and experience.
"This White Label Red takes pole position from the estate's classic 'Black' Label Red, at the pinnacle of price and quality for the series, the best of the best. It's composed of 40% cabernet sauvignon, the same lot used for the White Label varietal cabernet sauvignon, with 27% cabernet franc, 13% merlot, 13% malbec, and 7% petit verdot to be precise. It serves up a terrific nose, a dense, concentrated, complete and complex wine, not by accidented launched in the sublime 2020 vintage. I love the mix of saturated, sapid dark fruit, savoury, fresh and dried herbs, fully integrated barrel influence.
"Attention to detail and precision are in evidence from start to long finish, from understanding the nuances of parcel to reasoned and thoughtful winemaking and ageing. It's surely one of the finest red wines of its type yet produced in the province. 30 years ageing potential? This is all about structure, depth, complexity and longevity, magnificent in any case. 26% new oak across the blend." - 95 points John Szabo, MS,WineAlign