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
"...I will just say this off the top, this is the finest red wine I have ever tasted from Niagara and hence the highest scoring wine I have awarded. It’s a Left Bank looking blend, but really sits somewhere between the Medoc and Napa Valley, combining the power of Napa and the grace of Bordeaux, and capitalizing on Niagara’s most inspiring red vintage since the modern-day wine industry began in the region. Comparisons to other regions seem lame, but this is a wine priced to draw those comparisons, and consumers will. In reality, it’s a 100% Niagara tour de force that has been decades in the making.
From the first impression of dreamy, perfumed notes, you are drawn into this wine on the nose and beyond. It’s profoundly fruited with black currants, dark cherries, blackberries, and plums followed by foraged truffles, forest floor, savoury dried herbs, earthy notes, leather, graphite, and enticing spices notes that are elegant and persistent. It opens on the palate to firm, chewy tannins in support of a rich, luxuriously textured array of dense dark berries, damson plums, cherry/kirsch, dried tobacco, herbs, underlying earthy/savoury notes and gorgeous toasty, vanilla-tinged, elegant spices all leading to an echoing, velvety smooth and finessed finish that seems to last for minutes. This blockbuster, highly structured red is the epitome of grace and power and has what Groux calls a drinking window that can improve for three decades. He could be right, but I would safely suggest 15+ years, based on some of the greatest older Niagara reds I have tasted in the past. 97 points, Rick Vansickle, Wines In Niagara