The boutique-winery brand of Andrew Peller has really started to stand out on its own lately with some super tasty wines that really show what a great bottle of wine can be. Winemaker Karen Gillis is probably the one to take most of the blame for this and is a great example of how great a winery can be in they can hang on to the same wine maker for more than 3 years. She’s been there since 2007 making this past vintage her sixth at Red Rooster.
What happens when a winemaker is allowed to get to know the fruit over time? Fabulous wines. Awards and accolades. Stuff like that.
Exhibit A is the Red Rooster Chardonnay 2010 which took home a Gold at the Canadian Wine Awards in 2011 and retails for about $18. When I tasted it, the nose was full of cantaloupes, vanilla, peach fuzz, and sweet herbs. The palate was extremely well balanced with melon, butterscotch, and lemon flavours and a finish that lasted until the credits rolled. It was a $30 chard in disguise.
Red Rooster’s Reserve Meritage 2009 is at a different point in its life and I almost felt bad for opening it so soon. The glass in front of my only confirmed that it was still a little wound up and not ready to show all of its flavours just yet. The nose offered up dark cherries, baking spices, oak, and cherry pie filling. The palate had great acid and tannins with flavours of dark fruits and leather. The big alcohol on this wine did not throw the balance of this wine at all but likely contributed to its velvety texture. As I wrote in my notes, it’s still early on in its potential life but all the elements of a great wine are there.
Check them out if you can find them! Cheers from wine country!