Huff Estates – October 2016

2013 South Bay Merlot – ****+ – $40.00 – The South Bay site for Huff Estates is certainly a magic place for growing grapes in the province. This bottle is most definitely labelled as VQA Prince Edward County. I have to rub my eyes in disbelief because even in Niagara, where it’s a little warmer, it can be tough to make top notch Merlot. That being said, this is most definitely top notch Merlot. Perfectly ripe Cherry and Strawberry and a solid acid backbone round out the package. The tannin is soft and velvet making this wine approachable immediately. This may not be a bottle that you will want to stow away in a cellar for an extended period but it should hold up nicely for 3-6 years. Any bottles passing through my hands will be enjoyed immediately with beef.

2013 Cuvée Janine – **** – $30.00 – It should be no surprise that Pinot Noir sparkling wine from Huff Estates will fantastic. The “big brother” Peter F Huff Cuvée is consistently one of the best bottles of bubbly in the province. Janine is most definitely a little more approachable and gulpable than the “serious” big brother, but that doesn’t make it any less enjoyable. Soft Raspberry, Cranberry and Cherry on the nose and in the glass with bright, crisp acidity on the finish. There are nice citrus notes that work in perfect tandem with the red fruit. I realize this may be a little more money than people are comfortable spending for a Friday night Netflix binge session, but to be honest it punches out of its weight class and should be enjoyed at more than just your special occasions.

2014 Reserve Pinot Noir – ****½ – $35.00 – Two words about this wine before I go any further “Awww Yeah”. The nose is soft and delicate Red Cherry with whispers of Violet buried under all that fruit. When the wine works its way over your palate the Cherry flavours dominate this wine. But when you work your way into the second … and your third sip subtle baking spice, hints of earthiness, and a hint of the violet notes linger for awhile. The finish is very clean with nice acidity. A wine like this presents a dilemma for the consumer… Do I enjoy this with food, perhaps a nice mushroom risotto or a piece of lamb… or do I enjoy this without food? There really isn’t a wrong answer to this question.

2014 South Bay Chardonnay – ****+ – $30.00 – This wine could write the textbook on balance. There are nice aromas and flavours of vanilla and spice, but they are perfectly balanced with orange, peach and apple. The acidity is perfectly balanced and leaves your palate refreshed but with enough of a finish that your mouth is eager for the next sip. This wine is rich and complex but elegant and refined all at the same time. This is a fantastic example of what is right with Chardonnay from the County. This will be something to pair with fried chicken, creamy pasta or try serving this with buttered popcorn.

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