Le Vieux Pin Viognier-Roussanne 2009

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My recent trip to the Okanagan has inspired me to give a few more B.C. bottles a fair shake. This white blend from Le Vieux Pin, made from Rhone Valley varieties and part of their new Rhone ranger influenced program, is the best example of these grapes that I have tasted from B.C.

I appreciate how Le Vieux Pin prints considerable detail on their label, including soil type, tons per acre, suggested ageing, and even sub-regions. So far there are no legally established sub-appellations in the Okanagan Valley and so it is basically impossible to know where the fruit used in a particular wine has come from if the winery does not disclose that information. Very few wineries are even using all estate fruit or all fruit grown in the sub-region in which the winery is located.

While Le Vieux Pin does use fruit from around the valley, I applaud their transparency in labeling exactly where it came from. In this case, that means the Black Sage Bench, an area with more moderate sunlight than its neighbour the Golden Mile. The soils here are sandy, like the majority of soils in the Okanagan, and as such drain pretty quickly. This means irrigation is needed in most places, and the wines tend to be pretty fruity.

This is, true to its place, a fruity wine. It captures the great aromatics of Viognier and the voluptuous texture of Roussanne and offers good depth and balance. The fruit here is much higher quality than normal for these varieties, probably because of the lower cropping, and I thought this was an excellent example and shows great potential for the future of the Rhone program at Le Vieux Pin.

Very Good
$35 at the Winery

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