Calona Vineyards‘ Artist Series wines have been mighty achievers at an excellent price for many vintages now. The new release of pinot gris, each bottle graced by a work by artist Brittani Faulkes, is fresh, lively, full of typical pinot gris notes of melon and pear, with a hint of spice. At $13, it stands out in the market as remarkable value, but tasting blind among other bottles, you might mistake it for something much more expensive.
Sandhill’s master winemaker Howard Soon has a bit of a soft spot for his newest sauvignon blanc, $20, and it is easy to taste why. This wine is brimming with citrus and peach, and is wrapped around such graceful acidity you could easily think you are drinking something from the chalky terrain of Sancerre. A fantastic example of what the Okanagan can achieve, given the right grapes planted in the right soil, and made by sure hands.
And if you still persist in grilling on the barbecue, in honour of the great Argentine chef Francis Mallmann who recently visited Vancouver, try the Catena High Mountain Vines malbec, bursting with fresh blackberry and even cranberry fruits, with plenty of heft and balance to make it a terrific sipping wine as well as an ideal companion for your grilled Berkshire pork loin, $23.