The red wine drinkers have given me a couple of their favorite releases from 2021, to accompany those more formal indoor dinners, that we return to as fall takes hold. While I enjoy the occasional glass of red, some of us are more dedicated followers of what is out there from Canada's best wine region, the Okanagan. I thought it best to consult with some of them to determine these champions of the year. Ontarians may protest that I am focussing on B.C. wines, and rightly so, but that is mainly because folks in Alberta can easily travel to B.C. and sample the many varieties available. The top two wines recommended this year are the 2018 Meritage from Grey Monk and the 2019 Poppy from See Ya Later Ranch.
This is how Grey Monk describes the Odyssey Meritage: “This full-bodied wine is composed of the five traditional varieties, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Malbec, Petit Verdot and Cabernet Franc, all grown in the South Okanagan Valley. Aged in new French oak barrels, the result is flavours reminiscent of blackberry jam with a hint of vanilla lending it well to pairing with lamb and beef dishes.”
The See Ya Later Ranch winery describes the Poppy blend in a more casual way as follows: “Bursting with fruity flavours and easy to love. This red blend showcases iconic flavours of the Okanagan. A laid-back, easy drinking red that’s worth bringing out when you’re hanging with your people!”
I hope you get a chance to enjoy these two offerings, one from the north and one from the south of the Okanagan valley.