October 3-15, 2021
June 8, 2022
2021 Select Vineyards Merlot
A wine for sharing, this Merlot expresses enticing aromas of fresh blackberry and cocoa. A generous palate
follows with ripe plum and cherry characteristics, ending with a smooth and luscious finish. Soft tannins make
for a fabulous wine on its own or enjoy with a savoury pork roast and Italian plum chutney or try a cherry
glazed grilled chicken
The 2021 growing season in the South Okanagan was one for the history books as the driest on record, due in large part to the “Heat Dome” and its record breaking high temperatures. It was also one of the warmest years, seeing the most growing degree days GDD (1758) since 2015. Following flowering, we experienced an extremely dry and hot June during fruit set. The heat led to a lighter fruit set and smaller berry size than usual. While there was less fruit per vine and the yield was light in volume, on the upside the smaller berries in the clusters resulted in more concentrated flavours and colours on the red varietals. Similarly, for the white varietals there are intense flavours and vibrant aromatics. With the warm dry season, the grapes reached phenolic ripeness earlier than usual with harvest commencing and finishing early. We began picking the whites on August 27th for our Ti Amo (Prosecco-style sparkling wine). We started picking our first reds in mid-September with our block 10 Merlot on September 14th at our historic Golden Mile Bench estate vineyard. We finished our last estate reds pick with Cabernet Sauvignon from block 8 of our Golden Mile Bench vineyard on October 28, 2021. Overall, the 2021 harvest produced wines of outstanding quality and varietal character. We expect to see some intense, fruit driven wines, with excellent depth of flavour.
The grapes for this vintage are from our Vineyard Manager’s Fairview Vineyard along with three nearby
Oliver properties: Gill, Chahal and Sage Hill. An exceptional season produced nicely ripened fruit, which
was handpicked and then hand sorted on our new sorting table. The grapes were gently destemmed by our
Bucher Vaslin Oscillys destemmer, followed by a gentle fermentation in our Italian red fermenters and then
carefully pressed. After malolactic fermentation in stainless steel the different lots were tasted, blended and
allowed to further age for 8 months in French and American oak before bottling, for a satisfyingly fresh Merlot.
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