Ontario Reviews

Featherstone 2007 Gamay

When I first got a preview taste of this wine during Cuvee (Feb. 2009), I was thrilled by the big cherry flavour of this wine and its kiss of cinnamon toasty-ness and white pepper. I gave it five-stars on the spot. Now, some three months later, I tried it again, this time in it’s finished, bottled and ready for sale form, and I have to tell you I’m just as, if not more, impressed with this wine than I was back then. Those extra three months in bottle have focused this wine. The flavours and the barrel notes (30% new and 70% used) have fully integrated, giving the full effect of what good Gamay can be. Beautiful ruby colour is the first thing you’ll notice. Sweet red cherries on the nose, which continue onto the palate and turn black while still keeping that nice kiss of cinnamon and white pepper. Keep it in the mouth for a spell and you’ll get a nice deep, full mouth enveloping flavour with great tannins and a soap opera-like “bold and beautiful” cherry finish. Yummy – chill slightly and enjoy. Price: $17.95 – Rating: *****

Gamay Noir
Niagara Peninsula
at the winery

(December 31, 2014) ... New Year's Eve, Chinese food is ordered and now its time to pick out the last bottle of the year, what should it be?  For some reason I found myself in the wine fridge pulling out a bottle of Featherstone Gamay from 2007 ... A hot vintage in Ontario, but the question is:  does Gamay like the heat over the long haul?  I'm about to find out.  The nose comes across in a pleasant way with notes of black cherry and anise; while the palate has sweet dried black cherry, anise seed, lively tannins, and a long cedar mixed with cherry finish.  As the chill wears off of this one some odds things begin to happen.  First there is a kind of minty-earthy-cranberry note that develops on the nose, after about an hour and a half open.  The palate also starts to play a few odd tricks developing sour cranberry and anise on finish - which truthfully is not far off from what you'd expect from an older Gamay wine, sure its still relatively pleasant, but with more tannin and acidity on the finish than one would expect.  I think if you have some in the cellar, the time to drink is now, this one isn't going to get any better.

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