Wine: The Judgment of BC
From the Kelowna Daily Courier (Link Here)
Seemingly out of nowhere, Oliver winery C.C. Jentsch has emerged to win two major prizes.
This week, C.C. Jentsch’s 2013 Syrah was rated No. 1 at the Judgment of B.C. in Vancouver.
The contest was fashioned after the Judgment of Paris in 1976, where California wines were pitted against French wines in blind tastings.
In both categories – Chardonnay and Bordeaux red blends – California wines came out on top over the French, which were considered the best in the world at the time.
The Judgment of Paris also inspired the Hollywood movie Bottle Shock in 2008.
For the Judgment of B.C. the categories were Chardonnay and Syrah, with 12 vintages in each and a total of 12 wines from B.C. and 12 bottles from elsewhere in the world entered for the blind tasting.
In another connection to the 1976 showdown, Steven Spurrier, the British wine merchant who organized the Paris event, was on the panel of judges in Vancouver.
He’s currently a consulting editor at Decanter magazine.
As previously, mentioned the 2013 vintage from the Okanagan’s C.C. Jentsch was tops of the dozen Syrahs entered.
The same wine also won a platinum medal at the National Wine Awards of Canada earlier this summer.
“It shows B.C. Syrah is world class among its peers,” said judge Sid Cross, honorary president for the International Wine & Food Society.
No. 2 was Langmeil Shiraz Orphan Bank 2012 from South Australia and third was 2013 Domaine Vincent Paris Cornas Granit from France. The No. 4 and 5 Syrahs were from the Okanagan – 2012 Nichol from Naramata and 2013 Le Vieux Pin Cuvee Classique from Oliver.
Okanagan vintages didn’t do as well in the Chardonnay competition.
The top chard from the Valley was Okanagan Falls’ Blue Mountain Reserve 2013 in sixth place.
The top five finishers came from Australia (Soumah 2103), New Zealand (Kumea River 2012), South Africa (Hamilton Russell) and two from France (Jean-Marc Brochard Chablis Premier Cru Montmains 2012 and Bouchard Pere & Fils Meursault Premier Cru Genevrieres 2011).
“The Chardonnay in B.C. is not showing enough distinct terroir as others from around the world,” pointed out Cross.
The B.C. Wine Institute organized Judgment of B.C. to get an honest assessment of the current state of grape growing and winemaking in the province compared to world-class bottles.
“It was a courageous tasting,” said judge D.J. Kearney, the curator of the event.
“The point was about discover and learning, not about winning or losing.
It’s about pushing ourselves in our wine regions. the global benchmark wines were of a very high calibre. It was important to be challenged by high-quality international wines, and we were. And we will do it again. We must do it again.”
The B.C. Wine Institute is also happy with the results.
“We are extremely proud of how the wines of British Columbia showed at this monumental tasting,” said institute CEO Miles Prodan.
“With this year marking the 25th anniversary of B.C. VQA (Vintners’ Quality Alliance), the modern winemaking industry in B.C. is still in its infancy compared to many regions around the world.
It is astounding to see how much the B.C. wine industry has evolved in such a short time and to have the likes of Steven Spurrier the wines as heartily has he has.”