Tinhorn Creek Winery is beautifully situated in the newly designated sub-appellation of the “Golden Mile” near Oliver, BC. They have been making great wine for almost 20 years and continue to be a force in the Okanagan, and are deeply committed to the environment, their employees and the community. They grow their grapes in 2 very distinctive areas; the Black Sage Bench and behind their property on the Golden Mile Bench, both which total 100 acres. I was lucky enough to have a private tour of the property and taste many of their wines; here are my notes from a few of my favourites:
2015 Pinot Gris
Blended from the 2 vineyards, This medium bodied wine has aromas and flavours of citrus, melon and stone fruit with a crisp mineral finish and a slight floral lift.
This beautiful wine won Gold at Decanter’s world wine tasting in London earlier this year and it’s easy to see why the judges loved it! All the fruit is from the Black Sage bench with 100% natural ferment in a blend of Hungarian, French and American oak barrels. With luscious flavours of lemon, green apple, and light oak notes with crisp minerality, this wine is elegant and graceful.
Made from 100% Cabernet Franc with 8-9 days skin contact, the wine is bursting with flavours and aromas of red currant, strawberry, watermelon and rhubarb. A perfect, easy drinking summer wine that is just slightly off dry and delicious.
2012 Cabernet Franc Oldfield Series
The grapes chosen to make the Oldfield series are from the best sites and employ the best of what the winemaker can produce. Cabernet Franc does well in the Okanagan and this wine shows just how beautiful it can be with aromas of cherries, blackberry and roasted jalapeño followed by rich flavours of black cherry, sweet spice, roasted green pepper, toasty oak and hints of leather with smooth dusty tannins on the finish.
2011 Pinot Noir
Bottle aged for 3 years, with all the fruit coming from the Black Sage bench, this elegant wine has sweet cherry, cranberry and dried herb notes. The palate is complex with delicate flavours of leather, cocoa, black cherry and forest floor. It’s drinking well now but will ages up to 5 years.
Tinhorn Creek has been around a long time, but like any good growing and developing winery, they continue to evolve, delighting and surprising us with every new vintage. Be sure you take the time to try the wine, visit the winery and dine at their outstanding Mirador restaurant, which undoubtably provides the best views in the valley with delicious food and excellent service.