Bonterra Tasting

Bonterra Tasting at the iYellow Wine Cave.
Wines tasted April 2015


Most people are familiar with Bonterra Winery, well that is not a coincidence as they export nearly 70% of their wines into Canada and of that, about half is sold here in Ontario. Another reason the winery is known, is because it is one of the very few organic and biodynamic wineries in California[1]. Lesser known fact is that Concha Y Toro (one of my favorite Chilean wineries) acquired Bonterra in 2011 and now has an influence over the winemaking. Chilean wine industry is known for their push and advances into biodynamic and organic wine growing, which has undoubtedly increased Bonterra’s quality in the recent years.
The iYellow Wine Club put together a tasting of 4 Bonterra wines guided by Bonterra’s John Kinney and they were paired with two-course, tasty dinner “tossed” together by Chef Damian Harington’s skilled hands (literally…one should not forget the cheese pairing).


The 2013 Bonterra Viognier, with added Muscat (3%) and aged in oak for 6 months, has creamy, mouthwatering notes of green apple and muscat, together with subtle lees and cucumber on the nose and green apple, apricot, vanilla and oak on the palate. It is a light to medium bodied, extra-dry/dry, fruity wine; with forward yet round acidity and a medium to long finish. It is a food friendly wine; enjoy now to 2018+ (screw cap enclosure). My impression: quite NICE, 88 pts.
Score 88 pts. $19.95 Vintages September 2015 release.
The 2013 Bonterra Chardonnay, sourced from Mendocino county and composed of 89% Chardonnay, 6-7% Viognier and Muscat and aged for 8 months in both French and American Oaks; has inviting aromas of toast, butter, vanilla, pecan and quince on the nose and gooseberry, pineapple and wood on the palate. It is a medium bodied, extra-dry, fruity wine; with crisp acidity and a long finish. It is a food friendly and sipping wine; drink now and for the next 5-10 years (screw cap enclosure). My impression: NICE to BEAUTIFUL, 88-89 pts – recommended for its quality.
RECOMMENDED Score 88-89 pts. $19.95 Vintages 342436
The 2013 Bonterra Pinot Noir, aged in French Oak for 10 months; has intensely perfumed aromas (though atypical of Pinots) of red currant, prune, smoke, cigar box and wood on the nose and sour cherry, blueberry, dark chocolate, vanilla and wood on the palate. It is a medium bodied, extra-dry, fruity wine; with refreshing acidity, subtle to refined tannins and a long and inky finish. It is both food friendly and sipping wine; drink now and for the next 5 years (cork enclosure). My impression: NICE, 89-90 pts – recommended for its quality and value – recommended as a good wine, not due to its trueness to the varietal.
RECOMMENDED Score 89-90 pts. $19.95 Vintages 317685
The 2012 Bonterra Cabernet Sauvignon, made up of 97% Sauvignon, 3% Syrah and less than 1% Carmenere and aged in oak for undisclosed time; has desirable aromas of toast, graphite, strawberry and black cherry on the nose and black cherry, plum, dark chocolate and stone like texture on the palate. It is a medium to full bodied, extra-dry, integrated wine; BALANCED with good acidity, dusty/grippy tannins and a medium to long finish. This wine is a sipper; very enjoyable now though cellaring for few years will enhance it even further (+1-2 evolution points), drink now to 2025 (cork enclosure). My impression: BEAUTIFUL, 90-91 (+1-2 Ep) pts – recommended for its quality and value – stock up half to a full case into the cellar.
RECOMMENDED Score 90-91 (+1-2Ep) pts. $19.95 Vintages 342428



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