Trailblazer’s of the Okanagan Part 3: Cedar Creek Estate Winery
Cedar Creek Estate Winery
Vineyards: East Kelowna and Osyoos
Age of Vines: 30+
Wine Maker: Taylor Whelan
Photo Credit: Michael McDuff
Cedar Creek has been making wine for the past 30 years by the Fitzpatrick family in Kelowna, British Columbia. In 2014, the winery was purchased by Von Mandl, and together they share a keen partnership and vision to craft wine, representing the best coming from their East Kelowna and Osoyoos vineyards. A new winery is being built, and is set to open this Fall.
Cedar Creek produces Estate and Platinum Series wine. The Estate wines all feature grapes grown from all of their Okanagan based vineyards and include; Merlot, Syrah, Pinot Noir and a Meritage Blend. Estate Whites include Riesling, Gewürztramier, Pinot Gris, Chardonnay, along with blends.
The Platinum wines feature the very best vineyard grapes, and are very terroir driven. I had the privilege of tasting some of the Platinum Series, of which you can see below.
Viognier Platinum 2016
This vivacious Viognier is 40% fermented in French oak barriques, 30% concrete egg, and 30% barrel and foudre, with a 5-month aging period on the lees in oak and concrete egg. The ‘egg’ here is key as it allows the flavours to develop beautifully. The concrete egg is porous an it allows the wine to breathe a bit. It is also neutral and imparts to added flavour to the wine, allowing the Viognier to shine in all its glory.
Plenty of concentrated citrus, peach, and honeydew melon fruit mixed with streaks of candied ginger and floral notes. The palate is round and plump but balanced by a nice acidity. A broad wine with a silky mouth feel, it finished with notes of orange blossom and sweet spice. Lovely. Drink now or in the next 3-4 years.
Riesling Platinum 2014
Interesting wine here , with 10% of the Riesling being wild fermented on French oak. This added a little extra plumpness and mouth feel to the wine. The rest of the wine was fermented for 45 days in stainless steel tank, with a 5 month aging period on lees.
Mouth watering citrus fruit like lemon and lime with a great hit of concentrated green apple and peach. The fruit is framed by an excellent, fresh acidity and a nice streak of saline minerality. Round and very concentrated on the palate. The finish is bright and delightful. Incredible easy to drink. Drink now or in the next 4-5 years.
Merlot Desert Ridge 2014
This 100% Merlot was fermented 23 days in stainless steel before heading to French oak barrels for 20 months. 1,102 cases produced.
This was a quite an alluring Merlot that showed beautiful cassis, juicy blackberry and cherry notes. There was lots of concentration of fruit with ripe, silky tannins supported by a fine acidity. Layers of chocolate, vanilla, and graphite added dimension and complexity. The finish was long, concentrated and full of lasting flavour. Drink now or in the next 6-8 years.
The Last Word 2014
The Last Word has a blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet Franc, and Malbec, and was fermented for 30 days in stainless steel tank before getting aged for 20 months in French oak barrels. 314 cases produced.
A very well balanced and attractive wine, this shows of concentrated blackberries, plum and black cherry fruit. There is some complexity here as the cedar spice and earthy tobacco comes mid-way through the sip. The tannins are firm, but fine grained and creeps up nicely adding texture and structure to this supple wine, which also has plenty of refreshing acidity. The finish shows bits of chocolate and spice, which is very long and pleasurable. You could drink this now, but your patience would be rewarded in the next 7-8 years.
Bottle Shot Photo Credit: Cedar Creek Estate