CORKAGE: Burrowing Owl’s “Calliope” Label And Making A Prison Out Of Wine Country…
by Amorita Bastaja | A bottle or two of note, something overheard and many words read…
TASTED: This week I sampled the Calliope wines from Burrowing Owl, and was pleasantly surprised at the quality. Last year was the inaugural vintage of the Calliope label, with only a Sauvignon Blanc being released. This year, three more wines join the line up: a Riesling, a Viognier and a Rosé made mostly of Syrah with a touch of Viognier. The Sauvignon Blanc had zippy acidity and clean citrus notes; the Viognier spent a little time in the barrel creating some complexity on the palate, while the Rosé received a nice floral lift from the Viognier. Ranging in price from $15-$18 (private retail stores) there isn’t much to go around (only 175 cases were made of the Riesling and the Viognier). Although not terribly complex, they are absolutely perfect for mid-week trips to Kits Beach, screw caps and all. The wines will be released and ready for sale next week.
OVERHEARD: While at The Cocktail Show last week at Tofino’s Schooner, one of the lovely young ladies asked Mr. Jacob Sweetapple if he did the whole “flair bartending thing” (as she mimed flipping bottles into the air) to which Jacob replied “No, I quit the circus years ago…I just bartend now”.
READ: Lest I be confused by the myriad options when wine shopping, Essentia Vitae has created these new perfume shaped wine bottles. Labelled by their respective “scents”, they are intended to stand out to women who are just so overwhelmed by all the pretty bottles…Opposition is mounting against a proposed prison in Penticton, minutes away from the Naramata Bench, a popular tourist destination for wine tours. 19 wineries from the area have signed their names vocalizing their concern…EAT! Vancouver is this weekend with an appearance from Daenna Van Mulligen, better known as the Wine Diva…Napa Valley Vintner’s 31st annual charity auction took place a few days ago, some purchase highlights included 6 bottles of Chateau Montelena 2007 Cabernet Sauvignon selling for $8,200 and three 3 L of Frog’s Leap back vintage Cabernet Sauvignon auctioning at $6,100…Robert Parker, whom many consider to be partially responsible for inflated wine prices due to his controversial point scoring system, has perhaps decided to be part of the solution instead. In an interview with the AFP, he noted that prices of 2010 Bordeaux are too high, and the region will damage its reputation if it doesn’t lower them…the mother of all wine festivals, Vinexpo starts on June 19th in Bordeaux…My latest issue of Wine Access has arrived in the mail, and I’m very much enjoying the cover story “Behind the Bottles”. Focused on mentors and their protégés, highlights include interviews with Paul and Paul-Andre Bosc of Chateau des Charmes and Janet and Hailey Trefethen of Trefethen Family Vineyards. The interviewee’s are humble and speak openly of mistakes and hard work. The conversations are endearing and earnest, and allude to the true value of keeping business close to home.
Amorita Bastaja is a manager at Legacy Liquor Store, the largest liquor store in British Columbia (located in the Athlete’s Village), and the Wine Editor of Scout. Her love of imbibing steered her through courses from the International Sommelier Guild and the Wine & Spirits Education Trust, and has taken her to many wine regions, including Washington State, Napa and Sonoma, Piemonte, Veneto, Tuscany, Abruzzo, Provence and all over the Okanagan Valley.