2004 Royal DeMaria Wines Sauvignon Blanc Icewine VQA Niagara Peninsula VQA
I received this wonderful bottle of Icewine from a past co-worker for my birthday a number of years ago. Royal DeMaria Wines is not a typical winery in any sense of the word “typical”. Focussing only on Icewine, Joseph DeMaria stumbled upon a proprietary “fumble” while making his first batch of Icewine and has used the technique since to make atypical Icewine.
A colour of ultra-deep golden toffee. Nose of lanolin, candied gooseberry compote, perfumed high-note, slight rancio, oxidative sherry notes. Another smell that is hard to place, is it bananas foster?!
Flavours of overripe gooseberry, bright seam of acidity that carries the golden elixir across the palate like a velvet hammer. Sherry notes and a perfumed aftertaste.
Glorious to have aged icewine to sample on a whim. Magical liquid, not at all like the usual suspect of overly sweet and cloying icewine. Refined and elegant yet strong and firm. An enigma of a wine, finely superb.
1968 Seagram’s V.O. Canadian Whiskey
After spending the earlier part of the night at a good friend’s house celebrating the “New Year” with the kids, I got the family home and all tucked in long before the big ball dropped to usher in 2015. Looking for something to imbibe, this little bottle of whiskey seemed very appropriate. I inherited this bottle from my beautiful wife’s parents who themselves found it while cleaning out a closet. In going back through some family pictures I think this bottle came from a trip my wife’s grandparents went on to Alaska in 1968. It is always a gamble opening a bottle of booze that is 47 years old; it could be liquid gold or nail polish remover. The volume was still at high collar so I thought I had a pretty good chance of hitting pay dirt.
Pale golden dandelion hue. Initial waft of beehives set in a field of rye, then to a medicinal twang that with more air and time opened to wet seaside pebble. Unctuous, syrupy and smooth. A glorious oiliness on the palate, mouth coating glow. Flavours of warmth and happiness with iodine, deep caramel, a haunting sweetness like melting bees wax.
I have opened a few bottles of aged alcohol with some hits and more misses. This was definitely a hit, akin to a fine blended scotch. What a great way to ring in the new year.