The Wines of British Columbia Stand up to the World

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SUMMERLAND, B.C. — The wines of British Columbia were put to the ultimate test at the second annual Judgment of BC held June 21 in Summerland, B.C.

Hosted by the Kelowna-based BC Wine Institute, and curated by Vancouver wine educator and writer DJ Kearney, the event pitted 12 B.C. wines against 12 acknowledged global benchmarks. In the Riesling flight B.C.’s CedarCreek Platinum Block 3 Riesling 2012 from the Okanagan Valley was a close second to Germany’s Max Ferd. Richter Graacher Himmelreich Riesling Kabinett 2013 from the Mosel Valley, Germany placed first in the Riesling flight. Bouchard Père Premier Cru Beaune Clos de la Mousse Monopole 2012 from Burgundy, France came out on top for the flight of Pinot Noir, with BC placing fourth, fifth, sixth, seventh and eighth.

The event was a blind tasting of 12 Pinot Noir wines and 12 Rieslings — six from B.C. and six international benchmarks — featuring scoring by British wine critic Dr. Jamie Goode and American wine writer Elaine Chukan-Brown. An additional 29 expert Canadian wine judges, including Anthony Gismondi, John Szabo MS, Rhys Pender MW, Barbara Philip, David Lawrason, Steve Thurlow, Brad Royale, Craig Pinhey, Treve Ring and Kurtis Kolt, helped determine the winners.

“I am so pleased with the results. This is not about win or lose, good or better. This is about putting BC Wines up against really stiff competition and what great results,” says Kearney. “The global wines were all chosen for a reason — to challenge, to push and to help us realize we are in great company. This should be a tough competitive set and it was. It had to be. And B.C. did well. What this shows is we can hold our own among acknowledged classics.”

First hosted in Vancouver last year, the goal of the event is to assess the current state of grape growing and winemaking in the province in order to provide a clear perspective of the distinct characteristics of B.C. wine relative to global standards and to achieve a focused vision for the continued evolution of the local wine industry.

Riesling results

1. Max Ferd. Richter Graacher Himmelreich Riesling Kabinett 2013, Mosel Valley, Germany

2. CedarCreek Platinum Block 3 Riesling 2014, Okanagan Valley, B.C.

3. Wild Goose Stoney Slope Riesling 2013, Okanagan Falls, B.C.

4. Chateau Ste. Michelle & Dr. Loosen Eroica Riesling 2013, Columbia Valley AVA, Wash.

5. Leeuwin Art Series Riesling 2012, Margaret River, Australia

6. Synchromesh Storm Haven Vineyard Riesling 2015, Okanagan Falls, B.C.

7. Culmina Decora Riesling 2015, Okanagan Valley, B.C.

8. Pewsey Vale Eden Valley Riesling 2014, South Australia

9. Robert Weil Kiedricher Riesling Trocken 2012, Rheingau, Germany

10. Tantalus Old Vines Riesling 2013, Okanagan Valley, B.C.

11. Orofino Hendsbee Vineyard Riesling 2013, Similkameen Valley, B.C.

12. Trimbach Riesling 2012, Alsace, France
Pinot Noir results

1. Bouchard Père Premier Cru Beaune Clos de la Mousse Monopole 2012, Burgundy, France

2. Bachelder Oregon Pinot Noir 2012, Willamette Valley AVA, Oregon, U.S.

3. Felton Road Bannockburn Pinot Noir 2014, Central Otago, New Zealand

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