This week our 2019 harvest started with our crew bringing in Chardonnay grapes for our Seven Stars sparking wine collection. The date tied our earliest on record, (similar to the hot summer of 2015, when we brought in fruit for sparkling on the same day). The fruit tested at just the right sugar level for sparkling wine 17.5 Brix average. The grapes are from Hidden Terrace Vineyard in Oliver, situated near McIntyre Bluff by Vaseaux Lake, this premium vineyard has just under 300 acres planted. Located 330 feet above Okanagan River, affords a higher altitude which provides a slightly cooler growing environment producing beautifully elegant whites. The vineyard is overseen by the renowned Cleave family of viticulturists, MRS Vineyard Management. Planted in 2009, the property has a slight eastern slope and plentiful morning sun, with ideal sandy soil for excellent drainage. They employ both overhead and drip irrigation. The use of both types of irrigation is beneficial, with overhead used early in the season to help with overall soil health. As the canopy grows, they switch to drip irrigation so that the water is concentrated on the vines.
The Seven Stars 2019 vintage won't be released for at least two years as it undergoes the traditional Méthode Champenoise process. Some current vintages that are available this year are our Seven Stars Equinox, a clubSEVEN exclusive and Seven Stars Polaris, being released next month. Vancouver wine critic Tim Pawsey recently reviewed the two wines in Quench Magazine's July/August issue this summer. He wrote:
Seven Stars Equinox, 2015 - 93 points
"A very stylish single vineyard Traditional Method sparkling 100% Pinot Noir, sourced from long established Sperling Vineyards. Pretty, medium salmon in the glass, fine bubbles and a pleasing mousse. Citrus, red berry and some brioche notes precede a lively, balanced and well-textured palate; highlighted by delicate strawberry and cranberry notes supported by fresh acidity through the finish."
Seven Stars Polaris, 2016 - 92 points
"Traditional method Blanc de Blanc, 100% Chardonnay. A stream of fine bubbles and gentle mousse, aromas of brioche and orchard fruits followed by a well-structured palate of citrus, green apple and stone fruit, with generous but still lean mouthfeel underpinned by excellent acidity through a persistent finish."