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Established by the Shaunessy and Oldfield families on the South Okanagan’s legendary Golden Mile Bench in 1993, Tinhorn Creek is a very special winegrowing project, comprising 150 acres of spectacular vineyards in two distinct areas, one on either side of the valley. The two vineyards have significantly different soils, exposures, and microclimates. This is a big advantage, providing the opportunity to cultivate a wide range of grape varieties in optimum conditions. From the beginning, the...
Beautiful garnet red colour showing barrel ageing to perfection, with a youthful appearance. Nose opens with chocolate and black currant, cassis liquor, and blueberry pie. The wine has wonderful balance of power and elegance, with layers of chocolate and fresh red and black fruits. The finish is long and supple making this wine approachable now, but the acidity and tannin will go the distance and will reward significant cellaring.
Hot and dry summer, typical of the South Okanagan, but with a cool October allowing picking of Bordeaux Varietals at the end of October, selecting the fruit at perfect ripeness and balance. The three main varietals come from the Diamondback Vineyard on the Black Sage Bench which has free draining sandy soil, giving the wine plenty of power and intensity, with smooth tannins. The Malbec and Petit Verdot from the Golden Mile Bench vineyard yield beautiful acids and tannins to the wine. A very high quality vintage, there was no disease or pest pressure and we did moderate leaf thinning and green harvesting to ensure only the highest quality fruit made it into the winery.
The grapes were destemmed and partially crushed, leaving some whole berries and pumped to open-top fermenters and stainless steel tanks for fermentation. For some blocks special cold tolerant yeast strains are used and wines are fermented quite cool (~10-11C), while others are allowed to ferment naturally with no added yeast. These fermentations typically are warmer and are much less vigorous, leading to a long, slow (6-8 weeks long) gentle extraction of colour, tannin and flavour. The wines are then pressed and racked for malolactic fermentation and ageing. The wines were racked to tank for blending in spring 2016, and then returned to barrel for a further eight months, for a total of 24 months of barrel ageing.
- 92 Points -
After 23 years of crafting wines from the estate’s Diamondback Vineyard on Black Sage Bench and Tinhorn Creek Vineyard on the Golden Mile Bench, Tinhorn finally has its flagship red wine: The Creek. And it was well worth waiting for. It’s a blend of 53% Cabernet Sauvignon, 19% Merlot, 17% Cabernet Franc, 9% Malbec and 2% Petit Verdot that was pressed and racked to 40% new French and Hungarian oak barrels for malolactic fermentation and ageing. The wines were racked to tank for blending in spring 2016, and then returned to barrel for a further eight months, for a total of 24 months of barrel ageing. It’s about sheer elegance on the nose, a sum of its parts, showing blackberries, cherries, black licorice, graphite, cassis and toasted oak spice and vanilla. It shows its teeth on the palate with a firm foundation of ripe tannins and generous fruit, spice, campfire smoke and earth. It is but a baby at this point and needs time to all calm down to fully appreciate the beauty. Wait for it, it is the new flagship wine, after all.See detailed press review
- 91 Points -
Beppi Crosariol, September 2017
Tinhorn's new flagship wine is a blend of 53-per-cent cabernet sauvignon with support from merlot, cabernet franc, malbec and a splash of petit verdot – a Bordeaux-style red blend, in other words. There's spicy tang here from 24 months in French and Hungarian oak barrels, to be sure, which serves as a lively counterpoint to the seductive dark-berry fruit. It's very dry in the end, with fine-grained, dusty tannins that should help the wine evolve well for years in the cellar.See detailed press review