A welcome addition to the wines from Sonoma currently available in the Canadian market, J Vineyards recently made its debut into BC and is already making a splash at private wine stores and select restaurants.
Making wines for more than 20 years, J Vineyards' focus is on traditionally made sparkling wines made from: Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Pinot Meunier, as well as single varietal wines such as: Chardonnay, Pinot Gris and Pinot Noir.
The J Vineyards project began in 1986 by Judy Jordan. Initially it was proposed as an outlet for making traditional method sparkling wines - a project that began at Judy Jordan's father's winery in Alexander Valley - Jordan.
Recently I tasted the entire line-up of wines that are now available in Canada and can safely say I was very pleased with them all. All present purity of fruit, they are generous and polished and extremely approachable.
J Cuvee 20 Brut NV is 49% Chardonnay with 49% Pinot Noir and 2% Pinot Meunier. This is an extremely fragrant sparkler floral, exotic citrus, Asian pear and star anise aromas that lead you to expect a sweeter palate. It is creamy and bright with a very dry, crisp finish. $30+
J Rose Brut NV is mostly Pinot Noir with 44 % Pinot Meunier. Vibrant berries, citrus and a suggestion of exotic spice. The palate is a bit firmer than the Cuvee 20, nice richness and finesse with a long creamy finish. $40.+
J California Pinot Gris, 2009 is made from grapes harvested in Clarksburg, Russian River Valley and Monterey. It is aromatic and very inviting with plenty of pear compote and citrus peel throughout. There is a hint of spiciness on the finish and a lingering mouthful of crisp citrus and creamy pear. Delicious. $25+
J Russian River Chardonnay, 2007 is a nice juxtaposition of creamy caramel oak and vibrant fruit. Buttery sweet caramel and citrus with melon aromas flow into a creamy spiced palate that lacks no fresh fruit. Very balanced, if you like oak in your Chard you'll like this one, if you don't like oak in your Chard you'll probably still like it. $45+
J Russian River Pinot Noir, 2007 the focus in making this Pinot Noir is a multi-step (triage) system to remove any unwanted unripe/overripe or stems before fermenting to ensure pure fruit flavours. And it has been achieved - the fruit is pristine, sweet berries and violets, hints of warm fruitcake spice and chocolate. It is velvety on the palate and far too quaffable to sit around for long. $50+