Gehringer Brothers Estate Winery has Pinots for every taste, and this year the awards have been rolling in for one in particular. While they have been known for their portfolio of Rieslings (they make five), Pinot Blanc, Gris, and Noir are now making waves.
Pinot Blanc has always been the most underrated wine in BC. “A lot of Pinots have a little scratchiness because of the phenolic characteristics,” says Walter Gehringer, explaining a possible reason why some people may avoid the variety. “Ours doesn’t have that.” That explains the smooth lemon, herbal, and floral notes on the 2012 Pinot Blanc, a Gold medalist at both the All Canadian and Indy International wine competitions and Silver medalist at the Northwest Wine Summit this year. “It has a broad appeal, even for people who don’t like Pinot Blanc.”
Pinot Noir, currently a more stylish variety, is also a major part of their red portfolio and there are two different versions available. The Private Reserve is widely available while the Optimum, also a Gold medalist at the Indy International, is produced in much smaller quantities. Depending on the vintage, the Optimum could be crafted by blending different lots of Pinot Noir together or selected individually from one particularly special lot. “It varies from year to year,” says Walter. “Sometimes the result of the blend is better than any of the individual components. That applies for the Optimum Pinot Gris as well.” The Private Reserve Pinot Noir shows flavours of bright red cherries and earth while the Optimum exhibits a deeper profile of dark cherries, cocoa, and wet earth.
Vintage 2013 was full of adventure. “I think the overall vintage is going to be really good this year,” says Walter.  No doubt the anticipation from customers will be growing throughout the winter.
~ Luke Whittall