Blue Mountain Vineyards is one of my favourite B.C. wineries and a real hidden gem. Their wines are rarely seen in liquor stores since their wines are mostly sold directly to their loyal following of customers through their website.
The Mavety family has owned Blue Mountain Vineyards since the 1970s. They started out growing grapes for other wineries but in the early 1990s, they began producing their own wine. They have kept their winery small and family run. They focus on making really good quality wines and they have kept prices for their wines at affordable levels.
Let’s start with their sparking wines. Their Brut, Brut Rose and Brut Reserve are some of the top sparkling wines made in B.C. They would be considered of a more fruity style of sparkling wine with good acidity, fruitiness and creaminess. But their Gold Label Brut, priced at $27.90 is a really great value and won’t disappoint you at all. I am not sure many people would be able to tell the Gold Label Brut apart from a Champagne in a blind taste test.
Then they have an excellent selection of white wines. They make wonderful Pinot Blanc, Pinot Gris, Sauvignon Blanc and Chardonnay wines. It is really hard to pick a favourite, but if I had to choose one, I really like their Pinot Blanc, which again is one of the finest offerings of B.C. white wine. Pinot Blanc is a fairly bland grape so it is really hard to make a distinctive Pinot Blanc. Blue Mountain’s Pinot Blanc is crispness with stone fruit/tropical flavours and an interesting mineral twist at the end. Very much like an Alsace wine only with a bit more body. At $24.90, it is an exceptional wine. A close second would be their Pinot Gris which has citrus, grapefruit and orange grind flavour and aromas. When I order, I try to make sure I get some of each of their white wine offerings available at that time as they are all drink well right away and are delicious.
But where Blue Mountain really shines is their Pinot Noir. I have long felt and still believe that Blue Mountain makes the best Pinot Noir in B.C. If you can find it, their Estate Cuvee, priced at $34.80 is a tried and true great Pinot where there are cherry and blackberry flavours with a nice balanced finish.
If you are wiling to spend a bit more, Blue Mountain also produces a Reserve Pinot Noir at $44.90 which is a bit heavier and will need more time to really get to its peak. At the beginning of last year, Blue Mountain started producing single vineyard Pinot Noir, with each bottling expressing the terroir and location of that vineyard. They are all priced at around $54. It is really interesting to taste two bottles together as you really get the sense of how location and soil can affect the taste of a wine. My current favourite is their River Flow Block 23 Pinot Noir. It is smoky and gravely on the aroma with bright cherry and raspberry flavours. It does need two to three years of aging to hit its peak.
Blue Mountain is in good hands of Matt and Christie Mavety, the second generation of the family to run this winery. Their wines can be purchased from their website but their product sells out fairly quickly so just get what you can and enjoy! Until next time, happy drinking!
Tony Kwan is the Richmond News' new columnist. Lawyer by day, food and wine lover by night, Kwan is an epicurean who writes about wine, food and enjoying all that life has to offer.