Wine Review: Hidden Bench Pinot Noir Felseck Vineyard Beamsville Bench 2016

hidden benchDistinctive wines from this widely respected, artisan producer in southern Ontario, Canada, especially the wines sourced from their Felseck Vineyard. An elegant Chardonnay was enticing, as I tasted through their lineup, but this wild and crazy Pinot Noir stood out. The charming nose belies a beast lurking in the shadows.

A pretty, rose-scented halo surrounds ingratiating cherry and cranberry aromas set off by a layer of smoke. But in the mouth a narrow seam of sweet cherry is hemmed in by soaring flinty top notes and firm, voluminous tannins that come on early and persist through a long, tart finish. Powerful but not in the high alcohol, full bodied sense; its a sinewy strength, active and tautly expansive. A bright, brassy demeanor, ecstatic and turbulent, it pairs nicely with the fraught anxiety of Alice Merton’s Lash Out.

An original expression of Pinot Noir melding classic charm with a ravaged, rageful soul.

Technical Notes: Unfined, unfiltered , aged for 14 months in French Oak: 17% new, 17% 2nd fill and the rest older for 10 months; racked and returned to 17% new, 17% 2ndfill, 32% Stainless and the rest older oak for a further 4 months. Settled in stainless steel for 3 months prior to bottling, unfiltered. From a hot dry vintage, soils a mix of limestone and glacier till.

Score: 92

Price: $42 (Purchase here)

Alc: 13%

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