2011 Blomidon White, Tidal Bay, Nova Scotia, Canada


The 2011 Blomdion White is my first foray into any maritime Canadian wine, and what great start it is. This is not the type of wine that kicks down doors, it arrives on a silver platter with handwritten note sealed with perfume. At a wispy 10% alcohol I can describe this wine as a Canadian version of Vinho Verde, if you can subtract the light carbonation and replace the aromas and taste with crisp calla lilly. It does deliver the same wonderful refreshing, light yet substantial joy that any good summer wine should.

 

On the nose you get a quite pure floral notes and maybe if you sniff real hard some orange. But this is not a cerebral wine, it is a shy summer nymph that lounges in your backyard reading drugstore paperbacks. Usually I avoid noting the colour of the wines I music match, because colour is very over rated and frankly not that indicative of the effect the wine will have on any sensation except for sight. This wine was almost colourless. Was it John Clesese who said that “American beer was like sex in a canoe… like f*cking close to water.” Mr. Cleese could easily recycle that line for the lack of colouration in this lovely wine.

 

Charmed by the aroma, I was afraid that the wine would be ruined by gobs of residual sugar. Not the case, and that is a good thing as acid in the wine isn’t overpowering but given it is a simple wine the focus is squarely on the fresh cut flowers.

 

In a wine world that has no shortage of newcomers, it is very fun to find something that is new and different. This wine isn’t a clone of anything you will find from established regions, and celebrates it’s uniqueness.

 

I will admit I am quite charmed by this Blomidon white. From what I gather the powers that be in the Tidal Bay area want to build a reputation based on sparkling wines. I would love to see what would happen if this blend of white wine grapes were given a Vinho Verde process and allowed to develop a slight carbonation – I think it could be quite a crowd pleaser.

 

Musical Match: Gene Maclellan came from Nova Scotia’s neighbouring province, Prince Edward Island (not the wine region of Prince Edward County in Eastern Ontario!) who managed to write some unforgettable country/pop/folk tunes that went on to become hits, most notably for Nova Scotia born Anne Murray. Snowbird remains her signature song 35 years later, and she has Gene to thank for that song. Chet Atkins did a stripped down version, which I really prefer. Same thing for this wine, nothing complicated. And the beauty of the song is that you know that Atkins needed to be a master of his trade to able to make the music sound so natural and lively. I think the winemakers at Blomidon Estate Winery might be on to something here!

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  • Preacher58

    The lightly carbonated white you want is NOVA7 by Benjamin Bridge, one of the Gaspereau Valley wineries about fifteen miles away from Blomidon. Eight or nine wineries now produce Tidal Bay to a set of strict standards. At the base of all blends is the L’Acadie hybrid grape which is producing exceptional whites (2010 was a banner year). The sparkling wines from Benjamin Bridge and L’Acadie (the winery, not the grape) are award-winning. Blomidon’s sparklers are coming along nicely as well.

    • steveshanahan

      Hello Preacher, or should I say Reverend Preacher?

      Thanks for the information, now that the inter provincial iron curtain is lifting, hopefully I will have a chance to get my hands on the NOVA7!

      I travelled to Nova Scotia about seven years back, and remember seeing some signs for wineries – but never got around to stopping – I was travelling with others and our car was acting funny.

      I really do regret not having stopped by though.  I was shocked at how little locals ate local foods.  My wife fell in love with some folks at a lobsterman’s warf when she told them she couldn’t find any lobster in the stores. They pullled two out of a trap, boiled them up for her and had to be convinced to take any money. 

      Back at the Campground we were the only ones cooking mussels, all the blue nosers were having hot dogs and drinking Budweiser. 

      Folks looked at us quite strangely when we cooked up a mess of mussels and downed them with a bottle of Fiano di Avellino!

      These wines might bring us back!

      • Laurence DeWolfe

        Just on holiday in the Digby area of NS and visited one of my favourite spots, Bear River. It’s an amazing little microclimate consistently warmer than the rest of the province. Two wineries there now, Annapolis Highlands (this years Pinot Gris sold put before it was bottled), and Bear River, a small operation run by a fussy old pair who are producing some great wines.. Brought home a treasured bottle of their 2010 Pinot Noir. As for beers, the crowd here knock back Bud Light and Coors Light by the gallon, followed by the local watered down IPA, Keith’s, which is the hot mass produced beer across Canada. Shame, when we have some of the best micro breweries in Canada. BTW if you have a dream and $900000 to spare, Bear River Winery is for sale. It’s on my Christmas list. Best wine tasted in the past year was a glass of Red Rooster Pinot Noir at the winery on the Naramata Bench in Penticton, BC. Paired with a lunch of Moroccan spiced food.

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