RKS Wine: The Great Viognier Search

For Canadian wine drinkers say “Viognier” and you might receive a blank look. That’s too bad as it can make a great wine and an ideal companion for crustaceans. It matches well with simply prepared lobster, crab and shrimp. There aren’t great quantities of it produced in Canada. The most recent Canadian Viognier I encountered was on a pre surge COVID retreat in Niagara where I encountered a rather poor Fielding Estate Viognier. Oh and Niagara Falls was deserted and was incredibly enjoyable!  There have been some decent lower priced varieties coming from the South of France some of which have been top notch. In this case from Pays D’Oc we have a $12.95 Guillaume Aurèle 2020 Viognier.

As for aromatics this golden coloured wine has that familiar Viognier signature peaches, honey, tangerine and pineapple. You might want to summarize that as tropical. On the palate a quasi creaminess to it with a bit of pineapple, mango and spice. A moderate almost long finish with a bit of heat not surprising given its 13.5%. Outperforms its price. You can find “value” in Southern France. This is no cheap n cheerful plonk!

The Liquor Control Board of Ontario Vintages catalogue states tuna steak, roast pork or chicken curry is a good food match and that makes sense although I think a tuna steak would suit a Pinot Noir/Pinot Nero/Blaufränkisch/Fetasca Neagra more than a Viognier but the next time I have a tuna steak perhaps I should try it with a Viognier? In any case a good sipper.

(Guillaume Aurèle Viognier 2020 IGP Pays d’Oc, Alma Cersius France, $12.95, Liquor Control Board of Ontario # 380741, 750 mL, 13.5%, Robert K. Stephen A Little Birdie Told Me So Rating 90/100).

Published by Robert K Stephen (CSW)

Robert K Stephen writes about food and drink, travel, and lifestyle issues. He is one of the few non-national writers to be certified as a wine specialist by the Society of Wine Educators, in Washington, DC. Robert was the first associate member of the Wine Writers’ Circle of Canada. He also holds a Mindfulness Certification from the University of Leiden and the University of Toronto. Be it Spanish cured meat, dried fruit, BBQ, or recycled bamboo place mats, Robert endeavours to escape the mundane, which is why he has established this publication. His motto is, "Have Story, Will Write."

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