Wine Photo Credit: Tinhorn Creek

Free wine aging available now!

Tinhorn Creek goes to the time (and expense) to age their 2Bench red before releasing it—so you don’t have to.

Tinhorn Creek 2Bench Red 2012 $27

Imagine you’re a widget maker. You spend the better part of the year creating these perfect widgets and when you’re finally done you’re told you can’t sell them—for three years. You’d probably quit the widget business. But the scenario isn’t all that different for a winemaker—they only make money when the wine is for sale, so making the voluntary decision to hold the wine back until it’s ready to drink is huge. And then not charging any more for the service? That’s crazy enough that it has to be taken advantage of.

I was thinking of this tough economic rule a few weeks back when I was having a bottle of the 2011 2Bench Red from Tinhorn Creek, which until about a week ago was, amazingly, the latest release of this wine. It’s a “serious” wine, by which I mean it had a tannic profile that was not meant for easy quaffing, but the time since it was harvested had really allowed the parts of the wine—Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and a touch of Petite Verdot—to mesh beautifully in a package that recalled a well-made St. Emilion. It was a cool year and the wine had a nice dose of acid as well, making it a wine that, had I tasted it blind, I would never had guessed it was from the Okanagan.

All of which leads me to the 2012 version. It’s still tight and it has quite a bit higher alcohol content thanks to a warmer growing season in 2012. It’s also eased off on the Cabernet Franc in favour of more Cabernet Sauvignon (hence the tannic tightness), but there’s a classic bouquet of cassis, graphite and dried cherries that has me pinning high hopes on it. And notwithstanding the generosity of Tinhorn for cellaring it for you, it still needs at least a year more—which is the least you can do seeing as how they give you two years for free.

A well priced addition to your cellar.

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