September 17, 2015 | By RJS Craft Winemaking
Winemakers know that crafting a wine destined to achieve a near perfect score requires both skill and a touch of finesse. And one particularly important skill is the art of blending, or as it is called in the world of wine: assemblage. In pursuit of making the best of the best, winemakers around the world are constantly innovating by blending grape varieties, each grape with its own unique personality, as a way to achieve complex flavours in their wines.
Nowadays wine lovers are exposed to so many wine styles they have developed both sophisticated palates and clear stylistic preferences. Some may admire the citrus and green apple aromas of a fine Pinot Grigio, while others may enjoy the pronounced tropical fruit notes in a luscious Muscat. Thanks to skillful winemakers who are able to balance each individual flavour so it neither overpowers the others nor fades away, today’s wine consumer can enjoy distinctive wines with aromas and flavours that reflect the personality of the winemaker who created that particular vintage.
Following the lead of the world’s great winemakers, last year the RJS Craft Winemaking team launched a red blend we called Winemaker’s Trio Red. The combination of Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah, and Zinfandel created a perfect balance of tannins and acidity to deliver a profile our craft winemakers love. The success of the Winemaker’s Trio Red led us to see the obvious… it’s time to treat our white wine lovers to a new, innovative blend as well.
The RJS Tasting Panel, led by our Winemaking R&D Support – Rachel Kvas, sampled a range of popular blended wines and tapped into the experiences of our RJS Academy stores’ wine experts to help define the best white blend for our craft winemakers. Rachel then used her winemaking training and expertise to develop a recipe. After weeks of trial and error, she created a new white wine blend that combines the refreshing crispness of Pinot Grigio with herbal grassy notes of Sauvignon Blanc and the fruitiness of Muscat (commonly known as Muscato). We think Rachel has developed a wine that is truly greater than the sum of its individual varietals.
An added feature of our new Winemaker’s Trio White is that craft winemakers can play a greater role in customizing their own wine to reach the taste and mouth-feel they desire. “When creating this kit, I provided suggestions on how each winemaker can adjust the level of sweetness or dryness in the finished wine to suit their own palate”, commented Rachel when asked what craft winemakers will appreciate most about this new kit.
This fall will be an exciting time for the winemakers at RJS Craft Winemaking as we launch the Winemaker’s Trio White. Craft winemakers have the opportunity to develop this tri-varietal blend into something worth sharing with even the most sophisticated wine lovers who appreciate the art of “assemblage”.
Research & Development Coordinator for Constellation Brands Canada
After years of having a passion for art & science, I completed an honours degree in Oenology and Viticulture from Brock University in the Niagara Peninsula. My education presented the opportunity to work closely on viticulture research and even took me to Tokaj, Hungary to further my experience with international wine styles. Today, I spend my days developing wine kits for Constellation Brands Canada.