Daniel Bontorin recently created Bottega Wine Studio™ as the parent for both Seven Directions Wine and his new wine brand Bottega Wines™. Bottega can translate to a number of meanings in English depending on the noun it is used with, but in this instance, it means “studio”.
Seven Directions Wine will remain rosé exclusive while Bottega Wines™ will provide small lot red and white wines from Okanagan grapes. Varieties like Merlot, Cabernet Franc and Viognier. Daniel currently crafts his BC wines in a facility in West Kelowna but plans to acquire his own wine facilities in the near future.
Daniel Bontorin the Winemaker
I first met Daniel last year when tasting wine at Volcanic Hill Winery. I immediately saw his passion for winemaking and his enthusiasm for telling you a story about his wines. He has a solid reputation for making rich, deep, long-lived reds, supple aromatic crisp whites and smooth French style rosés. Daniel graduated top 5 in the winery assistant program through Okanagan University College in 2000. You can find out more about his winemaking experiences here.
Bottega Wines™ New Releases
Bottega Wines™ Viognier 2016
Viticulture and Winemaking
The Viognier grapes grew on a hot gravel bed in Osoyoos. They were planted East to West, in well-drained soil, so they had a nice lake view! The vines were spur pruned and cropped to yield only 3 tons per acre. The grapes were hand harvested on September 15, 2016, at 22 Brix when Daniel tasted the first flavour burst in the berries. The grapes pressed as whole clusters to preserve the acidity and retain the mouthfeel. Then inoculated with cultured yeast and cool fermented in stainless steel tanks. The fermentation temperature was gradually increased to 18 °C. The juice vigorously aerated to promote the formation of complex aromatics. The wine finished with sur-lee ageing and weekly Bâtonnage for six months. Production was 200 cases.
pH 3.20 TA 6.8 g/l RS 4.0 g/l Alcohol 13.0 %
This is a light to medium bodied Viognier. The wine has a light floral aroma, make sure the wine isn’t overly chilled if you drink during the winter. On the palate, the fruit forward wine displays a multitude of flavours – stone fruits, peach, pear and also kiwi, mandarin orange and hazelnut with a creamy finish. Well balanced with good acidity and a refreshingly light touch of bitterness. An ideal patio wine for the summer. Excellent when paired with BBQ chicken.
Bottega Wines™ Merlot 2015
Viticulture and Winemaking
The Merlot grapes are certified organically and grown by the outstanding Kozier Organic Vineyard on the Naramata Bench with its ideal clay formations. The water-stressed grape picked as single clusters. Yield limited to 2.5 tons per acre. The grapes picked on September 24, 2015, at 26.5 Brix with a small 30-pound picking lug to minimize pre-mature crushing. Destemming achieved an 85% whole berry structure. Then hand dumped into one stainless steel tank and one macro bin. Inoculated with cultured yeast after a 4-day cold soak. Gradually the temperature was increased to 30 °C with plunging the cap 3 times daily. The total length of the maceration was 40 days. Basket pressed and transferred to 100% new tight grain burgundy barrels for 12 months too allow full Malolactic conversion. Production was only 49 Cases.
pH 3.42 TA 7.8 g/l RS 2.9 g/l Alcohol 14.5 %
A rich and creamy Merlot. After decanting, the wine bursts from the glass with aromas of blackberries, cassis, liquorice and leather. On the palate, black cherry, black plum, mocha, white pepper and savoury herbs. Dry, full-bodied with a round texture and enough tannins to balance the soft fruit flavours. While the Merlot is great to drink now, I would recommend cellaring for up to 10 years to truly reap the rewards of this handcrafted wine.
To order these excellent BC wines please visit the Bottega Wines™ website.
Daniel provided the following comments on this year’s harvest. “Very balanced fruit. Many of the whites had to be picked early because the summer was so hot. The spring was cool with plenty of rain but the grapes were able to catch up with the summer heat. The yields are down, below average and maybe half what they were last year. It was a bad year for wildfires but smoke taint shouldn’t be an issue.
One of the other wine Daniel makes – Seven Direction, he expects the Pinot Noir quality for the Rosé to be better than last year. Yields of around 4.8 tons/acre for the Pinot Noir and 4 Tons/acre for the Cabernet Franc. He has increased Rosé production to meet his customer demands. All of the 2016 and 2015 production of around 600 cases is sold out!”
“Next year we will release a Cabernet Franc for Bottega Wines™. We plan to remain at the 1200 case production level. We also plan to lease space for a wine shop for next year. There are plans for a third wine label – K Little Vintners. This will be a less formal branding. A more fun easy drinking style of wine with bright, funky labels.”
In conclusion, the newly released Bottega Wines™ are excellent quality, so be sure to check them out and enjoy.