2012 Nuit Blanche is a handcrafted, organic bio-wine with a rich and toasty nose with aromatic spice, hay and green apple on the nose. Smoke and flinty notes compliments a creamy palate concentrated with passion fruit and candied pineapple. Shy in its youth, this vintage will benefit from careful cellaring.
- 92 points, rate by Rick VanSickle.
And there it is again, Rosomel Vineyard; it shines brightly on the Beamsville Bench, the vineyard built and nurtured by Roman Prydatkewycz and now in the hands of Thiel who tends to it with loving care. I can’t help but think of Prydatkewycz, now with the Vineland Estate team, every time I sip one his former vineyard’s wines now owned and made by Hidden Bench. Such a gentleman, such a brilliant viticulturalist. The 2012 Nuit Blanche is gorgeous, a blend of Sauvignon Blanc (95.5%) and the rest Semillon, that lovely grape that suffered so greatly during the terrible winter of 2014. There is grapefruit, melon, hay, baked apple, gunflint and layers of fine oak spice on the nose. On the palate, there is an integrated concentration of fruit with a lovely kiss of cream and spice, yet it is young and needs time to impart its greatest pleasures. It will come, oh, it will come.
- 91 points, rate by Rémy Charest.
There is a lot of substance in this wine. It has an elegant, aristocratic, generous nose, and shows the beauty of barrel-aging good sauvignon blanc (and blending it with a bit of sémillon). The oak is a little intense, at this point, but it should likely blend in with time, as the wine shows up fairly tight and young, with very nice white fruit notes and great length and precision. Give it a few years in the cellar, it should have lots to give.
- 90 points, rate by David Lawrason.
Still the leading ‘white Bordeaux’ inspired bottling from Niagara, the 2012 is 95% sauvignon blanc and 5% semillon, which was fermented with indigenous yeast in French oak barrels, and aged on lees for six months. The warm year has produced a very rich, warm example with ripe and exotic aromas of candied orange and lime, evergreen, gentle wood smoke and some candle wax character. It’s quite full bodied, warm, generous and spicy, with excellent length. I tasted the 2005 vintage alongside this 2012, and the 2005 was still in excellent condition. This may lack a little firmness to age as well, but certainly should hit the end of this decade. Tasted January 2015
In 2012 we exposed bunches at fruit set to sunlight by removing leaves on the east side of the canopy only, while providing some shade on the west side to protect against sunburn. Green harvest was performed at the start of véraison and we only left the healthiest bunches that were well exposed to sunlight in order to promote ripening, concentration of flavours and the expression of terroir.
The grapes were handpicked; gently hand sorted and whole bunch pressed. The juice was then left to settle at 5⁰C for 24 hours prior to racking after which it was warmed up to 18⁰C and then transferred to barrel. Fermentation occurred naturally with indigenous yeasts and the barrels were stirred weekly during fermentation to increase mouth feel and creaminess. The 2012 Nuit Blanche was blended in March 2013 and filtered before bottling.
About Hidden Bench Vineyards & Winery
Owner Harald Thiel’s uncompromising attention to detail has landed Hidden Bench in the Canadian Wine Awards’ top 10 every year since the winery opened in 2007 – with Nuit Blanche named Canadian White Wine of the Year. This small, yet modern and sophisticated, estate winery is tucked away on Locust Lane in the Beamsville Bench appellation, essentially hidden by vines. HB’s primary focus is to showcase the terroir of the Beamsville Bench through their award-winning Pinot Noir, Chardonnay and Riesling offerings. Limited-edition rarities like Tête de Cuvée Chardonnay are made in special vintages as well.
Each and every wine at Hidden Bench is made under strict conditions:
- Sustainable practices, which means 100% organically certified fruit from only estate vineyards.
- Individually bunch sorted white wine varietals and bunch sorted and then individual berry sort all of the red wine varietals.
- Non-interventionist, minimalist winemaking approach with gentle handling of the wine throughout the winemaking process.
- All wines are made with wild yeast and anything that doesn’t ferment naturally is inoculated and declassified into the winery’s bistro label.
Our mission is produce internationally recognized, superior wines made exclusively with estate grown fruit from the Beamsville Bench VQA sub-appellation that are reflective of this unique terroir. The quality of our wine will be a product of our passion for uncompromising excellence and attention to detail, and will inspire us to continue, and our clients to value and to seek out our wines. We will achieve our mission and vision by working together in a spirit of teamwork and mutual respect in accordance with our core values and above all while enjoying what we do and having a lot of fun, creating and sharing our wine.
We believe that the Beamsville Bench’s unique terroir and our sustainable viticulture practices, coupled with our low-yield crop management will provide Hidden Bench with the best fruit, producing wines of pronounced character complexity and bearing a sense of place and time.
We believe that we can enhance the winemaking and viticulture process by the selective application of the latest technology in the vineyard and the winery while respecting the traditional non-interventional winemaking style and sustainability that we embrace.
We are only stewards of the land and, as such, we will apply sustainable best practices in the vineyard and the winery to reduce the impact of our footprint on the environment, our neighbours, and society as a whole. We will use environmentally sound practices and products wherever possible in the making and marketing of our wines and all the while protecting the resources and infrastructure of Hidden Bench.
An ongoing passion for excellence and a contagious enthusiasm will be the cornerstones of the approach we embrace to achieve our mission and vision. Our ongoing uncompromising applied attention to detail will help distinguish and differentiate our wines and our winery from our contemporaries.
Specialty: Gluten-free, Organic