Just in case you were not privy to the wisdom, I’m here to put you in the know. Some phenomenal wine is made here in Ontario. A rather large and excited group at #ONWineChat talks about this very fact every Wednesday night. You can chime in or just eavesdrop. We also have some dedicated, propitious traffickers of the red, white and sparkling stuff, including Wines in Niagara, the Wine Council of Ontario, the Ontario Wine Society, Spotlight Toronto and Wine Align Cru.
If you are looking for an event that brings Ontario’s greatest wines, wineries and winemakers together, don’t miss CUVÉE WEEKEND 2013, taking place March 1 to March 3, 2013 in Niagara Falls and throughout the Niagara region.
Attending a wine festival is one way to spend three days away from the dolor and calamity of the city. Another way is to head north and leave the noisome and constant freezing/unfreezing behind. The freedom to seek peace and quiet is in itself a gift of something very special. It’s called time. Time to spend with family. Time to transcribe thoughts and notes, to watch a movie. Time to enjoy a glass of wine.
The kids clamber down through parapets of snow to the natural boathouse rink, a glassine envelope, like a reef’s teeming tide pool left behind by retreating waters. Inside is a sheltered 12′ x 40′ basin frozen in time with the lake laid out beyond the gate as far as the eye can see. Others bring the wine. Here are three calming selections to enjoy on such a winter’s day.
Trius Pinot Grigio 2011 (316414, $15.95) continues to throw smoke and amaze with its hue, this time reminiscent of crocus sativus linnaeus meets malachite green with an added fogging of rime. Herbal and balmy sweet, like pistachio halvah. Consistent with my previous note. “Out of the shell Ontario white.” 88 @TriusWines
Kunde Zinfandel 2007 (965921, $16.95) remains faithful in quiescence while we await the next incredibly valued vintage. The ’07’s bramble and brier are now more subtle, the sanguine notes now stanched. A Zinfandel in its later years, comfortable, content, grandfatherly. Enter retirement zin-city. 89 @KundeEstate @imbibersreport
Tawse Estate Chardonnay 2010 ($37.95) like its half-sister Quarry Road, stands firm and smacks stubbornly up to the heat of the vintage. Opaque green of agate stone. Combines the apples and citrus from Quarry with Robyn’s musk and pear, but also the searing, mineral tang of Hillside. The assemblage is the most fleshy and forthcoming Chardonnay of the lot. Promises the best of all Tawse’s worlds, without stealing the spotlight from its single vineyard sistren. 90 @Tawse_Winery @Paul_Pender
Winter tasting notes:
Boutari Grande Reserve 2007 (140111, $16.95) from the family @boutari is rusty and evinced of a slight, smokey corrosion though not yet nearly ancient, especially by Macedonian standards. Tough red, granting notes of smoked gyros, Kalamata olive and acetic, Bebecou apricot. Unique and worth a try. 88 @KolonakiGroup
Fielding Estate Cabernet/Syrah 2010 (258657, $24.95) from @RichieWine is a veritable smoked porcine charcuterie board sprinkled with potpourri. Black currant and fig, expertly extracted fruit in a ripe and round package. 88 @FieldingWinery
Creekside Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon 2007 (662247, $34.95) from @CreeksideWine offers up 31 months of sweet oak scents and flavours yet resists over-mochafication. Rarely does a Niagara Cab bask in such a rich and full-bodied bath like this robin red, Queenston Road Vineyard beauty. Currants, citrus and herbs make appearances. 89
Mocali Vigna Raunate Brunello Di Montalcino 2007 (162552, $46.95) is a pin-up babe indicative of the vintage, of crimson visage, flaunting a tanned and curvy figure. Brunello as a sexy twitter pic. Red cherry, smoky tobacco, mouth-puckering dried fruit. Spicy, sassy, ready to party. 90 @liffordwine
Altesino Brunello Di Montalcino 2007 (994095, $57.95) is not, contrary to the LCBO information page, a VQA wine. Offers instant permeate gratification with a stunning translucence studded by a faint, rustic and sweet cherry resonance. Fine, downy texture and corporeal substance for near wild heaven indulgence, followed by R.E.M. sleep. “My heart thrown open wide.” 91 @rogcowines
Château de Pez 2009 (202697, $58.95) is no kidding Johnny, this pirate in Saint-Estèphe clothing. Firm, cedar, mocha saveur and shakin’ all over. “Sends quivers down my backbone” and while it may be unapproachable today, this will aim to please when it settles down in ten years time. 90
And the fort still stands.
Good to go!