Tuesday, September 29, 2009

A week of Ontario wine…day 1

Have you heard the radio commercials or seen the TV commercials lately promoting the wines of Ontario? This is the Government of Ontario’s attempt to promote the wineries of Ontario as we head into our very busy harvest season. There is just one problem with their attempt…less than one quarter of the wineries in Ontario are receiving promotion time as a part of their attempt.
Now, the goal of my blog and of my business interests is to promote all Ontario wineries so I would be remiss if I did not go to all of the wine tastings that were featuring Ontario wineries. I did manage to go to most of them – I missed one due to a scheduling conflict – but this blog is going to be dedicated to the various outstanding wines I had a chance to try from all of these tastings. The first day of tastings featured Tawse Winery from the Beamsville Bench and Rosehall Run Vineyard of Prince Edward County.

Tawse Winery 2008 Foxcroft Block (Wismer Vineyard) Riesling
$22.00 per bottle
The aromatics on this particular wine are not strong but they are pleasantly there. Strong minerality and stone fruit make up the aromas of this particular wine with a good concentration of flavours on the palate. Mostly stone fruit with a slight hint of lemon on the palate, the finish has some substance to it…not quite long but definitely medium in length.

Rosehall Run Vineyards 2007 Rosehall Vineyard Chardonnay
$29.75 per bottle
Dan used mostly new barrels to make this barrel fermented Chardonnay and you can tell from its powerful nose and creamy texture. Stone fruit, pears and a hint of lemon make up the aromas and flavours with just a slight hint of butterscotch in the creamy palate. This wine is still developing in the bottle so what you taste one week could be enhanced a couple of weeks later. A pleasant, lingering finish makes this one of the most appealing Chardonnay’s I have tasted in recent months. Well done Dan.

Rosehall Run Vineyards 2007 Cabernet Franc Cold Creek
$29.75 per bottle
The aromas one this wine can only be described as WOW! Almost pure berry but with a thread of cedar weaving throughout, this wine is filled with equally powerful flavours. Raspberry, Cherry, Cedar smoke are just a few of the key players in your mouth when you sip this wine. The tannins are smoothed out making this a very enjoyable wine to drink now but, if you have the patience, there is no reason why you cannot age it for a year or so.

Rosehall Run Vineyards 2007 Rosehall Vineyard Pinot Noir
$37.75 per bottle
This wine is just very powerful – it’s the only way it can be described. Prince Edward County has become known for making phenomenal Pinot Noir in recent years and this is definitely one to add to the list of great examples using the Heartbreak Grape. This wine is an absolute medley of flavours and aromas – violets, cherries and cedar are the predominant notes but there is also the presence of kirsch, more floral and mineral.

Tawse Winery 2007 Robyn’s Block Chardonnay
$42.00 per bottle
This wine was made spending six months in tank and then twelve months in oak. The oak was all French oak and twenty percent of the barrels were new. The twenty percent new oak translates into a wine that has a slightly creamy palate but it does not have that strong, over powering, licking the side of a barrel, over oaking that Chardonnays of the past became known for. This is more of a kiss of oak with some smoky complexity along with apple and pear flavours. Although I have never been a huge fan of Chardonnay, this is one of the few Chardonnay’s from Niagara that I have always enjoyed. The current vintage definitely does not disappoint and I highly recommend picking up a bottle or two of it.

Now, in order to not make these blog entries too massive, because there were a number of outstanding wines tried this week and the next, I am dividing the entries up to the days that the wines were tasted. If you are interested in ordering any of these wines, please visit the wineries’ websites for ordering information.

Rosehall Run Vineyards
https://www.rosehallrun.com/aspx_orderwine/orderpage.aspx
(613) 399-1183
1-888-399-1183
Visit the tasting room and retail shop at 1243 Greer Road, Wellington

Tawse Winery
Phone: 905 562 9500
Fax: 905 562 9600
Email: info@tawsewinery.ca
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