New in Ontario Wineries

• Order the following two wines by the case for delivery to home, office or restaurant from Closson Chase or pick it up from the winery in Hillier, Prince Edward County. 

****1/2 drink or cellar  Oh Canada!
Closson Chase ‘Closson Chase Vineyard/South Clos’ Chardonnay 2013 

VQA Prince Edward County $39.95 12.5% alcohol 
The single-vineyard, hand-picked fruit was cultured-yeast fermented, underwent malolactic conversion in barrel and spent 17 months ageing in French oak, 20% new. It leaps from the glass with robust aromas of toasty oak, gunflint and piquant spice. Baked apple, ginger-flecked crème brulée, stone fruit and racy lemon curd coat the palate, medium-full bodied, creamy textured. The endless finish of spice, citrus and tang is absolutely delectable. This stylish, showy Chardonnay will reward another 12 months in bottle, drinking on to 2019. (Vic Harradine)

**** drink now  Oh Canada!
Closson Chase ‘Closson Chase Vineyard’ Pinot Noir 2012 

VQA Prince Edward County $29.95 11.5% alcohol 
A tapestry of savoury-tinged aromas fill the air, developed after spending 28 months ageing in French oak—cedar, truffle oil, pencil shavings and tobacco leaf. The mid-weight, lightly textured, sweet and tang stream of pie cherry, crabapple jelly and strawberry/rhubarb compote bathes the palate persisting through the dry, mouth-watering finish and aftertaste. This has structure, balance and that ‘je ne sais quoi’ quality of fine Pinot Noir. (Vic Harradine)

• Purchase the following wine, and reviewed wine in the May 27 newsletter, by the case for daily home, restaurant or office delivery online from Creekside Estate or pick up from the winery in Jordan. This Viognier is slated for a late-summer, 2015 winery release.

***** drink now Exceptional Value!  Oh Canada!
Creekside Estate ‘Queenston Road Vineyard - Reserve’ Viognier 2013
VQA St. David’s Bench $29.95 13.5% alcohol
Aromas of honeysuckle, baklava and notes of hazelnut abound in this amazing expression of Niagara Viognier. It bathes the palate with a surge of unctuous flavours that are pure ambrosia—honeyed apricot, blood orange and lemon curd to the fore. It’s good weight and heavenly textured with a monumental finish and aftertaste—palate flavours replay along with sweet vanilla, piquant spice and a notion of grapefruit pith. This limited edition, only 150 cases, is 100% Viognier, fermented and aged 9 months in oak on its lees—stunning wine. (Vic Harradine)

• Order the following wines by the case for delivery to home, office or licensee from Grange of Prince Edward along with those reviewed in the April 28, 2015 and May 13, 2015 winecurrent newsletter.

***1/2 drink now  Oh Canada!
Grange of Prince Edward ‘Select’ Cabernet Franc 2011

VQA Prince Edward County $20.95 13.5% alcohol
Dark berry fruit, cracked black pepper and roasted herb aromas introduce a light-on-its-feet flow of candied red cherry and red currant jelly, balanced and brimming with confectionary sweet and racy tang through the mouth-watering finish. It’s ready for sipping now with enough oomph, charm and balance to pour well with pork, veal or roast chicken. (Vic Harradine)

**** drink now  Oh Canada!
Grange of Prince Edward ‘Estate’ Pinot Noir 2013

VQA Prince Edward County $16.95 (230227) 12.5% alcohol
This is balanced, sprightly and damn good value. Light-ruby hued with quiet aromas of earthy notes, spice and red berry fruit, this streaks across the palate with a laser-like stream of tangy pie cherry, cranberry and notions of passion fruit. It’s light on its feet with nerve and verve and purity of fruit that lingers on the finish and aftertaste. Pour with grilled duck breasts or roast chicken.

*** drink now  Oh Canada!
Grange of Prince Edward ‘Lot 2 – Limited Production’ Riesling Brut 2013

Product of Canada $29.95 11.7% alcohol 
This off-dry, flavourful sparkling wine has light mousse with plenty of sweet flavour on the palate. Aromas of flinty slate and spiced baked apple set the table for a flavourful mouthful of sweet apple candy and notions of candied pear that bathe the palate replaying on the finish and aftertaste. Good to go now as an aperitif. (Vic Harradine)

• Purchase the following wine by the case for daily home, restaurant or office delivery online from Featherstone or pick up from the winery in Vineland along with wine reviewed in the May 27, 2015 newsletter.

**** drink now  Oh Canada!
Featherstone Pinot Noir 2011

VQA Twenty Mile Bench $24.95 (372425) 12.0% alcohol
Rosewood, savoury notes and red cherry aromas introduce a juicy mouthful of red fruit—cherry and currant—interwoven with wisps of tart rhubarb. There’s good balance, and red fruit flavour persisting throughout. It’s medium bodied with decent mouth feel and a lengthy, lip-smacking aftertaste. Pour alongside coq au vin. (Vic Harradine)

• Here’s a great wine that also sports a heart-warming aside—it’s named for owner/winemaker David Johnson’s mother, Joyce, and recently won, ‘Trophy for Best Sparkling Wine of the Year’, at the All Canadian Wine Championships.

****1/2 drink now  Oh Canada!
Featherstone ‘Joy - Premium Cuvée’ Sparkling Wine 2011

VQA Twenty Mile Bench, Niagara Peninsula $34.95 (310334) 12.5% alcohol
From the festooned crown-cap closure to the very last bubble, this Chardonnay - Traditional Method sparkler’s a winner. It delivers persistent, fine-bead bubbles and aromas of orchard fruit and citrus. Stylish and flavourful, the palate’s treated to lively river of lemon curd and lime yoghurt interlaced with nectarine and notions of Granny Smith apple carried along by oodles of delightful bubbles. It finishes crisp, refreshing and value packed. Bravo! (Vic Harradine) 

• Order the following wine, along with wine from previous May 13 and May 27, 2015 winecurrent newsletters, by the mixed case of 6 or 12 for daily home, restaurant or office delivery in Ontario online from Huff Estates or pick up from the winery in Bloomfield, Prince Edward County.

Lauren Harper stepped off the plane returning from Europe with a bottle tucked under her arm. A customs officer eyed it suspiciously. She smiled and offered, ‘A bottle of wine; got it for Stephen.’ The officer nodded, ‘Great trade, Ma’am.’ Here’s another great trade, Tawse Winery from Niagara and Huff Estates from Prince Edward County swapped fruit in 2013. Huff gave Tawse Chardonnay from their vaunted South Bay Vineyard and Tawse sent Huff Pinot Noir from their premiere Quarry Road Vineyard—each made wine with the others grapes. Here’s a review of the Pinot Noir Huff made from the Niagara, Quarry Road Vineyard fruit.

****1/2 drink or cellar  Oh Canada!
Huff Estates ‘Quarry Road Vineyard’ Pinot Noir 2013

VQA Vinemount Ridge, Niagara Peninsula $30.00 12.5% alcohol
Wood smoke, grilled herbs and rose petal aromas abound as precursor to a tang-laden stream of red currant, raspberry and flecks of minerality bathing the palate. It’s medium bodied with structure, lovely mouth feel and excellent purity of fruit persisting through the lip-smacking finish with a wisp of oak on the aftertaste—fermented and aged 14 months in oak tank. Another 12 months in bottle will enhance this already top-notch red. Kudos to Tawse for the fruit and Huff winemaker, Fréderic Picard, for the masterful handing of it. (Vic Harradine)

• And speaking of Tawse, the following wines are available by the case for daily home, office or restaurant delivery online from Tawse or can be picked up at the winery on Cherry Ave. in Vineland. 

***** drink or cellar  Oh Canada!
Tawse Winery Meritage 2011 

VQA Niagara Peninsula $59.95 13.5% alcohol
This almost even split of Merlot, Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon delivers aromas of dark berry fruit, graphite, cedar and grilled herbs. It dazzles the palate with a surge of sweet and tang—ripe mulberry and juicy red raspberry meet pie cherry and racy red currant. It’s medium bodied with textured mouth feel, good structure and a well-integrated 18 months in French oak barrel underpinned by fine-grained tannin. The finish is dry, balanced and lip-smacking. Aerate/decant three hours, popping corks now to 2023. (Vic Harradine)

**** drink now  Oh Canada!
Tawse Winery ‘Limestone Ridge’ 2013
VQA Twenty Mile Bench $21.95 10.0% alcohol
This Limestone Ridge, single-vineyard fruit was farmed organically and biodynamically. Stylish aromas of green plum, minerality, lime and Kiwi fruit herald a delicious wash of Key lime pie and lime cordial with hints of piquant spice and flinty/mineral notes. Medium bodied and brimming with tang, it finishes lengthy and mouth-watering good. Pour alongside steamed mussels in cream sauce. (Vic Harradine)

• The following wine is available by the case for home, office or restaurant delivery from Strewn or can be picked from the winery on Lakeshore Road, Niagara-on-the-Lake. 

**** drink now  Oh Canada!
Strewn Winery Cabernet Rosé 2014
VQA Niagara Peninsula $14.15 13.0% alcohol
This Rosé blend—67% Cabernet Sauvignon, 33% Cabernet Franc—delivers an aromatic nose of freshly sliced strawberry, red pepper jelly and raspberry. It bathes the palate with a fruity, tangy wash of cherry cordial, sugared and grilled red grapefruit and red currant jam. It’s medium bodied with good texture and long finish. Pour with charcuterie, roast chicken or smoked salmon. (Vic Harradine)