Sunday, July 29, 2007

Report from: Outer Limits of Ontario Wine Tasting - July 23, 2007

They came from far and wide (all over Ontario anyway) bringing with them the odd, the unique, the strange and the unforgettable … and that was just the staff. What I’m really talking about here are the “Outer Limits” wines that came from places like Ottawa, Warkworth, Woodstock, Prescott, St. Thomas, Port Perry, Cedar Springs and countless other places you never expected wine to come from. They are the forgotten wineries, the ones you’ve never heard of, the ones opening on the frontiers and the fringes in places you’ve seen on a map or drove through on your way to somewhere else, but never stopped in. Sure there are some you recognize like Southbrook, Stoney Ridge, Lakeview, Peninsula Ridge and Black Prince; but for every one you know there are four more you don’t: Ocala, Scotch Block, Green Gables, Rush Creek and Birtch Farms. They are the wineries the VQA forgot; they make wines from fruits that aren’t grapes and grapes that aren’t vinifera or are located in a non-DVA (Designated Viticultural Area). Wines with names like Cherries n’ Chocolate, Tufford Fine Port, Crimson Cranberry, TGI Frontenac, Back From the Dead Red and Cabaret Franc. At this, the first, and hopefully annual, Ontario Wine Society hosted event – and spearheaded by Larry “little fat wino” Patterson – over 40 wineries brought more than 212 wines to sip and sample so we could see what’s going on in The Outer Limits of Ontario’s winemaking community.

Now there is no way to taste this many wines in an afternoon and still walk away upright – so I foregoed the Southbrooks and Sunnybrooks of the tasting and concentrated more on those lesser known wineries and those off the beaten track. Even with that as a goal in mind I plowed through quite a few wines. And so without further ado I bring you my Outer Limits Awards for 2007:

Best Red:
Not that there were a ton of red wines, many of the wines showcased at this event were fruit based and hybrid grape varieties. But there is this new winery in Outer Mongolia, they call it Warkworth (north of Colbourne), called Oak Heights, where they made a 2006 Cabernet Franc ($19.95) that’s quite good. Some spicy pepper and black cherry flavours emerge as dominant.

Best White:
They have no winery as of, yet. They don’t have a price on any of their wines; though the wines will range between 12 and 20 dollars. Their website is still under construction, so I have no address for you. But aside from all that, Coffin Ridge (located in Meaford – part of Grey County) makes a couple of outstanding Rieslings. Terry Rayner, an amateur winemaker of some note, has crafted a Riesling Sur Lies (which spent 3 months on lees) that has good peach and lemon flavours; while his Riesling Sussreserve (in which sweet Riesling juice is added back to the finished wine) is minerally, peachy and limey. A touch of sweetness in each adds to the flavour profile – the Suss is a little sweeter (3) than the Sur Lies (1.5).

Best Non-Wine:
Some of the wineries took the opportunity to showcase something other than wines, though alcohol based none-the-less. Applewood Farm Winery, located north of Stouffville, brought a cider made entirely from raspberries called Crazy Eight ($2.50 – 341ml) - a dangerous summertime drink. 8.8% alcohol made from 100% raspberries, it’s light, refreshing and way too easy to consume way too much. This one’s a real winner. It tastes as good as you think it does, probably even better. And did I mention it’s all raspberry.

Best Good Weird Feeling:
I got this award name from an Odds album, and odd is how I can best describe the wines from Countryman’s Estate Winery (Prescott, Ontario). He had the must try wines of the show, not necessarily because they were so good, but because they were so unique. Tomato n’ Spice, Watermelon, Honeydew Melon … but the one that got jaws a flappin’ was Garden Salad ($13.95) made from cucumbers and smells and tastes just as the name suggests – lettuce and cucumbers. The Cantaloupe wine ($14.95) was also very interesting … I could actually taste the melon through the mid-palate.

Best Use of Icewine:
Tired of the same old same old when it comes to Vidal icewine? Well then it’s time to wonder over to Crown Bench Estates (Beamsville, Ontario). With their selection of infused icewines: Cranberry Ice ($34.95), Raspberry Ice ($34.95), Hot Ice ($36.95 – hot pepper infused), and Ambrosia ($39.95 – Belgian chocolate infused) – each wine starts off with a base of vidal icewine and then it is infused with its flavour profile. And man, aren’t these just the most delicious things; a real special occasion wine.

Best Use of Maple Syrup:
Just because I can I’m gonna give a shout out to Moon Shadows Estate Winery (Haliburton) for his always amazing Strawberry Shortcake and to Muskoka Lakes (Bala) for their Red Maple Dessert Wine. Read my reviews to find out why.

Best Prospect for the Future:
Up near Georgian Bay, Collingwood to be exact, you’ll find the retirement project of Robert Ketchin, Georgian Hills Vineyards. After plenty of test plantings he is growing Chardonnay, Seyval Blanc and a few other grapes on 15 acres. He also called into service the winemaking skills of Lindsay Puddicombe of Puddicombe Estates. The 2006 Chardonnay is light and flavourful with apples, pears and pineapple; the 2006 Seyval Blanc has a touch of sweetness (2) and peach, pineapple and pear as its main flavours – very friendly with lively acidity. A proper winery will open in a few years – good luck Robert.

Best New Use for Apples:
You have to hand it to The County Cider Company (Waupoos – Prince Edward County), one of the leaders for apple cider in Ontario. They have produced County 2000 Methode Champagnoise Sparkling Cider ($24.95) – made just like Champagne in a brut-style (dry – 0). Two years in bottle and on lees (dead yeast cells) fermented right in the bottle. Yeasty, appley goodness are the flavours you’ll get from this one – and it’s fun and refreshing with persistent little bubble – great for fooling your friends when you pull out your next bottle of bubbly.

Best Summertime Sipper:
Because of the lack of signage pointing to the upstairs tastings I had to do a whirlwind encounter with some of the wineries; and in some cases I even had to pour myself samples and make guesses as to what I was tasting (as the proprietor’s had already left to grab some dinner before the evening session). One of those self pours was a 2006 Aenigma (white - $12.50) from Villa Nova Estate Winery (near Simcoe) – some peach and apple flavours with a bit of sweetness made this ideal patio material, and considering I was on the rooftop patio of the Savoy Bistro I know of what I speak. The long finish only added to the enjoyment. In a later conversation with Phil Ryan, owner and winemaker, I found out the blend was Sauvignon Blanc, Vidal and Riesling mainly sourced for the Vineland area. Though he’s growing quite a bit of his own vinifera including Riesling, Gewurztraminer, Pinot Noir and Cab Franc just to name 4 of the 10 he rambled off to me.

Best Enigma:
It seems only fitting that after a wine called Aenigma that I have a enigma award. That goes to Viewpointe Estates Winery (Harrow, Lake Erie North Shore) who presented “Blattner from Switzerland” made by Jim Warren (of Stoney Ridge fame amongst other), but other than telling people it was Blattner from Switzerland and that there were a few different formulations the pourer could tell us no more. The stuff was tasty enough – but what is it and what John Fancsy (owner and winemaker) is doing with it remains a mystery.

Best Deadly Fruit Wine:
I was trying to spread the awards around but this was too good a wine to ignore. Amongst all the strawberry, raspberry and apple wines we go back to Coffin Ridge for this offering called A Winey Pear made from wild pears grown on a 65 year old wild pear tree they found growing on their property … there was no disguising what it was – pear wine, but very well balanced and tasty. No price on this one either.

Best Wine Not for Drinking:
Downey’s Estate Winery (Brampton) is primarily a fruit winery. Somehow maple has been given honorary fruit status (for wine’s sake) and Downey’s is making quite a good one from it called Maple Gold ($26.95 – 375ml), its maple syrup tasty, but too much and you’re likely to go into diabetic shock or have your teeth fall out of your head right before your very eyes. But have no fear, the folks at Downey’s have thought about that and have about half a dozen ideas about what else you can do with this truly Canadian wine: pour it over Belgian waffles, ice cream, mix it in with sauces, over fruit, etc. I suggested putting it in sparkling wine as a mixer to create a spritzer of sorts. I think that would cut the sweetness (24) and would taste quite fine indeed. Maybe they should get the County Cider Company boys on board with this idea. Or maybe it can be used as dosage for sparkling wines, Peller is doing it with icewine and what could be more Canadian than maple syrup in a sparkler. Maybe I’m onto something here ... hmmm – this might be something for next year’s tasting.

Long live the innovators and inventors on our winery borders … the fringe is where it all begins. Good work and good luck to all of them.

Saturday, July 28, 2007

Report from: Finger Lakes Winery Tour - July 20-22, 2007

This summer I decided to re-visit the Finger Lakes region of New York – I had done it a few times before, most recently 3 years ago, but this time I was coming at it from a different vantage point: that of a writer. I was prepared to leave my prejudice (New York wineries serve only sweet wines and because of Americans love for sticky wines -as I had found my last few times thru) behind; and instead embrace the wine industry and base my finding on service, knowledge and of course, the wines served to me. I packed up the car – loaded a few bottles of my Ontario favourites for nighttime sipping (just in case) and off I went. I had two set stops on my agenda the New York Wine and Culinary Center on Canandaigua Lake (see Newsletter 63 – August 16, 2007) and the Fingers Lakes Wine Festival in Watkins Glen (separate On the Road article); other than that I was going to let the wind and recommendations of others take me where they wished.

Day 1 – Friday, July 20 … After my stop at the Wine and Culinary Center I proceeded, with map in hand, to hit up some of the recommended wineries my waiter and host had proposed. First stop, Lamoreaux Landing Wine Cellars, a beautiful winery overlooking Seneca Lake (editor’s note: most Finger Lakes wineries overlook a lake of which there are 3 major and a bunch of minor lakes). The region is becoming well known for its Rieslings, but they also dabble in other vinifera varieties and lots of native and hybrid varieties. The American palate still prefers sweet (as many winery employees will tell foreigners like myself looking for something a little more on the drier side) which is why many of then still make at least one or two sweet wines – even if they’re trying to specialize in more “serious” wines (there are of course some exceptions to that rule – but not many). There is a movement afoot to woo “serious” wine drinkers too, that’s where wineries like Lamoreaux come in. (Editor’s note: the term “serious wine/drinker” in this article refers to those who prefer vinifera wines and wines that are dry). Here I tasted a Dry and Semi-Dry Riesling – both good and well priced at $14.99; I tried a Non-Vintage Barrel-Aged Cabernet Franc (a blend of 2003 and 2004 grapes). The nose had lots of green pepper and black cherry, while the palate showed good complexity of pepper, herbs, green pepper, black cherry and a long finish with some silky tannins. Finally, the Estate Red ($9.99) a blend of Pinot Noir, Merlot, Cab Franc and Cab Sauv – smoke and tobacco dominated the nose, while in the mouth the same elements continued with pepper, raspberry and cinnamon also showing up. The wine list also featured Merlot, Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, Gewurztraminer and a Rosé. All told a good start to the trip. New York Wineries 1 – Preconceived Notions 0

Next up a trip down Seneca Lake to Wagner, where they make both beer and wine. They grab you at the door, speak fast, force the “wine or beer” a decision on everyone who enters, get your money, give you a ticket, point to door A (wine) or B (beer) – instruct you in quick English (I think it was English) and then it is up to you to fend for yourself. I had not even been in the door 30 seconds before all this happened to me – and I am sure other visitors’ felt the same way by the look of confusion on their faces. It was all very frantic and I felt herded like cattle. When I finally figured it all out I started in the beer room … the beer was tasty, especially the Belgian Cherry Wheat and the Honey Wheat, while the wines were underwhelming, lots of sweet whites and smooth drink now reds; the best of the lot was a Merlot for $15.99 with a good all round plum, vanilla and black cherry smell. The smell of the wine was a respite from the wine jockey who had some of the worst breath I have ever smelled and it wafted over the bar frequently – if I did not have big feet to keep me standing he would have knocked me over. New York 1 – Preconceived 1

Final stop on the Friday was a winery I was informed I had to visit or not bother returning to my province of origin. A winemaker friend of mine from Niagara said he’s been and was impressed – the rest of his information about the place and the winemaker was all wrong, but I too was impressed. Shalestone Vineyards is an exception to my earlier rule about having at least one sweet wine in your portfolio … they make “serious” wine and their motto is “Reds is All We Do”. From their blends to their straight varietals there isn’t a drop of sugar to been seen anywhere, these are all dry wines that show what can be done around the Lakes. New York 2 – Preconceived 1

Day 2 – Saturday, July 21 … After a few hours spent pushing through the crowd at the wine festival I hopped back into the car, consulted a map and up the West Side of Seneca Lake I went. Stopping first at Lakewood, because it looked nice from the road. Inside it’s the tale of two wineries – the one serves the sweet crowd, the other respects the “serious” wino, you just have to prove to them which side of that fence you are on. Jack-of-all-trades and Entertainer Extraordinaire Tracy Gumtow pegged me for somebody serious right away. Playing to the crowd with the semi-dry Riesling, Delaware and Niagara sweet whites, he would slip over to me while the others tasted and poured me some stunning, award winning wines – keeping his voice low, as if sharing the secrets of these wines with only me (no sense letting others know that serious wine is being made behind all that sweet stuff). A 2005 Chardonnay ($12.99) loaded with buttery vanilla and a pineapple core; a crisp peachy 2006 Gewurztraminer ($16.99); a 2006 Pinot Gris with a titch of residual sugar (good papaya and pineapple notes); a cherry smelling, burnt caramel finishing 2002 Pinot Noir ($15.99) a good example of how Pinot does in the area (cranberry and earth through the mouth). A deeply tannic-black fruit based 2005 Cabernet Franc; and to top it off, a Baco Noir 2005 Port with cherry, chocolate, plum and a lasting finish. The port is interesting because it’s 100% Baco, from the grapes used to the fortification spirits – 100% Baco. There are some seriously good wines here. New York 3 – Preconceived 1

Tracy recommended a few places for “a serious wine drinker such as yourself” in those same hushed tones as he pulled out a map from under the counter. So on Tracy’s word the next stop was Miles Wine Cellars. Miles scores a point for New York because of there mix of “serious” (3) to people pleasing sweet (2) wines … and their reds have “balls” as they say, with good ageability and their Chardonnay was very good. Plus they have some older vintage stuff that has stood up quite well and a program where they make only “reserve” wines in the good years. New York 4 – Preconceived 1 Moving on to Fox Run Vineyard, whose claim to fame is a garlic festival – at least that’s what struck me when looking up at their events board. Most of the Fox Run tasting menu was on the sweet side and the rest of the stuff was over-priced: 2005 Cabernet Franc ($25), 2005 Cab Sauv ($19.99), 2006 Dry Riesling ($19.99); while some “limited release” wines started at $24.99-$45.00 with no explanation as to why and no one willing to say. But the sweet stuff flowed like water and was pushed on everybody who entered. New York 4 – Preconceived 2

Final stop of day 2, Ventosa Vineyards, now in their second year. They get points for innovation (they grow Sangiovese) and their pizza (my late lunch for the day) which was one of the best I’ve had in a long time: a 5 cheese blend with fresh basil and parsley made with their own homemade sauce. Their balcony overlooking the lake and the view was stunning. Well worth the stop for the food alone. The Vino Rosso is quite nice too. New York 5 – Preconceived 2

Day 3Sunday, July 22 … The road home took me by Keuka Lake, so I decided to make a few stops along the way. Having tried one of the most amazing wines at the Festival the day before, I made my first stop the winery that served it to me: Keuka Overlook. Not much to look at, and not much in the way of production (2500 cases) but here’s a guy who’s figured out how to make good wine. Sure he has his share of the sweet stuff for the crowd and fruit wines for those not into the grape, but Bob (owner and winemaker) gets it. His “Premium Reds” are all 14 months American oak aged and he reduces the acidity for a more drink now style. But unlike every other winery I had visited so far he talked about crop thinning, dropping fruit to the ground, reducing tonnage and making more highly concentrated fruit. The reasoning is simple and time honoured, the fruit that is left gets the nutrients from the vine and isn’t competing with other bunches thus producing better, riper, more concentrated fruit … bottom line – better building blocks, better wine. As for the “amazing wine”: it was a late harvest Dessert Johannisberg Riesling 2005, which had the taste of white chocolate (not a word of a lie) … Bob says he thinks it was a combination of the Botrytis on the grapes and the red wine yeast he used. New York 6 – Preconceived 2

“Serious” wine can also be found at Ravines Wine Cellars. Winemaker Morten Hallgren was born in Denmark trained in France and cut his teeth, on American soil, in Texas. A wine list of only 9 wines keeps this winery focused on quality, and only one sweetie on the menu (Keuka Village). “We don’t do well at the shows,” Morten told me, “because most of our wines are dry, but we do it for the exposure.” Ravines is one the few making Sauvignon Blanc, and he does it very well; his dry Riesling is just that, dry (0.2); the Chardonnay (sur lies) is made with 50% dehydrated grapes … his whites are delicious and impactful. The reds: “Cerise”, a blend of Pinot Noir and Lemberger is a cherry lovers dream (dry); the Cabernet Franc is all red fruit nose and cranberry taste, good tart finish; and the 2005 Meritage has 3and a half weeks of skin contact, bold and brilliant. Ravines is a wine lovers paradise, and the view should go without saying, is nice too. New York 7 – Preconceived 2

After Ravines Heron Hill was a let down – lots of wines to choose from yet master of none. They perceive themselves as a Riesling specialist with 6 different ones on the tasting menu. Unfortunately, this is another cattle-herding winery; not as abrupt as Wagner, but similar in tasting room style. The view is spectacular and the building divine (actually looks like a monastery), but the serving staff had little to no flair (like Tracy), the wines didn’t speak for them (like Ravines) and a half finished, corked-tainted bottle of “our best selling red” just didn’t show any care or concern by the serving staff … after the second bottle proved to be corked, I walked. New York 7 – Preconceived 3

Many of the “serious” winemakers know they are fighting an uphill battle against the sweet palate of their countrymen; but there are enough “serious” winemakers in the Finger Lakes that will keep trying to make a difference that I’ll be heading back there soon to try some more. May I suggest you give it a go also – you might find some great little surprises along the way.

Sunday, July 15, 2007

Report from: Festival Epicure - July 7, 2007

Before I begin let me say that I had someone read this before publishing and they said – “did you like the event or not, your focus is on the weather.” To which I answered, “It was a really hot day.” It is the one thing I took away from Festival Epicure this year – and the one thing that stuck … but allow me to say unequivocally that I did enjoy the event and think under a sunny sky and less heat it would have been the perfect day. So let’s see what I did write:

On what could have been one of the hottest days of the summer (so far), I attended Festival Epicure held in Windsor, Ontario. The thermometer rose to a blistering 91 degrees, I know this because Windsor remains one of the last bastions in Canada that still follows the Fahrenheit scale – they say it is because they are so close to the border. Organizers and exhibitors must have loved the sunny weather, but the daytime heat proved to be a bit of a detriment, as many either stayed at home or under the shade of the tented area during those daytime hours. At 4:30 in the afternoon many of the free standing wooden tables spread throughout the courtyard area remained mostly unoccupied – while under the big top it was standing room only, with people using plates, napkins, brochures, menus or anything else handy to fan themselves. On stage, located at the other end of the grounds, Johannes Linstead and his band did their very best to play cool tunes to a sparse, hot and tired crowd. Of course, kids are immune to the heat and hot, wet, cold, whatever, nothing stops them from having a good time – many youngsters found their way onto the floor-space in front of the stage to do their knee-bopping dance with either mom or dad as their reluctant partner. I suspect that as the day cooled off and moved into the evening hours the place filled up with those in search of a good time, reasonable drinks and a bite to eat. As I toured a few wineries earlier in the day most people I spoke with (staff and visitors alike) were planning to make their way to the festival “later” to catch Priscilla Pryce, Spyder Turner or Impact 7 … and avoid the heat.

For those who are not aware of Festival Epicure, now in its 13th year, it’s a waterfront food and wine (beer & spirits) spectacular, with about 29 restaurants, wineries, breweries and spirit manufacturers all taking part, a showcase of their wares feed and “water” the crowd. The admission onto the grounds, held at Windsor’s Riverfront Festival Plaza, was a very reasonable five dollars and food and drink ranged in price from $2 to $8, depending on your chosen gastronomical pleasure or libation. Entertainment plays all day (from noon to well past midnight), the food is enjoyable and the drinks are some of the best from the area wineries and breweries. The festival itself ran from Friday to Sunday. Aside from the extreme heat, which radiated off the asphalt creating an oven-like effect, if was a great event to attend – a local informed me that the “park” used to be grass but for easy maintenance they paved it over. As you would expect the busiest booth at the time of day I was there was the Lemonade Stand … the cherry lemonade was outstanding as well as refreshing. Next year I’m thinking that organizers will be hoping for the little cooler temperature, but the same kind of sunny day … a tough request to make in the middle of the summer – but one can cross their fingers. Of course if could have been raining; then you would have had to listen to me complain about how wet it was – you just can’t win. The event gets an A+; the weather’s grade depends on your point of view.

From the Organizer - Ken Brandes: "Too bad you did not attend [in the] evening ... crowds were shoulder to shoulder and you would have had a different impression, altogether ... a more subdued daytime crowd slowly evolves into a party-like night audience. And a tremendous heat wave causes the festival goer to delay purchase into the cooler evening hours, as witnessed both Saturday and Sunday ... but to get the flavour of this 3 day event, a critic must come at night, as well as the day, to get the gestalt of the event."

So I asked an evening goer - Tanya Mitchell winemaker for Sprucewood Shores Estate Winery - for her impressions: "The crowd was so packed I could barely move around when I arrived at 9pm - but it dwindled to the perfect amount by 10pm ... the vibe was definitely on par with what I was looking for. The weather was absolutely perfect, breezy and warm after such a hot afternoon!"

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Report from: Angels Gate Meet the New Winemaker Evening – July 5, 2007

Angles Gate Winery threw themselves a bash on Thursday night (July 5, 2007) to introduce the angelic-faithful to new winemaker Philip Dowell. The party was held outside in the courtyard at Hart House on the campus of the University of Toronto – the reason for the move from the winery setting to this downtown Toronto locale, according to Bonnie Sneath (retail sales manager) was to bring the party to our customers, many of whom come from the Toronto area and to make it easier for them to attend. A low-key, laid-back affair, at which a small jazz band played the evenings music and where nine wines were poured and paired with foods picked out by the director of catering and events of Hart House, Arlene Stein; who did, what I felt, was a wonderful job of pairing the foods with wines, based solely on the descriptions provided by the winery. From the simple: strawberries paired with a late harvest cabernet; to the more complex: medallions of beef tenderloin on crostini with blueberry relish paired with a 2002 Merlot. The showcase of wine and food proved to highlight what Philip Dowell was getting himself into by joining this team. None of the wines served on this night were his, per se, the wine he most had a hand in making was the All Canadian Wine Championship winning 2006 Sussreserve Riesling, which he was a 40% participant in; split with former Angels Gate winemaker Natalie Spytkowski, who has moved her winemaking skills over the Angels Gate’s as yet un-open winery neighbour. What this event did show was what a fine winemaking tradition Philip would have to build upon. Also announced on this evening was the planting of a new vineyard and the purchase of Kew Vineyards by Angels Gate.

Below is a review of the three wines that really stood out … I skipped over the 2006 Sussreserve Riesling ($13.95 – winery and LCBO) because I have previously reviewed it.

The evening began with the pouring of an ’04 Old Vines Chardonnay ($23.95 – winery & LCBO) a lush, buttery number that had lots of tropical fruit on the nose, including banana and pineapple … the banana continues onto the palate along with some vanilla-butteryness. Good value for this elegant and highly enjoyable Chardonnay, which I would have expected to pay more for. It was paired alongside a lobster macaroni and cheese.

2005 was good to red grapes in Ontario, they weren’t plentiful in Niagara but they made darn tasty wine – case and point is this 2005 Gamay Noir ($12.95 – winery only). The grapes for this gold medal winning wine (All Canadian Wine Championships 2007) were harvested in Beamsville, stainless steel fermented, and finally oak-aged in large (500L) French barrels for only 2 months. The result is a wine that has typical Gamay characteristics, namely red berries – and lots of it … but the oaking gives it a little heft and some peppery spiciness. A steal for the price and went well with the simple penne pasta with tomato and basil sauce.

Finally, a very simple wine, served with a very simple dessert and yet “divine” seems to be the word to describe it best. My notes had the word “delicious” written 3 times, so I must have liked it. The 2006 Snow Angel ($23.00 – winery only – 750ml … sugar code 5) is made from 100% Cabernet Sauvignon grapes that were late harvested (after the first frost of the 2006 growing season). The nose is full of raspberry sprinkled with Splenda and yet is delicate in both alcohol and sweetness - well-balanced, so it goes down smooth and easy. Not quite a dessert wine, yet not quite something to serve as aperitif … but quite, what was that word again, oh yes, there it is “delicious”. This wine was paired with fresh Ontario strawberries, but also goes quite well on its own. They have a slogan at Angels Gate, “Devilishly Good Wines” – this one truly is; and when you finish the whole bottle on your own you could say “the devil made me do it” – but instead of practicing the sin of gluttony invite some friends over to share in the fun.