Canada is a big country, with our wine grape growing areas on the limit of possibility, but at the edges of possibility is where you can make exciting wines, I’ve been told. In the Festival Tasting Room I spent many hours tasting wines from BC, Ontario, and Nova Scotia, and speaking with the winery principals in attendance. Below are the sparkling, white, and red wines that I thought were really good examples of what we can offer to ourselves and the world. Enjoy.
Jackson-Triggs Okanagan Estate Grand Reserve Entourage Brut 2010, BC – This is a sparkling wine that I didn’t know was available in BC, but was very happy to try it. It has a nice ripe citrus and apple plus toasty aromas. High acidity, with flavours of apple and lithe toast. Small bubble.
Tantalus Vineyards Blanc de Noir, BC – Lees and fruit cut apple nose. This bubble is dry with flavours of crisp apples, in particular crab and McIntosh apples. Medium sized bubble.
l’Acadie Vineyards Prestige Brut Estate 2010, Nova Scotia – Nice apple aromas. Off dry with high acidity to balance. Dry with crisp apple flavour, and minerality to finish.
l’Acadie Vineyards Vintage Cuvee 2014, Nova Scotia – Light apple aromas. Dry with high acidity. Crisp apple together with citrus and flowers. Creamy bubble.
Benjamin Bridge Methode Classique NV, Nova Scotia – Crisp, crushed apples nose. High acidity dry, medium body and medium bubble.Apple flavours.
50th Parallel Estate Riesling 2015, BC – Light pear and apple, with a hint of petrol on the nose. Medium minus body and medium acidity. Delicate apples on the palate. Tasty.
Baillie-Grohman Estate Winery Gewurztraminer 2015, BC – Rose and lychee aromas. Medium body, dry. Quite flavourful with sweet spices, roses and oranges. A higher quality Gew.
Black Hills Estate Winery Chardonnay 2015, BC – Light melon, tropical fruit and sweet spices on the nose. Medium plus body, round and soft. Tropical fruit and sweet spices, with a peppery finish.
CedarCreek Estate Winery Platinum Block 3 Riesling 2015, BC – Light stone fruit and honey on the nose. Very tasty stone fruit flavours, mixed with apple and minerality. Off dry with medium acid. Delicious.
Gehringer Brothers Estate Winery Private Reserve Riesling 2015, BC – Nice nose; herbal, but also stone fruits. Medium body, soft and round. Stone fruit along with hints of green herbal and spice.
Harper’s Trail Estate Winery Pioneer Block Dry Riesling 2014, BC – Light apples and petrol on the nose. Off-dry but balanced with higher acidity. Petrol, honey and stone fruits. Full flavoured.
Inniskillin Okanagan Estate Chenin Blanc 2014, BC – Light orangy nose. Chewy, round and soft. Medium acidity. Apples and stone fruit flavours. Very good, but only available at the winery!
Intersection Estate Winery Riesling 2015, BC – Light petrol and stone fruit aromas. Medium body, off-dry, with citrus, stone fruit and honey flavours. Also some nice minerality.
Noble Ridge Vineyard & Winery Chardonnay Reserve 2012, BC – Nice nose. Light sweet spices and apples. Medium body, dry and round. Tropical fruit and light sweet spice flavours. A tasty wine.
Devonian Coast Wineries Gaspereau Riesling 2015, Nova Scotia – Floral, melon and petrol, medium intensity nose. Medium body, round and off-dry. Higher acidity. Flavours of citrus and apples. Very nice. -
Domaine de Grand Pre Riesling 2015, Nova Scotia – Very light apple nose. Dry with medium plus acidity. Flavourful. Tart citrus and stone fruits. This wine should age nicely.
Baillie-Grohman Estate Winery, Reserve Pinot Noir 2013, BC – Masculine smelling nose, with oakand cherries. Medium body, dry and round. Cherries vanilla and light pepper on the finish.
Cassini Cellars Cabernet Franc Collector’s Series 2012, BC – Sweet, juicy ripe cherries, red fruit and vanilla aromas. Full body, dry with ripe red fruit, cherries, plums and follows with pepper.
Foxtrot Vineyards The Waltz Pinot Noir 2013, BC – Sweet red cherries and floral nose. Round and smooth with medium plus body. Red fruit, some bitter chocolate, nutmeg and some pepper on the palate.
Domaine Queylus Pinot Noir Tradition 2014, Ontario – Light cinnamon and crisp red fruit nose. Medium body, dry with some roundness and minerality. Ripe cassis and plum flavours. An elegant Pinot. -
C.C. Jentsch Cellars Small Lots Cabernet Franc 2014, BC – Medium intensity cassis nose. Fuller body, dry with medium acidity and roundish mouth feel. Firms tannins and acidic backbone. Ripe cassis and plums on the palate.
Stag’s Hollow Winery Renaissance Pinot Noir 2014, BC – Juicy raspberry nose. Round and fruity ,with more raspberry flavour, along with sweet spices. Medium, fine tannins. A hint of oak.
Stag’s Hollow Winery Dolcetto 2015, BC – Dark ripe raspberry and spice nose. Medium plus body, with medium plus acidity and spiciness. Ripe cassis flavour. It went very well with a piece of dark chocolate.
Colio Estate Wines Bricklayer’s Cache Cabernet Shiraz 2012, Ontario – Deep garnet with brownish tint. Molasses and dark fruit nose. Full body, ripe dark fruit flavours together with salty minerality and firm tannins.
More Canadian Wines
Looking back at the Canadian wines I rated the highest, Riesling and Pinot Noir come out on top from across Canada. Besides the wines I enjoyed from the Festival tasting room, there were more wines from Canada that rated 4.5-5 by me at the seminars I attended. You can check out the additional wines in these articles:
Recommended Wines from the Rest of the World
In my next article, I will cover the International wines from the Festival Tasting Room that I enjoyed. Stay tuned.