Enjoying Ontario’s Thirty Bench Wine Makers’ Rieslings and MorePR SAMPLE 

Thirty Bench Wine Makers
Thirty Bench Wine Makers

In the summer of 2017 I attended the International Cool Climate Chardonnay Celebration (i4c) in the Niagara region.  A celebration of Chardonnay and Ontario wines in particular (other Canadian wineries were in attendance).  After attending i4c, I visited a few wineries in the Niagara region.  One of the wineries I visited, and wines I tasted at i4c, was Thirty Bench Wine Makers on the Beamsville Bench to the west of St. Catherines.  They specialize in Riesling and Pinot Noir, which are two of my favourite varietals.  This September, I arranged to revisit Thirty Bench Wine Makers.

According to the winery, “With Riesling vineyards dating back as far as 1980, Thirty Bench Winemakers is incredibly proud to be considered one of Niagara’s first true boutique wineries.

Those original single-block, old-vine Rieslings in our Steel Post, Triangle and Wood Post vineyards are the roots of our winery. They set in place a firm foundation that inspired an expansion of our varietals in 2000.

Today, the Thirty Bench Wine Makers portfolio includes a diverse range of award-winning wines across nine varietals. Our Small Lot approach has been recognized with critical acclaim, including recent awards for both Small Winery of the Year and Winemaker of the Year.

Our commitment to Small Lots is something that goes far beyond the bottle and influences everything we do at Thirty Bench. From personalized tastings that invite guests to sit down, settle in and stay for awhile, to intimate special events that pair wine, food and fun, Small Lots are something we celebrate at Thirty Bench…”

My Wine Tasting Notes

All the Riesling wines were opened the day before I tasted them, so my tasting notes are for a decanted wine.

Thirty Bench Wine Makers flight of Riesling wines in order in my tasting notes.
Thirty Bench Wine Makers flight of Riesling wines in order in my tasting notes.

Thirty Bench Wine Makers Sparkling Riesling NV – made in the Traditional Method. It has a clear bright lemon colour . Medium intensity aroma of petrol, toast and cut apples. Tiny bubbles mixing biting and creamy. Medium-plus body with a lean mouthfeel. High acidity. Petrol, lemon and citrus pith bitterness. Also picked up a touch of salty minerality. Medium-plus length. 4 stars4.5 stars

Thirty Bench Wine Makers Small Lot Riesling Steel Post 2020 – from vines planted in 1982. The driest of their Riesling wines. It has a medium intensity bright lemon colour. Light aromas of herbal, petrol, peach and then toast with air. The wine is dry and has a medium-plus body, round and smooth with a thicker mouthfeel. Stone fruit flavour with a touch of sweet spice and petrol. Medium plus length. Some bitterness on the finish. 4.5 stars

Thirty Bench Wine Makers Small Lot Riesling Triangle Vineyard 2019 – A lighter lemon colour. Light aromas with touches of floral, tangerine, petrol and peach. Medium-plus body, round with a thicker mouthfeel. Medium-plus acidity but still has a smooth mouthfeel. I also picked up a touch of lanolin on the palate. Dryish. 4 stars4.5 stars

Thirty Bench Wine Makers Small Lot Riesling Wood Post 2019 – A light bright lemon colour. Light aromas of petrol, lemon and peach. This wine is off-dry with a smooth, round, thicker mouthfeel. Medium acidity. Light flavours of citrus and orange. Medium-plus length with a mix of tart and sweet flavours. 4 stars

Thirty Bench Wine Makers Small Lot Riesling ‘Wild Cask’ 2019 – a wild fermented wine. It has a deeper bright lemon colour. Medium-minus intensity aromas of toast, floral, and apples. Medium-minus body, smooth with a thicker textured mouthfeel. Ripe Mandarin orange, citrus and a touch of honey. Medium acidity. Off-dry. Medium-plus length with a tart fruit finish. 4.5 stars

Thirty Bench Wine Makers Winemaker’s Riesling 2022 – the fruit comes from across all their plots. This wine has a pale lemon colour. Closed nose with very light stone fruit and apple aromas. Medium body, off-dry with a round smooth mouthfeel. Medium acidity. Fresh fruit flavours of citrus and stone fruits. Subtle flavours. medium length with an off-dry tart fruit finish. 4 stars

Thirty Bench Wine Makers Small Lot Pinot Noir 2020 and Cabernet Franc 2018 with wines in glasses
Thirty Bench Wine Makers Small Lot Cabernet Franc 2018 and Pinot Noir 2020 with wines in glasses

Thirty Bench Wine Makers Small Lot Pinot Noir 2020 – A medium intensity clear garnet colour. Expressive aromas of berry fruits, cherries and light oak. Plus cinnamon with air. Medium-minus body, smooth and round mouthfeel. Ripe and candied red cherries, sweet spices and medium intensity oak and tannins. A touch of plums on the palate. Medium length with ripe cherry flavours. Some bitterness on the finish. 4.5 stars

Thirty Bench Wine Makers Small Lot Cabernet Franc 2018 – Medium-plus intensity clear garnet colour. Medium intensity aromas of capsicum, chocolate, dark fruits and a touch of sweet spices with air. Medium-plus body with a smooth mouthfeel. medium-minus intensity acidity and fine grained light tannins. Fruity flavours with red fruit, black cherries and sweet spices. Also a touch of vegetal and capsicum. Medium-plus length with ripe dark fruit flavours, a touch of pepperiness and a bit firmer tannins. A quality wine. 4.5 stars

I enjoyed all these wines and it was interesting to taste the Small Lot wines as they are single vineyard to give you an idea of the differences in terroir. 

Where Can I Buy These Wines?

These wines are available for purchase online from the Thirty Bench website.  If you live in Ontario, the LCBO carries a few of the Thirty Bench wines.

Author: mywinepal
Drink Good Wine. That is my motto and I really want to help you drink good wine. What is good wine? That can be a different thing for each people. Food also loves wine so I also cover food and wine pairings, restaurant reviews, and world travel. Enjoy life with me. MyWinePal was started by Karl Kliparchuk, WSET. I spent many years with the South World Wine Society as the President and then cellar master. I love to travel around the world, visiting wine regions and sharing my passion for food & wine with you. Come live vicariously through me, and enjoy all my recommended wines.

Don't make me whine. Please leave a comment!

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.