The 2022 All Canadian Wine Championships

At this year’s All Canadian Wine Championships there were a total of 1,233 wines from 194 participating wineries.  Unlike the National Wine Awards where there is a significant amount of emphasis on the wineries producing the wine, the total focus of the All Canadian is on the wines themselves.

The summary of this year’s results by province is as follows:

British Columbia – 751 entries

  • 2 Trophies
  • 31 Double Gold
  • 81 Gold
  • 75 Silver
  • 88 Bronze

Ontario – 372 entries

  • 3 Trophies
  • 20 Double Gold
  • 32 Gold
  • 32 Silver
  • 37 Bronze

Quebec – 34 entries

  • 1 Trophy
  • 3 Double Gold
  • 7 Gold
  • 6 Silver
  • 4 Bronze

Nova Scotia – 37 entries

  • 3 Double Gold
  • 2 Gold
  • 2 Silver
  • 3 Bronze

New Brunswick – 11 entries

  • 2 Gold
  • 1 Silver
  • 2 Bronze

Alberta – 13 entries

  • 2 Silver
  • 1 Bronze

Manitoba – 4 entries

  • 1 Bronze

Saskatchewan – 11 entries

  • 3 Silver

The trophy winning wines for 2022 are as follows:

Best Red Wine of the Year was awarded to Wesbert Winery Ltd., of Penticton, British Columbia for their 2020 Syrah ($37.89).

Best White Wine of the Year went to Thirty Bench Wines, of Beamsville, Ontario for their 2019 Small Lot Riesling Triangle Vineyard ($32.00).

Niagara College Teaching Wineryfrom Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario received the Best Sparkling Wine of the Year award for its N/V Balance Brut ($26.95).

The Oliver, British Columbia winery of Jackson-Triggs received the award for Best Dessert Wine of the Year for their 2018 Okanagan Reserve Riesling Icewine ($60.00).

Best Fruit Wine of the Year was presented to La Vallée de la Framboise Inc., of Val-Brillant , Quebec for their N/V  Douce Anna ($20.00).

Thornbury Craft Co. from Thornbury, Ontario was awarded Best Cider of the Year for their N/V Premium Craft Apple Cider ($3.50).

Award winning wines could receive a Double Gold, Gold, Silver or Bronze award.  The Double Gold and Gold awards are listed here.  A complete listing of award winners is available on the All Canadian Wine Championships website at https://allcanadianwinechampionships.com/acwc-2022-results/

Sparkling Wine-Traditional Method

Gold

  • Noble Ridge Vineyard and Winery, BC – 2018 The Pink One ($45.99)  
  • Silhouette Estate Winery, BC – 2018 Boyd Classic Cuvee ($42.99)  
  • Summerhill Pyramid Winery, BC – N/V Cipes Brut Rosé ($40.25)  
  • TIME Family of Wines, BC – N/V Chronos Brut ($34.99)  

Sparkling Wine–Charmat Method

Double Gold

  • TIME Family of Wines, BC – N/V Evolve Cellars Effervescence ($24.99)

Gold

  • Creekside Estate Winery Ltd., ON – 2019 Backyard Block Bubbly ($29.80)
  • Diamond Estate Wines, ON – N/V Fresh Sparkling Rose ($17.75)
  • Three Sisters Winery, BC – 2021 Pretty Women ($21.65)

Sparkling Wine–Frizzante Method

Double Gold

  • Moraine Winery, BC – 2021 Shipuchka Frizzante ($31.05)

Gold

  • Intrigue Wines, BC – N/V I DO ($20.90)
  • Play Winery, BC – 2021 Teatro ($33.34)
  • Intrigue Wines, BC – 2021 SOCIAL Sparkling ($20.90)

Chardonnay, Unoaked

Double Gold

  • TIME Family of Wines, BC – 2020 Chronos Chardonnay ($29.99)

Gold

  • Gray Monk Estate Winery, BC – 2021 Chardonnay Unwooded ($22.99)
  • Pelee Island Winery, ON – 2019 Ring Necked Pheasant Chardonnay Unoaked ($12.25)

Chardonnay Under $20

Double Gold

  • Colio Estate Wines, ON – 2020 Reserve Chardonnay ($19.95)

Gold

  • Trius Estate Winery, ON – 2020 Distinction Chardonnay Barrel Fermented ($19.75)

 Chardonnay $20.01-$30.00

Double Gold

  • Three Sisters Winery, BC – 2020 Chardonnay ($21.65)

Gold

  • Mission Hill Family Estate Winery, BC – 2020 Reserve Chardonnay ($26.00)
  • Harper’s Trail Estate Winery, BC – 2019 Chardonnay ($24.14)
  • Monte Creek Winery, BC – 2020 Living Land Chardonnay ($21.99)

Chardonnay Over $30.00

Double Gold

  • SpearHead Winery, BC – 2020 Clone 95 Chardonnay ($34.50)

Gold

  • Noble Ridge Vineyard and Winery, BC – 2019 King’s Ransom Chardonnay ($57.50)
  • Covert Farms Family Estate, BC – 2020 Grand Reserve Chardonnay ($65.00)
  • SpearHead Winery, BC – 2020 Saddle Block Chardonnay ($34.50)
  • Dark Horse Vineyard, BC – 2020 Chardonnay ($46.00)

Riesling Dry

Double Gold 

  • Niagara College Teaching Winery, ON – 2020 Balance Dry Riesling ($16.95)

Gold

  • Four Shadows Vineyard, BC – 2021 Riesling Dry ($27.59)

Riesling Off Dry

Gold

  • TIME Family of Wines, BC – 2020 Chronos Riesling ($27.99)
  • Andrew Peller Estates Winery, ON – 2019 Signature Series Riesling ($29.75)
  • Thirty Bench Wines, ON – 2019 Small Lot Riesling Wild Cask ($32.00)
  • Thirty Bench Wines, ON – 2020 Winemaker’s Blend Riesling ($22.75)

Sauvignon Blanc

Double Gold

  • Gehringer Bros. Estate Winery, BC – 2021 Dry Rock Sauvignon Blanc ($20.69)

Gold

  • Dirty Laundry Vineyard, BC – 2021 Sauvignon Blanc ($20.99)
  • Three Sisters Winery, BC – 2021 Sauvignon Blanc ($19.05)
  • Featherstone Estate Winery, ON – 2021 Sauvignon Blanc ($17.95)

Gewürztraminer

Double Gold

  • Priest Creek Family Estate Winery, BC – 2021 Gewürztraminer ($27.00)

Gold

  • Moraine Winery, BC – 2021 Gewürztraminer ($26.45)
  • Ruby Blues Winery, BC – 2021 Gewürztraminer ($25.90)
  • Wesbert Winery Ltd., BC – 2021 Gewürztraminer ($26.39)

Pinot Gris Style

Double Gold

  • Joseph’s Estate Wines Inc., ON – 2020 Rosato ($18.95)

Gold

  • Deep Roots Winery, BC – 2021 Pinot Gris ($21.90)
  • Savard Vines, BC – 2021 Forgotten Child Pinot Gris ($19.00)
  • Enrico Winery, BC – 2021 Pinot Gris Shining Armour ($24.50)
  • Legends Estates Winery, ON – 2019 Pinot Gris Barrel Fermented ($19.80)
  • Clos du Soleil Winery Inc., BC – 2021 Pinot Gris ($27.49)

Pinot Grigio Style

Double Gold

  • Featherstone Estate Winery, ON – 2021 Pinot Grigio ($17.95)

Gold

  • Kismet Estate Winery, BC – 2021 Pinot Grigio ($25.29)

Viognier

Double Gold

  • Bench 1775, BC – 2021 Viognier ($25.00)

Gold

  • Dirty Laundry Vineyard, BC – 2021 Viognier ($21.99)
  • Country Vines Winery, BC – 2019 Viognier ($21.99)

Other Single Vitis Vinifera Whites

Double Gold

  • Chaberton Estate Winery, BC – 2021 Estate Grown Bacchus ($20.75)

Gold

  • Moon Curser Vineyards, BC – 2021 Arneis ($31.04)
  • Alderlea Vineyards, BC – 2021 Bacchus ($23.00)
  • Forbidden Fruit Winery, BC – 2021 Dead End Gruner Veltliner ($23.00)
  • Gehringer Bros. Estate Winery, BC – 2021 Old Vines Auxerrois ($18.39)
  • Upper Bench Estate Winery, BC – 2021 Pinot Blanc ($25.40)

White Vitis Vinifera Blends

Double Gold

  • Noble Ridge Vineyard and Winery, BC – 2021 Mingle ($21.26)

Gold

  • Moraine Winery, BC – 2021 Cliffhanger White ($24.15)
  • Three Sisters Winery, BC – 2021 Bench White ($16.44)
  • Lakeside Cellars, BC – 2021 Portage White ($24.25)
  • Skimmerhorn Winery & Vineyard, BC – 2021 Autumn Tryst ($20.00)
  • Valley of the Springs Winery, BC – 2021 Vista ($24.15)

Single White Hybrids

Double Gold

  • Whispering Horse Winery, BC – 2021 La Crescent ($31.00)

Gold

  • Enrico Winery, BC – 2020 Petit Milo Coronet ($24.50)

White Hybrid Blends

Double Gold

  • Planters Ridge Winery, NS – 2021 Tidal Bay ($22.80)

Gold

  • Domaine de Grand Pré, NS – 2021 Tidal Bay ($23.00)
  • Vignoble de l’Orpailleur, QC – 2021 Vignoble de l’Orpailleur Blanc ($16.00)

Pet Nat and Orange Wines

Double Gold

  • Joseph’s Estate Wines Inc., ON – 2019 Arancia Skin Fermented Gewurztraminer ($34.95)

Gold

  • Pilliteri Estates Winery, ON – 2020 Racina Ambra Skin Fermented Gewurztraminer ($25.00)

Rosé Blush and Blanc de Noir

Double Gold Blanc de Noir Style

  • TIME Family of Wines, BC – 2021 Chronos Rosé ($27.99)

Double Gold Blush Style

  • Road 13 Vineyards, BC – 2021 Honest John’s Rosé ($23.00)

Gold

  • Bench 1775, BC – 2021 Glow ($26.00)
  • Thirty Bench Wines, ON – 2021 Winemaker’s Blend Rosé ($22.75)
  • Gehringer Bros. Estate Winery, BC – 2021 Rosé ($18.39)
  • Vanessa Vineyard, BC – 2021 Rosé ($29.99)
  • Sonora Desert Winery, BC – 2021 White Merlot ($25.00)
  • Hillside Cellars Winery, BC – 2021 Rosé ($25.00)
  • Three Sisters Winery, BC – 2021 Rosé ($19.05)
  • Ruby Blues Winery, BC – 2021 I Found My Thrill Rosé ($28.90)

Cabernet Sauvignon Under $30

Double Gold

  • Chaberton Estate Winery, BC – 2018 Cabernet Sauvignon ($29.95)

Gold

  • Sprucewood Shores Inc., ON – 2018 Cabernet Sauvignon ($17.95)

Cabernet Sauvignon Over $30

Double Gold

  • Sunrock Vineyards, BC – 2018 Cabernet Sauvignon ($34.49)

Gold

  • Diamond Estate Wines, ON – Lakeview Cellars 2017 Cabernet Sauvignon ($39.80)
  • Muscedere Vineyards Estate Winery Inc, ON – 2019 Cabernet Sauvignon ($31.75)
  • Nk’Mip Cellars, BC – 2019 Qwam Qwmt Cabernet Sauvignon ($45.99)

Merlot Under $30

Double Gold

  • Andrew Peller Estates Winery, ON  – 2020 Private Reserve Merlot ($26.75)

Gold

  • Deep Roots Winery, BC – 2020 Merlot ($29.90)
  • Colio Estate Wines, ON – 2020 Reserve Merlot $19.95

Merlot Over $30

Double Gold

  • Upper Bench Estate Winery, BC – 2018 Estate Merlot ($51.75)

Gold

  • Liquidity Wines Ltd., BC – 2020 ALTO Reserve Merlot ($35.00)
  • Nk’Mip Cellars, BC – 2019 Qwam Qwmt Merlot ($40.24)
  • Intersection Estate Winery, BC – 2017 Alluvia Unfiltered Merlot ($32.20)

Pinot Noir Under $30

Double Gold

  • Keint-he Winery and Vineyards Ltd., ON – 2019 Portage Pinot Noir ($28.00)

Gold

  • Gray Monk Estate Winery, BC – 2020 Pinot Noir ($28.75)

Pinot Noir Over $30

Double Gold

  • Queenstonmile Vineyard, ON – 2017 Pinot Noir ($39.80)

Gold

  • Baillie-Grohman Estate Winery, BC – 2019 Pinot Noir Reserve ($48.00)
  • Wild Goose Vineyards, BC – 2020 Pinot Noir ($38.00)
  • Privato Vineyard & Winery, BC – 2019 Woodward Collection – Tesoro Pinot Noir ($47.14)
  • Hainle Vyds Estate Winery, BC – 2020 Pinot Noir ($39.09)

Cabernet Franc Under $30

Double Gold

  • Monte Creek Winery, BC – 2020 Living Land Cabernet Franc ($22.99)

Gold

  • Thirty Bench Wines, ON – 2020 Winemaker’s Blend Cabernet Franc ($24.75)

Cabernet Franc Over $30

Double Gold

  • Two Sisters Vineyards, ON – 2017 Cabernet Franc ($57.80)

Gold

  • Play Winery, BC – 2020 Cabernet Franc ($44.83)
  • Dark Horse Vineyard, BC – 2018 Cabernet Franc ($51.75)
  • Frind Estate Winery, BC – 2020 Premier Cabernet Franc ($40.24)
  • Fort Berens Estate Winery, BC – 2019 Cabernet Franc ($31.99)

Bordeaux Blends Under $30

Double Gold

  • Indigenous World Winery, BC – 2019 Hee-Hee-Tel-Kin Red Blend ($28.74)

Gold

  • Monte Creek Winery, BC – 2019 Living Land Cabernet Merlot ($23.99)
  • Bordertown Estate Winery and Vineyard, BC – 2019 Living Desert Red ($27.00)
  • Persona, ON – N/V Cabernet Merlot ($12.75)
  • Noble Ridge Vineyard and Winery, BC – 2020 Noble Meritage ($28.74)
  • Sprucewood Shores Inc., ON – N/V Beach Glass Red ($19.95)
  • See Ya Later Ranch, BC – 2019 Ping Meritage ($28.73)

Bordeaux Blends Over $30

Double Gold

Magnotta Winery, ON – 2017 Enotrium Gran Riserva ($59.95)

Gold

  • Blasted Church Wines, BC – 2017 Nectar of the Gods ($75.00)
  • Phantom Creek Estates, BC – 2019 Phantom Creek Vineyard Cuvée ($150.00)
  • Kismet Estate Winery, BC – 2020 Mantra ($39.18)
  • Noble Ridge Vineyard and Winery, BC – 2017 King’s Ransom Meritage ($80.50)
  • Van Westen Vineyards, BC – 2018 V ($39.90)

Syrah/Shiraz Under $30

Double Gold

  • Lakeside Cellars, BC – 2018 Syrah ($28.85)

Gold

  • See Ya Later Ranch, BC – 2019 Rover ($25.29)

Syrah/Shiraz Over $30

Gold

  • Deep Roots Winery, BC – 2020 Syrah ($38.90)
  • Kacaba Vineyards, ON – 2019 Premium Series Terraced Vineyard Syrah ($34.95)
  • Kacaba Vineyards, ON – 2019 Premium Series Proprietors Block Syrah ($34.95)

Single Red Hybrids

Double Gold

  • Mercator Vineyards, NS – N/V Reserve Marquette ($34.80)

Gold

  • Domaine de Grand Pré, NS – 2019 Castel ($21.00)
  • Karlo Estates, ON – 2020 Marquette ($36.00)

Red Hybrid Blends

Double Gold

  • Jost Vineyards, NS – N/V Great Big Friggin’ Red ($17.79)

Gold

  • Volcanic Hills Vineyard & Cellars, BC – 2019 Magma Red ($23.99)
  • Monte Creek Winery, BC – 2020 Hands Up Red ($19.99)

Other Single Red Vitis Vinifera

Double Gold

  • Moon Curser Vineyards, BC – 2020 Touriga Nacional ($50.59)

Gold

  • Kalala Organic Estate Winery, BC – 2019 Zweigelt ($26.00)
  • Moon Curser Vineyards, BC – 2018 Tannat ($50.59)

Other Red Vitis Vinifera Blends

Double Gold

  • Good Natured Okanagan, BC – 2020 Balanced Red ($18.40)

Gold

  • Road 13 Vineyards, BC – 2019 GSM ($37.00)
  • Forbidden Fruit Winery, BC – 2019 Dead End Game Over Tannat Malbec ($40.00)
  • Savard Vines, BC – N/V 5 Turns ($26.00)

Malbec

Double Gold

  • Eau Vivre Winery, BC – 2019 Malbec ($39.90)

Gold

  • Moon Curser Vineyards, BC – 2020 Malbec ($40.24)

Gamay

Double Gold

  • Byland Estate Winery, ON – 2020 Gamay Noir Owner Signature Version ($34.80)

Gold

  • Volcanic Hills Vineyard & Cellars, BC – 2020 Gamay Noir ($20.50)

Soft Fruit Dry

Double Gold

  • Northern Lights Estate Winery Ltd., BC – 2018 Bell Reserve ($24.34)

Gold

  • Winegarden Estates Ltd., NB – 2020 Rubina, dry Blueberry Wine ($12.00)

Soft Fruit Off-Dry

Double Gold

  • Applewood Farm Winery, ON – 2021 Trio ($17.95)

Gold

  • Maan Farms Estate Winery, BC – 2020 Blueberry ($23.00)
  • Applewood Farm Winery, ON – 2021 Eden ($16.95)

Soft Fruit Dessert

Double Gold

  • La Vallée de la Framboise Inc., QC – N/V Le Matapédien ($18.00)

Gold

  • Krause Berry Farms and Estate Winery, BC – N/V Blackberry Portoe ($40.25)

Late Harvests

Double Gold

  • Pilliteri Estates Winery, ON – 2017 Cana Cabin Riesling Late Harvest ($25.00)

Gold

  • Thirty Bench Wines, ON – 2019 Special Select Late Harvest ($40.00)

Riesling Icewine

Gold

  • Inniskillin Okanagan, BC – 2018 Okanagan Estate Riesling Icewine ($60.02)

Vidal Icewine

Double Gold

  • Wayne Gretzky Estates, ON – 2019 No.99 Vidal Icewine ($79.85)

Gold

  • Andrew Peller Estates Winery, ON – 2018 Signature Series Vidal Blanc Icewine ($79.85)
  • Pilliteri Estates Winery, ON – 2017 Cana Cabin Premium Vidal Icewine ($70.00)

Other Icewine

Double Gold

  • Pilliteri Estates Winery, ON – 2017 Canadian Flower Pinot Blanc Icewine ($70.00)

Gold

  • Bench 1775, BC – 2020 Paradise Ranch Chardonnay Ice Wine ($71.00)

Red Icewines

Double Gold

  • Magnotta Winery, ON – 2018 Cabernet Franc Icewine Niagara Peninsula Limited Edition ($44.95)

Gold

  • Andrew Peller Estates Winery, ON – 2018 Cabernet Franc Icewine ($114.90)

Grape Fortifieds

Double Gold

  • Legends Estates Winery, ON – N/V Last Barrel Red ($59.80)

Gold

  • Legends Estates Winery, ON – N/V Last Barrel Red Liquid Gold ($99.80)

Sláinte mhaith

The 2022 National Wine Awards

The WineAlign National Wine Awards of Canada (NWAC) is Canada’s largest and most respected competition for wines which are one hundred percent grown and produced in Canada. Niagara Falls, Ontario was the host of this year’s event, which took place from June 19th to 23rd, with results published on July 29th.

This year’s awards were the first to be conducted since 2019 without the influence or restrictions from the pandemic. 

There were 24 judges who tasted 1,890 entries from more than 250 wineries. The entries came from British Columbia, Ontario, Quebec, Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, Alberta, Manitoba and Saskatchewan.

The wines were all served blind; producer, origin, and price were not revealed to the judges. The top medalists were tasted in multiple rounds by many different judges.

The top ten wineries are presented below, along with a listing of their Platinum and Gold medal wines.  For a complete listing of all the winning wines please see the Canadian Wine Awards website, at www.winealign.com/awards.

The 2022 winery of the year is CedarCreek Estate Winery, located in East Kelowna, British Columbia.  The winery first opened in 1980, then known as Uniacke Wines. In 1986 it was purchased by the Fitzpatrick family, who changed the name to CedarCreek, and began planting some of the earliest pinot noir vines in the valley.

Over five years ago CedarCreek embarked on a massive refit converting the family-owned Estate vineyards to organic farming that encompasses every aspect of the winery, from regenerative farming and sustainable viticulture to farm-to-bottle craftsmanship in their wine cellar.  As of 2021, all vineyards were Ecocert certified.

CedarCreek has partnered with local environmentalists to collect native plant seeds from the property – the seeds are used for fundraising, for native plant re-establishment on other sites, and at the boundaries of new vineyards to support biodiversity.

The estate is the home of five Scottish Highland Cows, a flock of chickens, beehives, worm farms and cover crops to create a thriving ecosystem.

CedarCreek was awarded two Platinum Medals, four Gold, eight Silver and five Bronze.

Platinum Medal

  • CedarCreek Platinum Jagged Rock Syrah 2020, Okanagan Valley
  • CedarCreek Aspect Collection Block 5 Chardonnay 2019, Okanagan Valley

Gold Medal

  • CedarCreek Platinum Jagged Rock Chardonnay 2020, Okanagan Valley
  • CedarCreek Aspect Collection Block 3 Riesling 2020, Okanagan Valley
  • CedarCreek Pinot Noir Rose 2021, Okanagan Valley
  • CedarCreek Platinum Home Block Riesling 2021, Okanagan Valley

Rounding out the top ten producers for 2022 were the following wineries:

The second-place finisher was Ontario’s 13th Street Winery, who was awarded 2 Platinum, 2 Gold, 7 Silver and 9 Bronze medals.

Platinum Medal

  • 13th Street Reserve Syrah 2020, Niagara Peninsula
  • 13th Street Premier Cuvee 2015, Niagara Peninsula

Gold Medal

  • 13th Street Gamay 2020, Niagara Peninsula
  • 13th Street Blanc De Blanc 2019, Niagara Peninsula

Third was British Columbia’s SpearHead Winery that had 1 Platinum, 7 Gold, 3 Silver and 5 Bronze medals.

Platinum Medal

  • Spearhead Coyote Vineyard Pinot Noir 2019, Okanagan Valley

Gold Medal

  • Spearhead Botrytis Affected Late Harvest Riesling 2019, Okanagan Valley (375ml)
  • Spearhead Pinot Noir Cuvée 2019, Okanagan Valley
  • Spearhead Golden Retreat Pinot Noir 2019, Okanagan Valley
  • Spearhead Pinot Gris Golden Retreat Vineyard 2020, Okanagan Valley

In fourth position was British Columbia’s Mission Hill Family Estate which earned 1 Platinum, 4 Gold and 9 Silver medals.

Platinum Medal

  • Mission Hill Terroir Collection Jagged Rock Syrah 2020, Okanagan Valley

Gold Medal

  • Mission Hill Reserve Riesling 2021, Okanagan Valley
  • Mission Hill Perpetua Chardonnay 2020, Okanagan Valley
  • Mission Hill Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon 2020, Okanagan Valley
  • Mission Hill Reserve Merlot 2020, Okanagan Valley

The fifth-place winery was British Columbia’s La Frenz Estate Winery which won 1 Platinum, 9 Gold and 8 Silver medals.

Platinum Medal

  • La Frenz Syrah Rockyfeller Vineyard 2019, Okanagan Valley

Gold Medal

  • La Frenz Malbec Rockyfeller Vineyard 2019, Okanagan Valley
  • La Frenz Grand Total Reserve 2019, Okanagan Valley
  • La Frenz Aster Brut 2018, Okanagan Valley
  • La Frenz Reserve Vivant 2020, Okanagan Valley
  • La Frenz Pinot Noir Desperation Hill Vineyard 2020, Okanagan Valley
  • La Frenz Semillon Knorr Vineyard 2021, Okanagan Valley
  • La Frenz Riesling Cl. 49 Rockyfeller Vineyard 2021, Okanagan Valley
  • La Frenz Cabernets Rockyfeller Vineyard 2019, Okanagan Valley
  • La Frenz Liqueur Muscat, Okanagan Valley (375ml)

The sixth-place finisher was Ontario’s Vieni Estates which had 1 Platinum, 4 Gold, 2 Silver and 9 Bronze medals.

Platinum Medal

  • Vieni Riesling 2020, Vinemount Ridge

Gold Medal

  • Vieni Cabernet Franc 2018, Vinemount Ridge
  • Vieni Cabernet Franc Reserve 2017, Vinemount Ridge
  • Vieni Pinot Grigio 2021, Vinemount Ridge
  • Vieni Unoaked Chardonnay 2019, Vinemount Ridge

In seventh position was British Columbia’s Black Hills Estate Winery, with a record of 1 Platinum, 5 Gold, 3 Silver and 3 Bronze medals.

Platinum Medal

  • Black Hills Ipso Facto 2020, Okanagan Valley

Gold Medal

  • Black Hills Per Se 2020, Okanagan Valley
  • Black Hills Chardonnay 2020, Okanagan Valley
  • Black Hills Roussanne 2020, Okanagan Valley
  • Black Hills Addendum 2020, BC VQA Okanagan Valley
  • Black Hills Alibi 2021, Okanagan Valley

The eighth spot went to British Columbia’s Fort Berens Estate Winery which earned 1 Platinum, 3 Gold, 2 Silver and 6 Bronze medals.

Platinum Medal

  • Fort Berens Pinot Noir 2020

Gold Medal

  • Fort Berens Small Lot Grüner Veltliner 2021, Lillooet
  • Fort Berens Merlot Reserve 2019, Lillooet
  • Fort Berens Merlot 2019

The ninth-place position went to British Columbia’s Bordertown Vineyards & Estate Winery which had 1 Platinum, 3 Gold, 3 Silver and 3 Bronze medals.

Platinum Medal

  • Bordertown Cabernet Sauvignon 2019, Okanagan Valley

Gold Medal

  • Bordertown Cabernet Franc 2019, BC VQA Okanagan Valley
  • Bordertown Malbec 2019, Okanagan Valley
  • Bordertown Syrah 2019, Okanagan Valley

Earning the tenth spot was Ontario’s Thirty Bench Wine Makers with 6 Gold, 7 Silver and 1 Bronze medal.

Gold Medal

  • Thirty Bench Winemaker’s Blend Cabernet Franc 2020, Niagara Peninsula
  • Thirty Bench Special Select Late Harvest 2019 (375ml)
  • Thirty Bench Small Lot Riesling Wood Post Vineyard 2019, VQA Beamsville Bench
  • Thirty Bench Small Lot Riesling Steel Post Vineyard 2020, VQA Beamsville Bench
  • Thirty Bench Small Lot Pinot Noir 2020, VQA Beamsville Bench
  • Thirty Bench Small Lot Riesling Triangle Vineyard 2019, VQA Beamsville Bench

The best performing small winery award goes to the winery with a production of 10,000 cases or less that chalked up the highest aggregate score for its five top-scoring wines.  This year the award was presented to the Okanagan Valley’s SpearHead Winery.  SpearHead 2019 Coyote Vineyard Pinot Noir took a coveted Platinum Medal.  In addition to this, SpearHead wines received seven Gold, three Silver and five Bronze medals.

Sláinte mhaith

Ontario’s Sustainable Wineries

The spirit of sustainability in Ontario starts with VQA (see Selecting Canadian Wines from June 22, 2019) in that the wines must be 100% locally crafted with 100% Ontario-grown grapes.  This helps to reduce the environmental footprint.

There are now thirteen Sustainable Winemaking Ontario Certified (SWO) wineries.  These wineries have had to adapt a rigorous, comprehensive program of environmentally responsible technologies and practices.  Certified wineries are audited annually by a third-party in the following 3 areas:

Environment

  • Water conservation
  • Energy efficiency
  • Recycling
  • Reducing
  • Reusing

Economy

  • Production of VQA wines
  • Local material sourcing

Community

  • Community leadership
  • Social responsibility
  • Being a good neighbour

The wines produced by SWO wineries will display a green-leaf logo on the bottle.

Ontario’s SWO wineries are identified in alphabetical order below.

Cave Spring Vineyard (Niagara)

5-3836 Main Street

Jordan, Ontario, L0R 1S0

SWO Winery & Vineyard Certified

Cave Spring uses a mixture of grasses to control weeds and erosion in the vineyard.  They also encourage endangered species like the brown bat to inhabit the areas of the vineyard.  The bats help to combat the insect population, eliminating the need for chemical pesticides.

Indigenous yeast is used in the wine’s fermentation process and the winery’s main warehouse is powered by solar panels.

Château des Charmes (Niagara)

1025 York Road, Niagara-on-the-Lake

St. David’s, Ontario, L0S 1P0

SWO Winery & Vineyard Certified

Herbicides are never used at Château des Charmes.  Weeds are controlled by mechanically tilling the soil which chops them up and mixes them with the soil turning them into fertilizer.

The discarded stems, skins, seeds and unused grapes are returned to the land as a natural fertilizer.  Composted manure instead of chemical fertilizer is used to replenish nutrients in the soil.

Pest control is utilized only when necessary and, when possible, natural products like sulfur are used in the smallest possible quantities.

The cellars are temperature controlled using geothermal systems.  They are located 9 metres below ground and remain a consistent temperature and humidity throughout the year.

Gray water acquired after washing tanks and barrels is collected and pumped to a clay-lined lagoon onsite. This water is naturally filtered then used to water their lawns and gardens.

Natural cork is used because it is a sustainably farmed product and its production has a much lower carbon footprint than the production methods used to make aluminum screw caps.

The barrels are sourced from Programme for the Endorsement Forest Certification (PEFC) certified forests, utilizing raw materials that are often wasted during the stave milling process.

Flat Rock Cellars (Niagara)

2727 Seventh Avenue

Jordan, Ontario, L0R 1S0

SWO Winery & Vineyard Certified

Flat Rock uses geothermal systems to heat and cool the winery.  They make use of gravity wherever possible throughout the wine making process to minimize energy use.  Their Green Roof Patio is located on top of the barrel cellar and warehouse, which is built into the geological structure of the landscape.  This lets Flat Rock take advantage of the naturally insulated underground space to age and store their wine.

Henry of Pelham Family Estate (Niagara)

1469 Pelham Rd., R.R. #1

St. Catharines, ON Canada L2R 6P7

SWO Winery & Vineyard Certified

The winery has been designed so that the various areas can be heated or cooled independently, often using outdoor air.  The stainless-steel storage tanks have been wrapped in foil-coated bubble wrap.

Henry of Pelham takes part in wetland restoration, biofiltration, reforestation and water conservation.  They also have a community fund-raising program and accept fund raising applications.

Hidden Bench Estate Winery (Niagara)

4152 Locust Lane

Beamsville, Ontario, L0R 1B0

SWO Winery Certified, Certified Organic

Geothermal energy is used to provide heating and cooling for both the building and winemaking processes.  There are also solar panels on the roof of their storage building which help reduce the need for power from the electrical grid.

Hidden Bench was one of the initial consumers of Bullfrog Power, Ontario’s first green electricity company. Bullfrog Power sources its electricity from wind turbines, solar and non-interventionist hydroelectric power so there is minimal impact on the environment.

There is a complimentary EV charging station at the winery which allows their visitors to charge their electric cars while there.

Hidden Bench uses recycled materials wherever possible in its product packaging.

Malivoire Wine Company (Niagara)

4260 King Street East

Beamsville, Ontario, L0R 1B0

SWO Winery & Vineyard Certified

Sustainability has been a core pillar of the winemaking and wine-growing philosophy at Malivoire since their inception. They see the winery and vineyard as a wholistic system. They promote biodiversity and a healthy living vineyard that protects wildlife habitat by working to eliminate synthetic inputs.  Soil stability and fertility are important to them.

Pelee Island Winery (Lake Erie North Shore)

20 East West Road

Pelee Island, Ontario, N0R 1M0

SWO Winery Certified

Pelee Island uses a protocol for integrated pest management developed with support from World Wildlife Fund Canada (WWF). They are committed to the use of ecologically responsible pesticides and ‘all natural’ island grown fertilizer.

The winery has established a stewardship for a Red Cedar Savannah Forest that is unique to Pelee Island. Restoration efforts have saved this forest from extinction and allowed for new growth, as well as the acclimatization of dozens of unique habitats.  The winery plans to engage a in five-year study that will facilitate the total rehabilitation of this forest.

With investments in renewable energies, such as solar and wind power, recycling, water treatment facilities, composting, bio-dynamic sewage systems and organic farming, Pelee Island Winery plans to lead the way as an environmentally safe community.

Pillitteri Estates Winery (Niagara)

1696 Niagara Stone Road

Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario, L0S 1J0

SWO Winery Certified

As family farmers, Pillitteri know the importance of buying quality and locally sourced products. They support the economy of their local community which provides the best opportunity to purchase a quality product at the best price.  That is why Pillitteri Estates Winery has chosen to produce 100% locally grown wines that come from grapes grown in their community.

Reif Estate Winery (Niagara)

15608 Niagara Parkway

Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario, L0S 1J0

SWO Winery Certified

There are no details regarding sustainability practices provided on Reif’s website.

Southbrook Organic Vineyards (Niagara)

581 Niagara Stone Rd.

Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario, L0S 1J0

SWO Winery & Vineyard Certified, Certified Organic, Biodynamic, & LEED Certified

Southbrook understands the importance of organic and biodynamic viticulture and focuses on the soil, water and ecosystems for producing their wine.  Their certifications include Demeter, ECOCERT Canada, LEED® (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design), Sustainable Winemaking Ontario, and VQA (Vintners Quality Alliance).

Organic agriculture uses natural inputs. It uses less water, less energy, no synthetic pesticides, no chemical fertilizer, no bioengineering and no genetic modification. Organic agriculture results in more biodiversity, conserves more water and improves soil health. The entire 150-acre property is certified organic and biodynamic.  

Southbrook’s hospitality pavilion became the first winery building to receive the Gold level of LEED.  Natural light prevails in the hospitality pavilion, while the floor-to-ceiling double-glazed windows control temperature transfer. The walls are thoroughly insulated, while deep roof overhangs give added shade to the building. Indoor water usage is controlled by automatic and low-flow fixtures. Externally, there is a bioswale with native wetland plants to break down pollution from stormwater draining off the access road and parking lots.

Southbrook gives back to the community through donations of facilities, labour and wine.  They have committed tens of thousands of dollars to charity.

Stratus (Niagara)

2059 Niagara Stone Rd.

Niagara-On-The-Lake, Ontario, L0S 1J0

SWO Winery & Vineyard Certified, LEED Certified

In 2005, Stratus was the first winery in Canada to earn LEED certification (see my post on LEED Certification in the Wine Industry from October 23, 2021).  They recycle vine trunks and cuttings using a technique called pyrolysis, which processes green matter into biochar by heating it in an oxygen-reduced self-contained chamber.  The biochar is then added to the compost pile and eventually circulated back into the vineyard.

Strewn Winery (Niagara)

1339 Lakeshore Rd.

Niagara-on-the-Lake, ON L0S 1J0

SWO Winery & Vineyard Certified

Strewn’s web site indicates that the winery is a certified sustainable winery but provides no other details.

Vineland Estate Winery (Niagara)

3620 Moyer Rd.

Vineland, Ontario, L0R 2C0

SWO Winery & Vineyard Certified

Vineland’s sustainability efforts have included switching from conventional to LED lighting.  Timers and motion sensors have been installed. Equipment has been upgraded to be more energy efficient.

Water usage has been reduced as a result of changing their cleaning procedures and changing to low-flow water taps where possible.  They have also taken other measures to reduce wastewater and waste in general.

From a community perspective, Vineland supports fair wages and working conditions.  They also support several charitable organizations through their Legacy and Game Changer programs.

Final Thoughts

Although the number of sustainable wineries in Ontario is increasing, the vast majority are still not sustainable.  Given the seriousness of our environmental challenges, the wine industry, like so many others, still has a long way to go before we begin to see a real positive impact. 

Sláinte mhaith

2022 Ontario Wine Awards

Photo credit: ontariowineawards.ca

After a 3-year hiatus thanks to COVID, this spring saw the return of the Ontario Wine Awards. There were participants from over 80 wineries and more than 500 of the best VQA wines that Ontario has to offer.

A special award was introduced this year to honour the memory of Tawse Winery winemaker, Paul Pender, who was tragically killed earlier this year. The inaugural Paul Pender Memorial ‘Rising Star’ Award was presented to Alec Baines, winemaker at Hidden Bench Winery.  Alec was selected by a committee of his peers for having demonstrated the qualities that made Paul Pender a winemaker’s winemaker – talent, selfless generosity, mentorship and innovation.

The Winemaker of the Year Award was posthumously presented to Paul Pender.  Tawse was where Paul honed his skills and talents as a winemaker. 

The results of this year’s competition were as follows:

White Wine of The Year

Domaine Queylus La Grande Réserve Chardonnay 2020

Deep golden colour; intense apple and pear bouquet with oak spice and a thread of minerality; medium to full-bodied, with the richly extracted yellow apple and pear flavours carried on lively lemony acidity to a long, lingering finish.

Red Wine of The Year

Peninsula Ridge Reserve Syrah 2016

Deep purple-ruby in colour; cedary, toasty, meaty nose of blackberries and vanilla oak; medium to full-bodied, dry, spicy, well-structured and harmonious black fruit flavours. Reminiscent of Syrah from the northern Rhône.

Sparkling Wine (traditional method) Award

Gold

  • Malivoire Bisous Rosé N/V
  • Pelee Island Empress II 2019

Silver

  • Huff Estate Cuvee Janine 2018

Bronze

  • Huff Estate Cuvee Peter F. Huff 2018
  • Queenston Mile Vineyard Blanc de Noir 2017

Riesling Dry Award

Gold

  • Wending Home Estate Vineyards Riesling 2020

Silver

  • Niagara Teaching Winery Balance Dry Riesling 2020

Bronze

  • Strewn Winery Terroir Riesling 2019

Semi-Dry Riesling Award

Gold:

  • Vineland Estates St. Urban Elevation Riesling 2021
  • Thirty Bench Winemakers Small Lot Riesling Wild Cask 2019
  • Tawse Quarry Road Riesling 2019

Silver:

  • Redstone Limestone Riesling 2020

Pinot Gris Award

Gold

  • Dim Wine Co. Forged Pinot Gris 2017
  • Big Head Wines Pinot Gris Select 2017

Silver

  • Lakeview East Dell Pinot Grigio 2020

Bronze

  • Konzelmann Estate Pinot Grigio 2019

Sauvignon Blanc/Semillon Award

Gold

  • Creekside Estate Backyard Block Sauvignon Blanc 2021
  • Burnt Ship Bay Estate Winery Sauvignon Blanc 2021

Silver

  • Palatine Hills Estate Wild & Free White Meritage 2020
  • Ravine Vineyard Sauvignon Blanc 2020
  • Peller Estate Signature Series Sauvignon Blanc 2019

Bronze

  • Trius Showcase Wild Ferment Sauvignon Blanc 2019
  • Vineland Estates Sauvignon Blanc 2021

Unoaked Chardonnay Award

Gold

  • Peninsula Ridge Inox Chardonnay 2020

Silver

  • Kacaba Unoaked Chardonnay 2020

Bronze

  • Ravine Vineyard Unoaked Chardonnay 2021

Oaked Chardonnay (Under $20) Award

Gold

  • Konzelmann Estate Barrel-Aged Chardonnay 2020

Silver

  • North 42 Degrees Chardonnay 2020

Bronze

  • Trius ‘Distinction’ Barrel-Fermented Chardonnay 2020

Oaked Chardonnay (Over $20) Award

Gold

  • Domaine Queylus La Grande Réserve Chardonnay 2020

Silver

  • Bachelder Wismer-Foxcoft Chardonnay 2019
  • Magnotta Limited Edition Chardonnay 2020

Bronze

  • Henry of Pelham Estate Chardonnay 2020

Gewurztraminer Award

Gold

  • None awarded

Silver

  • Jackson-Triggs Grand Reserve Gewurztraminer 2020

Bronze

  • Stoney Ridge Estate Gewurztraminer 2019

Dry White Varietals Awards

Gold

  • None awarded

Silver

  • Redstone White Meritage 2020
  • Niagara College Dean’s List Viognier 2020

Bronze

  • Reif Estate Semillon 2020

Roses/Blanc De Noir Award

Gold

  • Malivoire Wine Moira Rosé 2021

Silver

  • 13th Street Winery Gamay Vin Gris 2021

Bronze

  • Henry of Pelham Speck Three of Hearts Rosé 2020
  • Inniskillin Wines Reserve Cabernet Franc Rosé 2020

Gamay Award

Gold

  • Bachelder 52% Whole Cluster Wismer-Foxcroft Gamay 2020

Silver

  • 13th Street Gamay 2020
  • Byland Estate Gamay Noir Owner Signature 2020

Bronze

  • Niagara College Balance Gamay Noir 2018

Pinot Noir Award

Gold

  • Domaine Queylus Pinot Noir Tradition 2019
  • Closson Chase Pinot Noir 2019

Silver

  • Closson Chase South Clos Pinot Noir 2019
  • Le Clos Jordanne Jordan Village Pinot Noir 2019

Bronze

  • Locust Lane Estate Winery Pinot Noir 2019

Cabernet Franc Award

Gold

  • Tawse Winery David’s Block Cabernet Franc 2019
  • Domaine Queylus Cabernet Franc Réserve 2020

Silver

  • Inniskillin Wines Reserve Cabernet Franc 2018

Bronze 

  • Ravine Vineyard Estate Lonna’s Block Cabernet Franc 2019

Cabernet Franc Award

Gold

  • Tawse Winery David’s Block Cabernet Franc 2019
  • Domaine Queylus Cabernet Franc Réserve 2020

Silver

  • Inniskillin Wines Reserve Cabernet Franc 2018

Bronze

  • Ravine Vineyard Estate Lonna’s Block Cabernet Franc 2019

Merlot Award

Gold

  • None awarded

Silver

  • Konzelmann Merlot Barrel-Aged Reserve Series 2020
  • GreenLane Estate Christine’s Block Merlot 2017

Bronze

  • Jackson-Triggs Grand Reserve Merlot 2019

Cabernet Sauvignon Award

Gold

  • Strewn Winery Cabernet Sauvignon 2017

Silver

  • Waupoos Estates Winery 2019

Bronze

  • Peninsula Ridge Estate BV Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon 2016
  • Trius Showcase East Block Cabernet Sauvignon 2019

Meritage And Cabernet Blends Award

Gold

  • Southbrook Poetica Red 2019

The Foreign Affair Temptress 2018

Silver

  • Magnotta Legacy Limited edition 2018
  • The Foreign Affair Dream 2018

Syrah/Shiraz Award

Gold

  • Big Head Raw Syrah 2020
  • Kacaba Proprietor’s Block Syrah Escarpment 2019
  • Peninsula Ridge Reserve Syrah 2016

Silver

  • Rockway Syrah 2018

Hybrid Red Award

Gold

  • Henry of Pelham Speck Family Reserve Baco Noir 2020

Silver

  • Wayne Gretzky Estates No. 99 Signature Series Baco Noir 2020

Bronze

  • Riverview Cellars Baco Noir 2020

Late Harvest Whites & Reds

Gold

  • Thirty Bench Special Select Late Harvest Vidal 2019

Silver

  • Trius Showcase Late Harvest Vidal 2019
  • Konzelmann Select Late Harvest Cabernet Sauvignon 2019

Bronze

  • Strewn Ice-Breaker Select Late Harvest Vidal 2014

Appassimento Red Award

Gold

  • None awarded

Silver

  • Dim Wine Co. Field Select Red 2016
  • Rennie Estate Winery ‘G’ Assemblage 2016

Bronze

  • The Foreign Affair Apologetic 2018

Orange Wine Award

Gold

  • None awarded

Silver

  • Maenad Wine Co. Skin-Fermented Chardonnay 2020
  • Southbrook Skin-Fermented White (Vidal) 2020

Bronze

  • Big Head Amber 2021

Other Red Wines Award

Gold

  • Lakeview Cellars Grand Reserve Red 2017

Silver

  • Lakeview Cellars Malbec 2017
  • Green Lane Estate Malbec 2018

Bronze

  • Creekside Red Tractor Cabernet Shiraz 2019

Vidal Icewine Award

Gold

  • Kittling Ridge Vidal Icewine 2019
  • Riverview Cellars Vidal Icewine 2019

Silver

  • Inniskillin Oak-Aged Vidal Icewine 2019
  • Magnotta Vidal Icewine Limited 2019
  • Sue-Ann Staff Estate Winery Vidal Icewine 2018

Bronze

  • Lakeview Wine Co. Lakeview Cellars Vidal Icewine 2019

Vinifera Icewine Award

Gold

  • Redstone Cabernet Sauvignon Icewine 2019

Silver

  • Jackson-Triggs Cabernet Franc Icewine 2019
  • Wayne Gretzky Riesling Icewine 2019

Bronze

  • Inniskillin Cabernet Franc Icewine 2019

Label Design Award

  • Megalomaniac To Be Franc Cabernet Franc

Sláinte mhaith

Ontario Wine Get-Aways

If you ever have the desire to relax and immerse yourself in any of Ontario’s wine regions, an overnight stay at a winery may prove to be ‘the icing on the cake’.  If you would like to consider pursuing this idea, here are some Ontario wineries, organized by region, that offer accommodations at the winery.

NIAGARA REGION

13th Street Winery (Escarpment and Area)

1776 Fourth Avenue

St. Catharines, Ontario L2R 6P9

Celebrating over 20 years of winemaking in Niagara, 13th Street Winery’s mission is to create exceptional wines that reflect the unique terroir of Niagara. They provide a unique blend of wine, food and art. You can experience the tasting bar, wander the sculpture gardens or relax with a glass of wine.

For accommodations, there is a choice of two contemporary houses, both offering private, luxurious accommodations. Both are set amongst the vineyards on the winery estate. Each house sleeps up to eight guests and include a fully equipped kitchen, living room, expansive deck and 3 ½ baths. The Cottage has 3 bedrooms and the Farmhouse has 4. Both are available to book on Air Bnb.

WHAT’S NEAR BY

  • King’s Court Estate Winery
  • Creekside Estate Winery
  • 16 Mile Cellar
  • 13th Street Bakery & Farmhouse Bistro
  • The Deck at Creekside Estate Winery
  • Inn on the Twenty
  • Alvento Winery Vineyard Villa

Alvento Winery (Escarpment and Area)

3048 2nd Avenue

Vineland Station, Ontario L0R 2E0

Alvento Winery was established in 2001.  It offers visitors a unique boutique wine country experience. This 13-acre vineyard features an authentic 19th Century barn with a renovated tasting room, as well as unique, luxurious accommodation in the four-room, picturesque Bed & Breakfast.

WHAT’S NEAR BY

  • Di Profio Estate Wines
  • Harbour Estates Winery
  • Honsberger
  • Zinc Bistro at Di Profio Estate Wines
  • The Harbour Patio at Harbour Estates Winery
  • Inn on the Twenty
  • Accommodations at Vineland Estates

Cave Springs Winery (Escarpment and Area)

3836 Main Street

Jordan, Ontario L0R 1S0

Cave Spring is located in the centre of Jordan Village. The wines capture the terroir of this prime sub-appellation. Visitors may enjoy an intimate, seated experience in the tasting room, featuring curated wine flights paired with local charcuterie.

The Estate House at Cave Spring Vineyard is a stunning Victorian-style farmhouse located at the heart of the vineyard. Nestled high on the Beamsville Bench of the Niagara Escarpment overlooking Lake Ontario, it offers some breathtaking vistas of Niagara wine country. It is a fully equipped, self-catered rental with many of the region’s top estate wineries within a 15-minute drive and hiking on the Bruce Trail literally on your doorstep.

WHAT’S NEAR BY

  • Di Profio Estate Wines
  • Honsberger
  • Stoney Ridge Estate Winery
  • 2027 Cellars
  • Inn On The Twenty Restaurant
  • Jordan House Tavern
  • Inn on the Twenty
  • Alvento Winery Vineyard Villa

Commisso Estate Winery (Escarpment and Area)

564 Kemp Road East

Beamsville, Ontario L0R 1B2

Commisso Estate is a 32-acre estate winery and Bed & Breakfast located on the 75-year-old Commisso farm at the top of the Niagara Escarpment in the heart of wine country.  The winery focuses on premium, small-lot VQA wines, particularly Appassimento wines and big bold reds.  Situated amidst lush vineyards and breathtaking gardens it is also the perfect venue for corporate events and private functions.

The property includes beautiful landscapes, acres of vineyards, gazebos, a pond and other attractions to make any occasion truly memorable. The hospitality suites provide the option for overnight stays and the wine boutique will showcase wines produced from the vineyard as well as feature small-batch wines from local vineyards.

WHAT’S NEAR BY

  • Angels Gate Winery
  • Organized Crime Winery
  • Rosewood Estates Winery & Meadery
  • London Born Wine Company
  • London Born Winery Restaurant
  • The Restaurant at Peninsula Ridge
  • Vieni Estates Wine & Spirits Bed and Breakfast

Vieni Estates (Escarpment and Area)

4553 Fly Road

Beamsville, Ontario L0R 1B2

Vieni means “come” or “welcome” in Italian and that is just how they want you to feel – welcomed and at home at Vieni Estates. The winery is situated on a diverse 175-acre estate on the edge of the Niagara Escarpment. In addition to their fine wines, Vieni Estates offers traditional Italian-style sparkling wines, Icewines, grappas and spirits distilled from the many fruits of Ontario.

You can stay at the beautifully updated Bed & Breakfast, where every room has a stunning view of the vineyards and 30 acres of protected forest along the Niagara Escarpment.  You can unwind and relax poolside, visit the winery or discover the property and enjoy a picnic by their pond, or hike the Bruce Trail.

WHAT’S NEAR BY

  • Cave Spring Vineyard Tasting Room
  • Rennie Estate Winery
  • Kew Vineyards Estate Winery
  • The Restaurant at Redstone
  • Megalomaniac Food+Drink
  • Alvento Winery Vineyard Villa

Vineland Estates Winery (Escarpment and Area)

3620 Moyer Road

Vineland L0R 2C0

For over 30 years Vineland Estates Winery has offered an unparalleled wine and food experience within a setting of breathtaking vistas and welcoming warmth. Vineland is passionately committed to authenticity and excellence in all things and has been singled out as a top producer of award-winning Riesling and Cabernet Franc as well as locally sourced cuisine.

Vineland Estates Winery operates two accommodation options adjacent to the estate vineyards. The Bed and Breakfast Cottage and Estate Guest House both provide great experiences.

WHAT’S NEAR BY

  • Vineland Estates Winery
  • Kacaba Vineyards and Winery
  • Tawse Winery
  • Ridgepoint Wines
  • The Restaurant at Vineland Estates Winery
  • Ridgepoint Wines Restaurant
  • Inn on the Twenty
  • Alvento Winery Vineyard Villa

PRINCE EDWARD COUNTY

Casa-Dea Estates Winery

1186 Greer Road

Wellington, Ontario K0K 3L0

This picturesque property was the first winery on Greer Road and is now one of the largest wineries in the County. The 65-acre vineyard is planted with Pinot Gris, Chardonnay, Riesling, Pinot Noir and Cabernet Franc. They are focused on making VQA wines from 100% County grapes. Enjoy Italian cuisine at La Pergola in the summer. There are also banquet facilities for your dream wedding, including outdoor ceremonies.

Their guest house, the ‘Casa del Silenzio’, is located at the winery, just steps away from the vineyard, tasting bar and patio restaurant. Rent it for two nights (minimum) or a week and experience ‘The County’. Casa del Silenzio also makes the perfect addition to a wedding at Casa-Dea, providing accommodations for the bride, groom and wedding party.

WHAT’S NEAR BY

  • Norman Hardie Winery and Vineyard
  • Rosehall Run
  • Traynor Family Vineyard
  • Sandbanks Estate Winery
  • La Condesa
  • Drake Devonshire
  • By Chadsey’s Cairns Farmhouse
  • Huff Estates Winery

Huff Estates Winery

2274 County Road 1

Bloomfield, Ontario K0K 1G0

In addition to the winery, Huff Estates has an inn and art gallery. You may sample their wines in the tasting room; have lunch overlooking the vineyard and discover contemporary Canadian art in the Oeno Gallery and stay at the luxurious Inn at Huff Estates.

WHAT’S NEAR BY

  • Sugarbush Vineyards
  • Karlo Estates
  • Broken Stone Winery
  • Closson Chase
  • La Condesa
  • Drake Devonshire
  • The Waring House

Three Dog Winery

1920 Fish Lake Road

Picton, Ontario K0K 1W0

At Three Dog Winery they strive to become a gathering place for the community where you not only want to enjoy a glass of wine but gather to dine with friends. On weekends enjoy live music and wood-fired pizza on the patio. Their wines are award-winning, affordable and easy drinking. Just 15 minutes off Hwy 401, they have 6km of hiking trails – plenty of room to walk your four-legged friends.  You can also book your stay at the Vineyard Loft which overlooks the vineyard.

WHAT’S NEAR BY

  • Black Prince Winery – Canadian Vinegar Cellars
  • Amanda’s Vineyards
  • Waupoos Estates Winery
  • Huff Estates Winery
  • The Inn at Lake on the Mountain Resort
  • Hartleys Tavern
  • Three Dog Winery – Vineyard Loft
  • Merrill House

Waupoos Estate Winery

3016 County Road 8

Picton, Ontario K0K 2T0

Waupoos is the oldest winery in Prince Edward County and has a wide selection of award-winning wines. The winery features boutique shopping with chocolate and gelato, a petting zoo and fine dining experience in the full-service Restaurant overlooking beautiful Prince Edward Bay. Accommodations are available in the 1900 Century Farm House. The Farmhouse is a beautifully restored century home situated on the 100 acre grounds of Waupoos Estates, with breathtaking views of Prince Edward Bay and the vineyards.  A 2 night minimum stay is required.

WHAT’S NEAR BY

  • Amanda’s Vineyards
  • Three Dog Winery
  • Black Prince Winery – Canadian Vinegar Cellars
  • Huff Estates Winery
  • Waupoos Estate Winery Restaurant
  • The Inn at Lake on the Mountain Resort
  • Merrill House

NORTHERN AREA

Coffin Ridge Boutique Winery (Georgian Bay)

599448 2nd Concession North RR1

Annan, Ontario N0H 1B0

Situated in Grey County, Coffin Ridge has a modern tasting room that opens to an elevated deck overlooking Georgian Bay and the vineyard. Carefully researched winter-hardy varieties flourish here, with hybrids like L’Acadie Blanc and Marquette gaining critical acclaim. Visit the winery to try their Riesling Bone Dry or Back From the Dead Red blend VQA wines.

An overnight stay at the Resting Place will give you access to a gorgeous and tranquil escape from the norm, including a games room, theatre, gym, pool, hot tub and a library as well as various sitting areas overlooking the vineyard and beautiful Georgian Bay. 

WHAT’S NEAR BY

  • Georgian Hills Vineyards
  • The Roost Wine Company
  • Adamo Estate Winery
  • Windrush Estate Winery
  • Bruce Wine Bar Kitchen
  • Barrhead Pub & Grill
  • Burning Kiln Wilderness Suites

Schatz Winery by Hessenland Inn

72981 Bluewater Hwy

Zurich, Ontario N0M 2T0

Schatz is Hessenland Inn’s winery, located on the Lake Huron Shores nestled between Bayfield and Grand Bend, offers a unique combination of history, innovation, and European elegance.

Also onsite is Hessenland Inn & Restaurant which serves a locally sourced menu.

WHAT’S NEAR BY

  • Cornerfield Wine Co.
  • Dark Horse Estate Winery
  • Maelstrom Winery
  • Alton Farms Estate Winery
  • Black Dog Village Pub & Bistro
  • The Little Inn of Bayfield
  • Burning Kiln Wilderness Suites

LAKE ERIE NORTH SHORE

Burning Kiln Winery

1709 Front Road

St Williams, Ontario N0E 1P0

Rooted in the agricultural significance of tobacco and Norfolk County, Burning Kiln offers a vision of this emerging VQA region’s bright future. The picturesque winery is a repurposed tobacco pack barn overlooking Long Point Bay on Lake Erie, close to some of the best vacation areas and beaches.

You can book a stay at the Farmhouse located at the vineyard. The 1865 home has been fully restored to its original charm.  The house is situated at the highest point of the estate providing picturesque views of the surrounding winery.

WHAT’S NEAR BY

  • Front Road Cellars
  • Smoke & Gamble | Frisky Beaver
  • Hounds of Erie
  • Ridge Road Estate Winery
  • The Combine
  • Barrel Restaurant
  • Burning Kiln Wilderness Suites
  • Vieni Estates Wine & Spirits Bed and Breakfast

Sláinte mhaith

Canada’s Liquid Gold

Ontario is internationally acclaimed for its Ice Wine (also spelled Icewine).  However, it is said to have been discovered by accident in Franken, Germany in 1794 by farmers trying to save their grape harvest after a sudden frost.  Winemakers that year had to create a product from the grapes available for harvest. The resulting wines had an unusually high sugar content, along with great flavour. As a result, this new technique became popular in Germany and by the mid-1800s, the Rheingau region was making what the Germans called Eiswein.

Photo credit: TheDrinksBusiness.com

In the 1980s, Ontario’s vintners recognized that their cold winters would provide the perfect conditions for producing exceptional Ice Wine.  In 1984, Niagara’s Inniskillin winery was the first Canadian winery to produce Ice Wine for commercial purposes. This wine was made from Vidal grapes and was labelled “Eiswein”. Canadian Ice Wine soon became popular and more Canadian producers picked up the idea. The international breakthrough of Canadian Ice Wine came in 1991, when Inniskillin’s 1989 Vidal ice wine won the Grand Prix d’Honneur at VinExpo in Bordeaux, France. By the early 2000s, Canada was established as the largest producer of ice wine in the world. In 2001, the EU recognized Canada’s high standard for producing Ice Wine and began allowing its importation.

At the normal fall harvest time, producers leave select vineyards unharvested and wait for winter to set in. Being left on the vine, the grapes are vulnerable to rot, high winds, hail, hungry birds and animals.  The grapes are harvested in the middle of the night at temperatures below -8°C.  The grapes are picked by hand and must be pressed immediately while they are still frozen.

Only about 10 to 20% of the liquid in these frozen grapes is used for Ice Wine. The juice is so sweet that it can take from 3 to 6 months to make ice wine.  When it’s all done, wines have around 10% alcohol by volume (ABV) and a range of sweetness from around 160 to 220 grams/litre of residual sugar, which is two times the sweetness of Coca-Cola.

Grapes that grow well in cold climates make the best ice wines.  These include Cabernet Franc, Merlot, Gewürztraminer, Riesling, Grüner Veltliner, Chenin Blanc, Chardonnay and Vidal Blanc.

To produce Ice Wine, summers must be hot and winters must be cold. Of all the wine-producing regions in the world, only Ontario has a winter climate consistently cold enough to produce Ice Wine every year. Even Germany cannot produce an Ice Wine every vintage.

Regulations in Canada, Germany, Austria, and the U.S. prohibit dessert wines from being labeled as ice wine if grapes are commercially frozen. Instead, these products are usually labeled as “iced wine” or simply “dessert wine.” So, if you’re looking for true ice wine, be a wary shopper and read the labels or look up the production information.

Ice Wine is not just a dessert wine, but if you do serve it along side dessert, make sure the dessert is less sweet than the Ice Wine.  Pairing suggestions include fruit cobbler or pie or cheesecake.  White Ice Wine goes well with apple pie, cheesecake, vanilla pound cake, ice cream, fresh fruit panna cotta, fruit compote, crème brûlée and white chocolate mousse.

If you are serving dark chocolate, it pairs well with Cabernet Franc or other red Ice Wine.  White chocolate goes well with a Riesling or Vidal Ice Wine.

White Ice Wine pairs well with savoury dishes, such as chicken liver pâté, oysters or foie gras.  These salty foods enhance the wine’s sweetness.  The acidity of the Ice Wine cleanses the palate between bites.

Spicy foods, such as spicy chicken or Thai curry will pair well because the sweetness of the wine will control the heat of the food while maintaining the flavours of the spices.

White Ice Wine pairs well with snack foods such as soft cheeses or blue cheeses.  Red Ice Wine goes well with nuts such as almonds, hazelnuts, walnuts and pecans.

Ice Wine should always be chilled, whether that be for 15 minutes in an ice bucket or 2 hours in the fridge before enjoying.  It can be served in an Ice Wine glass, which is a narrow, tulip-shaped long-stemmed glass or it can be simply served in a white wine glass.  A standard serving is about 1.5 ounces or 45 ml per person.

Once opened, unlike other wines, Ice Wine will keep in the fridge for several weeks.

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Triumph to Tragedy

My wife and I recently hosted a family dinner and for the occasion I asked my wife to purchase a Riesling to go along with it.  One of the challenges of living in a rural community is that the local liquor store doesn’t have a lot of choices when in search of a particular varietal. She returned home with Tawse 2017 Sketches of Niagara Riesling. 

When we opened and served the wine with the dinner my wife and I identified the bouquet right away, diesel fuel.  My wife was immediately turned off by it while I became positively excited.  This was the first Ontario Riesling that I have had that authentically portrays its Old-World style German cousin.

The wine was vibrant with subtle floral, nutty, fig, smoke and pear notes, a soft sweetness and long finish.   It is a great value at only $18.95.  Even though my wife was not a fan of the nose of a traditional German style Riesling, she did enjoy the overall flavour of the wine.

When I clicked on Tawse website to see if I could learn more about their German style Riesling, I saw that their wine maker, Paul Pender, had been tragically killed several days prior.  I never had the opportunity of meeting him but after tasting the Riesling, as well as other wonderful creations from Tawse, I certainly wish I had.  His untimely passing is a tragic loss to the entire wine community.

If you are a fan of Riesling, I suggest picking up a bottle or two of the Sketches of Niagara as a tribute to its creator.

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Appassimento Style of Wines

Appassimento is an Italian term that describes the drying of harvested grapes.  Traditionally this was done on bamboo racks or straw mats.  The process took anywhere from a few weeks up to several months to concentrate the sugars and flavours of the grapes. This process is used in making Amarone, Recioto and Sforzato.

Photo credit: WineAnorak.com

The process goes all the way back to the Egyptians or Greeks. The fruit was dehydrated by either leaving them on the vine to dry naturally in the hot sun or by picking and laying the bunches out on straw mats or hanging from rafters.

These types of wines became popular because they provided higher levels of alcohol and sweetness, thus making them not only more stable and complex but appealing to the consumer.

Today, dried grape wines are made in many regions of the world. The most well-known are the Amarone and Recioto wines of Valpolicella in Veneto, Italy.  However, dried-grape wines are also made throughout the rest of Italy and Mediterranean Europe, parts of the southern hemisphere, and even in cool climate regions such as Romania, Moldova, Switzerland, France, Austria, and Germany.

Canada is even now experimenting with these wines. Niagara’s Magnotta’s Enotrium is considered the first of its kind in Canada.

Today the appassimento process consists of harvesting ripe grapes and drying them for a period of several days or months in special rooms where airflow, humidity and temperature are controlled to varying degrees. The process does not ripen grapes like green bananas turning yellow and then brown in a bowl on your kitchen counter. Instead, the process concentrates what already exists in the grapes after they are removed from the vine. The grapes must be very healthy and fully ripe with adequate levels of acidity when harvested.

There are many different approaches to drying in Ontario. Some vintners use ventilated barns or open-air greenhouses while others use kilns.

The drying process will take anywhere from two weeks to over 140 days. Aside from concentrating sugars, acidity and tannins, the drying process will result in important microbiological changes in the grapes that can impart additional unique aromas and flavours adding greater complexity and intrigue to the final product. After the desired period of drying has elapsed, the winemaker will perform a final sorting to eliminate any unwanted fruit from entering the fermentation stage.

Anywhere from 30% to 50% of the original harvested juice yield will be lost using this process. Many of Ontario’s top appassimento-style wines are only made in select, high quality vintages. It is important to inquire as to what percentage of the wine has been dried and to take note of the alcohol percentage and residual sugar present. Knowing this will help you predict the final style of the wine and can help you match your taste preferences to the right product.

A second, less costly by-product of the appassimento process is ripasso wines. Unlike the appassimento wines where dried grapes make up part, or all of the final blend, ripasso wines use fresh, undried grapes to make the base wine which is then re-passed over the used skins leftover from the rarer and expensive appassimento process. This second contact with the skins may start a short re-fermentation adding a slight increase in alcohol to the base wine while adding extra complexity and flavour.

Ontario wineries producing wines using this process include Angel’s Gate, Big Head Winery, Burning Kiln Winery, Kew Vineyards, The Foreign Affair Winery and Rennie Vineyards.

The VQA of Ontario (VQAO) is currently reviewing the use of terms like appassimento and partial appassimento on labels of VQA wines. The VQAO is attempting to update the rules to ensure producers meet all the necessary legal limits for sugar, alcohol content and percentage of dried grapes so consumers will have clarity when buying wines.

As the Canadian wine industry continues to evolve, I believe the inclusion of the Appassimento style will enhance the industry moving forward. Expansion of Canadian viticulture and winemaking provides consumers with an even greater selection of fine wines offering excellent value.

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2021 & the B.C. Wine Industry

2021 presented lots of challenges for British Columbia’s vintners.  The spring was one of the driest on record with very little rain from late May to the end of June. Temperatures in June climbed up to 47 degrees Celsius.  The combination of these things resulted in the grapes maturing faster and earlier than normal.  The grape yields were low but the quality was good, producing small, very ripe fruit bursting with flavour.  It is hoped that this high concentration of flavour will translate into an excellent, though a low yield vintage.

Photo credit: TourismKelowna.com

The wild fires also wreaked havoc on the harvest in some areas, particularly the Thompson and Okanagan Valleys.  Fortunately, the worst of the smoke exposure occurred before the grapes began to ripen so the impact is believed to be minimal.

The recent flooding in B.C. has affected all residents either directly or indirectly.  With major transportation routes being blocked or damaged, supply chains and mobility have been severely restricted.  At this point it is still too early to know what additional burden will be felt by B.C.’s wine industry as a whole because of the flooding.

This year was without a doubt a season with its challenges because of the smoke, heat and floods.  However, early indications suggest that the 2021 vintage of British Columbia wines will be very flavourful.  Unfortunately for consumers the prices will most likely be higher due to the smaller than normal yields produced.  These are some things to keep in mind when the 2021 B. C. vintages begin hitting the store shelves in a year or two.

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Ontario’s Top 10 Wineries at the 2021 Wine Align National Wine Awards of Canada (NWAC)

Ontario had 79 wineries enter this year’s National Wine Awards competition, second only to B.C.  With such a strong field of competitors, earning a position in the top 10 is truly an accomplishment.

The wines were presented to the judges without displaying the producer, origin or price.  The wines were identified and organized by grape variety or style. The top medalists were tasted in multiple rounds by many different judges.

All ten wineries were from the Niagara region.  There were no winners from Prince Edward County, the North Shore of Lake Erie, Norfolk County, Georgian Bay, Huron Shores or the Toronto Wine Region.

The wineries identified in green periodically have their wines available for sale in local liquor stores. The award winning wines identified in blue are available in Ontario through the LCBO.

1. Malivoire Wine Company, Beamsville, ON (1st overall)

Malivoire Wine Company is the National Wine Awards Winery of the Year as a result of their earning 3 Platinum, 1 Gold, 8 Silver and 5 Bronze medals.  This was the first year that a winery has received 3 Platinum medals.  Malivoire’s wines may be purchased from their website at www.malivoire.com.

Platinum Medal Winners

2020 Le Coeur Gamay – Category: Gamay – $27.95

N/V Bisous Rose – Category: Sparkling Pink – $29.95

2020 Analog Demo Series – Category: Red Blend – $27.95

Gold Medal Winner

2020 Small Lot Chardonnay – Category: Chardonnay – $19.95

Silver Medal Winners

2019 Mottiar Pinot Noir – Category: Pinot Noir – $39.95

2019 Small Lot Pinot Noir – Category: Pinot Noir – $29.95

2020 Genova Gamay – Category: Gamay – $27.95

2020 Small Lot Gamay – Category: Gamay – $21.95

2019 Mottiar Chardonnay – Category: Chardonnay – $34.95

2020 Moira Chardonnay – Category: Chardonnay – $49.95

N/V Bisous Brut – Category: Sparkling Wine – $34.95

2020 Moira Rosé – Category: Rosé – $24.95

Bronze Medal Winners

2018 Stouck Farmstead Red – Category: Red Blend – $29.95

2020 Wismer-Foxcroft Gamay – Category: Gamay – $27.95

N/V Che Bello, Ontario – Category: Sparkling Wine – 17.95

2020 Ladybug Rosé – Category: Rosé – $16.95

2020 Vivant Rosé – Category: Rosé – $19.95

2. Trius Winery, Niagara-on-the-Lake, ON (4th overall)

Trius Winery was awarded 2 Platinum, 1 Gold, 7 Silver and 5 Bronze medals at this year’s event.  Their wines may be purchased from their website at www.triuswines.com.

Platinum Medal Winners

2019 Showcase Late Harvest Vidal – Category: Late Harvest – $29.95

Brut Rose – Category: Sparkling Pink – $29.95

Gold Medal Winner

2019 Showcase Riesling Ghost Creek – Category: Riesling – $29.75

Silver Medal Winners

2020 Distinction Sauvignon Blanc – Category: Sauvignon Blanc – $19.75

2019 Red The Icon – Category: Red Blend – $24.95

2019 Reserve Syrah – Category: Syrah – $25.75

2019 Showcase Cabernet Franc Red Shale – Cabernet Franc – $54.80

2020 Distinction Sauvignon Blanc – Category: Sauvignon Blanc – $19.75

N/V Brut – Category: Sparkling White – $29.95

N/V Showcase Brut Nature – Category: Sparkling White – $55.00

Bronze Medal Winners

2019 Showcase Pinot Noir Clark Farm – Category: Pinot Noir – $36.75

2020 Distinction Cabernet Sauvignon – Category: Cabernet Sauvignon – $19.75

2019 Distinction Divine White – Category: White Blend – $22.75

2019 Reserve Viognier – Category: Viognier – $23.75

2020 Rosé – Category: Rosé – $18.05

3. Peller Estates, Niagara-on-the-Lake, ON (5th overall)

Peller Estates received 2 Platinum, 2 Gold, 5 Silver and 3 Bronze medals at this year’s awards.  Their wines are available at retailers across Canada, as well as from their website at www.peller.com.

Platinum Medal Winners

2019 Private Reserve Cabernet Franc – Category: Cabernet Franc – $23.75

2019 Signature Series Riesling – Category: Riesling – $29.95

Gold Medal Winners

2018 Andrew Peller Cabernet Franc Icewine – Category: Icewine – $108.90

2019 Signature Series Sauvignon Blanc – Category: Sauvignon Blanc – $24.75

Silver Medal Winners

2018 Signature Series Vidal Blanc Icewine – Category: Icewine – $74.85

2019 Private Reserve Gamay Noir – Category: Gamay – $21.75

2019 Signature Series Cabernet Franc – Category: Cabernet Franc – $54.80

2018 Signature Series Vidal Blanc Icewine – Category: Icewine – $74.85

2019 Andrew Peller Riesling Icewine – Category: Icewine – $24.99

Bronze Medal Winners

2020 Private Reserve Sauvignon Blanc – Category: Sauvignon Blanc – $20.75

N/V Ice Cuvée Rose Signature Series – Category: Sparkling Pink – $36.75

2020 Private Reserve Rosé – Category: Rosé – $22.75

4. Thirty Bench Wine Makers, Beamsville, ON (9th overall)

Thirty Bench earned 5 Gold, 6 Silver and 3 Bronze medals.  Their wines are available online at www.thirtybench.com.

Gold Medal Winners

2019 Small Lot Gewürztraminer – Category: Gewürztraminer – $29.75

2019 Small Lot Riesling Steel Post Vineyard – Category: Riesling – $29.75

2018 Small Lot Riesling Wild Cask – Category: Riesling – $29.75

2018 Small Lot Riesling Wood Post Vineyard – Category: Riesling – $29.75

2017 Small Lot Cabernet Franc – Category: Cabernet Franc – $75.20

Silver Medal Winners

2017 Small Lot Cabernet Sauvignon – Category: Cabernet Sauvignon – $50.00

2018 Small Lot Riesling Triangle Vineyard – Category: Riesling – $29.75

2019 Small Lot Pinot Noir – Category: Pinot Noir – $36.75

2019 Small Lot Riesling Wild Cask – Category: Riesling – $29.75

2019 Small Lot Riesling Wood Post Vineyard – Category: Riesling – $29.75

2019 Winemaker’s Blend Riesling – Category: Riesling – $22.95

Bronze Medal Winners

2019 Winemaker’s Blend Red – Category: Red Blend – $24.95

2019 Small Lot Riesling Triangle Vineyard – Category: Riesling – $29.75

2018 Effervescent Riesling – Category: Sparkling White – $38.95

5. 13th Street Winery, St. Catharines, ON (15th overall)

13th Street was awarded 1 Platinum, 1 Gold, 5 Silver and 14 Bronze medals.  Their wines are available at retailers in Ontario, as well as from their website at www.13thstreetwinery.com.

Platinum Medal Winner

2015 Premier Cuvee – Category: Sparkling White – $39.95

Gold Medal Winner

2020 Cabernet Franc June’s Vineyard – Category: Cabernet Franc – $24.95

Silver Medal Winners

2013 Grande Cuvee Blanc de Noir – Category: Sparkling White – $59.95

2019 Gamay – Category: Gamay – $19.95

2019 Blanc de Blanc – Category: Sparkling White – $29.95

2020 Riesling June’s Vineyard – Category: Riesling – $19.95

2020 Gamay Whitty Vineyard – Category: Gamay – $24.95

Bronze Medal Winners

2018 Essence Cabernet Franc – Category: Cabernet Franc – $49.95

2019 Cabernet Merlot – Category: Red Blend – $19.95

2019 Expression Cabernet Merlot – Category: Red Blend – $17.95

2019 Gamay Sandstone – Category: Gamay – $34.95

2020 Gamay – Category: Gamay – $17.95

N/V Burger Blend Gamay Pinot Noir- Category: Red Blend – $14.95

2019 Chardonnay L. Viscek Vineyard – Category: Chardonnay – $34.95

2019 Reserve Pinot Gris Home Farm – Category: Pinot Gris – $29.95

2020 Chardonnay, Creek Shores – Category: Chardonnay – $24.95

2020 Maximum Intervention Riesling – Category: Orange Wine – $24.95

2020 Pinot Gris Market Vineyard – Category: Pinot Gris – $19.95

N/V Burger Blend Riesling Pinot Grigio – Category: White Blend – $14.95

2019 Gamay Blanc de Noir – Category: Sparkling White – $34.95

N/V Cuvée Rose – Category: Sparkling Pink – $29.95

6. Ravine Vineyard Estate Winery, St. Davids, ON (21st overall)

Ravine Vineyard earned 3 Gold, 4 Silver and 6 Bronze medals at this year’s event.  Their wines are available online at www.ravinevineyard.com.

Gold Medal Winners

2020 Botrytis Affected Riesling – Category: Late Harvest – $38.00

2019 Lonna’s Block Cabernet Franc – Category: Cabernet Franc – $55.00

2018 Reserve Red Category: Red Blend – $65.00

Silver Medal Winners

2018 Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon – Category: Cabernet Sauvignon – $65.00

2019 Nancy’s Block Cabernet Franc – Category: Cabernet Franc – $55.00

2020 Patricia’s Block Riesling – Category: Riesling – $35.00

2019 Cabernet Franc Icewine – Category: Icewine – $45.00

Bronze Medal Winners

2018 Reserve Merlot – Category: Merlot – $65.00

2019 Meritage – Category: Red Blend – $32.00

2019 Small Batch Riesling – Category: Riesling – $28.00

2019 Chardonnay – Category: Chardonnay – $35.00

2020 Gewürztraminer – Category: Gewürztraminer – $25.00

2020 Rosé – Category: Rosé – $25.00

7. Fielding Estate Winery, Beamsville, ON (22nd overall)

Fielding achieved 3 Gold, 5 Silver and 12 Bronze medals this year.  Their wines are available at retailers across Ontario, as well as from their website at www.fieldingwines.com.

Gold Medal Winners

2018 Estate Bottled Cabernet Franc – Category: Cabernet Franc – $39.95

2019 Cabernet-Syrah – Category: Red Blend – $29.95

N/V Sparkling Brut – Category: Sparkling White – $37.15

Silver Medal Winners

2019 Estate Bottled Riesling – Category: Riesling – $16.25

Fielding 2020 Chardonnay Unoaked – Category: Chardonnay – $15.95

2020 Estate Bottled Chardonnay – Category: Chardonnay – $18.15

2020 Estate Bottled Gamay – Category: Gamay – $25.95

2020 Rosé – Category: Rosé – $15.95

Bronze Medal Winners

2017 Syrah Lowrey Vineyard – Category: Syrah – $34.95

2019 Cabernet Franc – Category: Cabernet Franc – $24.95

2019 Pinot Noir – Category: Pinot Noir – $39.95

2019 Red Conception – Category: Red Blend – $14.75

2020 Gamay Category: Gamay – $19.95

2018 Riesling – Category: Riesling – $16.95

2018 Rock Pile Chardonnay – Category: Chardonnay – $36.95

2019 White Conception – Sauvignon Blanc/Semillon – Category: White Blend – $25.95

2020 Estate Bottled Pinot Gris – Category: Pinot Gris – $21.95

2020 Pinot Grigio – Category: Pinot Grigio – $16.95

2020 Sauvignon Blanc – Category: Sauvignon Blanc – $19.95

N/V Sparkling Rosé – Category: Sparkling Pink – $29.95

8. Creekside Estate Winery, Jordan Station, ON

Creekside was awarded 2 Gold, 5 Silver and 3 Bronze medals.  Their wines are available from their website www.creeksidewine.com.

Gold Medal Winners

2017 Iconoclast Syrah – Category: Syrah -$25.00

2020 Sauvignon Blanc – Category: Sauvignon Blanc – $15.95

Silver Medal Winners

2017 Broken Press Syrah Reserve Queenston Road Vineyard – Category: Syrah – $55.00

2018 Iconoclast Semillon Sauvignon – Category: White Blend – $23.00

2018 Laura’s Red – Category: Red Blend – $25.00

2019 Syrah – Category: Syrah – $15.95

2020 Backyard Block Sauvignon Blanc – Category: Sauvignon Blanc – $22.00

Bronze Medal Winners

2017 Laura’s Red – Category: Red Blend – $25.00

2019 Cabernet Merlot – Category: Red Blend – $15.95

2020 Red Tractor Pinot Gris – Category: Pinot Gris – $19.95

9. Tawse Winery, Vineland, ON

Tawse received 2 Gold, 12 Silver and 7 Bronze medals at this year’s awards.  Their wines are available from their website www.tawsewinery.ca and from retailers across Ontario.

Gold Medal Winners

2019 Riesling Limestone Ridge-North – Category: Riesling – $21.95

2018 Meritage – Category: Red Blend – $67.95

Silver Medal Winners

2016 Merlot Laundry Vineyard – Category: Merlot – $49.95

2019 Growers Blend Pinot Noir – Category: Pinot Noir -$25.95

2019 Pinot Noir Quarry Road Vineyard – Category: Pinot Noir -$35.95

2018 Riesling Carly’s Block Category: Riesling – $31.95

2018 Riesling Limestone Ridge-North – Category: Riesling – $21.95

2019 Pinot Gris Lawrie Vineyard – Category: Pinot Gris – $27.15

2019 Riesling Quarry Road Vineyard – Category: Riesling – $24.95

2020 Skin Fermented Pinot Gris – Category: Orange Wine – $26.95

2019 Spark Rose Quarry Road Vineyard – Category: Sparkling Pink – $29.95

2014 Spark Chardonnay David’s Block – Category: Sparkling White – $39.95

2019 Spark Limestone Ridge Riesling – Category: Sparkling White – $20.95

2019 Cabernet Sauvignon Icewine – Category: Icewine – $35.95

Bronze Medal Winners

2016 Meritage – Category: Red Blend – $67.95

2018 Cabernet Franc David’s Block – Category: Cabernet Franc – $49.95

2019 Gamay Noir Cherry Avenue – Category: Gamay – $28.95

2019 Pinot Noir Tintern Road – Category: Pinot Noir – $44.95

2018 Riesling – Category: Riesling – $15.88

2019 Riesling Carly’s Block – Category: Riesling – $32.15

2020 Sketches Rosé – Category: Rosé – $17.95

10. Redstone Winery, Beamsville, ON

Redstone received 2 Gold, 3 Silver and 2 Bronze medals.  Their wines are available from their website at www.redstonewines.ca.

Gold Medal Winners

2019 Brickyard Riesling – Category: Riesling – $13.95

2017 Meritage Redstone Vineyard – Category: Red Blend – $67.95

Silver Medal Winners

2018 Syrah Redstone Vineyard – Category: Syrah – $40.15

2019 The Club Riesling Limestone Vineyard – Category: Riesling – $23.95

2019 Cabernet Sauvignon Icewine – Category: Icewine – $36.05

Bronze Medal Winners

2017 The Club Syrah Redfoot Vineyard – Category: Syrah – $39.95

2018 Merlot Redstone Vineyard – Category: Merlot – $39.95

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