Sometimes we drink wine on its own to relish a moment and at other times we drink wine to enhance the experience of dining, complimenting both the glass and the plate. As an introduction to Club Foody I have selected two well-crafted Canadian wines, from two of the great wine regions of Canada. Many times I feel we tend to over look what we actually have in our own back yard and lean towards a more traditional feel by going with a robust Barolo from Italy or a big Cabernet Sauvignon from France and while both of these countries produce amazing products lets not forget that in the last 15 years Canada has been a very successful contender on the International wine scene.
The Okanagan valley in beautiful British Columbia, Canada is home to 133 licenced vineyards. Boasting about 82% of the provinces vineyard acreage with the first vineyard opening in 1931 (Calona Vineyards). Okanagan wineries are constantly ranked among the worlds best at international competitions. This is why I have chosen to introduce you to a delightful wine from TinHorn Creek.
TinHorn Creek Gewürztraminer 2014. Wow! This is a classic Gewürztraminer which is intensely aromatic with deep flavors of lychee and citrus fruit. There is a subtle sweetness that gives this wine great balance and it comes in at just under $20.00, so it’s a great buy! It will pair well with a soft curry or a spicy jerk chicken right off the grill. Delicious!
Now let me take you to the Niagara region of Ontario, home to about 88 wineries. The Niagara region being on the same latitude as southern France with a unique and moderate micro climate and rich, mineral soil, lends itself to some very elite wine making.
This is where we find Rief Estates Winery, which I had the pleasure of touring a few years back. Located on the banks of the Niagara River, the Riefs winemaking tradition can be traced back to 1636 in Neustadt Germany. A small wine making town located in the Rhine River valley. What does all this mean you ask? They know what they are doing and it shows consistently in their products.
For all of you that like big fat Cabernet Sauvignons, the Rief Estate Cabernet Sauvignon Reserve 2012 is a bold and sexy glass of wine, with its dark ruby red color and flavors of deep rich currants and black berries, plus a small finish of dark chocolate may be noted. Not to be cliché but a Chicago charred rare Filet Mignon with blue cheese would pair very well here. Decant for at least an hour, prior to serving. This wine is a bit pricier at about $28.00 but it is worth every penny!
Club Foody Wine Analyst