21 Oct 2012
Yesterday, I was treated to the opportunity to do some winery tours and learn more about wine in the Niagara area with the iYellow Wine Club. This is something I have been wanting to do for quite some time. I know I’m starting to appreciate wine a little bit more, but know very little about it. At 10AM, everyone heading down met up in Liberty Village where we were warmly greeted by the founder of the iYellow Wine Club Angela Aiello (and then understood the why the name was iYellow). I brought my friend Anna along with me, and she’s quite the good photographer – so you get to enjoy some seriously great photos in this post! We were touring three wineries that day (but later, added on a fourth because time permitted it) and were treated to taste 30 wines!
First stop, the Peninsula Ridge Estates Winery, where we sampled many wines including a Cabernet Rose (which is smooth enough to drink for breakfast) – I also purchased a bottle of it I enjoyed it so much. Oh, one thing we learned quickly on… Wineries SOUND like they are in the middle of a war with artillery shells being fired a few times a minute. These are called bird bangers, and are essentially blank shells fired when motion activated to scare away the birds from eating the grapes. Not going to lie, I thought it was the coolest thing haha. Boys and war right?
Next up was the Southbrook Vineyards – an organic and bio-dynamic winery where we tasted three wines, and then went right out to the barrels and were treated to taste two wines that were still aging. (I also learned that while it may smell like Welchs grape juice, wine that isn’t ready doesn’t taste great. To me anyway, others seemed to enjoy the bitter, burnt wood, scratchy taste).
Next we stopped at Reif Estate Winery where we tried two red wines and an ice wine (which was delicious!) And finally we wrapped up at the Vineland Estates Winery, where they store their wine in what I’m convinced is a cold war bunker that they repurposed after deciding nuclear war wasn’t going to happen. There I go again back with the war stuff… Heh.
It was a really great day to be honest. Lots of wine, a nice lunch and learned quite a bit about wine and how to smell/taste properly. Did you know that people hated Chardonnay so much they founded clubs called ABC – Anything But Chardonnay… the reason behind it is people didn’t like drinking 2×4 wood. You see traditional Chardonnay is aged in oak barrels and so it takes on the oak flavour strongly… so now, when you’re in the LCBO you see ‘Unoaked Chardonnay’, which as the name suggests is not aged in oak!
Anyway, you should definitely experience a wine tour with iYellow if you have the opportunity. And they hinted that they might be doing Ice Wine tours this winter, so there’s that to look forward to! And now to finish off the post with a bunch more pictures to enjoy!