Sweet As Ice Wine

DSCN0708I’m ashamed to say this, but as close as Canada is, there is so much I just didn’t know about it before vacationing there.

Like the fact that Quebec is the largest maple syrup producer in the world.

Or that Canada produced maple syrup at all.

I kept wondering why there were so many maple products around the gift shops.

The bad part is the maple leaf is on the flag, which should have been a big indicator, but nope.

DSCN0649

DSCN0710Duh!

I also didn’t know that Canada was a major wine producer.

Don’t judge me, but one of the main reasons I selected my hotel package was because it included a tour and tasting at sister wineries Jackson-Triggs and Inniskillin.

I loved learning how Allan Jackson and Don Triggs managed to buy the wine division from their former employer at the local brewing company. And how they revolutionized Canadian wine by figuring out how to grow European venifra grapes on Canadian soil.

DSCN0707DSCN0713But more so than anything, I loved learning about ice wine, a highly concentrated dessert wine. Iniskillin Winery, where I am pictured, is recognized for producing the first Canadian ice wine.

Ice wine is made from frozen grapes. Unlike traditional wine that takes 20 bunches for each bottle, ice wine requires the nectar of 200 bunches of grapes.

And boy is it sweet. Just how I like it.

Diana, our tour guide, described Jackson-Triggs’ “Vidal Ice Wine” by saying “it tastes like peaches and honey.” Tell me that doesn’t sound absolutely delish?

She recommended that it be served with a non-sweet dessert like lemon or rhubarb to balance out the sweetness.

We’ll see how that goes, but in her defense, it is the sweetest wine I have ever tasted.

  • I don’t think I’ve ever had ice wine, now I’m interested. Is it typically expensive? I didn’t know that about Canada, either, or pick up on the fact that the maple leaf was on their flag.

    • I never even heard of it before going to Canada. Yes, it is typically more expensive because of how it’s processed and how many grapes it takes for one bottle, but I have some. Next time you come to my apt, I will let you try it. Right! Me either. It was a real “duh” moment.