Essex Winer Review

Wine of the Month 2011


January 2011
Essex Wine Review - Wine of the Month, January 2011

Aleksander Estate Shiraz 2007

The Cottam Wine Society got together for the 2nd Annual Local Wine Championship to crown a local wine in what they consider the best of the best in a varietial.

This year eight local “Shiraz / Syrah’s” from Lake Erie North Shore and Pelee Island went head to head. The wines had to be either VQA Lake Erie North Shore or VQA Pelee Island. The competition was tough with all of the excellent local shiraz / syrah’s. Some of the wines have already been crowned as Essex Wine Review’s “Wine Of The Month” in the past.

Aleksander Estate’s 2007 Shiraz took top honours and was crowned this year”s top pick. Looking at the score cards of all judges this wine received high marks by every judge.

Another fine example of a Lake Erie North Shore wine. We are excited to get 2011 rolling by announcing Aleksander Estate’s 2007 Shiraz as our first “Wine Of The Month” for 2011.

CLICK HERE to see reviews of Aleksander Estate Shiraz 2007.





Essex Wine Review - Lake Erie North Shore and Pelee Island Wine Reviews.





February 2011
Essex Wine Review - Wine of the Month, February 2011

Pelee Island Winery Cabernet Sauvignon 2008

Pelee Island, a small island of approximately 10 000 acres, is Canada’s most southerly point and Canada’s smallest VQA Appellation (VQA Pelee Island). Situated in Lake Erie about 20 kilometres off the shoreline, Pelee Island enjoys the longest growing season of all appellations in Ontario.

Of all of the VQA Appellations in Ontario, Cabernet Sauvignon harvested from Pelee Island have the greatest potential for ripeness and it shows in this wine from Pelee Island Winery.

Available at the winery and also at many LCBO Vintages locations across Ontario. (VINTAGES #530576). Here is your chance to taste a VQA Pelee Island wine.

CLICK HERE to see reviews of Pelee Island Winery Cabernet Sauvignon 2008.





Essex Wine Review - Lake Erie North Shore and Pelee Island Wine Reviews.





March 2011
Essex Wine Review - Wine of the Month, March 2011

CREW (Colchester Ridge Estate Winery) Cabernet Sauvignon 2007

I first tasted CREW’s Cabernet Sauvignon in August of 2009 and like it then but this is one wine that has just gotten better with a little time in the bottle.

Nancy Gorski (co-owner of CREW and wife of wine maker Bernie Gorski) and I are taking a Master Wine Taster class together and while working on our class project on Terrior Nancy brought one of these for our group to taste.

The CREW’s Cabernet Sauvignon is an excellent expression of LENS Terrior and 2007’s hot summer. A wonderful balance ripe fruit, supporting acidity, and well integrated secondary notes from the time spent in the barrel. This wine is drinking well right now.

Priced at $18 you will get a lot of value out of this one. Put this wine on your “Must Buy” list.

CLICK HERE to see reviews of CREW (Colchester Ridge Estate Winery) Cabernet Sauvignon 2007.





Essex Wine Review - Lake Erie North Shore and Pelee Island Wine Reviews.





April 2011
Essex Wine Review - Wine of the Month, April 2011

Viewpointe Estate Winery Cabernet Merlot 2006

Viewpointe’s Blue Label 2006 Cabernet Merlot is currently only available at selected LCBO’s in Ontario. (LCBO product #220723).

According to LCBO staff this is currently a HOT product at the Windsor Roundhouse (Howard Ave.) LCBO store. Staff at this and other LCBO locations and have been recommending this wine to their customers.

Affordable, this is a great restaurant VQA Lake Erie North Shore wine. Complex taste offers great value and an opportunity to taste wines from one of Canada’s southern most wine regions. This won’t last long, head to your LCBO and buy this before it’s gone!

CLICK HERE to see reviews of Viewpointe Estate Winery Cabernet Merlot 2006.





Essex Wine Review - Lake Erie North Shore and Pelee Island Wine Reviews.





May 2011
Essex Wine Review - Wine of the Month, May 2011

Colio Frizzante

Light, refreshing, and will wake up the palate.

Frizzante wines have small bubbles that offer a refreshing tingle while helping to mask the wine’s sweetness. Frizzante wines are also considered to be slightly less effervescent than champagne. If you find champagne to be too “fizzy” for your tastes, frizzante wines are a great beverage choice for weddings, anniversaries, holidays, and other special occasions.

May is the perfect month to pop the cork on a Colio Frizzante. There is Mother’s Day, Victoria Day weekend, or to celebrate the first sunny, warm weekend of spring. It perfect for a Sunday Brunch!

CLICK HERE to see reviews of Colio Frizzante.





Essex Wine Review - Lake Erie North Shore and Pelee Island Wine Reviews.





June 2011
Essex Wine Review - Wine of the Month, June 2011

Smith & Wilson – 2007 Double Barrel

A fantastic full bodied red wine.

On a recent visit to the winery I was surprised to find this one still for sale. A 2008 vintage has also been released ( a cab / merlot blend). The 2007 offers a little bit more complexity with some syrah added to the blend.

The 2007 vintage is showing quite well right now. Ripe fruits, spice, round and well integrated tannins, good balance, very food friendly red wine for summer BBQing.

CLICK HERE to see reviews of Smith & Wilson – 2007 Double Barrel.





Essex Wine Review - Lake Erie North Shore and Pelee Island Wine Reviews.





July 2011
Essex Wine Review - Wine of the Month, July 2011

Erie Shore Vineyard – 2008 Blanc de Blancs Vidal Blanc

When the temperature rises, and you are looking for a summer time wine that is both refreshing and perfect with light summer foods open a bottle of Erie Shore Vineyard’s 2008 Blanc de Blancs Vidal Blanc.

It’s an easy going summer time sipper. A refreshing, crisp wine with a hints of pear fruit, melon, and citrus. This wine has evolved nicely in the bottle since its release over a year ago.

Priced under $10 this wine is so affordable. Have a few chilled bottles on hand for guest, to serve at summer parties and BBQ’s. Summertime is finally here!

CLICK HERE to see reviews of Erie Shore Vineyard – 2008 Blanc de Blancs Vidal Blanc.





Essex Wine Review - Lake Erie North Shore and Pelee Island Wine Reviews.









August 2011
Essex Wine Review - Wine of the Month, August 2011

Mastronardi Estate Winery – 2007 Merlot

It’s been about a year and a half since I last tasted this wine. It was very good then, and keeps on getting better.

This Merlot is filled with aromas of cherry and vanilla. It is round, ripe and well-structured with amazing length and great earthy soft finish. The tannins are now well integrated into this wine. It’s tasting so good right now. Drink now and enjoy this beauty while at its peak!

This is the second time in three years that a Mastronardi Merlot has been selected as EWR’s “Wine of the Month” (the ’06 Merlot was the May 2009 wine of the month). Mastronardi’s consistently makes a great Merlot!

CLICK HERE to see reviews of Mastronardi Estate Winery – 2007 Merlot.





Essex Wine Review - Lake Erie North Shore and Pelee Island Wine Reviews.









September 2011
Essex Wine Review - Wine of the Month, September 2011

Sprucewood Shores – 2008 Lady In Red

Blending is a craft. Sprucewood’s winemaker Tanya Mitchell applies her own preferences and palate to put the pieces of the puzzle together when blending wines. Her blending of Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot has created a work of art she calls “Lady In Red”

This wine shows its VQA Lake Erie North Shore terroir and character. Rich, ripe, juicy red fruits and is another red wine that shows what the region had to offer in 2008.

This wine will be available at LCBO locations this September. Buy it!!

CLICK HERE to see reviews of Sprucewood Shores – 2008 Lady In Red.





Essex Wine Review - Lake Erie North Shore and Pelee Island Wine Reviews.









October 2011
Essex Wine Review - Wine of the Month, October 2011

Aleksander Estate Winery – 2009 Baco Noir

New label, same great taste!

Aleksander Estate Winery’s Baco Noir is consistently one of the best in Ontario. This 2009 Vintage is one of their best yet. A Gold medal winner at the All Canadian Wine Championships validates that they are doing something right.

Juicy, jammy berry fruit notes, lively acidity that lead to a long, lip smack’n, mouth watering finish. Good stuff!

CLICK HERE to see reviews of Aleksander Estate Winery – 2009 Baco Noir.





Essex Wine Review - Lake Erie North Shore and Pelee Island Wine Reviews.









November 2011
Essex Wine Review - Wine of the Month, November 2011

D’Angelo Fortified Foch

Fall season is here, and the temperature outside is dropping. We have already had our first frost warning and it won’t be long now before old man winter hits us with our firstblast of snow for the season.

Looking for a wine that pairs well with the cold weather? D’Angelo’s Fortified Foch is a perfect pairing for such an occasion. This port like wine offers a chocolate and raisin notes with a nice silky textured mouthfeel. Slightly sweet and perfect as an after dinner treat. Pair with rich chocolate cake for an amazing treat.

A great value at just $10.

CLICK HERE to see reviews of D’Angelo Fortified Foch.





Essex Wine Review - Lake Erie North Shore and Pelee Island Wine Reviews.









December 2011
Essex Wine Review - Wine of the Month, December 2011

Sprucewood Shores 2010 Rosé

December’s wine of the month is always the hardest one for me to pick, and also the one I give the most thought in choosing. It’s the wine I recommend for Christmas dinner. Each year I taste almost all of the Lake Erie North Shore and Pelee Island wine releases, and every year a few do stand out and above the rest. This Rosé is one of them.

Rosé wines are beginning to get noticed, but more so as a summer sipping wine. Sprucewood’s Rosé is an excellent sipper too but it offers much more. It’s a complex Rosé, with perfect acidity and sweetness balance.

Pinot Noir and Rieslings are always a safe choice for the holidays, break the mould this Christmas. Sprucewood’s Rosé allows you to be flexible as it will pair well with almost everything on your Christmas menu such as turkey, ham, roasted goose, rib roast, lamb, salmon and especially the Christmas cranberry sauce.

CLICK HERE to see reviews of Sprucewood Shores 2010 Rosé.





Essex Wine Review - Lake Erie North Shore and Pelee Island Wine Reviews.