Inniskillin Vidal Icewine (375ML half-bottle) 2017
Aromatics of tropical fruit including mango and orange dominate, on the palate fruit flavors including peach, nectarine and lemon are balanced by crisp, lively acidity.
Perfect on its own; a variety of cheeses (blue veined, aged cheddar, rich cream cheeses with dried fruits); seared scallops; lobster; rich pates; fruit based desserts.
Critical AcclaimAll Vintages
Ripe and dense, with intense notes of tea, apricot, toffee apple and more overt tropical fruit, with a tinge of candied pineapple.
The 2017 Vidal Icewine comes in with 255 grams of residual sugar, 9.79 of total acidity and a pH of 3.55. Unctuous and rather syrupy, this is a sugar rush from the first moment. The flavors and aromatics, though, are classic. The wine itself is delicious. It is fun to just smell. This is super, a hedonistic and sexy wine with a big, flavorful finish. The juicy finish dribbles sugar and fruit all over the palate. The next day, this seemed to be in better balance and fresher but also a touch thinner. It is nuanced with some tasty pineapples. This lacks the density of the Gold Vidal this issue, but it is spicier and livelier.
What is Icewine?
VQA Icewine is a highly concentrated dessert wine made by harvesting grapes naturally frozen on the vine at -10 C in December-January. Inniskillin VQA Icewine is internationally awarded and recognized and is exported throughout the world.
With a cool climate suitable for more than just icewine production, Canada is also home to excellent dry, still and sparkling wines. Most viticulture is based in Ontario on the east coast and British Columbia on the west coast. Because of the high risk of winter freeze and spring frost, plantings are typically centered on large bodies of water to take advantage of their temperature moderating effects.
In Ontario, particularly on the Niagara Peninsula, aromatic white varieties like Riesling and Gewürztraminer are most successful. Many wineries produce both dry and semi-dry versions. Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, Gamay, and Cabernet Franc perform nicely here as well. For icewine, French-American hybrid variety, Vidal, is popular. In British Columbia, many of the same grapes are grown, but there is also a significant emphasis on Bordeaux varieties—especially Merlot.
Apart from the classics, we find many regional gems of different styles.
Late harvest wines are probably the easiest to understand. Grapes are picked so late that the sugars build up and residual sugar remains after the fermentation process. Ice wine, a style founded in Germany and there referred to as eiswein, is an extreme late harvest wine, produced from grapes frozen on the vine, and pressed while still frozen, resulting in a higher concentration of sugar. It is becoming a specialty of Canada as well, where it takes on the English name of ice wine.
Vin Santo, literally “holy wine,” is a Tuscan sweet wine made from drying the local white grapes Trebbiano Toscano and Malvasia in the winery and not pressing until somewhere between November and March.