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Canadian (Inniskillen) Ice Wine - Printable Version

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- wondersofwine - 09-07-2006 03:29 PM

Constellation, a humongous wine and liquor entity, purchased Inniskillen, Vincor, Jackson-Triggs (all Canadian) and Kim Crawford (New Zealand). Robert Mondavi wines also come under Constellation now. Icon Estates is the fine wine component of Constellation. I attended a seminar/tasting on Ice Wine by a spokesman for Icon Estates who is also one of the founders of the Triangle Wine Experience in Raleigh-Durham-Chapel Hill area.
The grapes for the ice wines we tasted are grown in the Niagara Peninsula of Canada and the wines are made with 10-12% residual sugar. We first had a VIDAL SPARKLING ICE WINE (no mousse or bubbles evident). Medium gold color. Plenty of acid structure. (Vidal is a European/American hybrid grape).
Next we had a RIESLING ICE WINE (btw, I've seen ice wine as two words, one word or hyphenated so will use the two words in English--it's one word in German, Eiswein).
The Riesling was lovely and came through as advertised with apricot/nectar and honey nose. It was chewier than the first wine. Still had the acid structure to balance the residual sugar.

Then we had a CABERNET FRANC ICE WINE. I really liked this one too. It is about
$65 the half bottle (more expensive than the Riesling at about $58 the half bottle). Red berry nose--strawberry or maybe strawberry/raspberry mix. Very nice.

Finally the Inniskillen OAK-AGED VIDAL ICE WINE. A bit of fermentation takes place in oak barrels but the fermentation starts in stainless steel. Not much new oak is utilized. It was not oppressively oaked, but I prefered the purer aromas/flavors of the unoaked wines.

I wanted to buy a half bottle of the Riesling (and maybe later order more Riesling plus the Cabernet Franc) but the Riesling was sold out when I inquired so I took home a half bottle of the C.F.

It was a treat to sample such limited production wines.


- dananne - 09-07-2006 04:33 PM

Sounds like a fun tasting! Anne and I have been sitting on a few Inskillin Ice Wines to open on some special night. Must get her off her diet soon . . .


- wondersofwine - 09-14-2006 06:03 AM

Which ones do you have Dananne?


- dananne - 09-14-2006 04:47 PM

We have the Niagara Vidal Icewine (don't know offhand if it's the oak aged one) and the Riesling Icewine (the black label one, I think). The first is a '99 and the second is '00. (I think -- I'm posting this at work without my cellar sheet)