Well I am finally back from the New York Finger Lakes and the Niagara Peninsula in Canada. I had a great time, saw some amazing sights and met many wonderful people. After my last piece I visited the Finger Lakes Wine Festival at Watkins Glen where I experienced the American wine consumer up close.
While there I was also fortunate enough to be invited to attend a seminar presented by George Riedel, who was on great form. I have always appreciated that good glassware can make a real difference to my appreciation of a wine, but have always been slightly sceptical view of the Riedel approach. I shall write it up properly as it was extremely interesting as well as entertaining and I was very impressed by Herr Riedel – and not only because I received a free set of Vinum XL tasting glasses!
After that I set off for Canada for three days to have a look at some wineries on the Niagra Peninsula and to see the state of the Canadian wine industry. In truth Canada had never really appealed to me as somewhere to visit, but I found myself charmed by it. Certainly that part of the country is very beautiful and I would recommend it highly.
I stayed in Niagara-on-the-Lake which is just a gorgeous town, outrageously attractive – verging on the twee.
During my all too brief visit to Canada I was able to visit many wineries and to try quite an array of wines, Rieslings, Chardonnays, Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon and blends, but the speciality is Icewine.
I must have quadrupled my lifetime’s Icewine consumption in three days – some wineries presented four different Icewines for me to try and one partnered almost every course in a meal with Icewine – I suppose that you have to be creative in its use if you have a lot of Icewine to get through!
It was an intensive visit, so I tasted lots of exciting things and spoke to some terrific winemakers and will be writing up much of it in the forthcoming weeks – keep checking back.