Back from Vacation

We’re back from our vacation, a few hundred dollars lighter than we expected, but we also have a lot of wine to enjoy over the next few weeks.

The Niagara-on-the-Lake region of Ontario is known for it’s icewine specifically, but also has excellent whites and lighter reds – less expensive than California for the most part (except the icewine).  We brought back 13 bottles of “normal” wine, and 400mL of icewine.

Icewine is a super sweet dessert wine that I’ve heard referred to as the ambrosia of the gods.  It’s almost syrupy, which doesn’t lend itself to drinking a lot at once.  You *might* drink 1oz at a time, more than that is just too much – that’s the reason it’s sold in 50mL, 200mL and 375mL bottles.  We bought two 200mL bottles and 8 50mL ones.  It’s made by leaving the grapes on the vine until there are 3-5 consecutive days of -10 to -12C temps (10-14F).  Then the grapes are harvested at night, and pressed while frozen to produce a very concentrated juice.  Then that juice is fermented like “regular” wine.  Most icewines are made from Vidal and Riesling grapes, but on this trip, we saw a lot of Cabernet Franc icewines, and one Winery had icewine made from almost any kind of grape you can imagine.  Unfortunately, they didn’t have any of the Chardonnay or Shiraz icewine for tasting, and we weren’t going to pay the premium for it.  Icewines run from about $40-$50 to $200 or more per 200mL – expensive stuff, but oooh so good!

We also took in a lot of the tourist sights around Niagara Falls, and met some of my friends for dinner in Toronto.  All-in-all, a great vacation.  I even managed to get myself back on east coast time pretty quickly after my recent visit to South East Asia.

I’m off to the West Coast for work tomorrow, but I’m on “American” time, so it’s not so hard on my body.  The separation is kinda hard on Daughter Person though.  She hasn’t let go of me since we picked her up at Grammy’s this weekend.

2 thoughts on “Back from Vacation

  1. donebyforty

    I love hearing about the process of making that ice wine. How cool, literally! I’m glad you had a great vacation. Toronto is a beautiful city and Niagara Falls is stunning. Welcome back!

    1. Mom Post author

      There’s an Icewine festival in January to celebrate it. Dad and I want to go, it probably won’t be this coming January, but some January, we’re going to go visit that weekend. I was in Niagara-on-the-Lake about 10 years ago, and Icewine was still pretty popular, but not like it was on this trip. It was nice to see all of the smaller wineries making it as well.


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