As we left Blomidon Estate Winery, we made our way toward Gaspereau Vineyards in the Gaspereau Valley. I love this winery; it's a lovely building nestled at the foot of a hill that houses Gaspereau's vines. Luscious and green in the summer, this winery's winter aesthetic is just as welcoming.
This past wknd, Gaspereau's Icewine festival event was a "Flight of Ice", happening again next wknd, the 13th and 14th at 2 pm. For just $10 pp, curious culinarians can enjoy gold medal award-winning Icewines paired with food samples that will delight every palate. Winemaker Gina Haverstock will escort you through a vertical tasting. Remember to pre-register (it's required!) because space is limited.
As we entered the winery's store, we were greeted by the big smiles of friendly staff eager to pour and answer our questions. Gaspereau Vineyards has an extensive portfolio, with 16 varietals available. The tasting menu is equally as generous with at least 8 wines ready for the thirsty traveller. We tasted a selection of reds and whites, and relished a sparkler, dessert and port.
And the wine began to flow... We started with the 2008 Seyval Blanc ($16.99), a Silver Award winner at the All Canadian Wine Championships. A sweet and refreshing wine, one could choose this to enhance any of the province's seafood, or to cool the palate when paired with a spicy dish. Next, we moved on to the 2008 Muscat Chardonnay Ltd. Ed. ($17.99), a combo of the muscat grape and Gaspereau's Chardonnay. This is a lovely wine to sip before or after dinner, and would nicely compliment a nutty cheese or lobster dish, mmmmm!
2008 Seyval Blanc
Whe our curiosity could not stand it a moment longer, we sampled the 2008 Crescendo, a Bronze winner at the ACWC. The first sparkling wine to be produced at Gaspereau, theCrescendo is a lovely wine to celebrate any special occasion, or simply to celebrate dinner! Crisp and clean with a touch of exotic fruit, the Crescendo, as it's name implies is a build-up of bubbly what awakens the mouth.
When we ventured into the red wines, we chose the 2006 DeChaunac ($15.99), a Gold Medal Winner at the 2008 ACWC. This is a lovely drinking wine and would suit the palate well on its own, or as the compliment to a winter meal. The 2007 Castel ($19.99) was the next varietal of choice. A dark, hearty red, this wine is an intense mouthful and would be the perfect marriage to a rich pasta.
In addition to the deep red wines, crisp whites and tickling sparklers that my palate had already entertained, I was excited to kick it up a notch and sample some of Gaspereau'sluscious after-dinner wines; their Reserve Port ($19.99), a Gold medal winner at the 2009 International Taster's Guild, and their 2008 Ortega Vidal Icewine ($29.99) whose vintage won Double Gold in the same competition.
Port is one of those languid wines that roll around in your mouth and coat your tongue.Gaspereau's offering was no exception. All of the components of this port are Nova Scotia grown and offer a rich, silky feel. On this occasion, our attendant offered the ideal accompaniment- a piece of dark chocolate from Gourmandises Avenue . The Ortega Vidal is the perfect blend of sweet apricot (from the Ortega) and tart apple (from the Vidal), creating an incredibly balanced bevy.
And so, our visit to Gaspereau Vineyards ended on a sweet note. With so many wines to choose from, it was difficult to decide on a favorite. The more I thought about that "predicament", I realised that it would be impossible to compare so many different wines, each with their own characteristics, nuances and complexity. One thing is for certain though, withGaspereau's extensive selection, you'll have no trouble finding a wine to suit any palate!
Tomorrow's post: a sparkling buffet with wines made in the traditional Champagnoise-style atL'Acadie Vineyards!