As wine drinkers in Canada, we're lucky to have access to great Rieslings and Chardonnays from the Niagara Peninsula and Prince Edward County—two grapes that Ontario winemakers have been sharpening their reputations with. That being said, what local whites do you reach for when you want to drink something different? Something with lifted springtime aromatics? Ontario also produces delicious examples of Gewürztraminer, Viognier, and Pinot Gris. Here are a few whites with generous floral and perfumed notes that are worth seeking out.
Trail Estates White Blend 2013, 12.8% ($21.95)
Meet a Riesling with a slight twist. A blend of 10% Gewürztraminer gives this wine the palest rosy hue and plenty of intrigue. It's on the drier side, with characters of citrus, mineral, a hint of perfumed aromatics, orange blossom and spice. Great for wine drinkers who find Gewürztraminers a bit too intense and don't mind it when their Riesling shares the spotlight with another grape.
Tawse Redstone Vineyard Pinot Gris 2013, 12% ($24.95)
Winemaker Paul Pender is best known for his single vineyard Chardonnays, Rieslings, Pinot Noirs, and Cabernet Francs, but the aromatic whites from Tawse are delicious as well. The Redstone Vineyard Pinot Gris is a rich, fruit-driven Gris with melon and tropical notes, and a distinct nose of white flowers. It has the great viscous texture that Pinot Gris can express.
13th Street Essence Arôme 2011, 13% ($34.95%)
This is 13th Street's premium white blend of 50% Pinot Gris, 25% Gewürztraminer, and 25% Viognier from winemaker Jean-Pierre Colas. It's a dry, rich, lush white with a creamy texture. The grape varieties are blended harmoniously and the aromas focus on stone fruits, orange rind, and exotic spices. The perfumed complexities will keep you glued to your glass.
Jake Skakun is a writer and sommelier from Vancouver, currently living in Toronto. He can be found most days pulling corks and twisting caps at the Black Hoof. He Tweets and Instagrams @jakeskakun.