I sometimes get mistaken for a wine expert – probably because I Tweet about wine. A lot. I’ve been known to Instagram the odd label or two as I guzzle some grapes. It’s a healthy obsession, even if my wife and I keep a wine journal. A what? A wine journal – essentially a lovely booklet where you record the details of your wine purchases and affix the labels from emptied bottles. We were the Pinterest of the wine world before, um, Pinterest.
My foray into wine commenced a few years ago when my buddy Duviner invited us on a trip to Niagara-on-the-Lake. We explored vineyards. Sampled local food. Tasted wine. Bought wine. Tasted more wine. But mostly, we saw beautiful parts of Ontario we never knew existed.
A new hobby was born.
Several trips to NOTL and the Niagara Escarpment later and an inaugural trip to Prince Edward County this past summer has netted our family a nice collection of Ontario wines. My unsophisticated and untrained pallet prefers ice wine and whites when selecting from Ontario’s vineyards. That’s not to say there isn’t good red to be found (Hello Le Clos Jordanne), but I prefer to turn to B.C.’s Okanagan when it comes to Syrahs, Pinots and other varietals of red.
When I was contacted to take part in the 12 Days of Wine Country Ontario contest, I didn’t hesitate to say “YES”! As a displaced Vancouverite, I’ve been pleasantly surprised by what Ontario has to offer in terms of scenery, artisanal crafts and food, and of course, wine. Our family trip to P.E.C. for Labour Day Weekend provided us plenty of entertainment for the kids on the beach at Sandbanks Provincial Park in addition to some wonderful opportunities to navigate rustic back roads in search of secluded wineries.
Rolling down the road to Closson Chase was a highlight only surpassed by the many wonderful Chardonnays that we sampled. Who wouldn’t like pulling up to a big purple barn to taste wine? But the wine spoke for itself and we managed to find room between the strollers to bring a half-case home for our collection.
So what is this contest about?
I’m giving away a $100 gift card to Stratus. I like Stratus because they put a lot of effort into making one great red and one great white each year. It’s simple. It tastes good. A new surprise is delivered annually. What’s not to like? They also make amazing ice wine, which I could probably drink by the litre.
So how can you enjoy some of this fine Stratus wine? Easy…
Tell me in the comments section below which charity you are donating to this holiday season and why it is important to you. It will be a chance for me to learn about your charity of choice and it will allow me to reward one lucky (and community conscious) person with $100 towards some great wine. Win-Win, non?
You can also share your charity of choice with me via Twitter. Hit me up @jaimestein and make sure to use the hashtag #12DaysWCO. Contest will close on Wednesday, December 19th at 11:59pm Eastern.
Want to learn more about Wine Country Ontario? Check them out: