Yup, I know we just got back from a 3-week trip and our to-do list is still blazing out of control, but the hell with it…we felt like driving down to Niagara and stocking up on wine for the fall and winter. The weather gods were certainly with us — it was a beautiful, sunny fall weekend. We hit nine (!) wineries on Saturday and had an amazing lunch at Stone Road Grille as well as dinner at On The Twenty, across the street from the Inn On The Twenty in Jordan where we stayed. The soup we had at the former and the duck at the latter were among the best things I’ve eaten all year.
On Sunday we had a bit of a stroll on the Twenty Valley Trail, and then visited seven more wineries, including Vineland Estates — where we ate yet another spectacular meal. After pillaging the region for all it was worth we drove home, dropped the car and produced the final tally:
- Calamus 2009 Gewurztraminer
- Calamus 2010 Pinot Gris
- Cave Spring 2008 CSV Riesling
- Creekside 2007 Shiraz
- Creekside 2007 Laura’s Red
- Featherstone 2010 Four Feathers
- Flat Rock 2008 Chardonnay
- Hidden Bench 2008 Felseck Vineyard Chardonnay
- Hidden Bench 2009 Nuit Blanche
- Kacaba 2008 Cabernet Franc
- Kacaba 2008 Meritage
- Lailey 2008 Cabernet
- Lailey 2008 Old Vines Chardonnay
- Le Clos Jordanne 2009 Village Reserve Pinot Noir (x2)
- Le Clos Jordanne 2009 Le Clos Vineyard Pinot Noir
- Le Clos Jordanne 2009 Claystone Terrace Chardonnay
- Le Clos Jordanne 2009 Village Reserve Chardonnay (x2)
- Malivoire 2007 Moira Pinot Noir
- Malivoire 2010 Pinot Gris
- Megalomaniac 2008 Bravado Cabernet Sauvignon (x2)
- Southbrook 2008 Triomphe Cabernet Sauvignon
- Southbrook 2004 Poetica Chardonnay
- Staff 2009 Cabernet Merlot
- Staff 2008 Riesling
- Stratus 2008 Voignier
- Stratus 2008 Sauvignon Blanc
- Stratus 2006 White
- Stratus 2007 White
- Stratus 2010 Red Ice Wine
- Thirty Bench 2008 Cabernet Franc (x3)
- Twenty Twenty Seven Cellars 2009 Queenston Road Pinot Noir
- Vineland Estates 2010 Pinot Meunier
- Vineland Estates 2008 Pinot Blanc
We had two purposes on this trip: stock up for the winter, but also try some places for the first time. Calamus, Creekside, Featherstone/2027, Kacaba, Lailey, Malivoire, Staff and Vineland Estates were all first-time visits for us. Flat Rock and Megalomaniac were more proximity plays since we had to drive right past them to get to others on our list and we knew each had wines we wanted to pick up. Hidden Bench, Jackson-Triggs (for the Clos Jordanne), Southbrook, Stratus and Thirty Bench are practically must-hits whenever we’re in the area. And, in case you’re wondering, Cave Spring only happened because it’s the house winery at Inn On The Twenty and we felt bad leaving without one.
I’d classify most of the new places as good, not great. Only Kacaba really wowed us…their reds were terrific, and very reasonably priced. And it wasn’t even in our original plans for this weekend — several people responded to my tweet announcing our agenda, telling us not going to Kacaba would be a miss. They were right, and we left with two bottles. And there may be a case in our future. I should also point out that we didn’t spend nearly enough time at Vineland tasting their wine; we just tried three in the few minutes before our lunch reservation, but liked two of them enough to buy bottles, so more investigation is probably warranted.
And now, the classic follow-up problem…where do we put all this freaking wine?!?
3 thoughts on “That settles it, we need a bigger place”
I have plenty of storage room. I can help you out. I just cannot promise the bottles will still be full when it comes time to ship back.
[…] been more than eight months since we last visited the Niagara wine region, and guiding our friends CBJ+M around seemed like a perfectly good excuse. We decided to see what […]