Nowadays, trends seem to change year to year and are driven primarily by the younger generation and the movers and shakers on social media.
Here is the curious drinker’s guide to what’s happening in Ontario wine should you want to be in the know.
Wine with a story
Folks in Ontario are more interested than ever in the background and story of the wine they drink, who made it, and what their story is. Is the wine organic, biodynamic, etc. Likewise, consumers continue to seek genuine wine products and experiences. With so many easy-to-sell wines with expensive marketing campaigns, they are always going to produce wine. This is designed to appeal to the broadest possible audience; local wineries offer a unique alternative with homegrown products as consumers are starting to become wise to the difference in local grape-to-glass wines.
Rosé is having its day
People love rosé – the stylish colour, the day drinking & easy, refreshing feel. It’s the kind of wine that’s a pure pleasure, but also has the power to elevate any occasion.
Bigger is Better
Magnums aren’t new to the wine industry, far from it! Wines in magnums and other large-format bottles store better and taste fresher than the standard 750 mL bottle, as the proportion of wine exposed to oxygen is significantly less in larger bottles, allowing the wine to retain its acidity and structure.
Large-format bottles are great for parties too. There’s nothing worse than passing a bottle of wine around at a gathering and running out before everyone has had a chance to take a sip. With more people entertaining at home, dinner parties are the ideal setting to bring out the big guns, and we suggest picking up food-friendly varietals like Riesling, Gamay and Cabernet Franc. You would be hard-pressed not to find a winery that doesn’t have a magnum or two hanging out in their cellar.
The Innovative New Product
People are in search of the next cool thing; the rise of canned wine, which is the result of technological advances meeting a whole new breed of consumer, one that favours convenience over convention plus the causal advantage. They’re great for picnics, beach or park outings, or just when you want a little bit of wine but not a whole bottle. They’re also easier on the environment, with less carbon footprint than a glass bottle and more comfortable with recycling or disposing of. Will you be one of the many who rebels against tradition?
The rustic sparkling wine Pét-Nat (short for pétillant-naturel), is hip, fun, and it’s a time-tested approach to producing cloudy, fizzy sparkling wines; that is bottled while they’re still fermenting. Yeast and sediment are all part of the package, so if you’re expecting something polished and refined, you might want to stick to champagne. But Pét-nats are perfect for pairing with food. They hold onto their acidity and are a bit heavier than your average sparkling wine. These are crowd-pleasing wines and quantities can be limited, so drink young, not meant to age. Enjoy!