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Fruit Wine Has Been Berry Berry Good To Me – Tuesday July 4th, 2006

July 26, 2008

Well it's the 4th of July and I'm watching Sideways. This movie definitely isn't one of my favorites, maybe I just don't get it.


It's been really hot down here lately. This makes big reds basically out of the question but there are alternatives. You can have roses and whites but now there is another local alternative: fruit wine.


Leave the city and head toward Leamington and you'll soon see what I am talking about. Fruit trees everywhere. Well grapes are fruit too.


My travels have discovered three producers in the area. Well two in Essex county and one in Blenhiem. Well that isn't in this appellation, but its close and a real nice drive along the lake.


If I miss any please forgive, but I've had fruit wines from Wagner, Aleksander and Smith and Wilson.


Lets start with Smith and Wilson as I really like their wines. Style wise they remind me of Sanson wines ( to me a good thing). Their property is also beautiful. It's in Blenhiem and on the lake. Fifty acres on a beautiful slope to the bluff to the lake. What a view. When I talked to the owner, I got the feeling that he is a fruit farmer who makes wine rather than a "winemaker". To me that's great as I fully believe that the wine is made in the vineyard and not the cellar.


But back to the fruit wines. Theirs are really classy. There is complexity smoothness and flavors not necessarily associated  with fruit wine. This ain't Boones Farm. They have whimsical names which I find fun. Raspberry is the one that does it for me, but the back current is great too. TSO loves them all except one, which I like. We both think that all their wines are excellent.


Different in style is the Wagner product. These exude fruit. Just oodles of fruitiness and Harold is a hoot. He does a variety of fruits and again I like them all. There's apple wine and apple ice wine , black currant and of course raspberry. He's coming up with a cider soon so I'm just waiting for that one. He's a real nice guy and is just coming up with product after product so that's great.


Similar in style to the Wagner is Aleksander. They have a raspberry and a peach. Again very fruity but cultured.


My best taste test was during an FA Cup game. As I had to pay $20 to watch Liverpool I invited a friend over. Well it was early morning so I brought out an Aleksander raspberry wine. It was wonderful and went over very well. 2nd half and well we needed more, so I opened a raspberry from Smith and Wilson. It was so radically different, like it wasn't the basically same thing. Both were great but so polar opposites: big fruit taste with the Aleksander and smooth class with the S&W. Which is better???? Neither. Both were good in their own way and that's the fun. Its such a drag to always rate things and I would rather just enjoy.


And that I guess is why I'm writing this. I'm not going to slag anything and am just going to talk about stuff I like. That is just more positive and just more fun to me.


Grab a bottle of Wagner Black Ice and take it to a friend's to drink by the pool. It's not expensive and gives huge bang for the buck. They thought it was great and so did I. If we could only get APP to develop a fruitini then life would be even better.

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