Monday, December 7, 2009

Our LCBO Wines

The following are the wines we now have available at the local LCBO stores. Local means the Essex County and City of Windsor stores. (Not all are available at all stores)

2006 VQA Vidal Icewine-it is packaged in a burgundy gift box,

the Wine of the Month: the 2006 VQA Unoaked Chardonnay,

the Staff picks: the 2007 VQA Cabernet, 2007 VQA Baco Noir,

and the 2008 VQA Summer Sun Cabernet.

These and our other 11 vintages are also available at the vineyard store.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Post-Taste of the Season Holiday Open House

We wish to thank all of you who attended our Taste of the Season Holiday Open House last weekend, November 28th & 29th! What a fabulous turnout!
We think this will continue to be an annual event!
At left is the local Harrow News coverage. Thanks to all!

Sunday, November 29, 2009

2002- 2009: Celebrating 7 !!

Sunday, December 6th and Sunday, December 13th, from 1-5 pm, we invite our customers to our winery to help us celebrate our seventh year in operation. We thank you for your suport during our past seven years in business and hope you will join us for Holiday Hors D'oeuvres and a tasting as we celebrate 7. Erie Shore Vineyard-(inside)

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Taste of the Season Holiday Open House

Please join us as we present an interactive wine tasting with the Winemaker. Enjoy Holiday Treats, and a chance to win an Erie Shore Vineyard Gift, plus a chance to enter and win a regional wine gift.

Date: Saturday & Sunday, November 28 & 29th

Time: 12 pm - 5 pm

Admission: Non-perishable canned good for local food banks

We hope you will come out and join us--inside the winery. If the weather is good we will also open the pavilion for some outdoor cheer.

Many holiday gift idea's and 16 vintages of wine available. Please keep the date, we'd love to see you!

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Free Run

Many people who have a lot of hands-on experience in a field can tell when something is ready, or a piece of equipment has a problem by sense-the sound or sometimes the smell-(bouquet), the feel, or the look of something.

Picking and pressing grapes into wine after many hours and after many years, can also be like that. After many years you can tell when grapes are ready to harvest. This same experience applied to crushing and pressing grapes. After many hours of pressing grapes we should be able to tell by the sound of the grape seeds inside the press, that there is no more free run, and it is time to start inflating to press the grapes to retrieve the remaining juice. While many have computerized presses and lab equipment these days, we like many wineries that still go by sense or experience, and confirm it up with lab tests or computer equipment. I reprint a section from The Wine Manual with respect to free run.

"Free Run is a substantial amount of the juice of the grapes, more than half, that pases through the tiny perforations in the stainless steel cage of the press. This naturally flowing juice is called the free-run. It is the sweetest, least astringent juice, considered to be of the highest quality.

Several types of presses are used in modern winemaking. Modern state-of-the-art wineries are equipped with computer-controlled presses which regulate the whole cycle. Some common presses include the basket press, the continuous press, and (the most gentle) the horizontal pneumatic membrane press.

This last type contains an airbag that runs the entire length of the press. While the must is pumped in, the airbage is collapsed. Once the press is loaded to capacity and the cage is closed, the airbag is inflated and the must is gently pressed through the perforations, and funnelled into fermentation tanks. Skins, stems, and seeds are retained inside the cage." The Wine Manual by J. Marie

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Wine Pairings for (Canadian) Thanksgiving

Canadian Thanksgiving is coming up very soon: Monday, October 12th. Thansgiving always seems to be in the midst of harvest for us, and this year will be no different. Having grown up on a farm, Thansgiving was also a busy time usually with corn harvest.
Even though it was usually a busy time, we always kept the traditional Thanksgiving Dinner. We try to do the same today. There should always be some time to reflect on what to be thankful for.

We suggest the following Erie Shore Vineyard vintage white and red pairings for your Thanksgiving Dinner:

with Turkey: Chardonnay, Summer Sun and Cabernet Franc

with Dinner Ham: Riesling, Baco Noir or Ridge Red.

We wish you a Happy Thanksgiving and hope you enjoy it with family and friends!

Friday, September 18, 2009

Hawk Migration receives ideal weather conditions...

We are looking forward to a great migration this weekend. We reprint and link to Steve Pollock of the Toledo Blade for his article on this phenomenon, and a photo by Len Strahl:

Article published September 16, 2007:

Weather conditions ideal for annual hawk migration

..."The setup is about as good as it gets for the next several days, given the vagaries of nature, for a "big day" in the migration of hawks around the northwest corner of Lake Erie.
That corner marks a natural funnel for tens of thousands of hawks and other birds of prey in the annual autumn southbound migration to warmer climes. Traditionally major movements of birds of prey, or raptors, occur in mid September on the back side of a cold front, such as the region is experiencing this weekend.".....

On Sept. 17, 1998, a record of nearly 517,000 hawks soared past two sites, and on Sept. 18, 2004, nearly 131,000 hawks and other raptors glided overhead. Such noteworthy passages have put the region on the ornithological map."...


See the entire article online:

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Shores of Erie International Wine Festival breaks their attendance record

Posted By Ron Giofu/The Amherstburg Echo
Posted 11 hours ago
AMHERSTBURG – The Shores of Erie International Wine Festival has completed a highly successful fifth anniversary celebration.
The four-day festival wrapped up Sunday evening and when all was said and done, approximately 20,000 had passed through the gates of Fort Malden National Historic Site of Canada. To say organizers were pleased, it was an understatement.
“We were hoping for that number and we are overjoyed with that number especially with the way the economy is,” said wine festival committee chair Karen Gyorgy. “We are very, very happy.”
Gyorgy attributed the success to the venue, the music, the volunteers and the sponsors. She said they offered something for everyone and that she received numerous compliments about how helpful volunteers were. Government grants were also a big part of their success as it allowed them to bring in top level entertainment.
“People know we’re trying to do a quality event,” said Gyorgy.
Limiting the number of tickets per night helped, she believed, as they tried to lessen the “shoulder to shoulder” type crowds that packed in the Fort, especially on Saturday night.
“It’s not about packing people in here,” said Gyorgy. “It’s about quality, not quantity. It’s about the quality of the event.”
The event featured such music as Bedouin Soundlash, Serena Ryder and Kathleen Edwards, just to name a few. Demo tents, a winemakers pavilion, 12 local wineries and 23 restaurants helped make the event the success that it was.
Gyorgy said the 20,000 people helps showcase the region as they also visit other establishments in the area. There were reports of people from Toronto, Pennsylvania, Ohio, Michigan, London, Chatham and Collingwood coming into Amherstburg and enjoying the festival.
“It brought 20,000 people to our region. It’s our mandate and I believe we accomplished it,” said Gyorgy.
The shuttle service worked well, she said, and the House of Shalom Youth Centre were an enormous help with maintenance and cleanup. The House of Shalom cashes in the empty wine bottles as a fundraiser.}

“I can’t give enough credit to the House of Shalom,” said Gyorgy. “They are beyond belief. They are great. I can’t say enough about the House of Shalom.”
Plans for 2010 will get underway very shortly, if not already, but Gyorgy said there are no plans for expansion. They may look to do new things within the festival and help keep it fresh and lively.
“It’s all about the wine,” she said.
Gordon Orr, managing director of the Windsor-Essex County & Pelee Island Convention & Visitors Bureau, noted that the wine festival is the “perfect blend” of the region’s wine and food.
“We’re really celebrating the bounty of the region,” he said during Thursday night’s opening ceremonies.
Mayor Wayne Hurst said that the event has evolved from being an event to a “happening.” He encouraged patrons to walk through the downtown and enjoy what Amherstburg has to offer. Town council voted Monday night to send a letter of congratulations to the wine festival committee for their work in staging a successful event.
Essex County Warden Nelson Santos offered his congratulations to the municipality and the organizing committee, as did Essex MP Jeff Watson and Essex MPP Bruce Crozier.
“This is one of the premier events in the Province of Ontario,” said Crozier. “That isn’t by accident. I’m proud when I go east of here to Toronto and talk about one of the greatest wine regions in the province right here in Essex County.”
Article ID# 1752556

Saturday, September 5, 2009

Shores of Erie International Wine Festival to celebrate their fifth anniversary

we reprint this from the Amherstburg Echo:
Friday night fireworks added to this year's festival
Posted By Ron Giofu/The Amherstburg Echo
AMHERSTBURG – The Shores of Erie International Wine Festival celebrates their fifth anniversary this weekend with a full slate of wine, food, entertainment and fun.
The festival opens Thursday, September 10 and following the opening ceremonies, the evening’s entertainment will be Justin Nozuka starting at 5:45 p.m. followed by The Stills at 7:15 p.m. with Bedouin Soundclash closing the evening out starting at 8:45 p.m. Festival administrator Kelly O’Rourke believes that night will appeal to people with different musical tastes.
“That will be a really cool night,” said O’Rourke.
O’Rourke noted that thanks to a grant from Celebrate Ontario, the wine festival has been able to secure more top flight entertainment. That includes Serena Ryder on Friday night and Kathleen Edwards on Sunday afternoon. All the featured entertainment will be on the main stage, but, like last year, there will be a second stage also located on the Fort Malden National Historic Site grounds.
As part of their fifth annual celebrations, there will be fireworks on Friday night at roughly 10 p.m. People and entire families are encouraged to enjoy them, and those with families who don’t or can’t access the Fort grounds invited to watch them from Navy Yard Park.
“Bring your family down to watch. Walk through the downtown when it’s vibrant and busy. It’s so cool,” said O’Rourke.
O’Rourke pointed out that once again this year there will be the cooking demonstrations put on by chefs and master chefs Saturday and Sunday with the demonstrations also including samples for the audience and the recipes so people can try them at home. Also on Saturday and Sunday, there will be “The Four Corners of the Wine World” which attempts to give people an appreciation of wine through education. Those interactive presentations will be ongoing for both days. Those presentations are free once inside the Fort grounds.
“If you are a novice, you will learn right away,” said O’Rourke. “If you are an experienced wine lover, you’ll pick up some tips.”
New this year is a shuttle service, which runs from the former General Chemical property on Sandwich St. North to Fort Malden. O’Rourke said the ride takes roughly 3 ½ minutes and runs throughout the festival, right up until 30 minutes after last call.
“We want to take the hassle out of finding a parking spot,” she said.
The House of Shalom Youth Centre will help by providing set up, maintenance and cleanup at Fort Malden.
Also this year, the Shores of Erie International Wine Festival teams with the Sir Winston Churchill Chapter IODE Antique Show with the antique show being held nearby in the General Amherst High School gymnasium. Admission to that is $5 and runs Saturday 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Sunday 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
“It’s a really good compliment to our festival,” said O’Rourke.
There are 12 local wineries and 24 area restaurants that will be participating in this year’s wine festival with some restaurants returning from last year and some new ones. O’Rourke said everyone will get a wine glass to use as they enter the grounds thanks to a TD Friends of the Environment grant. People are asked not to bring outside glass in.
Hours of the festival are 5-10 p.m. both Thursday and Friday, 11:30 a.m. to 10 p.m. Saturday and 11:30 a.m. to 7 p.m. Tickets are $30 for Thursday night in advance and $15 in advance for Friday, Saturday and Sunday. A three-day pass, available only at the wine festival office in the Gordon House, is $40 and good for Friday through Sunday. All tickets are $5 more at the gate. Tickets are available at the Gordon House, any United Communities Credit Union or ScotiaBank locations throughout Essex County. There were still tickets available for all nights, as of this past Thursday afternoon.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Festival of Hawks --September 12-26th, 2009

This is not a wine event, but it is a significant local event.

It is the Fall Migration! Raptors, Monarchs, Dragonflies and more. Holiday Beach Conservation Area, Amherstburg, ON (*5 miles west of Erie Shore Vineyard), and Point Pelee National Park of Canada, Leamington, ON (*20 miles east of Erie Shore Vineyard) Details on: or download a complete brochure:

/Photo courtesy of Len Strahl

Friday, August 21, 2009

New 2007 Sellar Secret, new Winter Harvest Cabernet

We have released two more new vintages this week that we think you will love.
The ever popular Sellar Secret in the Blue Bottle, is made from Chambourcin grapes that are fermented away from the skins, resulting in a very pleasant, soft, cherry-pink colour with no tannins. Vibrant tropical and strawberry flavours. Serve chilled of course.
The Winter Harvest Cabernet is another great one! Great apple, strawberry flavours with a spine of acidity that cuts through the natural sweetness. It's dessert in a glass.

Friday, August 14, 2009

New! New, new...Sun '08, Cab Reserve, ...

Yes it's official, the new Summer Sun '08 is on the shelves! Also on the shelves is the 07 Cabernet Reserve. They just get better folks!

The Sun is also available on most of the LCBO shelves as well. Soon: 07 Sellar Secret, 07 Baco, and three icewines.

Sunday, August 9, 2009

True Essex County Temperatures for the Vintage Tasting

94 F /34C and hazy and humid. A fitting Essex Summer day for the 15th Annual Vintage Tasting. For a day like this our new 2008 Summer Sun poured well. We certainly had many visitors to our retail for it throughout the afternoon. It will officially be available tomorrow...

Thank you to everyone that attended the event, and especially to Jim & Judy who helped us pour today. We certainly are fortunate to have such great friends to help us out so professionally.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009


Yesterday and today marked the first observed Veraison at Erie Shore Vineyard. Our earliest varieties started to change colour. Veraison is an intermediate stage in the grape's development, when they go from hard, green berries to soft and coloured grapes.

We use some of these developmental stages to guage crop development. Based on the timing of early veraison, we are exactly normal in fruit development. Based on this we will start harvest in mid to late September.

Friday, July 17, 2009

New Red Wine Released

Every year we have received more requests for an "unoaked" red wine. Last year with our 2008 vintage we created this new vintage for us. It is a blend of three of our 2008 red vinages in a very fruit forward, unoaked style.

This is a low tannin red, done very fruit forward, but dry (0), and no oak. It is a deep red in colour and taste, very fruity. It matches well with most heavy foods, red meats, tomato sauce pasta's and cheeses. We are excited by the very early response to this new red, which offers the health benefits of a red while remaining low in tannins to those sensitive to them.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

The 5th Annual Shores of Erie International Wine Festival

Please join us again on:
September 10th to 13th, 2009 for The Shores of Erie International Wine Festival! details online:
"The Shores of Erie International Wine Festival combines the perfect blend of regional wines, fine cuisine and live entertainment. Set along the magnificent, waterfront grounds of Fort Malden National Historic Site of Canada, the festival has become a signature event, anticipated by many visitors in Southwestern Ontario and Michigan.Fort Malden provides a perfect outdoor atmosphere for wine and food lovers. Over 43 winery and culinary vendors provide the finest wines and cuisine along with live entertainment, historical re-enactments, and optional attendance at our Culinary Demo and Wine for Everyone Pavilions featuring interactive culinary demonstrations by celebrity chefs and a speaker series from wine experts."
We will have our tent close to the main stage along the water. We hope you'll stop by!

15th Annual SWOVA (Southwestern Ontario Vintners Association) Vintage Tasting

The Southwestern Ontario Vintners Association and Sprucewood Shores Estate Winery are proud to announce the 15th Annual Vintage Tasting to be held on August 9th 2009 from 1-5pm. This event rotates to a different winery each year and this year it will be held at Sprucewood Shores Estate Winery. Sprucewood Shores is our nearest winery neighbour to our west and they will be hosting winemakers from all around the region to showcase and pour you their best vintage wines, along with providing unlimited delicious food and entertainment.

This highly anticipated event always sells out so please visit, call or email us to purchase your tickets soon. 519-738-9858 or Please let us know if you'd like to reserve your tickets.

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Essex Wine Review's July Wine of the Month

Thank you! Another great compliment to our Summer Sun Cabernet!

" Get this while you can! Stock of this "Wine of the Month" is running low and may be sold out by the end of the month, if not sooner!Having tasted all of the local rosé style wines this was by far our favourite summer time sipper. Just chill and serve this wine is perfect to sip on during one of those hot summer days. Made from Cabernet Franc grapes grown in the Lake Erie North Shore region this is one excellent local wine.Available directly from the winery and also at some LCBO locations in Windsor and Essex County."

Saturday, June 13, 2009

100 Days

We are now in bloom in our earliest varieties. This is a late spring, as anyone in Essex County will tell you. This is a significant stage in grape development-approximately 100 days from full-bloom we should be harvesting. Harvest is what it's all about.

(Photo's soon.)

Monday, June 1, 2009

More Staff Picks Erie Shore Summer Sun Cabernet!

LCBO STAFF PICKS: 2007 VQA Summer Sun Cabernet!
We are excited to have our 2007 VQA Summer Sun Cabernet selected as the LCBO Staff Pick. The LCBO's local flagship store, the Roundhouse at 3165 Howard Ave., in Windsor (EC Row & Howard)selected this as their Staff Pick in late April, and now at the Amycroft, Tecumseh location and the Windsor Ottawa St & Walker locations have selected it as their Summer Sipper!

Thank you LCBO and to our Summer Sun Customers!!

Sunday, May 31, 2009

Sip Into Summer! June 6 & 7

We hope you can join us for our first public event of the season: Sip into Summer with a savory herb experience.

Sip Into Summer will be held on:

Saturday & Sunday, June 6 & 7, 2009: Noon to 5 pm.

We will be serving an hors d'oeuvre featuring our herbal theme, matched with our wine. Each customer also will receive their choice of either Thyme of Summer Savory to plant in their garden, or grow indoors (while quantities last)

Our Herbal Theme is Summer Savory & Thyme.
Happy Spring! We hope to see you then.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Stage- Inflorescence clearly Visible, 5-6 leaves unfolded

This again is the stage of our Baco Noir, which is our earliest variety in grapes. If you look at the stem you can see the tiny grape cluster. We expect this to bloom in about 10 days, to 2 weeks. The other varieties are very close to this. Slightly small and fewer leaves, but inforescence's are visible.

The second photo shows this same variety from a distance.

Monday, May 11, 2009

2007 VQA Vidal Released

This wine will be sure to please all our Vidal fans. Below is Ontario Wine Review's wine review of this ...

"Yippee Ki-Yi-Yah Mother … well any movie fan should know the rest of this one, so let’s move on from the cliché to something tangible. This is a great little Vidal – I know not the world’s most respectable grape, and saying that a winery makes the “Best Vidal”, to some is kind of a back handed compliment. But when you can take my mind away from the usual sweet syrupy sticky we call Icewine and get me to enjoy a tasty little table wine, you know you’re doing something right. Harvey Hollingshead, winemaker/owner, has made what he believes is his best Vidal since 2003 … the nose is a peach-apple combo, but in the mouth you’re going to have to delve little deeper, as it becomes all tropical with papaya, pineapple and mango … amazingly sippable, and great for entertaining. And what a great price. Price: $9.95 "

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Early Varieties in Budbreak

Happy Mother's Day Everyone!
At left is a photo of some of our earliest budbreak. Later this week we should see the tiny grape clusters. Have a great day all!

Thursday, April 30, 2009

Spring Bud Break - It's Happening..

In vineyard life there are some very key times. One of these is happening right now. In our earliest varieties we are now experiencing bud break. This is time when snall shoots emerge from the young buds. This also means that bloom is 8 weeks away. Bloom is the next significant stage.

We have had quite a lot of rain this week. This is normal for Spring-"April Showers bring May Flowers.." These large, penetrating rains encourage the plant into bud break. We should see a lot of development this week.

Our vineyard is on the shore of Lake Erie. The lake effect delays us in the Spring. We can be 10 days behind the City of Windsor at this time. Our earliest bulbs are just now blooming.

Happy Spring!
The photo shows the vineyard now, and if you look closely, you'll see how we are training new trunks beside the old ones.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Staff Pick! - 2007 VQA Summer Sun Cabernet

We are pleased to have our 2007 VQA Summer Sun Cabernet selected by the LCBO Roundhouse Staff as their Staff Pick! All the staff must vote on the product they pick as their staff pick for promotion by the till. Thank you!
The "Roundhouse Centre" the LCBO Store at HOWARD & E.C. ROW EXPWY
Our Wine Notes:
Vintage: Cabernet Franc – Erie Shore Vineyard- Harrow, ON
Winemaker – Harvey Hollingshead
Vintage 2007 750 mL Retail $12.65
Aged in Stainless Steel. Sugar Code (1) Serve at 15-18 Degrees C (55-60 F)

The ever popular Summer Sun Cabernet is 100% Cabernet Franc grapes that are pressed immediately at harvest and fermented away from the skins and seeds. This results in a very pleasant, soft, salmon-pink coloured red wine, with litle to no tannins, while maintaining subtle Cabernet flavours. Serve slightly chilled. Vibrant citrus nose(lime, grapefruit) with a hint of sweetness. Dry finish. A wonderful match with seafood, cheese, grilled vegetables, appetizers, salads, wraps, summer or daytime foods.
Other Reviews of this wine include: Essex Wine Review & Ontario Wine Review
Photo courtesty of Essex Wine Review.

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Essex County Local Food Map

The Essex County Federation of Agriculture has been putting a map together of its membership and their produce. This ranges from Galati Cheese in Windsor, who produce cheese from 100% of the County produced milk, to Lamb from Ewe Dell, to honey, made and sold in Cottam, to of course estate grown and made wines.

The recent Essex County Local Food Map is now available in an online version, on Google Maps, by clicking this link:

The Essex County Federation site is at:

A great resource!

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Serving Temperatures of Wine

Probably the most asked question we receive in our retail store is about serving temperatures for wines. We reprint the following from our Spring 2008 Newsletter:
"Much more important than people realize is the temperatures at which wine is served. Cold temperatures tend to mute sweetness and flavour. In red wines, cold temperatures will emphasize tannin. Warm temperatures will emphasize sweetness and alcohol. We tend to serve our reds too warm and our white wines too cool.

A quick rule of thumb is to put red wine into the fridge for 15-20 minutes before serving and to take white wine out of the firdge 15-20 minutes before serving. Icewine and sweeter wines can be served directly from the fridge or from an icebucket."

Serving Temperatures:
White Wines at 10C/50F

Red Wines at 18-19C/65-68F

Light Reds such as Summer Sun 15C/ 55-60F

Icewine at Freezing 0C /32F

Monday, March 30, 2009

Meadows by the Lake

We are pleased to let you know that the “Meadows” has re-opened after the heart-breaking kitchen fire last Fall. You’ll love it-it’s nicely renovated after the damage, but feels warm and friendly like it always did. We’re so glad to have Wayne & Neda & the staff of the Meadows back! It sure has been a long winter without them!

aside: To those of you that do not live or have a cottage, or summer home in the area, the Meadows was built some 87 years ago, we learned this weekend. As a note of trivia when we applied for our winery license in 2002 we learned that the township we are in was "dry" until 1983. The Meadows, while only 3 miles west of us, is across the township line, and that township was not dry since prohibition in 1920's. At any rate, the Meadows is a great neighborhood restaurant - roadhouse, with great character, and in my opinion, the best Lake Erie Perch anywehre although their menu has many, many more items. We are sure glad they have reopened!

Photos: 2007 Cabernet and 2007 Blanc de Blancs, Courtesy Essex Wine Review -both served at the Meadows.

Bald Eagles Return

Yes! They’re back….the bald eagles have migrated and are back. Not only are the bald eagles the King of the Raptors, and a sign that the Lake and our environment are becoming healthy once again, they also are important to us in the vineyard. They are important as they are territorial. When our vineyard is part of their territory other birds are not allowed in. This is a huge help to us in August and September in protecting the grape crop from the starlings. While eagles normally are fish eaters, the other birds still respect their land territory-even hawks and falcons. Being just 600 meters(yards) from the lake shore, their preferred food is right here. They will go for other birds or small rodents, but only if they are very hungry.

We'll post a photo once we get one. They are very difficult to get a decent photo of as they fly very, very high above the vineyard.

Note: These pictures are just a few of many great ones I received from Len Strahl.

Just to show how difficult to get these photos- the photo below is the one I took of the Bald Eagles. Thank you Len, and thank you John!

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Staff Pick!-2007 VQA Baco Noir

We are pleased to have had our 2007 VQA Baco Noir wine selected by the Belle River LCBO store as their Staff Pick. As I understand it all the staff must vote on the product they pick as their staff pick for promotion by the till. Thank you!

Our Baco is a heavier red wine, with blackberry and currant flavours. It's a great wine with all the grilled red meats, tomato sauce pastas and lamb.

The wine writers and sommoliers are also putting it at the end of the meal with dessert--ie Dark Chocolate and richer desserts like Cherries Jubilee. This wine matching would be as an alternative to a dessert type wine like icewine.

Photo courtesty of Essex Wine Review.

Monday, March 16, 2009

VQA 2006 Duet the Favourite at the Wine & Cheese

What a wonderful time and great turnout to the recent Wine and Cheese event at the Harrow Agricultural Hall on March 6th. Many great people turned out. A great band-local too! Great food and 14 wineries!

We brought 7 wines, but by far the most popular was the new Duet! We brought twice what we thought we needed, and we ran out an hour before the end of the event. We hope you enjoyed the event as well.

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Spring Budburst is still six weeks away

With Spring seemingly just around the corner, we are in the vineyard preparing for budburst. Grapes are one of the last plants to bud-out in spring. Our earliest variety is Baco Noir. In an early spring, budburst on this variety would be the last week of April. In a late spring-year bud burst for our Baco Noir would be mid-May.
We remove 90% of last years growth before spring-or budburst. Only the canes (or shoots) developed from the previous year are fruitful, and we only need 10% of what a normal year grows to produce a normal crop. If we leave too many buds, the grape crop will not mature properly. If we leave too few, we will encourage too much vegetative growth on the vines, and the fruit will not mature properly as well. As in many aspects of winegrape growing and winemaking, assuming cleanliness and timeliness of practices, balance is the key.

Saturday, March 7, 2009

Surely Spring is Here…

We started pruning our Baco Noir this week. Normally when we start pruning it is quite cold with little sign of birds. This past week though , we noticed a number of birds. The Canada Geese were flying in formation North as were the elegant and pure white Trumpetor Swans. While these birds are great to watch, a sure sign of spring is when the red-winged black birds return to the creek that runs between our two vineyard blocks. The red-winged black birds are our early migratory birds and also resident birds. These particular birds are also beneficial to us as they eat many insects that could be pests to our grapes. We are pleased that they were back this week.
While these birds are familar to us here at the Lake Erie Shore and just inland, a great many birds migrate through this area via Holiday Beach and Point Pelee. Holiday Beach is only 5 miles west of us here at Erie Shore, and Point Pelee National Park only 21 miles east of us. These areas see many more birds than we do here and has been recogniced by Birder’s World Magazine as one of the “top 15 birding spots in North America” has also been dubbed the “Warbler Capital of Canada” .
If anyone has interest in following the bird migration, The Friends of Point Pelee and Point Pelee National Park welcome “birders” each spring to experience the avian migration phenomenon from Canada’s southernmost mainland. They offer to teach birding techniques and identification as well as interesting facts about the park. Anyone can take a guided bird hike, but registering for guided bird hikes at 8:30am, 1:00pm or the evening twilight hikes at the DeLaurier Homestead is recommended. Birders could also register online or by phone 888-707-3533 or 519 326-6173. There are maximum numbers for each hike, so advanced registration is recommended.

Also of note is the:

FESTIVAL OF BIRDS 2009 –May 2nd-18th, 2009, Point Pelee National Park of Canada

and the: Festival of Hawks this fall at Holiday Beach Conservation Area (5 Miles West of Erie Shore Vineyard) September 12th through September 26th from 9am to 3pm. See their Website: ERCA: Calendar of Events

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

16th Annual Wine & Cheese Hospitality Night

Our next upcoming event in on Friday, March 6th, 2009. The 16th Annual Wine & Cheese Hospitality Night will be held in the Harrow Agricultural Building from 7-10pm. This event is a wine and food tasting event sponsored by the Harrow & Colchester South Chamber of Commerce and features all 14 wineries of this area. Area restaurants will also be featuring their cuisine. The Dairy Farmers of Ontario will once again have cheeses to compliment wine, music by Spencer for Hire.

We will have all three new red wines available to taste, plus a variety of other wines. We hope you will be able to attend.

All inclusive tickets $20.00 per person. Available prior to the event at The Harrow News, Baubles by Blue, Country Depot and Harrow Post Office. Please contact us for more information
519.738.9858 or

Monday, February 23, 2009

Riesling Rules

We would like to thank all of you who attended the Wine Festival this past weekend. We certainly appreciated it.

The popular wines for us were #1- 2006 VQA Riesling.

#2 & #3 (tied) two of our three new reds: 2006 VQA Duet, & 2007 VQA Cabernet.

These were followed by Baco Noir and Chardonnay.

We expect to release a new Riesling by Spring. We hope you will enjoy as much as all the previous vintages. Thank you again!

Photo coutesty of Essex Wine Review

Friday, February 20, 2009

Looking Forward to a Great Wine Festival!

We are ready to go! The newest Wine and Food Festival in the area will open to the public today at 5pm. It promises to be a great time.

This festival, like many of the successful festivals of this area, boasts a great musical entertainment lineup, along with fabulous cuisine and of course wine.
The Festival is being held at the Windsor Expo Centre. The Centre provides Ample Free Parking immediately to the East of the building entrance off St. Luke St. This is off Seminole (at Walker Rd). We are told that additional parking will be made available off of Walker Road and to south of the Centre if necessary. There is also street parking to the East of main parking lot.

Erie Shore's booth is to the left as you enter the turnstyles of the main entrance of the Centre, and toward the stage. You can't miss it. We will have all three new red wines, three white wines, and both Summer Sun and Sellar Secret available.
There will be non-alcoholic beverage available as well in the T2B booth just south of us toward the stage. 100% of the proceeds of this booth will go to T2B.

We're excited about this festival, and its potential for a February Festival for the area. We think this area and this facility have great potential for the future.

Hope to see you soon! H&A

Friday, February 6, 2009

!!Wine of the Month!!

We are very pleased to have our 2006 VQA Unoaked Chardonnay selected as the wine of the month by Essex Wine Review! This wine continues to receive great reviews. Thank you Essex Wine Review!
We offer these wine notes for the 2006 Erie Shore Vineyard VQA Unoaked Chardonnay

Wine Notes: Chardonnay – Erie Shore Vineyard- Harrow, ON
Winemaker – Harvey Hollingshead
Vintage 2006 750 mL Retail $12.95
Aged in Stainless Steel. Sugar Code (0) Serve at 10 Degrees C (50-55F)

The 2006 VQA Chardonnay is a lovely, fruity, but dry mid-bodied white wine. Unoaked.
Nicely matched with most main courses including: chicken, beef, game, lamb, pork, vegetables, cream sauces, most cheeses, pizza, Thai and Chinese.
For more reviews of this and other wines, see essex wine review or our wine list online.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Good News for White Wine

There have been a number of studies that have shown white wine has as many health benefits as red. Both red and white wines are rich in anti-oxidants, which prevent a huge variety of diseases. Recent research also shows incredible promise in resveratrol (from red wine grapes) as a new cancer treatment.

We reprint part of this new article on white wine benefits:

"When picking a wine to drink for health, opt for a glass of red over white, right? Wrong. New research shows white wine also has cardioprotective benefits.A study published in September in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry compared the antioxidant effects of resveratrol (from red) and tyrosol and hydroxytyrosol (from white) on rats. The results suggest that white wine is just as powerful as red in improving heart function and preventing artery blockage. “We tested a variety of wines,” says Dipak K. Das, a professor at the University of Connecticut school of medicine, who led the study. ..."

“We found that white wines are rich in a type of antioxidant composition that is similarly present in olive oil.”

One thing hasn’t changed: Stick to a glass a day. /from:

Saturday, January 24, 2009

The Winter Vineyard

This winter has been one of the few winters where we have maintained snowcover on the ground. This is a good insulator for both the roots and the graft union of the plant.
Winter is an important season for grapevines. During the winter months, the grapevines are in a deep dormancy caused by internal factors and later environmental factors. Dormancy is basically a rest period for the plant following the work it has had to do to produce fruit during the growing season.
When we leave the fruit for icewine, the vine does not go into a true dormancy. It only goes into dormancy after the fruit has been removed.
We show a photo of our horses feeding on hay. We are finding that leftover alfalfa in the hay is consumed by rabbits. We don’t mind this as it keeps the rabbits from feeding on the tender bark of the grapevines.
Also shown is the vineyard in the background. The white covering on part of it is netting on the Cabernet icewine grapes. These were harvested this past December. The netting will be removed once the snow is melted.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Erie Shore Wine Moves to LCBO Shelves

We reprint the following from
What's Cooking
by Ted Whipp, Windsor Star
Published: Wednesday, December 31, 2008.
“Just in time for its seventh anniversary, Erie Shore Vineyard recently released another vintage red wine, the first of five new vintages on their way.
The 2007 VQA Baco Noir has received early rave reviews, the winery reports, and this wine is now available for $12.95 at seven area LCBO stores. They are located at:
Roundhouse Centre, 3165 Howard Ave.; 1320 Walker Road at Ottawa; 7201 Tecumseh Rd. E. at Parkway Plaza; Belle River; Wheatley; Harrow and Amherstburg.
Erie Shore is among the few of the 13 area wineries with products available at LCBO stores.
Erie Shore started selling its first wine, a 2006 Cabernet Franc, in local LCBO stores a year ago and has up to four available in city and county stores, with several supplying its icewine….”
“They're only available at the winery store and LCBO stores in this area, not elsewhere in the retail chain. As for the new Baco, the wine ages well in a cellar and pairs well with grilled or roasted red meats, and pizza, tomato-based pastas, cheeses and dark chocolate. “

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Icewine Harvest 2008

We hope you enjoy this new blog from us at Erie Shore Vineyard. We hope to post updates on what's happening in the vineyard and the winery.

We finished our Icewine harvest right before Christmas 2008. It was on the two coldest days of December, and we were fortunate to have twelve who helped harvest our Cabernet icewine crop.
The temperature was on average -13 C (8.6F) and even colder with the good windchill. The Cabernet 2008 is of beautiful quality, and we can’t wait to release it when it’s ready.
Pictured are the 2008 Cabernet Ice wine grapes, immediately before picking. The nets in the background are required only to attempt to control bird damage. This variety must be snipped to harvest.
As a note, the weather was cold enough that we could pick during the day. The grapes can thaw on one side by the sun if it’s below –10 C (14F) . For this reason we most often harvest at night.