Here’s what’s inside June’s Toronto Life Wine Club box
In this month’s delivery: Three wines from Closson Chase, one of Prince Edward County’s most esteemed, and pioneering, wineries. This is cool-climate winemaking at its best, where conscientious vineyard management yields unique wines that are full of character.
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Closson Chase K.J. Watson Pinot Gris 2018
Why we’re into this wine: Pinot gris is the hottest wine in Ontario right now, and this one’s so hot you can’t even buy it anywhere yet: It’s available exclusively to Toronto Life Wine Club members until it’s officially released at the winery later this year. Closson Chase sources its grapes from the Four Mile Creek appellation in Niagara. It’s fermented in temperature-controlled stainless steel, and the result is a steely (no pun intended) and intensely focused wine. This is a great summer sipper.
What it tastes like: There’s so much mineral character here, with forthright citrus and tree fruit, pineapple and hay. Zippy acidity gives all that fresh fruit a boost. You’ll get pear, melon, lime and a lovely refreshing honeysuckle finish.
How to drink it: Serve this quite chilled, but not frosty. Acid heads will love to sip this when the sun gets warm. Great with seafood ceviche, fish tacos and asparagus risotto.
Closson Chase South Clos Chardonnay 2017
Why we’re into this wine: This chardonnay is a serious threat to the grand wines of Burgundy. It’s fermented and aged in French oak barrels, 20 percent of which are new, resulting in an opulent, complex and spicy powerhouse with a confident elegance.
What it tastes like: A fragrance of wildflower meadow, herbs, citrus, vanilla and prominent croissant dough. It’s supple and elegant, with generous apple, lemon/lime, pineapple, and sweet oak spice, with hints of beeswax and a long finish.
How to drink it: Such a formidable wine can take on anything from seafood to poultry to red meats. And soft cheese too. Try Cornish hen, grilled whitefish, lobster or crab, or top quality lamb chops.
Closson Chase 2015 Churchside Pinot Noir
Why we’re into this wine: That Closson Chase winemaker Keith Tyers is a pinot noir fanatic becomes quite evident when you get the chance to taste his range of wines. Or start here, with one of his best. The yields on these grapes are minute—just a half ton per acre—so the grapes are pristine, ripe and concentrated, and demonstrate the power and finesse that pinot can attain here.
What it tastes like: Complex with layers of fruit and spice: cherries, plum and pomegranate, along with earthy smoke and baking spice. Bright, pretty, bold and age-worthy. Serve with beef carpaccio or tartare, duck breast or grilled wild salmon. You might also consider steak frites.
How to drink it: Decanting would not be a bad idea, just for 30 minutes or so. Even a little chill would be okay. Then break out the finest stemware.