Sweet wines, once the most consumed type of wines have been falling in popularity for decades.
Sauternes, Barsacs, Sherries, Ports, sweeter German wines and their replicants around the world once made up substantial parts of winemakers' incomes. The reasons for this were many and included the fact that the sweeter wines kept better and longer, dining was longer and included desserts and dessert wines, the taxman wasn't as greedy and sweet wines can mask a myriad of winemaking faults.
Nowadays, with faster life-styles and a new calorie-consciousness, sweet wines are generally out of favour much to the consternation of traditional producers who are looking at new ways of marketing them ..... but that's another story.
Last night, in celebration of our move to Canada soon we opened a bottle of a sweet Canadian wine that I've had in the cellar for some time. The wine is Inniskillin 2002 Gold Reserve Vidal Icewine.
Inniskillin is a producer based at Niagara.
Vidal is a Canadian grape varietal. Icewine is a style of wine made from frozen (on the vine) grapes.
To be honest I was thinking that I'd left the wine in the cellar for too long as I do with most of the sweet wines we have but I was really surprised. The wine has a rich, golden colour but is still bright. The aroma is full of honey and butterscotch notes and the flavour - delicious. It is all honey, butterscotch and tropical fruits with a hint of apricot kernel. Marvellous and a great teaser for our adventure.