A Wine Lover’s Diary, Part 659: Ferox Winery

Monday, July 24th: Deborah is away for three days on a cottage retreat with her book club ladies. Seems they’re taking more wine than food. Got down to some tasting after taking Pinot for a walk.

  • Henry of Pelham Red House Wine Co. Cabernet Shiraz 2016 ($13.95): ruby-purple colour; cedary-spicy nose of oak and plum with a light floral note; light to medium-bodied, dry, firm on the palate with a hint of sweetness. Easy drinking. (87)
  • Vinetti de Fiorini Chianti Superiore 2014 ($14.95): deep ruby colour; earthy, cherry nose; light to medium-bodied, dry, sour cherry flavour; fresh on the palate with lively acidity. (87)
  • Tocado 2015 (Campo de Borja – Grenache): deep ruby colour; spicy-cedary, black raspberry nose; medium-bodied, dry with a floral note, inky and fruity with a firm tannic finish. (87.5)
  • Alejandro Fernández Dehesa La Granja 2008 (Castilla y León – $20.95): dense-ruby-purple colour; sandalwood, spicy, black fruit nose; medium-bodied, dry, strawberry and sandalwood flavours with ripe tannins and lively acidity. (89)
  • Ravenswood Belloni Zinfandel 2014 ($44.95): deep purple-ruby colour; cedary, plum and leather nose; medium to full-bodied, ripe plum and blackberry flavours with grainy tannins fresh acidity and a note of black licorice on the finish. (90)
  • Huff Estates Rosé 2016 (Cabernet Franc – $19): pink with a bluish tint; minerally, raspberry nose; medium-bodied, dry with a raspberry flavour topped with a floral note. Finishes firmly. (88)
  • Huff Estates Pinot Gris 2016 (80% Prince Edward County/20% Niagara – $22): pale straw colour; minerally, white peach nose; medium-bodied, dry, white peach and citrus flavours; clean and true with great length. (89)
  • Huff Estates Riesling off dry 2016 ($20): very pale in colour; minerally, grapefruit and kiwi bouquet; light to medium-bodied, honeyed grapefruit and lime flavours with an engaging bitter note on the finish. (88.5)
  • Kono Sauvignon Blanc 2015 (Marlborough – $18.95): almost water white; grassy, elderberry and gooseberry nose; medium-bodied, dry, herbaceous, gooseberry and green melon flavours; fresh and lively on the palate with mouth-freshening acidity. (89)

Tuesday, July 25th: Spent much of the day getting tax receipts for sponsors and purchasers of Grapes for Humanity’s “France Uncorked” event. Trying to deal with the volume of wine samples for tasting.

  • Henry of Pelham White House Wine Co. Riesling Pinot Grigio 2016: straw colour, peachy-grapefruit nose; medium-bodied, dry, white peach and citrus flavours with lively acidity. (87)
  • Tinhorn Creek 2 Bench White 2016 (Okanagan Valley): medium straw colour; minerally, peach and melon bouquet; medium to full-bodied, dry, smoky, tarry flavours of peach, orange and pineapple. (89)
  • Rodney Strong Chalk Hill Chardonnay 2014 (California – $26.95): straw coloured with a nose of undergrowth and apple with well-integrated oak; medium to full-bodied, spicy, apple and peach flavours; well-balanced and creamy on the palate with a nutty finish. (89)
  • Bremerton Coulthard Cabernet 2014 (Langhorne Creek, South Australia – $24.95): deep ruby in colour; cedary, blackcurrant with vanilla oak notes; medium-bodied, dry, herbal blackcurrant flavour with a lively spine of acidity. (88.5)

Wednesday, July 26th: To the LCBO lab for a tasting of the August 5th Vintages release.

Thursday, July 27th: Wrote my Quench magazine piece about Anthony von Mandl’s new Okanagan winery, Checkmate – and thirty wine reviews. Received a copy from London of the piece I wrote for Decanter‘s August issue, “My Toronto”; see www.decanter.com/?s=aspler. Prepared for this evening’s dinner tasting at the Oakdale Golf Club – a South American wine theme:

Hors D’Oeuvres
Assorted mini empanadas, Goat cheese in a cucumber cup, and Grilled shrimp skewers

Trio of Mixed seafood ceviche, Grilled provolone with marinated eggplant, Mild chorizo and peach chutney

Grilled gaucho beef tenderloin with red chimichurri sauce, garlic roast potatoes, cherry tomatoes and green beans
Grilled halibut with cilantro chimichurri,
wild rice, cherry tomatoes and green beans

Dulce de leche lava cake with vanilla ice cream
(Gluten free option- berries with vanilla ice cream)
Coffee & Tea

Oakdale Golf Club dinner wines

Friday, July 27th: Another Vintages release tasting – for August 19th. 123 products.

Saturday, July 28th: Down to the Rogers Centre with Deborah for a Blue Jays game against the Los Angeles Angels – a birthday/Father’s Day gift from my son Guy. Guy and Sasha brought Isla along for her first Blue Jay game. We lost. So goes the season.

Baby Isla’s first Jays game

On the way home Deborah and I dropped into to Dean’s Real Scoop ice cream parlour on Queen West (around the corner from my son’s house) to commiserate. Saw the following sign above the counter.


Came home to taste some wines from a new Ontario winery called Ferox. The wines were made at Reif.

  • Ferox Riesling 2016 (Niagara Peninsula – $38): very pale in colour with a minerally, honeyed grapefruit nose; light-bodied, just off-dry with flavours of grapefruit, apple and orange. Great length. (90)
  • Ferox Sauvignon Blanc 2016 (Four Mile Creek – $46): very pale in colour with a grassy, earthy, green bean nose; medium-bodied, dry, melon and green plum flavours with a lovely mouth-feel. Very white Bordeaux in style. (89)
  • Ferox Merlot Cabernet 2015 (Niagara Peninsula – aged in 70% new French oak and 30% American – $55): Dense purple in colour with a cedary, spicy blackcurrant nose lifted by a lovely floral note; medium to full-bodied, dry, firmly structured with plum and cherry flavours and hints of baker’s chocolate supported by grainy but ripe tannins. (90)

A very promising debut.

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