As of August of this year, a new winter-hardy hybrid has been added to the VQA’s list of authorized grape varieties. It’s called Marquette and, according to Wikipedia, it’s “an inter-specific hybrid red wine grape variety developed at the University of Minnesota, and is a cross between two other hybrids, MN 1094 and Ravat 262. Marquette was introduced in 2006.”
The grape’s most enthusiastic proponent is Sandor Johnson, owner of Potter Settlement Artisan Winery in Tweed, Ontario.
Potter Settlement Marquette 2017 (aged in French oak) won Gold Medals at this year’s National Wine Awards of Canada and the San Francisco International Wine Competition.
At the Judgement of Kingston (County Pinot Noir versus New Zealand Pinot Noir), Sandor was the MC. He gave me a bottle of his wine to taste.
Potter Settlement Marquette 2017 ($50)
Dense purple in colour; spicy plum and prune bouquet with red licorice and floral notes; medium-bodied, dry, plum and cooked cherry flavours with well-integrated oak and lively acidity, and a suggestion of chocolate on the finish. (89).