Canadian wineries finding focus

17th May, 2013 by Rupert Millar

Canada’s wineries are becoming increasingly focused on specific grape varieties as the country’s wine industry matures.

WinesCanadaSpeaking to the drinks business at the annual Wines of Canada tasting at the Canadian High Commission, several producers voiced the opinion that there was an increasing amount of specialisation and that Canada was “more than just icewine”.

“Ontario is very similar to parts of the New World where there’s a lot of cellar door sales,” said Bill Redelmeier of Southbrook Vineyards.

“That approach rewards having a lot of varieties but it’s not good for focus. Specialisation is catching on though.”

Norman Hardie of Norman Hardie Winery added that plants are increasingly “getting to the right spot” and this was reflected in the growing quality and consistency of the wines.

He added that there was a “big emphasis” on Pinot Noir and Cabernet Franc (when it came to the best red varieties) and that Cabernet Sauvignon was much more site specific.

Stephen Gash, managing director of Malivoire, told db that Matt Kramer of the Wine Spectator had caused something of a stir a few years ago when he announced that the grape with the best potential in Ontario was Gamay – of which a little is planted (mostly by Malivoire) though plantings are apparently growing.

Nonetheless, Hardie pointed out that the long growing season meant that Canadian regions could handle a relatively diverse array of varieties.

Giving a wider overview of the tasting, Janet Dorozynski, global practice lead for beer, wine and spirits at the Global Business Opportunities Bureau, told db that while Canada had built up a “strong image for icewine, many producers see Canada as being more than that.

“We’re a modern industry, only 20-25 years old but we’re learning more, we’re a country of experimentation and, if I can use the analogy, we’re beyond the awkward teenage years.”

As well as the main varieties being shown at the tasting, Dorozynski also spoke of the potential for Canadian sparkling wines and rosé in the UK – two of the most popular and fastest growing categories – while admitting that it would not be easy to sell Canadian wine in great volume.

“The focus is the on-trade and independent merchants, not supermarkets. It’s expensive in Canada, land, labour and production costs are high. It’s not like South Africa or Chile.

“But we’re not competing in the £5 category, we can’t, but many of the wines are worth it.”

 

One Response to “Canadian wineries finding focus”

  1. Konrad Ejbich says:

    I would have liked to hear more from the visiting tasters than the sellers. What did they have to say about what they tasted?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Subscribe to our newsletters

Job vacancies

European Brands Sales Manager, Field Sales Managers and Executives

Amathus Drinks PLC
London, Brighton, E Sussex/Kent, Cornwall & Devon, GB

Commercial/Sales Manager

Crush Wines Ltd
Bremhill/Home office, GB

Wine Buyer

Adnams
Southwold, UK

Sales Manager - Scotland

Eurowines Ltd
Scotland

Sales Manager - North-West England

Eurowines Ltd
North-West England, UK

Sales Manager - London

Eurowines Ltd
London, UK

Key Account Manager - Grocery

Australian Vintage Limited
London (Croydon), UK

Key Accounts Manager - Impulse

Australian Vintage Limited
London (Croydon), UK

Business Development Manager

Regency Wines Ltd
North Devon & Somerset, UK

Sales Manager - North East England

Eurowines Ltd
Within 15-20 mile radius of York, UK

National Account Manager

Ehrmanns Wines
London, UK

London Account Manager

The Drinks Club
London, UK

London Sales Executive

Gourvid Limited
London and Greater London, GB

Logistics Administrator

Speciality Drinks Ltd
Park Royal, London, UK

Head of Sales - Hush Heath Estate

Hush Heath Estate
Kent/ London, UK

The Global Merlot Masters 2017

Deadline : 2nd May 2017

db Awards 2017

Deadline : 3rd May 2017

The Global Organic Masters 2017

Deadline : 2nd May 2017

The Global Sparkling Masters 2017

Deadline : 12th May 2017

Click to view more

Global Chardonnay Masters 2016

Now in its fourth year, the competition will identify the best Chardonnay from all around the world in every price range.

Rioja Masters 2016

Now in its fifth year, the competition will recognise and reward the finest Riojas on the world stage.

Fortified Masters 2016

Now in its third year, The Fortified Masters will reward the best fortified wines on offer.

The Global Malbec Masters 2016

the drinks business is proud to announce the inaugural Global Malbec Masters 2016.

Click to view more