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Best of London 2018 P-A-R-T-Y!!!



Thanks to everyone who voted for us in the London Free Press “Best of London 2018” competition. Because of you we were voted London’s Best Wine Store for the sixth time. 


We are very proud.


Over 130 friends and customers helped us celebrate on June 21st. Check out the photos.


Let’s do it again next year!!!



2018 Restricted Quantities Program




Every year, our major supplier, RJS Craft Winemaking, announces the 4 wine kits that will be available in our annual Restricted Quantities limited release program.  If you are not familiar with this program, it is essentially a pre-order program.  RJS announces their choice of ultra-premium 8-week kits, we order them, and they produce only as many kits as get pre-ordered, so the number of kits is restricted to only those pre-ordered.  The deadline for ordering this year is October 20th for the kits to be released one-per-month in December (a lovely Australian Shiraz Viognier blend), in January (Chilean Carménère), in February (Spanish Tempranillo) and finishing in March (German Riesling).  Over the next few months, we will be learning about each of these wines.

We are going to start with the December Restricted Quantities wine, Shiraz Viognier, an interesting blend that originated in the northern Côte du Rhône region of France (especially in the Côte Rôtie region).  Traditionally, Viognier (pronounced vee-oh–NYAY) is the white grape variety, and Syrah (or Shiraz) is the red grape variety grown in this region, and due to the perfect sun exposure and dry climate (the terroir), these Syrah grapes ripen fully, with very high sugar content and finishing the growing season with very thick skins.  This combination, when fermented, creates a very harsh, full-bodied red wine that is almost too strong to drink.  To help “tame” the wine, vintners in the Region blend in a small amount of white wine, in this case, Viognier (5-10%), with the Syrah (90-95%) to both lower the alcohol content and to soften the tannins.  The Viognier grape adds a pleasant fruit salad aroma (guava, papaya, banana and pear) with honey and floral scents and low acidity.  Because of the small amount used in the finished blend, the action of the Viognier is very subtle.  These finished wines tend to have a perfumed violet aroma with concentrated fruit flavours, are full-bodied, with a long finish and smooth tannins. They also are spicy with peppery notes, and are usually finished in toasted smoky oak barrels with dense black currant, plum and black raspberry characteristics.   Although our juice for this release comes from Australia, the blend is the same.  Australian vineyards have been growing the same Syrah clone as planted in the Hermitage and Côte Rôtie districts of the northern Côte du Rhône Region.

This wine pairs well with bison burgers, lamb kebabs, meat pie, sharp cheddar, and pretty well any red meat or pork grilled to perfection on the BBQ.  (Hot dogs and pizza also work!)

In past years we have made three versions of this blend and have won three medals in three different years; a gold, a silver and a bronze medal in the world’s largest amateur winemaking competition, sponsored annually by WineMaker Magazine™.  If you would like more information or would like to order any of the Restricted Quantities wine kits, please call the store (519 471-5250) to place your order before October 20, 2017.   



‘Tis the Season is coming… you have enough wine???


September & October are traditionally the harvest months in the northern hemisphere.  Also traditionally, October is our busiest month, since most wine drinkers are planning to have some “extra” wine available for the upcoming Christmas and Holiday Season.  Whether party planning, planning for those “drop-in” guests, or preparing for gift-giving, crafting your own wine with custom labels makes pre-planning almost a no-brainer.  With a minimum of 1 month under the cork for white wines, and 3 months under the cork for red wines, now is a great time to get yours started.  If you require assistance with your selection, or already know what variety or style of wine you would like craft for yourself, our knowledgeable Staff are very helpful, and you can start your Festive vintage in as little as 7 minutes. We have over 90 selections of 4, 5, 6 and 8 week kits available for you to choose from.  Along with all of those choices, we also have a large selection of Fruit Wine Kits, Ice-Style Wine Kits, and Dessert Style Kits.  Some of these choices are available only for the Holidays, and are released in stores only at this time of year, like CranApple Celebration and 5 Dessert Wine (Port-Style) Kits.   These specialty kits are usually sweet, and have some very exotic flavours.  We stock de-luscious flavours such as Vanilla Fig, Raspberry Mocha, Coffee, Black Forest and Toasted Caramel. It will make a ½ batch, or 30 x 375ml bottles of deliciousness.  You may ask yourself “What am I going to do with 30 bottles of sweet wine?”  The answer is:  craft 5 great bottles for you, and then have 25 great gift bottles with customized labels for friends and family.  Our Dessert Wine flavours are NOT available from the LCBO, so you can truly craft some spectacular, unique gifts.

If you already craft your own wine, or would like to get started, we have several of our 4-Week, 5-Week and 6-Week and 8-Week Kits on Special Promotion for September and October.  All of these selections will be ready in time to share with family and friends, although why wait?  The sooner we get started, the sooner you get your cellar stocked!  If you are having trouble with the idea of 30 bottles, get together with family members, split some batches, and stock everybody’s cellars!  Ask a co-worker or two (because they already know that you are wine lover!), and they can be too!  Planning a “12 Houses of Christmas Crawl”?   Get together with neighbours (you know who you are!) and plan the perfect combination of crafted wines to serve with each course!  Anyway, crafting your own wine is fun!  Sharing your wines with friends, relatives and neighbours is easier than ever!

Custom labels can also be fun to dream up and then share with others.  With over 40 label varieties in stock at all times, the challenge is yours to think up a name or theme, and then when you come in to bottle your luscious wines, we’ll design them before your eyes on our state-of-the-art label program, et viola, 30 seconds later, your labels are done!  Simply choose a matching shrink cap, and your finished product is ready to store and share with your loved ones.  Simple.