On Labor Day, I was honored to be invited along with these fabulous ladies from the NSLC (Nova Scotia Liquor Corporation) for an NSLC Appreciation Day at the Blomidon Estate Winery. Rayell, Meg, Kim and myself had a fabulous day touring and tasting at two wineries. I will tell you about the other one next week, because this week I want to share the knowledge and great wines we tasted from Blomidon Estate Winery. Blomidon is located in the beautiful Annapolis Valley near Canning and is about an hour’s drive from Halifax. The views are breathtaking and the wine is quite good too!
Blomidon uses 100% Nova Scotia grown grapes in their wines and have recently been honored with the prestigious Lieutenant Governor’s Award of Excellence for it’s Cuvée L’Acadie, 2010. Now owned by the Ramey family, Blomidon’s chief winemaker is Simon Rafuse, and I was thrilled for the opportunity to listen to him speak about his wines.
Simon joined Blomidon in 2009. He’s a native Nova Scotian, but has extensive experience in New Zealand and France, just to name drop a few of the impressive places he’s worked and studied. And now he’s doing impressive things at Blomidon…. not just winning awards, but making award worthy wine. He also helps out teaching us CAPS students.
Kyle Gallant is the viticulturist at Blomidon and researched ‘Sustainable Nutrient Management Practices in Vineyards’ for his Masters thesis. His discussion on the nutrients, weather hazards and rots were very interesting as well. Some of his challenges include phylloxera and downy mildew.
But let’s get to the wines. The first one I want to tell you about is the Blomidon Tidal Bay. Tidal Bay is Nova Scotia’s signature wine reflecting the terroir of our province, and many of the Nova Scotia wineries produce a Tidal Bay… each one a little different than the other. The Tidal Bay from Blomidon is a blend of L’Acadie Blanc, Seyval Blanc and New York Muscat. It’s a dryer style, which I really liked. It was crisp and refreshing with gorgeous citrus notes and a real nice light mouth feel.
This year the 2010 Blomidon Cuvee Brut was not only the winner of the Lieutenant Governor’s Award of Excellence in Nova Scotia wine, it was also voted “Best Sparkling Wine” at this year’s Atlantic Canada Wine Awards… which I poured for. And for good reason. It’s dry and crisp with some lovely pineapple flavors. A gorgeous wine which deserves every award it receives.
But my absolute favorite of the day…..the Blomidon Vidal Ice Wine.
Rayell and I took many of the CAPS program together. She is finished though and is now a very accomplished Sommelier. Both Rayell and I tried this one and both agreed it was heavenly. That’s the one word that comes to mind when describing this luscious ice wine with it’s rich sweet flavors of honey and apricots. It had some great acidity as well as a beautiful lingering finish, and I can’t wait to have it again.
It was a great vineyard experience and I have to thank Simon, Kyle and the entire staff at Blomidon for their hospitality. They even cooked a wonderful BBQ for us! And a big thank you to Meg, Kim and Rayell for inviting me along.
Next week, I will tell you about our journey to Benjamin Bridge where we will meet winemaker Jean Benoit Deslauriers.
Till next week, Cheers. And wherever this wine blog may find you, I hope you pick this week to try a local wine.