You may have heard through the grapevine, that the hottest trend in winemaking is orange wine. What now you might want to know what it is. No, it is not made from oranges, it is not rosé and actually it is not really new. It is really a very old practice dating back thousands of years. Back in the old, old days in the country of Georgia, they made these wines, also referred to has ‘skin-contact white wine” by you guessed it, fermenting white grape with the grape skins resulting in the wine turning a lovely amber or orange colour.
According to WineAlign, “There are plenty of orange wines made in northeastern Italy and bordering Slovenia and parts of the Balkans with the style becoming more popular and increasingly made in Canada over the past few years. Both VQA Ontario and BC VQA have categories and/or regulate the production and use of the term skin contact or orange wines and there are orange wines being made successfully across the country. They are often from aromatic white varieties such as this year’s winners from muscat, gewürztraminer, pinot gris and even riesling, with many of the wines going beyond the required ten days of skin contact to 15 or 20 days of maceration on the skins.”
So now that you know what orange wine is, you can appreciate this category in the recent WineAlign National Wine Awards of Canada. The WineAlign National Wine Awards of Canada (NWAC), the country’s largest competition of Canadian wines, is held annually in mid to late June. Each year, somewhere in Canadian wine country, co-founders Anthony Gismondi and David Lawrason assemble Canada’s leading wine writers, trade buyers and sommeliers to evaluate the current crop of 100 percent Canadian grown and made wines and ciders.
The 2019 WineAlign National Wine Awards of Canada were a huge success with 1,815 entries from 259 different wineries from eight different provinces. This year, 21 judges assembled in Wellington, located in the beautiful Prince Edward County wine region of Ontario, from June 10–14 to determine the best wines in Canada. See all of the winners and categories here: https://www.winealign.com/
Orange Wine Medal Winners:
Orofino 2018 Orange – Skin Contact Muscat, Similkameen Valley, British Columbia
Culmina 2018 N° 008 Skin Contact Gewürztraminer, Golden Mile Bench, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia
Dirty Laundry 2018 Au Naturel Gewurztraminer, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia
Three Sisters 2018 Gewurztraminer, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia
Trail Estate 2018 Skin-Ferment Riesling Hughes Vineyard, Lincoln Lakeshore, Niagara Peninsula, Ontario
Bartier Bros. 2018 Granite, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia
Joseph’s Estates Wines 2018 Muscat Orange Wine, Ontario
Sperling Vineyards 2018 Natural Amber Pinot Gris, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia
Now, orange you glad you Know what orange wine is? (sorry, couldn’t resist)
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