Ice wine is a highly valuable dessert wine, best served chilled, and is retailed in tall, thin bottles of half the normal size. To make ice wine, the grapes are left on the vine after the normal season. They are then repeatedly exposed to freezing temperatures and picked during the night when temperatures reach between -8 and -10 degrees Celsius. The frozen grapes must be pressed immediately or they are ruined.
By allowing the grapes to be frozen and thawed on the vine repeatedly before picking, more complex flavors are released giving a superior finished product.
The water content in the grape freezes and when the grapes are pressed a highly concentrated wine is extracted. The concentrated wine is then slowly fermented over months with special strains of yeast.
Ice wine must have a specific must weight, dependent on the country of origin. Must weight indicates the amount of sugar in the grape juice and is measured by refractometer.
Making ice wine may date back from Roman times. Germany has a long tradition of making eiswein and is still one of the world’s main producers; Canada remains the world’s largest.
Making ice wine requires warm summers and cold winters, so can only be produced in particular areas of the world. Some years, the winters are either too harsh or too mild and the crop can be lost.
Our ice wine comes from Ontario, using the most popular variety of grapes Riesling, Cabernet Franc and Vidal.
Ice wine is very sweet with high acidity, which makes it a very refreshing drink and gives our jelly its tropical fruit smell.