It was that time of year again where the Niagara Food and Wine Expo 2013 sprang upon us and like any good wine lover, I gassed up the car, packed up the camera and an overnight bag, and headed to Niagara to take in all the show had to offer.  Since I had been there the year previous,  I was prepared, or so I thought, for the expo floor. I arrived early enough on a Friday to give myself time to talk to exhibitors of interest, but soon realized that the expo floor was more beer than it was wine. In fact, my friend and I commented in jest that the show would have been more true to itself if it were called the ‘Niagara Food and Beer Expo’.   This year, tutored tasting stages, which were once reserved for wine and cheese, were now shared with beer pundits, who were, admittedly, passionately discussing their craft and  tasting hints.

Though I don’t know what happened to lessen the number of wines on the expo floor, I should, in all fairness, state that I was wowed by some of the few in attendance, and ‘wowed’ to the point that we’ve already started planning day trips out to some of these formidable wineries for tastings and of course purchases.

Notables from the Niagara Food and Wine Expo

The wine that made the most impact on our taste buds came from Between the Lines Winery; a winery we weren’t very familiar with, however, familiar or not, there was no disputing how amazing their Pinot Noir Reserve was. Robust in structure, and fruit forward with hints of chocolate in there. Mouthwatering, even as I write this days after tasting.   Unfortunately, Between the Lines isn’t found in the LCBO, but I am sure these guys wouldn’t mind placing an order for you!

Between the Lines Pinot Noir Reserve

Not only did Cornerstone Winery change some of their labeling (love the new look), we tried a recent Merlot that was to die for too, and though Cornerstone wines are not available at the LCBO, its definitely worth traveling up to Cornerstone yourselves for a tasting.  The last time I saw them I had their Port, which if I wasn’t looking at the label, I would have sworn it came out of Porto!

Cornerstone Estate Winery

We stopped in at the Ontario Wine Society booth and waylaid in the Rosewood wines displayed there.  I was lucky enough to try a Rosewood Meritage that was not on display and first sip of this Lock Stock & Barrel Meritage gave insight into why it was pulled out and poured only so often. This red blend was amazing and one of our primary reasons from planning a road-trip to Beamsville.

Rosewood Estate Lock Stock and Barrel

Am I the only one who didn’t know that caviar came in fancy colours and wasabi and truffle flavoured to boot?

Caviar

Of course there was no shortage of treats and truth be told, though I go to these things for the wine, it’s the various types of chocolate, fudge, shortbread’s, etc… that I look forward to not only trying at the show, but taking home with me too!

Chocolate Covered Strawberries

Lastly, and for good measure, here is a picture of beer…

Beer