Pillitteri Icewine

Pillitteri Estates Winery is proud to produce one of nature’s most exquisite gifts — Icewine.

Pillitteri Estates Winery

Pillitteri Estates Winery is proud to produce one of nature’s most exquisite gifts — Icewine.

Pillitteri Icewine

Pillitteri Estates, takes great pride in producing Icewine within the strict VQA standards — a recognition of the highest level of quality attainable.

Pillitteri Icewine is a unique tasting experience with flavours that can range from honeyed peach and apricot to more tropical fruit like mangos.

Pillitteri Estates, takes great pride in producing Icewine within the strict VQA standards — a recognition of the highest level of quality attainable.

Pillitteri Estates Icewine has been recognized at wine competitions throughout the world, earning some of the most prestigious awards in the industry.

Icewine: Intensely sweet and indulgent

This sweet dessert wine, traditionally made with white grapes, is now also made with red varieties, each with its own unique character. The grapes stay on the vine through autumn and dry into raisins. As winter arrives, the freeze-thaw cycle further dehydrates them, intensifying the sugar, acids and other components. The flavour of the juice is highly concentrated, making a complex wine with deep, rich nuances. Canada has made icewine into an international star. We’ve trademarked the term, and our Vintners Quality Alliance has created the most stringent regulations in the world for its production: it must be naturally produced (no artificial freezing); it must have a minimum Brix (sugar content) of 35 degrees; the alcohol must come from the grapes’ natural sugars; and the harvest must not start before Nov. 15. Why the exorbitant price tag and small bottle? When pressed, the frozen grapes produce miniscule amounts of juice. The yield is less than one-quarter of what would be produced by unfrozen grapes. 10 things you should know about icewine: 1. Icewine was discovered accidently in Franconia, Germany, in 1794. Vintners pressed frozen grapes they’d left on the vines for winter animal fodder and found that the resulting wine had a very high level of sugar. Late-harvest sweet wines were already prized in Germany, so by the 1800s, Eiswein was being made intentionally in the Rheingau region. 2. Icewine is made in Canada, Germany, Australia, Austria, New Zealand, Israel and California. Those made using freezers are often called “icebox wines.” 3. The first Canadian commercial icewine was made in 1978 by Hainle Vineyards in British Columbia. Ontario followed... read more

Gold is Made in the Cold

Debbie Trenholm Savvy Company How does Icewine differ from other wines? Throughout the growing season, winemakers decide which grapes to leave on the vines long after the regular harvest is complete and wait for Mother Nature to turn them into gold - icewine grapes that is. The magic number is the air needs to hit -8 degrees Celsius or colder. At this point, the frenzy begins! The frozen grapes can be picked (by law it must reach -8 degrees in order to be classified as an Icewine). Some wineries leave the grapes on longer (such as -10 degrees). The trick with Icewine is that winemakers never know when during the winter -8 degrees will come. This year -8 degrees came to Niagara in early January. Winemakers also need a long period of time at that cold temperature to pick (some wineries have many acres of vineyards with frozen grapes) and crush the grapes. In 2001 I was called on to pick in an Icewine harvest. While staying in Niagara doing some consulting work, I received a phone call at 11:30 one night from Ann Sperling - Winemaker at the time at Malivoire. What an opportunity! I bundled up and headed out! When you think of a vineyard often thoughts of lush green comes to mind. But in January, the reality is that many grapes had fallen off (these are no good), and the bare dead vines set against the stark whiteness of the snow was very dramatic. Shadows of people were cast from the head lamps of the tractor going up and down the rows of grapes being picked... read more

Icewine Recipe: Icewine Crème Brûlée (Egg-Free)

Icewine Crème Brûlée (Egg-Free) Courtesy of: Anna Olsen Food Network Serves 6 This version of crème brûlée is not cooked using eggs, but instead uses the acidity of Icewine, a very sweet dessert wine, to set the cream. Because it is not baked, it can be beautifully presented in wine glasses. Ingredients Custards 2 ½ cups whipping cream ¾ cup sugar ½ cup Pillitteri Riesling Icewine 2 tablespoons lemon juice Oat Brûlée & Assembly ¼ cup maple syrup 3 tablespoons regular rolled oats (not instant) 1 ½ cups mixed fresh berries, such as raspberries, blueberries, strawberries, blackberries Oat Brûlée & Assembly ¼ cup maple syrup 3 tablespoons regular rolled oats (not instant) 1 ½ cups mixed fresh berries, such as raspberries, blueberries, strawberries, blackberries Directions Custards Heat the cream and sugar over medium heat and whisk occasionally, heating just until the sugar has fully dissolved. Remove the pot from the heat and stir in the Icewine and lemon juice. Allow the mixture to cool for 15 minutes, then carefully pour into serving dishes (you can use wine glasses, champagne flutes, or other desired attractive glassware, since you will not be using a torch to “brûlée” this dessert). Chill overnight to set (these custards need at least 8 hours to set). Oat Brûlée & Assembly 1. For the oat brûlée, preheat the oven to 375 F. Line a pie plate with foil and spray with food release spray. 2. Stir the maple syrup and oats until the oats are fully coated and then pour this into the prepared pie place, swirling to make an even and thin layer. Bake this... read more

2014 Niagara Icewine Festival – My Review

By:Jason Solanki Published: January 23rd, 2014 http://vintagewinepicks.blogspot.ca/2014/01/2014-niagara-icewine-festival-my-review.html What an amazing two days! Last weekend, we enjoyed many Icewines and tasty culinary creations at 9 different wineries throughout Niagara-on-the-Lake and Twenty Valley. The full photo gallery is available at the bottom of this post. Our group of 11 began Saturday afternoon at Sue-Ann Staff Estate Winery, where we were greeted by Chris, whom I first met back in Fall of 2012 at Niagara College Teaching Winery. While waiting for the rest of the group to arrive, we tasted a few wines in Sue-Ann’s kitchen. Sue-Ann tends to make wines in a crowd-pleasing style, and her 2012 Rosé (87 pts) fits that bill nicely. It’s a blend of 92% Loved by Lu Riesling and 8% Unoaked Cab Franc and is fresh and crisp with grapefruit, peach, and lime aromas, with nice replays on the palate; it’s medium-bodied with a long, tart finish. Chocolate bark topped with goodies at Sue-Ann Staff Estate Winery Once everyone arrived, we walked into Sue-Ann’s formal dining room where we chose our chocolate bark and hand-picked our toppings, and then paired it with our choice of the 2007 Riesling Icewine or the 2011 Sparkling & SASSY Riesling (89 pts, reviewed here). On my chocolate bark, I opted for the nuts, dried citrus and dried berries and paired it with the sparkling wine. The pairing was fantastic - the right amount of sweetness from both the wine and the chocolate bark was in sync and perfectly complemented each other. There was also a smoked salt bark which I completely forgot about, but at least one person in our... read more

Icewine Recipes: Poached Pear Infused with Pillitteri Vidal Icewine

Poached Pear with Icewine? This is delicious! Ingredients (serves 4) 3 cups water 1 cup (firmly packed) brown sugar ½ cup Pillitteri Estates Vidal Icewine 2 x cinnamon sticks roughly broken 2 large, just ripe bosc pears, peeled, cored and cut in half 4 1inch x 1inch thin squares of good quality white chocolate Good quality blue cheese to crumble, like Blue Benedictine, enough for 4 people. *½ cup of Pillitteri Estates Vidal Icewine, reserved Method: Combine the water, sugar, ½ cup Icewine and cinnamon in a large sauce pan over low heat. Cook, stirring for 2 minutes or until the sugar dissolves and liquid turns lightly syrupy. Add the pears and stir to combine. Cook, covered for 10 – 15 minutes or until the pears are tender. Use a slotted spoon to transfer the pears from the poaching liquid. In a small sauce pan, carefully add 1 cup of warm poaching liquid plus *½ cup of Vidal Icewine and bring to a boil. Boil uncovered for 5- 10 minutes until syrup reduces and thickens slightly. Individually plate a square of white chocolate. Place a warm pear half on top of the chocolate. Crumble blue cheese over top of pear. Finish with a drizzle of reduced syrup over blue cheese and pear. Serve immediately. Enjoy with a glass of Pillitteri Estates Vidal Icewine.... read more

Pillitteri Estates Winery Completes Their Largest Icewine Harvest

Published by: Wines in Niagara Rick VanSickle ‏ January 3rd, 2014 Pillitteri Estates Winery completed their largest ever harvest of icewine grapes during a wild New Year’s winter storm. A record icewine harvest for Pillitteri, which began in early December kicked in to high gear on New Year’s Day. At 5 a.m. as the temperature reached -10C and the snow moved in to blanket the estate vineyards the Pillitteri team mobilized for a marathon finish. It was the largest icewine harvest ever for Pillitteri and included the harvesting of rare icewine grapes including: Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Gewurztraminer, Merlot, Shiraz and Riesling. The bulk of the icewine harvest came from the popular Vidal grape with over 200 tonnes harvested. The final stretch of the harvest primarily took place throughout the early morning of New Years Day and continued into the night with extreme challenges. “With the amount of blowing and drifting snow and the depth of snow it was difficult to even get into the vineyards. The visibility was very poor and with the whiteouts, it was difficult to see the equipment and even the vines. Our tractors were slipping in the snow and we were constantly fighting the elements,” explained Jamie Slingerland (see top photo), Pillitteri’s Director of Viticulture. This was a lengthy harvest, and one of the earliest completed for the winery, which finished the entire harvest by Jan. 2. It took many hours of dedicated work to complete, resulting in a total tonnage of 750 tonnes. This year’s timely cold spells offered an excellent quality of juice, which will ultimately take up to two weeks to... read more

A record year for BC Icewine

By John Schreiner Here’s hoping that consumers still have a taste for something sweet: British Columbia’s winemakers are likely to produce about 300,000 litres of Icewine. This is double from the 2012 production. Some 29 producers have registered to turn 1,000 tons of grapes into Icewine this year. The harvest began November 20-21, the third earliest Icewine harvest in British Columbia. The earliest harvests were November 3, 2003 and November 19, 2011. One winery, Little Straw Vineyards in West Kelowna, was able to pick some grapes early on the morning of November 20, stopping when the temperature rose during the day, and finishing that night. Several consecutive days of frigid weather in the Okanagan and Similkameen Valleys have given producers a generous window for the harvest. For the whole article, visit... read more

Market for icewines heats up

The Vancouver Sun By: Michelle Locke November 20th, 2013 Leaving grapes to freeze on the vine seems like a recipe for stone cold failure. But under the right conditions, the grapes that come in from the (extreme) cold can produce delicious dessert wines that are a cool favourite for holiday pairings. What to call it? It depends on where you are. It’s called eiswein in Austria and Germany, where it began; icewine, one word, in Canada, where it’s become something of a signature wine; and ice wine, two words, in the United States, where vintners in New York state and few other regions are experimenting with the hard-to-make, easy-to-drink product. The icewine category in Canada is continuing to evolve with new and innovative products entering the market each vintage. The thing that’s cool about ice wine is there’s a textural difference that you don’t see with other wines, and you see the care- the fact that there’s so many steps, there’s so much effort that goes into making it. Click here to read more of this article.... read more

Best Ways to Enjoy Icewine

Love Icewine  but have a hard time wondering what to pair it with? Pillitteri has you covered, providing several suggestions on what to have with Icewine. Icewine is incredibly versatile, pairing nicely with a variety of foods and snacks. The only thing we do not recommend is pairing Icewine with something that is much sweeter. Other than that, the possibilities are endless. These ideas could be used at gatherings, parties, or even for a treat on your own. Click this link below, and it will take you to our Pinterest page. All of our pairing suggestions are listed there. Enjoy!... read more

Pillitteri Estates Winery Niagara-on-the-Lake

Pillitteri Estates Winery is proud to produce one of nature's most exquisite gifts -- Icewine.

Pillitteri Estates Icewine has been recognized at wine competitions throughout the world, earning some of the most prestigious awards in the industry.

Find Out More About Icewine