1.Schuchmann Wines Georgia Tsinandali 2013 Georgia (AMZ-Whiz Trading), about $16.95: Tsinandali is a wine region in Georgia; it is the home of Rkatsiteli (possibly once the world's most widely planted white wine grape variety) and Mtsvane, both white wines that are used in this blend. The former, also made into wine in New York's Finger Lakes, is highly acidic, lending citric and apple tones. The latter is fairly fruity and aromatic. The blend is complementary: the green attack of the Rkatsiteli seems to be perfectly balanced by the orange stone fruit (peaches, apricots) of the Mtsvane. The upfront fruit and flowers on the nose and entry is mellowed by the stoney character on the mid-palate, and it finishes refreshingly citrus. A pretty good sipper and even better with seafood as a first course. This particular wine has a pale clear colour emphasizing its fresh nature; it is only six months old, from the 2013 vintage. It should be served chilled. It reminds me of a new style Ontario Vidal or a Vermentino from Italy. 13% ABV, with a cork closure. Stainless fermentation and storage at the winery, which is a tourist destination with name recognition; it appears to be worth a visit. Quality/Price rating is 89 points by Dean Tudor of Gothic Epicures.
2.Huff Estates Chardonnay South Bay Vineyards 2011 VQA Prince Edward County, $29.95 at winery: a year in French oak, about 25% new. Slightly smokey, citric tones and some minerality, good balance and nuances between the elements. Long finish, needs buttery food. Not really a sipper, and don't overchill. 13% ABV. Quality/Price rating is 88 points by Dean Tudor of Gothic Epicures.
3.Huff Estates Cuvee Janine 2012 Sparking Rose VQA Prince Edward County, $29.95 at winery: all pinot noir, with a year on lees (first made in 2010 with two years on lees). Traditional method as in Champagne. Dark rose colour, just a shade paler than most Alsatian still pinot noirs! Good brisk refreshing bubbles accent the black fruit tones. Long dry finish suggests food as well as sipping. 12.5% ABV. 220 cases made. Quality/Price rating is 89 points by Dean Tudor of Gothic Epicures.
4.Huff Estates Gamay 2012 VQA Ontario, $24.95 at winery: with 14 months in French oak (15% new), the body has suggestions of black fruit and cherries, done up in a North American appeal style. A bit heftier than Beaujolais but still suggestive of casual food. 13.5% ABV. 530 cases made. Quality/Price rating is 88 points by Dean Tudor of Gothic Epicures.
5.Huff Estates Pinot Noir 2012 VQA Prince Edward County, $29.95 at winery: another wine with 14 months of French oak (40% new) showing off plenty of strawbs, cherries and other red fruit. Some forest floor in evidence (suggesting earth food), with finishing acidity integrating well with dark chocolate (even mocha) tones. 12.5% ABV, 200 cases made. Quality/Price rating is 89 points by Dean Tudor of Gothic Epicures.
6.Angry Orchard Cider, $14.95 for a six pack, +374520: from Ohio but from a variety of apples (including France and Italy plus America), it reflects American tastes of apple peels and sweetness. Good but soft fizz, appealing for summer. Quality/Price rating is 88 points by Dean Tudor of Gothic Epicures.
7.Radio Boka Tempranillo 2013 Valencia, +376145, $11: a ripe and voluptuous red from Spain, good MVC for tempranillo, and a great price. Fleshy and fruity, with medium consistency all the way in its body, dryness, colour, and aroma intensity. Vines are 12 – 25 years old, and the wine was partially aged in French oak for softness. Quality/Price rating is 88 points by Dean Tudor of Gothic Epicures.
8.Rockway Vineyards Patio 9 Vidal Spritz 2011 VQA Ontario, $12.95 Winery: a good wine for summer at 9% ABV, meant for the patio (obviously, by the name alone). Some tropical and orchard fruit, light and fizzy, grapey, finishes with citric tones. Twist top. Quality/Price rating is 88 points by Dean Tudor of Gothic Epicures.
9.Rockway Vineyards The Outcast Small Lot Syrah 2011 VQA 20 Mile Bench Niagara, $19.95 winery: Rockway's Small Lot series emphasizes few cases. Here, there are just 49 cases of this 13% ABV wine that has been augmented by adding 5% riesling for verve, in the tradition of adding viognier in the Rhone. Expect black fruit and berries, coffee and chocolate tones. It is a big plummy wine with barrel aging of 18 months. Quality/Price rating is 90 points by Dean Tudor of Gothic Epicures.
10.Rockway Vineyards Rose 2013 VQA 20 Mile Bench Niagara, $13.95 winery: this is like a small lot, with 88 cases and being all merlot. Previous editions were cabernet; this time it is merlot. Fresh and compelling, sip or food, 12% ABV, twist top. Quality/Price rating is 88 points by Dean Tudor of Gothic Epicures.
11.Rockway Vineyards Riesling Fergie Jenkins Series 2012 VQA 20 Mile Bench Niagara, $14.95 winery: A good basic MVC Ontario riesling with citric flavours, apples, some peach, and a bracing finish. Off-dry on the mid-palate. A portion of the proceeds go to the charity of Fergie Jenkins Foundation. 10% ABV, twist top. Quality/Price rating is 89 points by Dean Tudor of Gothic Epicures.
12.Rockway Vineyards Cabernet Franc Small Lot Block 11-140 2011 VQA 20 Mile Bench Niagara, $24.95 winery: expect black fruit, herbs and peppers, some vanilla in a typical franc mix. 13% ABV, 170 cases in total. Quality/Price rating is 90 points by Dean Tudor of Gothic Epicures.
13.Rockway Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon Small Lot Block 12-120 2011 VQA 20 Mile Bench Niagara, $22.95 winery: Plums, mocha, bright colours, a wide range of palette flavours on the palate. 99 cases, 13% ABV. Quality/Price rating is 89 points by Dean Tudor of Gothic Epicures.