So far, “this is a normal year” says owner and winemaker Ted Kane about the 2017 vintage. Ted is always keeping an eye on how the fruit is developing. He pays particular attention to the date of “veraison”, which is when the ripening grapes start to change colour and soften. Red grape varieties start to darken into their colours and white varieties turn to various shades of yellow, light green, or pink depending on the variety. In River Stone’s vineyard, that usually occurs between August 8th and 12th. Visitors can always ask about anything going on in the vineyard from staff when visiting the wine shop if interested. From the moment you arrive, River Stone’s wine shop is an immersive experience because grape vines surround you at every turn.
If you have visited River Stone’s wine shop previously, be prepared for a new experience. Over the spring, Ted constructed a beautiful new tasting bar that curves elegantly from one end of the shop to the other. “I love woodworking,” explains Ted, who built it from scratch. It replaces the much smaller bar so that now more people can now enjoy tasting the wines. Starting with a crisp Sauvignon Blanc, the portfolio moves through a small plethora of wines including Pinot Gris, Gewürztraminer, Malbec Rosé, Merlot, and Cabernet Franc. There are blends in the mix not be missed including Splash (Pinot Gris, Viognier, and Gewürztraminer), Stones Throw and the iconic Corner Stone (both Bordeaux–style blends).
The talk of the shop is the new Sparkling White Merlot, a beautifully fruity sparkling wine with all of the same great flavours that make Merlot a popular grape. Red wine lovers and sparkling lovers alike will both appreciate its flavours and finesse. With its distinctive red fruit flavours, it opens up a whole new world of food pairing possibilities!