VINELAND – Tawse in Vineland has been named Canada’s 2011 Winery of the Year.
It’s the second year in a row the award-winning vintner has received the honour at the prestigious Canadian Wine Awards, where Tawse racked up an impressive 24 medals in the competition, including a record-setting six gold medals.
“We’re very excited to be named Canada’s Winery of the Year again in 2011 – for us it’s like winning the ‘best picture’ Oscar two years in a row,” said Moray Tawse, a Toronto financier and winery owner.
“Our philosophy is that great wine begins in the vineyard and I’m indebted to our winemaker Paul Pender, and his team, who are as involved in viticulture as they are in making wine.”
The Canadian Wine Awards have been held annually since 2000 by Wine Access Magazine, and involve stringent, international-calibre competition with blind tasting by wine experts.
Tawse Winery is located on the bench of the Niagara Escarpment along Ontario’s wine route.
A certified organic and biodynamic wine producer, Tawse doesn’t use pesticides, fungicides or chemical fertilizers.
Horse-drawn equipment is used and farm animals roam the Tawse vineyards, eating weeds and excess vine foliage as well as providing natural fertilizer.
Tawse says part of the winery’s secret of success also involves the unique clay, limestone and shale soil of the escarpment bench.
“The soil here is complex and varies from vineyard to vineyard. It allows for wines of great depth, richness and character,” said Tawse.
The six gold medals won by Tawse are for the 2009 Estate Chardonnay, 2009 Sketches of Niagara Riesling, 2010 Riesling, 2009 Robyn’s Block Chardonnay, 2009 Sketches of Niagara Chardonnay and 2009 Members Select Chardonnay.