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  • Writer's pictureToronto Vintners Club

Virtual New World Pinot Noir

Toronto Vintners Club held its inaugural virtual tasting of our own wines - New World Pinot Noirs - from the cellar on November 24, 2020. The event was initially limited to 24 tickets but sold out within one day and so another 12 spots were opened up. See our event notice for a list of the wines.

How did it work? Small 2-oz bottles were purchased and labelled to provide a set of 8 wines for each ticket buyer. The pours were almost 50% larger than our usual pours at in-person tastings; some folks shared the pour and others enjoyed their own set of bottles. Several of our directors drove around town to deliver the wines the day of the tasting.

Ticket buyers were invited to participate in this virtual event via Zoom and led by the extremely knowledgeable Tim Reed Manessy of The Living Vine. Tim has spoken to at some of our events in the past and he's entertaining as well as an expert sommelier!

The wines were poured blind from the little bottles into our wine glasses at home. We tasted each, one at a time, and then Tim gave his impressions before we went to the next wine. At the end of the evening, we revealed the pouring order and polled attendees on their favourite pinot noir of the evening. There were definitely regional and country differences which drove home that this grape is a product of its terroir.

Organizing the event was a huge amount of work from sourcing the bottles to get a good price, to labelling each bottle and cap (there were 288 bottles for our 36 participants), and then pouring the wines from the main bottles into these small vessels. Far more effort and time on our part than hosting a regular in-person tasting. However, we were buoyed by the fact that people enjoyed the evening and gave us positive feedback. So we may repeat such tastings until COVID-19 restrictions are lifted.

And the favourite wine of the evening from our small Zoom poll? The 2016 Hidden Bench Felseck Vineyard from Ontario!

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