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Ontario Wine Wednesday: The Foreign Affair Winery

From Pelee Island to Niagara to Prince Edward County, Southern Ontario’s wine-producing pockets are home to a bounty of vintners that craft high-quality Pinot Noirs, Rieslings, Icewines and much, much more. Every Wednesday throughout the summer, Where Toronto profiles an Ontario winery whose bottles are worth seeking out, and whose vineyards are definitely worthy of a day trip from the big city.

Ontario Wine Foreign Affair Corks

This week’s Ontario winery:

THE FOREIGN AFFAIR WINERY
Founded in 2008
Proprietors: Len and Marisa Crispino

How many varieties of wine do you produce?
Eight varieties and 14 different wines crafted in the Italian Amarone style using the appassimento method.

What are your three most popular wines?
Cabernet Franc, a 100 per cent appassimento reminiscent of the grand Amarones; “The Conspiracy” Cabernet Sauvignon, the first Canadian ripasso-style wine; and “Temptress,” a Bordeaux blend.

Foreign Affair Winery's Tuscan-style tasting room

Foreign Affair Winery’s Tuscan-style tasting room

Does the winery offer tours?
Tours are conducted upon request and appointment. Drop-in is fine for groups of fewer than five people, unless they’re seeking a particular type of tour. It’s best to call ahead.

Is there a retail shop on site?
Yes, a beautiful Italian-style tasting area reminiscent of Tuscan landscape.

What is one piece of advice you’d offer someone wishing to have a better experience with wine?
The best advice when coming to our winery is to leave previous experiences and wine biases at the door. Our wines are big in flavour and depth and complexity. That is what we specialize in.

• The Foreign Affair Winery, 4890 Victoria Ave. N., Vineland Station, 905-562-9898 or 1-877-262-7661
foreignaffairwinery.com; Facebook page; Twitter @wineaffair

  • grichens

    I returned home to the Cayman Islands in April with several bottles of Foreign Affair’s higher-end wines in tow..

    Succinctly, I would describe their 2007 Cabernet Franc and their 2010 Gran Q (Cab Sauv, Cab Franc, Merlot blend) as “all out” efforts. These are not priced within normal expectations for Ontario wines. However they show very well against similarly priced and more expensive old world wines.

    A group of us compared the Grand Q with a bottle of 2008 Sassicaia at a local restaurant. The Grand Q clearly outdid the Sassicaia in terms of concentration, complexity and smoothness (notwithstanding the Q’s 16.9% ABV compared to the Sassicaia’s 13.5). The Sassicaia seemed slightly more balanced – meaning the acids will a little more pronounced..

    I will not hesitate to recommend the F/A wines.