Wine Trends 2017

As wine drinkers, the majority of us are pretty adamant about what we like to drink. As consumers, it’s easy to play it safe with California Cab Sauvs and Sauvignon Blancs from Down Under. You know what you’re getting. What we propose for this year is a bit of a tannic exploration so to speak.

Check out what’s trending for 2017 below!

Portuguese Whites

Portuguese reds have been on the radar for quite some time with wine lovers and connoisseurs, but we predict the following two white varietals will be on your LCBO list this year:

a) Arinto– Highly acidic with lemon notes. Perfect with a light salad, roast chicken or grilled white fish.
b) Encruzado– Voluptuous and complex with aromatic mineral notes and tropical fruit like green papaya, passion fruit, and melon. Paired great with a light, winter risotto.

So, why drink these? Both of these whites are Portugal’s answer to a Chardonnay, and who doesn’t love a good Chardonnay? When buying these varietals, be aware of the year of production; the older the vintage, the more nutty and lush the flavours will be.

Austrian Reds

Sandwiched between Barolos, Bordeauxs, and everything else in the Rhone Valley, Austria often gets lost in the shuffle when discussing European reds. These two varietals offer a delicious alternative to the norm:

a) Zweigelt– The most planted red wine grape in the country has aromas of violets, spicebox, punchy raspberry, and even cinnamon. Served best slightly chilled, this wine is paired deliciously with any type of grilled meat.
b) Blaufrankisch– Most of these wines are juicy and have slight hints of spice. Sometimes referred to as a Lemberger grape, Washington State are starting to produce quite a bit, which could lead to its trendiness increasing.

Don’t let the Germanic super-varietals like Riesling and Gewurztraminer deter you from trying something different. In Austria, the hills are certainly alive…with the taste of wine!

Bourbon Wine?

Typically when we think of aged wine we imagine massive barrels housing precious liquid until it is perfectly oaky…right? Beginning in 2016, and probably continuing into this year, bourbon-barrel wine is becoming popular. Barrels once containing whiskey or bourbon, are now being refurbished and used to age wine. This method of aging is primarily used to enhance aromas and flavour with charred undertones. Sustainability is always trendy, and here’s hoping this odd aging practice is one you get to try this year!

As always, please enjoy our Union Wines and all wine responsibly, and we hope you have a fantastic 2017.