Congratulations to all the winners at this year’s Ontario Wine Awards!
After a three-year hiatus due to COVID, the Ontario Wine Awards (presented by Swiftpost) was back with a vengeance this year. Competition founder Tony Aspler said: ‘Seventy-four wineries from Niagara, Prince Edward County and South West Ontario entered 600 wines in the competition.’The judging by twelve panels took place at George Brown College in Toronto on Saturday, May 7th.The results were released at the awards ceremony, held at Niagara College where the medals for best in category were presented to the winemakers. The quality of winemaking was exceptional: Thirty wines received GOLD medals; 39 SILVER and 30 BRONZE.
A special award was inaugurated this year to honour the memory of a much-loved winemaker who died tragically in February: The Paul Pender Memorial ‘Rising Star’ Award.The winner was Alec Baines. He received a trophy of a mounted Blundstone boot (Paul favoured footwear) and a citation that reads: ‘The inaugural Paul Pender Memorial Award celebrates the achievements and legacy of an outstanding leader in the Canadian wine industry. The recipient of this ‘Rising Star’ award – selected by a committee of their peers – has demonstrated the qualities that made Paul Pender a winemaker’s winemaker – talent, selfless generosity, mentorship and innovation.’