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Berry Good! 

Cocktails Anyone?
by Sheila Swerling-Puritt

Necessity was the mother of Ontario's Southbrook Vineyard's Framboise when the very wet spring and summer weather in 1992 kept customers away from Southbrook founder and proprietor Bill Redelmeier's "pick your own" raspberry business. What to do with all those unpicked berries – two to three tons of them by the end of the season! Bill stored the fruit in freezers and decided to ferment them, and stopped the fermentation by adding certified Canadian grain spirit to the must, retaining loads of fresh raspberry aromas and flavours and balanced residual sugar. The resulting wine became a Southbrook multi-award-winning signature product.

Under Redelmeier's direction, Southbrook branched out into other fruit-based sweet wines, benefiting from a growing supply that grew to include blueberries and blackcurrants.

The Canadian Blueberry has gentler aromas and flavours than Southbrook's other fruit wines but carries enough power to remind you of fresh blueberry pie. The Canadian Cassis is at the intense end of the spectrum with unexpected spicy orange peel and earthy notes.

The balancing acidity in all Southbrook fruit wines means that they'll work with creamy or chocolate desserts as well as on their own and in mixed drinks. Just in case you don't finish the bottle of fruit wine, it will last longer if it is refrigerated and can hold for two to three weeks depending on how full it is.

 
Kir Imperiale

  • 1 oz. chilled Southbrook Canadian Framboise
  • 5 oz. sparkling wine

Pour Framboise into the bottom of the flute first then slowly pour the sparkling wine into the flute. For a festive touch, drop a few frozen raspberries into the flute.

 
Southbrook Bella

Marinate slices of peach in the Canadian Framboise. Place in the bottom of a flute and fill it with sparkling wine.

 
Canadian Blueberry Margarita

  • ½ cup Blueberry wine
  • 2 oz. Tequila
  • 1 oz. Triple sec
  • 1 oz. lime juice
  • 1 cup ice

Place all the ingredients in a blender, add ice cubes one at a time and pour the slushy ingredients into a margarita glass.

 
Summer in a Glass

  1. Fill highball glass with ice.
  2. Add 2 oz. Southbrook Canadian Cassis
  3. Fill glass with lemonade.

By the way, if you are traveling out to Niagara, a stop at Southbrook's new winery is a definite must. Not only is it architecturally functional but the building is an absolute beauty! And you can load up on lots of edible gifts as well as great wine for sale in their gift shop.

 

For more information, you can contact Sheila at spuritt@hotmail.com.

 

 

 

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