June 25, 2022

paul_leswan_5816.jpg Paul Pender, Tawse and Redstone wineries
Pictures shared by Tawse Vineyard
Tawse Vineyard

The phrases humble and accepting have been utilized in many tributes to winemaker Paul Pender, who died all of the sudden final week. A carpenter and cupboard maker who modified careers to winemaking after growing allergy symptoms to mud and solvents utilized in his former commerce, Pender began at Tawse Vineyard as an intern in 2005 and have become its winemaker the following yr.

A graduate of Niagara School’s wine program, Pender’s first transfer at Tawse was to introduce natural and biodynamic farming practices to the Vineland vineyard in a bid to embrace a extra all the way down to earth winemaking type. Any use of pesticides, fungicides or chemical fertilizers stopped. Sheep and chickens have been launched to the winery to regulate weeds and pests across the Cherry Avenue property, which was ploughed by horse.

A soil scientist was consulted to higher perceive what was occurring beneath the vines. Pender and his staff invested themselves in studying all they may to make the type of wines that vineyard proprietor Moray Tawse got down to make.

It’s unimaginable to say whether or not these holistic approaches would have paid off as efficiently with out Pender’s overflowing ardour for wine behind the scenes at Tawse and its sister vineyard, Redstone Vineyard, which was opened to the general public in 2015.

Along with his beloved canine Maeve by his facet, Pender nurtured an enthusiastic and pushed staff as Tawse’s manufacturing elevated, winery holdings expanded and the portfolio grew, including distilling and cider-making to the expansive choices.

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A 2,000-case operation when Pender arrived, Tawse now produces an estimated 30,000 instances of wine a yr. Alongside the way in which, Pender’s title would turn into director of viticulture and winemaking for Tawse and Redstone.

The chardonnays, pinot noirs, rieslings and cabernet francs produced at Tawse persistently win prime awards in home and worldwide competitions. Pender was named Winemaker of the Yr on the Ontario Wine Awards in 2011 and Tawse earned the title of Canadian Vineyard of the Yr on the Nationwide Wine Awards of Canada a number of instances, together with a string of victories in 2010, 2011 and 2012.

“The factor you wish to get as a winemaker is that stability,” he as soon as defined about the important thing to his winemaking type. “You’re by no means going to have the identical wine yearly, however you at all times need them to be balanced.”

When a bottle of Tawse property chardonnay from 2011 was hailed as one of many world’s finest chardonnays outdoors of Burgundy on the quilt of Decanter Journal, Pender accepted reward, however rapidly recommended that very same credit score applies to ones made by native colleagues akin to Thomas Bachelder and Malivoire’s Shiraz Mottiar.

Condolences posted by fellow winemakers, sommeliers and customers all convey how approachable and real the 54-year-old was. Whereas he was one among Canada’s most celebrated winemakers, he was devoid of ego, greeting everybody with a welcoming smile, at all times prepared to speak about wine or his different passions, akin to biking, meals or espresso roasting, a enterprise curiosity he pursued lately.

Pender made a few of Canada’s finest wines, which shall be loved for years to return, however his skilled legacy helps to place Canadian wine – wine, not icewine – on the map internationally with benchmark bottles which might be positive to encourage future generations of Canadian winemakers to shine.

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The latest launch of the Quarry Street chardonnay from Tawse is featured as one among this week’s advisable wines.

Beringer Knights Valley Cabernet Sauvignon 2018 (United States)

SCORE: 90 PRICE: $46.95

Primarily based in Napa, Beringer has owned vineyards in close by Knights Valley for the reason that Nineteen Sixties and launched its first cabernet sauvignon in 1974. Since then, this advanced and structured pink has turn into a staple, with an interesting mixture of ripe fruit, espresso and natural notes. Drink now to 2026. Obtainable in Ontario on the above value, $49.99 in British Columbia ($45.99 till March 5, 2022), numerous costs in Alberta, $49.99 in Saskatchewan, $44.99 in Manitoba and New Brunswick, $40.75 in Quebec (2019 classic), $60.20 in Prince Edward Island, $57.99 in Newfoundland.

El Enemigo El Mirador Single Winery Bonarda 2017 (Argentina)

SCORE: 91 PRICE: $21.95

That is 100-per-cent bonarda from El Mirador in Rivadavia in jap Mendoza. It’s a hotter local weather (in comparison with cooler pockets in Uco Valley or Pedernal) that fuels a lot of the majority manufacturing for Argentina’s wineries. Co-owner Alejandro Vigil, whose full-time occupation is head winemaker for Catena Zapata, sees nice potential in bonarda from this area. Made in a ripe and approachable type, this presents engaging cherry and berry notes with natural accents. Freshness and a smooth, silky texture add to its enchantment. Drink now to 2028. Obtainable in Ontario.

Inniskillin Montague Winery Chardonnay 2019 (Canada)

SCORE: 88 PRICE: $25.95

The Montague Winery in Niagara-on-the-Lake has been cultivated by Inniskillin since 1982. The unique 50-acre parcel expanded to incorporate a further 50 acres in 1991. Whereas the winery is planted with a number of grape varieties, it has loved super success with chardonnay and pinot noir over time. That is an old-school type of chardonnay, with a ripe and wealthy character formed by tropical fruit, peach and cream notes. Drink now to 2024. Obtainable in Ontario on the above value or direct by means of greatestatesniagara.com.

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Tawse Quarry Street Chardonnay 2019 (Canada)

SCORE: 92 PRICE: $36.95

This vivid and flavourful chardonnay has lengthy been the standout within the Tawse portfolio. Made with organically grown chardonnay from a web site situated proper above a limestone quarry, that is at all times a refreshing and wealthy white wine, with interesting citrus and inexperienced apple notes that carry by means of to a lingering end. Drink now to 2027. Obtainable in Ontario on the above value or direct by means of tawsewinery.ca, numerous costs in Alberta, $37.98 in Newfoundland.

Tyrrell’s Hunter Valley Shiraz 2019 (Australia)

SCORE: 91 PRICE: $26.95

A terrific expression of shiraz from family-owned Tyrrell’s vineyard within the Hunter Valley and the nice 2019 classic. A unique expression from the sturdy and concentrated shiraz type from wineries working in South Australia, this exhibits the ripe and targeted Hunter type, with vivid fruit, savoury complexity and a lovely end. Drink now to 2025. Obtainable in Ontario on the above value, $24.99 in Manitoba.

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