Ice Wine isn’t what Glenora Wine Cellars is known for, and it certainly doesn’t come close to its other wines in terms of production numbers.
However, it’s something which owner Gene Pierce still likes partake in every year, weather permitting.
These above average temperatures are pushing the season back by a month or even more.
“We’re watching the temperature and the long range temperature very closely,” says Pierce.
“The period we’re seeing right now is the week of January 17-18, we’re going to see some temperatures get down in the mid-teens and stay there for two or three days. So if the long range forecast holds true that’s when the ice wines will be harvested.”
To make Ice Wine, grapes must experience 24-36 hours of temperatures at or around 17 degrees. After being picked, those grapes must be pressed before they get colder or thaw, to ensure the process goes as planned.
A lot of work for a wine which for which its yield is outnumbered by its Riesling counterparts by thousands of gallons. In a year, Pierce says Glenora may harvest 100-140 gallons of Ice Wine.
While the winery harvests 12,000-14,000 gallons of Riesling.
“It’s interesting and actually it’s a lot of fun,” says Pierce.
“There is some risk, financial risk and so forth, but to be able to go out and do something that’s a little bit unique, its fun.”