of my favouite stops on my recent Prince Edward County wine tour was at
Karlo Estates winery. I had been chatting with the amazingly talented Sherry Martin on
Twitter and was excited to meet her, but I had also heard nothing but
rave reviews for their port and was eager to try that. I definitely
wasn’t disappointed.
Estates has a gorgeous location and the creek that runs out behind is
just stunning. Richard Karlo, the winemaker, has built an incredible
bridge out there and the members of our wine tour made sure to pose for
photos on top of it before our tasting.
were a large group but they had a fantastic set-up for us in their
lovely loft area, with lots of interesting food pairings to go with each
tasting. I was surprised by many of the selections, as it seemed to go
against what I typically choose in terms of wine. The cab franc, which I
had been excited to try, didn’t suit my tastes (Shawn loved it), but
the CHOA Chardonnay lit up my tastebuds. I am not a chard drinker in
general, so this was impressive for me.
the real surprise for me was the port. Granted, I had heard a lot of
hype from friends on Twitter who are big fans, but I still wasn’t sure
what I would think of it. Port can be hit or miss – too sweet, too
cloying, too much overall, so it can go either way. From the moment the Van Alstine port hit my mouth, though, I was in love.  It was a flavour explosion – hitting all the right notes and not overwhelming with the sweetness. Love.
Van Alstine White Port was sweeter, but I still really enjoyed it. And white port in and
of itself is so rare that I was fascinated. I was happy to have been
able to sample both and to get to check out the differences.
line to purchase, I had decided on a bottle of CHOA and a bottle of
white port. The red was spectacular, but I was mindful of my wallet
after two days in wine country and thinking that the white port was so
unique and interesting that it would be a shame to leave without it.
Discussing my choices with a man from our group, he shook his head and
said, ‘I saw your face when you tried that red port – you have to get
that one.’ He reminded me of what one of our wine tour guides had told
us earlier in the day – ‘you always regret the wine you leave behind.’
So true. Which is how I ended up with a bottle of both the red and the white port and I don’t regret a penny.  I’m definitely looking forward to our next trip to Karlo Estates.