Another first comes to the Wine of the Month Club! Stratus Vineyards is located within Ontario, Canada in a place called Niagara-on-the-Lake. Their company was established in 2000 and practices sustainability in their innovative winery by the means of a state-of-the-art facility producing quality wines with the smallest environmental impact possible.
Canada is not the typical wine producing country, in part mainly due to grapes not being fond of snow during the growing season. But there are caveats. First, there is the Okanagan Valley, which is protected from the cold Eastern winds by the Cascades. Niagara has a similar guardian, the Lakes. They act as mediators with the temperature because large bodies of water cannot get as cold as land. They make it just warm enough to plant grapes. Many, like our selection, are stunning.
The name Stratus Winery refers to the upper atmosphere stratus clouds and was decided on as a nod to the many windows and natural light found at the winery. It also references the importance of the stratigraphy, the complex layers of soil allowing impressive quality grapes to grow. Groux wanted to make a wine with many layers of flavor. Since their sales manager helped in the decision, they decided to name a wine after him. That is only part of the story.
Riesling is picked earlier than most so it can survive a limited season. What it produces, however, is a rich, ripe apricot intensity with a long finish and low alcohol. It is an absolute delight with fresh fruit or coconut cookies.