Aimed at promoting Ontario viticulture and winemaking, the Lieutenant Governor’s Award for Excellence in Ontario Wines was established in 2011. This awards program promotes VQA Ontario wines (made from 100% Ontario-grown and processed grapes). In this unique competition, all wines compete against each other—with eight to 12 being chosen for their excellence—regardless of vintage or varietal

 Lieutenant Governor’s Award for Excellence


2018 winning wines

  • 13th Street Winery Premier Cuvée 2012
  • Trius Winery Showcase Ghost Creek Riesling 2016
  • Rockway Vineyards Small Lot Riesling Block 150–183 2015
  • Leaning Post Wines Chardonnay Clone 96 2016
  • Tawse Winery Chardonnay–Quarry Road Vineyard 2013
  • Konzelmann Estate Winery Late Harvest Gewürztraminer 2016
  • The Farm Winery Pinot Noir–Mason Vineyard 2015
  • Tawse Winery Cabernet Franc–David’s Block 2015
  • Creekside Estate Winery Broken Press Reserve Syrah 2015
  • The Foreign Affair Winery The Temptress 2015
  • Hernder Estate Wines Late Harvest Riesling 2012


2017 Winners List:

Magnotta NV Blanc de Blancs
A fine Chardonnay sparkler made in the traditional method. A complex wine with persistent tiny bubbles with a toasty, leesy nose; medium-bodied, dry, green apple and hazelnut flavours with a long, minerally, nutty finish.

Creekside 2015 Iconoclast Semillon/Sauvignon Blanc
Pale straw colour with a spicy nose of grapefruit, green pear and lanolin; medium-bodied with a creamy texture, crisply dry, fresh and clean with an engaging tartness and good intensity of flavour.

Trius 2015 Showcase Clean Slate Sauvignon Blanc Wild Ferment
A beautifully balanced wine with a bouquet of cut grass, orange blossom with a thread of minerality. Medium-bodied, dry, round on the palate with flavours of gooseberries and passionfruit.

Flat Rock 2014 Rusty Shed Chardonnay
Golden straw colour with a green tint, this Chardonnay offers an expressive nose of red apple and melon with a floral note and toasty oak; full and rich on the palate, it sustains well thanks to its vibrant acidity.

Henry of Pelham 2016 Riesling Estate
A fine example of an off-dry Riesling. Pale straw colour with a nose of honeyed grapefruit and lime; light to medium-bodied, with guava and citrus fruit flavours that linger long on the palate.

Trius Showcase Riesling Ghost Creek Vineyard 2015
Pale lemon colour with orchard fruit aromas of peach and apple with a floral grace note; good tension between sweet fruit and citrus acidity with a long, mouth-freshening finish.

Château des Charmes 2015 Gamay Noir ‘Droit’ St. David’s Bench Vineyard
Medium ruby colour with a herbal, earthy, cherry nose and just a hint of oak; medium-bodied with meatiness in mid-palate and a dry and savoury plum flavour. Classic Ontario Gamay.

Nomad at Hinterbrook Cabernet Franc 2013
Deep ruby in colour with a flattering nose of bell pepper, coffee beans and currants; medium-bodied, dry, plum and cherry flavours with balancing acidity and a long finish.

Kew Vineyards 2012 Heritage
Bordeaux varieties subjected to appassimento treatment before fermentation. Ruby colour with a bouquet of dried berries with notes of leather, rose petals and moist earth. Medium to full-bodied with blackcurrant and coffee flavours that finish with a tannic lift on the finish.

Trius 2014 Showcase Vidal Icewine
Deep golden-amber colour; botrytis and floral notes on the nose redolent with mango, honey and peach aromas; full-bodied, sweet and unctuous on the palate with dried fig, tropical fruit and honey flavours kept in check by balancing acidity.

Inniskillin Niagara Estate 2014 Sparkling Vidal Icewine
Deep golden colour with a nose of caramel and apricot jam; medium weight, honeyed peach flavour with an active mousse whose bubbles ameliorate the wine’s sweetness and give length to the finish.

Winners of the 2016 Lieutenant Governor’s Award

  • 2012 Creekside Estate Broken Press Syrah Reserve
  • 2013 Exultet Estates Chardonnay “The Blessed”
  • Henry of Pelham Cuvée Catharine Brut Rosé Sparkling Wine (NV)
  • 2014 Inniskillin Vidal Sparkling Icewine
  • 2012 Jackson-Triggs Grand Reserve Meritage
  • 2014 Jackson-Triggs Reserve Gewürztraminer Icewine
  • 2012 Peller Estates AP Signature Series Cabernet Franc
  • 2013 Southbrook Vineyards Estate Grown Small Lot Cabernet Franc
  • 2013 Tawse Riesling Icewine
  • 2013 Tawse Tintern Road Pinot Noir
  • 2014 Thirty Bench Small Lot Riesling Wood Post Vineyard
  • 2014 Trius Showcase Riesling Ghost Creek Vineyard

2015 Winners

~ Flat Rock Cellars - Riddled Sparking 2009

~ Flat Rock Cellars - Gravity Pinot Noir 2012

~ Hernder Estate Wines - Riesling 2010

~ Jackson-Triggs Riesling Icewine Reserve 2013

~ Peller Estates Sauvgnon Blanc Signature Series 2013

~ Peller Estate Gamay Noir Private Reserve, 2013

~ Thirty Bench - Small Lot Riesling “Wild Cask”, 2013

~ Creekside Estate Winery - Riesling 2014

~ Ravine Vineyards - Chardonnay 2013

~ Rockway Vineyards - small lot block 12-140 syrah 2012


2014 Winners


~ Peller Estates Private Reserve Vintage Gamay Noir, 2012
~ Trius Winery Showcase Ghost Creek Riesling, 2013
~ Trius Winery Trius Brut, NV
~ Tawse Winery Robyn's Block Chardonnay, 2011
~ Tawse Winery Carly's Block Riesling, 2012
~ Ravine Vineyard Reserve Chardonnay, 2010
~ Domaine Queylus Pinot Noir Traditional
~ Big Head Wines Syrah, 2012
~ Malivoire Wine Company Stouck Meritage, 2011
~ Inniskillin Discovery Series Botrytis Affected Viognier, 2013
~ Burning Kiln Winery Cab Franc 2012



Winners 2013

  • ‘The Blessed' Chardonnay 2011
    Exultet Estates

  • Henry of Pelham Speck Family Reserve 2008 Riesling
    Henry of Pelham

  • Cuvée Peter F. Huff 2007
    Huff Estates

  • Stratus Syrah 2010
    Stratus Vineyards

  • Merlot Reserve 2010 – Natural Fermentation
    Rosewood Estates Winery

  • 2010 Whimsy! ‘201' Cabernet Franc
    Southbrook Vineyards

  • Stouck Cabernet Sauvignon 2010
    Malivoire Wine Company

  • 2010 Vidal Icewine
    Konzelmann Estate Winery

  • Signature Series 2008 Riesling Icewine
    Peller Estates Winery

  • Carly's Block 2010 Riesling
    Tawse Winery

  • Stratus Chardonnay 2010
    Stratus Vineyards

  • Tawse 2010 Meritage
    Tawse Winery




  • Cave Spring Blanc de Blancs Brut NV
    Cave Spring Cellars
  • Ravine Vineyard Reserve Cabernet Franc Picone Vineyard 2010
    Ravine Vineyard
  • Stoney Ridge Estate Winery Excellence Chardonnay 2010
    Stoney Ridge Estate Winery
  • Riverview Cellars Salvatore's Reserve Cabernet Franc 2010
    Riverview Cellars Estate Winery
  • Flat Rock Cellars Sparkling Brut VQA Twenty Mile Bench 2007
    Flat Rock Cellars
  • Malivoire Courtney Gamay 2010
    Malivoire Wine Company Ltd.
  • Kacaba Vineyards Reserve Meritage 2007
    Kacaba Vineyards
  • Tawse Sketches Riesling 2010
    Tawse Winery
  • Konzelmann Estate Vidal Icewine 2010
    Konzelmann Estate Winery
  • Thirty Bench Riesling 2011
    ( Thirty Bench Wine Makers
  • Inniskillin Riesling Icewine 2008

  • Ontario's ' Lieutenant Governor 's Award for Excellence in Ontario Wines ' began in 2011, after consultation with industry stakeholders including: the Winery and Grower Alliance of Ontario, the Grape Growers of Ontario, VQA Ontario, the Wine Council of Ontario, and the Canadian Food & Wine Institute at Niagara College.
  • The design and delivery of this program was implemented in partnership with Canadian Food and Wine Institute at Niagara College.
  • This annual competition is open to all VQA wines in the province, produced by definition, with 100% Ontario-grown and Ontario-processed grapes.
  • The competition recognizes the best wines submitted regardless of vintage or variety. Instead of the typical ' best of per varietal ', this award celebrates the ' best of per competition '.
  • In 2012, a total of 258 wines were submitted from 73 wineries.
  • Adjudication was conducted by 14 of Ontario's leading wine experts and sommeliers.
  • The eleven winning wines derive from one of Ontario's most concentrated wine appellations.
  • Ontario's various terroir conditions support balanced, complex, and elegant wines.
  • Awards will be presented at a ceremony and wine-tasting reception at 5:30 p.m. on Thursday, July 26 , in the Lieutenant Governor 's Suite at Queen's Park. The awards ceremony and reception are open to members of the media and Ontario's Consular Corps.


Wineries of Canada

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