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Ice wine harvest endangered!

Up to now I’ve been somewhat agnostic on the causes of global warming, but this news has decided the issue for me. Something must be done! Apparently the late frost up north this year has imperiled the frozen grape harvest that produces ice wines.

Now, if you’re not familiar with these lovely offerings, you can read all about them here. Or you can just rely on my unscientific summary, which is as follows: certain grapes are allowed to freeze on the vine, then are harvested and made into sweet wines. They’re pricey, but they come in small bottles and you’re supposed to sip rather than swill them, so the occasional splurge (dinner for the boss, entertaining George Clooney, intentionally pissing off your mother-in-law with your spendthrift ways) is okay. They can be drunk with dinner or dessert, but I like them paired with cheeses. Think special appetizers or a cheese course between the meal and the dessert. Or, if you’re entertaining non-sweet eaters, this is the perfect thing to serve in place of dessert.

Pairing ice wine with food can be tricky, but the good folks at Inniskillin Winery have gone to great trouble to lay it all out for you. If you’ve never tried it, don’t be put off by the sweetness of the wine — it’s the perfect counterbalance to cheeses, from mild to stinky. Trust me, you’ll never ruin a perfectly good gorgonzola with a glass of Cabernet again.

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