The Niagara Wine Trail is celebrating its 12th anniversary with the annual Wine Trail Blossoms event on Mother’s Day weekend, Friday through Sunday.
Tickets include a tasting of three wines for each participant and a flower from each winery. Ticket holders also receive a commemorative wine glass and carafe flower vase from their starting winery.
The event will be held from noon to 5 p.m. Friday; 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday; and noon to 5 p.m. Sunday. Both participants on a couples ticket will receive their own commemorative glass and wine tastings, as well as one carafe vase.
Wine Trail Blossoms tickets are valid for all three days of the event, so patrons might want to spread their tastings over the weekend. Patrons are invited to visit different wineries each day in any order they choose. Note that tickets do not include transportation, and a valid photo identification with proof of age is required to participate in a wine tasting.
Presale tickets may be purchased online through Thursday. Tickets are $40 each or $70 per couple. For more information and to purchase tickets, visit www.NiagaraWineTrail.org.
Mike Palczynski, owner of Midnight Run Wine Cellars, 3301 Braley Road, Ransomville, said his winery also will offer a craft fair Saturday and Sunday during the event.
“We’ll have about 20 different local crafters here,” he said. “This is the third year we’ve done this, and people like it. We’ll also have live music.”
Palczynski said the craft booths will run the gamut from jewelry and decorated wine glasses to wood crafts and pastries.
Palczynski’s winery was one of 10 on the Niagara Wine Trail to earn medals at this spring’s 2014 Finger Lakes International Wine Competition, taking home a silver and a bronze.
Four local wineries captured gold medals, while Niagara Wine Trail members also earned 11 silver and 19 bronze medals at the late March competition held in Rochester.
The competition featured more than 3,700 wine entries from 20 countries, including entries from each of the 50 states, as well as from six Canadian provinces. The event included 75 judges from 16 countries.
Gold medals were awarded to: Honeymoon Trail Winery’s “Diamond,” a 2013 vintage, 100 percent Diamond variety; Leonard Oakes Estate Winery’s “Vidal Blanc Ice Wine,” a 2011 vintage, 100 percent Vidal Blanc variety; Schulze Vineyards & Winery’s “Vidal Blanc Ice Wine,” a 2012 vintage, 100 percent Vidal Blanc variety; and The Winery at Marjim Manor’s “Lady of the Manor,” a 2013 vintage, 100 percent Concord wine.
Lori Hoover, owner of Honeymoon Trail Winery at 4120 Ridge Road, Lockport, said her winery entered seven wines and took home six medals, including the top prize for its popular “Diamond” selection. It also earned three silver and two bronze medals.
This victory was particularly poignant for Hoover.
“My husband, Garry, passed away a few years ago, and he was the winemaker, and he entered the competitions, so it’s taken me a while to enter a competition again,” Hoover said. “But we have a new winemaker, Dave Lindsay, and he’s using Garry’s recipes. The Diamond that won is one of the first Dave made start to finish, so it was pretty exciting for us. This is a big competition.”
In addition, A Gust of Sun Winery & Vineyard received a silver and three bronze medals in the Finger Lakes competition; Black Willow Winery was awarded two bronze medals; Leonard Oakes Estate Winery also earned a silver and two bronzes; Niagara Landing Wine Cellars earned a silver and bronze; Schulze Vineyards & Winery also won three silver and two bronze medals; Schwenk Wine Cellars, the Trail’s newest member, received a bronze medal; Marjim Manor also earned three bronze medals; and Vizcarra Vineyards at Becker Farms received a silver and two bronze awards.