Icewine - the nectar of winter. Or, should we say, the nectar of the gods? What else could you possibly call a drink that goes for upwards of $250,000 per 350 ml (11.8 oz)? That's the price you'd have to pay for an ultra-rare bottle of Royal DeMaria, 2000 Chardonnay icewine. Most icewines are priced well below that figure, but they still garner higher prices than traditional wines. Why? The grapes used to make the sweet dessert wine aren't pressed until they are frozen. As such, 1/5th the amount of grape juice is pressed from each frozen grape compared to the non-frozen variety. For vintners, a general rule of thumb is that each frozen grape will yield just one drop of icewine. The flavor of the finished product is divine. Depending on the varietal, the nose can offer notes of peach, pear, honey, dried apricot, and green apple. In the glass, the flavor is a sumptuous combination of apricot, peach, mango, melon, and other sweet fruits. This fabulous black tea blend uses real icewine to deliver all that fruity sweetness in a rich, round cuppa.Who invented icewine? No one really knows, but the Latin poet Marcus Valerius Martialis (AD 40-102) wrote that grapes should be left on the vine until they were stiff with frost. Evidently, he preferred the rich, sweet wines produced after November.
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