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Hillier Creek Estates
by
Kathy Sullivan

Hillier Creek EstatesSummary: Hillier Creek Estates produces only estate wines. The tasting room, winery and barrel room are located in a mid-19th century barn. Vinifera wines are produced from the 25 acre vineyard. Enjoy a glass of wine on the delightful patio.

From the parking area, visitors traverse a brick paved sidewalk at the side of a large, colorful flower garden. The path leads to the facility that is located in an 1850 barn. Inside, we met Ben Simmon, winemaker. Ben explained that shipbuilders originally built the barn during the winter when they could not work on ships. After the barn was purchased for Hillier Creek, it was stripped down to its frame. It was determined that the trees used to build the barn in 1850 were 300 years old.

Hillier Creek EstatesVineyards

Kemp and Amber Stewart purchased the Hillier Creek Estates property in 2000 and vineyards were planted between 2002 and 2004. The 25 acres of vineyards include Riesling, Gamay, Vidal, Chardonnay and Pinot Noir. The vines are deep rooted into a mixture of clay and limestone. This Hillier clay loam has a high amount of calcium. In the fall after harvest the vines are covered with soil and then uncovered in early spring. This soil covering protects the vines from the severe cold that can reach as low as -35ºC. A farm tractor has been adapted to help work with the mounding of soil over the vines. All wines produced at Hillier Creek Estates are made from grapes growing on the property's onsite vineyards.

Hillier Creek EstatesTasting Room

The tasting room counter is of dark wood. Walls are sided with wood and old timbers are left exposed adding additional ambiance to the room. Across from the tasting counter, a large window allows wine tasters the opportunity to view the barrel room that is located on a lower level. Another window near the ceiling provides a view of the ceiling of the barn over a large event space.

Hillier Creek EstatesPatio

A large patio has been added just outside the tasting room. Patio furniture adds a touch of class to the experience of enjoying a glass of wine. Near the patio a large wood fired oven has been constructed.

The winery opened to the public in Spring 2010. Current production is 3,000 cases of wine. Several wines were tasted.

Hillier Creek EstatesWhite Wines

Barrel Aged Chardonnay 2008 was aged six months in oak barrels including French, American and Prince Edward County oak. The result was a light yellow wine with notes of apple and pear. The finish had fruit yielding to caramel and vanilla. Estate Chardonnay 2008 was a light straw color. The taste was dry, smooth and crisp. The finish was crisp with fruit notes. This is a good summer afternoon wine. The suggested pairing was with creamy pasta. Estate Riesling 2009 was a very light straw color. The aroma had citrus notes specifically lemon and lime. The taste was slightly sweet and fruity. Suggested pairings were with fruit and mild cheese.

Rosé

Estate Rosé 2009 was orange with pink hues. The aroma was of red berry fruit while the taste had strawberry notes with a hint of grapefruit. The finish was crisp and fruity.

Red Wines

Gamay 2007 was red. The aroma had pepper and spice notes. Cherry notes with a hint of tartness were on the taste. The fruit finish yielded to pepper. Pinot Noir 2007 was a bright red with red hues. The aroma was earthy and the taste was smooth with dark fruit. The finish had tannins and was chewy. Suggested pairings included beef or lamb.

Hillier Creek EstatesPrivate events can be scheduled at the indoor event facility. The area is a few steps up from the tasting room. The room has kept its rustic charm and the rent seems to be very reasonable although it should be noted that renters need to supply their own caterer.

Enjoy a visit to Hillier Creek Vineyards where you can take a picnic lunch and discover Hillier Creek Estate wines.

Hillier Creek Estates
46 Stapleton Road
Hillier, ON K0K 2J0

GPS: N43º 58.290’ W77º 27.735’

 


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