Irish wine…really? When we think of Ireland, wine does not readily come to mind. The obvious thought would turn to Guinness or Irish whiskey or maybe even cider. However, Irish strawberry wine, or wine in any other form… never.
One pioneering winery has bucked this fact and created amazing wines with a fruit that grows particularly well in the “land of a thousand welcomes”, the strawberry. Strawberries are the fruit that signals the start of summer and everything else that this entails. Who wouldn’t want summer to last all year long?
The strawberry season is now well behind us (in the northern hemisphere anyway). Wicklow Way Wines owned by Brett Stephenson and Pamela Walsh has been able to capture the essence of this wonderful fruit in an even more interesting version, for us to enjoy year round.
The wine produced is made from strawberries grown in the “garden of Ireland” in the areas around Wicklow Way, south of Dublin. Their brand called “Móinéir” is the Gaelic word for ‘meadows’ where most of the fruit is picked. A very suitable name for it!
Technically speaking, strawberry wine is not an easy fruit wine to make. It is very delicate and tends to oxidize very easily. Very great care of the fruit is needed to retain its beautiful aroma and flavours. Having personally tasted their wines, I can attest that they have done a brilliant job of it.
I am eagerly awaiting their other releases of elderflower wine and an elderberry/blackberry blend. They should hopefully be released soon.
The winery has gained very quick acceptance for its wines and I’m glad to see fruit wine gaining a foothold in Ireland. I am sure that others will follow through and start producing more fruit wines made with what grows in this beautiful country.
Congrats to Wicklow Way Wines! Very soon, I’am sure that through the efforts of fearless pioneering wine entrepreneurs like them, Ireland will be known not only for its beer and whiskey, but also for its fine fruit wines!