Henry of Pelham Cuvée Catharine 2012 Estate Blanc de Blanc – Review

This is “POP or FLOP”, where we taste test sparkling wines so you don’t have to! This week we’re sipping Henry of Pelham’s Cuvée Catharine 2012 Estate Blanc de Blanc – which just won platinum at the National Wine Awards of Canada! So, without further ado… is this a bottle of bubbles you should POP? 💁 Or is it a FLOP? 🙅 Let’s see…

Henry of Pelham is one of the oldest wineries in the Niagara region, producing their first vintage in the 1980’s! At the time there were very few wineries producing premium quality wines made from 100% Ontario grown grapes, so the term “pioneers” certainly applies here. Their portfolio of sparkling wines is named after Catharine Smith, the widow of Henry of Pelham and the matriarch of the family. They produce a non-vintage Brut and Brut Rosé, along with this special vintage bottling. The 2012 Estate Blanc de Blanc is made from 100% estate grown and hand picked Chardonnay, and produced in the traditional method with 60 months on lees before disgorgement. So how did this platinum award winning wine fare? Read on to find out!


  • Pale straw colour, with intense beads of fine bubbles.


  • Fresh honey-bread, lemon zest, custard, yellow apple, pear, with a hint of nuttiness and distinct minerality.


  • Medium bodied, dry, with a crisp acidity. Flavours of lemon, apple, apricot, almond, brioche, and lingering citrus finish. Complex and beautifully balanced with a creaminess and roundness as a result of the extended lees aging.

Food Pairing

  • The crisp acidity and citrus notes in this wine make it a perfect match for seafood. Try it with some freshly shucked oysters with lemon and a mignonette sauce, or caviar if you wanna get real fancy!

The Verdict?

  • It’s … a POP! We’re all about the Blanc de Blanc these days – and clearly we’re not alone! All 3 platinum Sparkling Wine winners at the National Wine Awards of Canada were 100% Chardonnay based. The Henry of Pelham Cuvée Catharine 2012 Estate Blanc de Blanc is a shining example of why Ontario does Chardonnay – especially of the sparkling variety – so incredibly well!

Henry of Pelham Cuvée Catharine 2012 Estate Blanc de Blanc


About the Author



Jeff is WSET Level 3 Certified, and has a fascination with fizz so fierce that he even wrote a song about it! (Search "OMG Classic - Champagne" on iTunes *wink*!)