06/17/2013 02:58 EDT | Updated 08/17/2013 05:12 EDT

1,100 wines from across country compete in National Wine Awards of Canada

NIAGARA-ON-THE-LAKE, Ont. - More than 1,000 wines from across the country will be uncorked this week as judges rate them in the first National Wine Awards of Canada.

The judging takes place from Monday to Friday in the heart of Ontario's wine country — Niagara-on-the-Lake — and is being hosted by the online wine site WineAlign.

Seventeen wine experts, including critics, writers, educators and judges, from six provinces are on tap to blind taste and judge the wines from British Columbia, Alberta, Ontario, Quebec and Nova Scotia.

They are being overseen by co-head judges and WineAlign principal critics, Anthony Gismondi of Vancouver (WineAlign, Vancouver Sun) and David Lawrason of Toronto (WineAlign, Toronto Life, Ottawa Magazine).

"The competition presents an annual snapshot of the state of Canadian wine," Gismondi said Monday in a release. "The results are an invaluable guide for consumers and producers when it comes to finding out who is making the best wine in the country."

Medal winners will be notified within a few weeks of the awards. The rose results will be released in August ahead of the announcement in early September of all medals and the Canadian Winery of the Year.

For more information and to see judges' reactions, visit or follow on Twitter at the #NWAC13 hashtag.