Discover Ontario’s Most Interesting Wine Selections

The microclimate of Niagara with its mild winters and consistently warm summers makes for Ontario’s most fertile wine region. There are a variety of wineries experimenting with their grapes to offer distinct and intricate flavour profiles. Whether you’re a lover of red or white, there’s always something new and affordable to discover. Try a wine made by the Speck family for example like their iconic Baco Noir or mature Rieslings. Alternatively, Chateau Des Charmes from Niagara-on-the-lake offers bold wines built for ageing and they even use sustainable farming techniques, while Southbrook Vineyards also situated in this area is Canada’s first biodynamic winery. Read on below for some excellent choices that are sure to keep party guests talking.

The Barrel Fermented Chardonnay Estate Bottled VQA by Château Des Charmes, vintage 2015, presents white wine drinkers with buttered toast, ginger, cinnamon, pear and pineapple aromas on the nose. In the mouth, it is dry and medium-full bodied, with a balanced backbone of acidity that showcases the creamy, round texture of the fruit. Other notes include that of spice, toast, and a touch of white pepper. even gives it a 4 out of 5 stars – it’s made for those who aren’t shy about complexity when choosing their wine selections.

For lovers of deep reds, the Baco Noir Speck Family Reserve VQA by Henry of Pelham, vintage 2016, is packed with flavour at a price point worth noting. Wild aromas of bacon fat, savoury herbs, and spiced black plum support the robust flavours of dark, briary berry fruit, juicy cherry and red currant accented further by more herbs and spice. It's full bodied, well balanced, rich, and has a lengthy finish framed by toasty notes and that quintessential Baco acidity. This selection pairs beautifully with red and cured meats as well as hard cheeses.

Since life is busy enough, why not take the stress out of choosing the right wine, by shopping online. The best way to shop for wine online is through a reputable vendor who can help you choose the right bottle based on your food pairings, and even your personality. Southbrook Vineyards offers an exquisite 90-point bottle and it’s available for under $30 through retailers like Wine Online. Orange wine has a sour, nutty and robust taste derived from using a very natural oxidation process that doesn’t use as many additives. The Small Lot Natural Orange Wine by Southbrook is a 2016 vintage and it doesn’t even need yeast. It’s created from 100% handpicked Vidal grapes partly fermented in whole clusters along with their skins and stems.  On the nose, it is expressive with notes of wildflowers, tangerine, marmalade and bergamot. On the palate it is bone-dry, with herbal notes and a creamy mouthfeel, finishing long and well-balanced. Additionally, it has a low alcohol percentage so drinkers may enjoy it generously.

Next time you’re making a wine purchase, why not check out the options available locally from the beloved Niagara region, or even lesser known areas like Lake Erie’s North Shore, Pelee Island, or Prince Edward County. When it comes to creating fabulous, quality wines that pack that flavour punch, look no further than your own backyard for cool-climate selections that pair great with food thanks to their high acidity and sophistication on the palate.