Colia Estate Wines is the fourth largest winery in Ontario owning 240 acres of premium vinifera vineyards in the Viticultural Area called Lake Erie North Shore. Colio labels include ultra-premium VQA wines called Colio Estate Vinyards and premium VQA wines called Harrow Estates, plus distinctive international varietals called Crosswinds.
Cilento's winery is a state-of-the-art 36.000 square foot California mission style building located in Woodbridge, Ontario, just north of Toronto. Cilento is a primarily VQA Winery with vineyards located in the Niagara region of Ontario. Since its inception in 1995 Cilento has produced many wines that have been awarded Gold Medals in international wine competitions.
Château des Charmes was founded in 1978 by Paul Michel Bosc, a fifth generation French wine grower. The Bosc family owns 300 acres of vineyards and has the largest winery-owned vineyard holdings in the Niagara Peninsula. The Bosc family produces their award winning wines in a magnificiently designed château that is the jewel of the Niagara countryside.
Wines produced at Cave Spring Cellars are selected primarily from the benchlands of the Niagara Escarpment. Great attention is paid during wine making to allow the terroir of this special growing area to be expressed. Mineral rich soils, gentle elevation and moderating breezes from Lake Ontario create a unique growing area. The Cave Spring Vineyard, source of their Estate Bottled wines, is located on one of the finest escarpment slopes, the Beamsville Bench.
Located in the heart of the wine country in Niagara-on-the-Lake, Hillebrand Estates Winery is Canada's largest producer of VQA wines (VQA = Vintners Quality Alliance, Ontario's appellation system). This award winning winery, founded in 1982, produces a range of wines from classic varietals to unique wine styles.
Inniskillin Wines was co-founded by pioneers Donald Ziraldo and Karl Kaiser. Inniskillin was founded upon and dedicated to the principle of producing the finest wines from premium grapes grown in the Niagara Peninsula. Their Icewines have received some of the world's most prestigious awards including the Grand Prix d'Honneur.
We visite Stonechurch for reasons of trying to save money. They had a free trail around their vineyards so you can get right out there and see the grapes. They also offered fairly inexpensive tastings. 3 wine tastings for $2.00 and 1 Ice Wine tasting for $2.00. The bartenders were very helpful and had great suggestions.
This was a great experience, bought a bottle of wine and two of their glasses. The glasses made a great gift for remembering the day.
Fort George, just a short walk from downtown, was an awesome step back into history. The fort, all but one building, redone has been set up for an easy walk around with many demostrations to view. Everything from Cannon's shooting, musket shooting, flag raising, etc. Re-enactments help you really appreciate the experience. Only cost $10 a person to enter, its well worth it, especially for the history buffs.
Lately it seems to take an Aussie to get me to go down to Niagara Falls area. This latest time 2nd April 2006, I was with a friend from Australia who got me included on a bus tour with a post-conference on Composting, and Recycling group. It was a totally International group, with 2 Aussies, some Romanians, Italians, from Indonesia, Malaysia, Taiwan, and several other countries. We just happened to stop at Inniskillen, and were fortunate to meet one of the co-founders of the winery, and a gentleman who has done a lot in promoting the Niagara Region's wines, Donald J.P. Ziraldo.
While having been there before, I had never had an actual guided tour through the property, and a wine tasting there. It was well worth the return visit, and this time we did purchase some wines.
Ok, I didn't stay here, but I can surely imagine how a stay here might be enjoyed! As we parked down the street and walked around, this was the sight that most drew our attention. Partly because of the victorian style architecture but mostly for the striking visuals that the many and prolific flowers afforded. Simply Beautiful!
Later, as we strolled past we noticed the detail of the building and a cozy, well-appointed restaurant. I will not create a hotel tip for this place as I feel they should be created only by places that you can provide some actual experience and knowledge, but if you can afford to stay here, I think your stay may be most enjoyable! Let me know, please! ;-)
Honestly, everywhere you walk in this scenic town, you see beautiful flowers and neat shops and some of the Best Aromas drifting from the various eateries. However, though we walked into several shops specifically to ask about the trees with the unusual blossums, no one could tell us! And surprisingly, nearly all of the shop keepers said that many people had stopped to ask the same question and yet no one knew? Bring in the Chamber of Commerce! Bring in the horticulturists! Bring in the Mayor! Bring in SomeOne Who Knows!!!
Do You Know? I would still like to know the name of this unusual tree... Someone Help!
The main road leading away from Niagara-on-the-Lake heading towards Niagara Falls is the Niagara River Parkway. Whether you plan on visiting the Falls, or are just looking for more pretty scenery, be sure to put this on your itinerary. The Parkway isn’t very long, and you can make it to the Falls in about 20 minutes, but it’s not the destination, it’s the journey, right?
The Parkway weaves and winds, paralleling the mighty Niagara River. Through various breaks in the trees and lookout spots where you can park your car, you can view the river, and across to New York State. Along the way you’ll see Brock’s Monument and historic Fort George, as well as many large homes and vineyards, all shaded under centuries old trees.
It’s a beautiful drive.
Due to its location nestled beside the Niagara Escarpment, the entire Niagara Region is a fantastic place for growing all types of plants. The area is well known for its orchards and vineyards, and all Ontarians look forward to late summer, when the harvest of peaches, nectarines and many other fruits & vegetables comes in.
Niagara-on-the-Lake is no exception. All throughout the village, you will find beautiful flowerbeds, hanging plants, and beautiful parks. Of course, the plants are certainly well cared for, being in such a picturesque tourist spot, but the moderate, protected climate provides plants a longer growing season, and also allows the growing of certain plants typically only seen in lower lattitudes.
Be sure to take some time to enjoy the greenery, and prolific colours.
With more than 50 Wineries in the Niagara area, there's no shortage of tours available to suit your fancy. Your options runs from the 'do it yourself' variety, to fully escorted, limo driven weekend events, and everything in between. Or, if your somewhat athletic, how about a bicycle tour? This would be a great way to see the beautiful Niagara Escarpment landscape from the ground up, and enjoy a glass or 2 along the way.
Take a romantic carriage tour around town for some great history and fun. The carriage driver will give you all kinds of good historic information about the town of Niagara on the Lake while taking you around to see the sights. There are a few companies that are as follows.
Niagara-on-the-Lake L0S 1J0
905-468-4943, Fax: 905-468-8585
Queens Royal Tours Inc.
Niagara-on-the-Lake, ON, L0S 1J0
905-468-0333, Fax: 905-468-9543
So check them out because this is a fun way to learn about the town that you are in and it's history.