Thursday, June 19, 2008

Niagara wine tour, June 2008

On to more happier things. I just finished planning out a wine route for a trip up to Niagara again with some friends. I have a list of 10 wineries to visit, and I've booked tours at 2 of them. Should be extremely interesting and educating.

We will be visiting:

Thirty Bench Wines
Angels Gate Winery
Fielding Estate Winery
HIdden Bench Vineyards & Winery Inc.
Malivoire Wine Co, Ltd.
Tawse Winery
Featherstone Estate Winery
Cave Spring Cellars
Thirteenth Street Wine Company Corporation
Lailey Vineyards

We have tours at Thirty Bench and Lailey. I've had wines from both estates, and I've enjoyed them both. Really exceptional character to these wines.

With the exception of Lailey, all the wineries are located in Niagara West, or the Beamsville Bench appellation. I really believe that this area produces the best wine in Ontario, perhaps even in Canada. Really hoping to get out into the vineyards and taste their entire lineups. Hopefully I'll be able to get some dialogue going, and get a feel about the philosophy behind each winery. Please check back for my thoughts when we get back!


  1. Great list of wineries to visit! Don't be put off by the rude staff at Lailey; those are some awesome reds and late harvest Riesling.

    Hidden Bench is the best winery in Niagara.

  2. Unfortunately we didn't have time to visit Thirteenth Street.

    I found Lailey's staff to be friendly, knowledgable, and very honest about their wines, something that was lacking in other places!

    My friends and I agreed that Thirty Bench stood out the most this time. I liked Hidden Bench but we weren't able to taste their red wines - I don't want to judge a winery where we were only able to taste half its lineup.

  3. To taste the reds you need to come with me, because I'm a member and then you get to taste all the reds :) They don't have many around at the moment; they've only been open a year and sold out of a lot.

    The 2006 Nuit Blanche is AMAZING; that comes out in the fall, be sure to come back!

    Lailey's people were asses to me, frankly, they couldn't be bothered with us until we bought several bottles and then came to life all of a sudden.

  4. That sounds like a great idea!

    Wow, that's too bad at Lailey. There's one lady there that my friends refer to as the Ice Lady, but otherwise, they're quite genuine. Bad day maybe?