as you know, friday the boy and i somehow miraculously got out of work so we went on a little road trip. we have always wanted to go on a wine tour and see what canada's wine country has to offer.
niagara on the lake is about an hour and a half drive from downtown toronto. really not that bad when if the traffic co-operates. the niagara escarpment is really a fluke in canada. in this small area grows about 70% (based on what I remember from the presentation, don't quote that) of the wine that canada produces. the only other place in canada is in bc, in the okanogen valley. The winters in canada are so cold that normally the grapes vines freeze and then do not produce grapes the following summer. but because of the location of niagara, right at the west end of lake ontario, the air is heated while going over the lake and then warmed when it hits the land. the escarpment is a huge ridge that keeps this flow of air contained to the niagara valley and thus it is about 10 degrees warmer in this little pocket then anywhere else in canada. and the only reason we can even dream about growing wine grapes here. this is a pretty good website to find out more info.
we chose to check out cave springs, on the recommendation of a friend. it was in a cute little town, not far from the highway and consisted of a few shops and sleepy bungalows. the tour itself was short and sweet. i was hoping we could actually go out to the vineyard and see the grapes growing but we just toured the wine making facility and then were able to taste some of the wines. overall a good learning experience for me. the boy deals with wine everyday at his job so the wine tasting was pretty elementary for him but we both really liked the Riesling we were able to try.