A trip to Ontario’s wine country can be just the thing to turn an average weekend into something amazing. Each of Ontario’s three wine regions — Niagara, Prince Edward County and Lake Erie North Shore — is special in its own way, and there’s much to explore here, like winery tours, festivals and guided tastings.
Whether plans include a romantic getaway or a girls’ weekend to rekindle old friendships, no Ontario trip would be complete without a stop at some excellent wine bars featuring local VQA wines. Here are four great choices to help plan the perfect trip:
1. The Shaw Café and Wine Bar, Niagara-On-The-Lake
The Shaw Café and Wine Bar is an iconic, round column building that is the centerpiece of downtown Niagara-on-the-Lake. Manager and Ontario native Jill Harper has done her homework and put together a menu of 23 wines by the glass and four wine flights; among these is their famous Niagara Sangria. Her knowledge of local wines is unmatched, which translates into a flavorful experience for guests in a lush, relaxing atmosphere.
Website | (905) 468-4772 | 92 Queen Street, Niagara-On-The-Lake, ON L0S 1J0
2. Pomodoro Trattoria and Wine Bar, Wellington
A wine-connoisseur’s jewel resides in Prince Edward County. Situated on Main Street in tiny but beautiful Wellington, Pomodoro is a cozy Italian restaurant that specializes in rustic cuisine. The restaurant’s accompanying wine bar is a favorite stop for both hearty pasta dishes and luscious desserts, and the wine list features vintages from several Canadian wineries. Pomodoro will open again in the spring, though its sister restaurant East and Main is open all year round and offers an extensive wine list of its own.
3. The Old Winery Restaurant, Niagara-On-The-Lake
The Old Winery Restaurant in Niagara-on-the-Lake has a new wine bar with a long wine list and live entertainment on the weekends. The atmosphere is casual, making it the perfect spot to unwind after a day touring the area’s vineyards. This wine bar offers a feast for the senses. The warmth of the oven’s fire, the trickling sound of the creek off the deck, the scent of wonderful Mediterranean cooking and the murmur of voices amidst clinking glasses all make this place a spot to savor.
Website | (905) 468-8900 | firstname.lastname@example.org | 2228 Niagara Stone Road, Niagara-On-The-Lake, ON L0S 1J0
4. Corks Wine Bar and Eatery, Niagara-On-The-Lake
Corks Wine Bar and Eatery is right in the middle of scenic Niagara-on-the-Lake, and it’s a favourite with locals and visitors alike for its friendly vibe and great food. Its wine bar features more than 30 local wines from Ontario wineries, and 20 different beers are also available on tap for those who are looking for a change of pace. There’s live music on the weekends during warm weather, and the second floor is home to the Playhouse Theatre, where local performers show their stuff to an ever-appreciative audience.
There’s no better way to enjoy an evening in wine country than with a carefully selected vintage from a great local wine bar. After a day surrounded by the scenic beauty of the region, pull up a chair in an exceptional wine bar to sit back, relax and taste all that Ontario has to offer.