Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Niagara on the Lake...The Sequel

I LOVE visiting C, K and their pup in Niagara on the Lake - not only do we get to catch up with two of our favourite people, but we get the inside track on local wineries, restaurants and shops. This time around C (despite her inability to participate due to her little bun in the oven) planned out an expert itinerary, bringing us to excellent wineries big and small.

Our first stop was Southbrook, just a stone's throw from C & K's place. We grabbed a sunny spot and enjoyed three of their delicious wood fired pizzas, made right there on the patio.

Southbrook is also a certified Biodynamic Winery and produces organic wines. Biodynamics is all about the interrelationship of a farm’s soil, plants and animals to grow low-impact crops, including grapes. It treats the whole farm as a single living thing. These adorable sheep were on site and part of the biodynamic cycle at Southbrook:

With our bellies full we headed down the highway to Jordan, which although not as well known as NOTL, has plenty of up and coming and more established wineries to choose from. One of my favourites was Megalomaniac, for the setting alone. Nestled into a hilltop, the winery has spectacular views, and the tasting  area was stunning. I tried the Narcissist Riesling and the Bravado Cabernet Sauvignon which were both delicious and well worth the uphill drive!

We capped off our tour with visits to Calamus (an adorable winery housed in an old barn), Tawse, and Stratus (back in NOTL). 

What goes better with wine than cheese? We picked up some delicious varieties from the Upper Canada Cheese Company in Jordan  (including a sticky-toffee dessert cheese - have you ever heard of such an amazing invention??) and C put together an alcohol absorbing feast for us, including bacon wrapped dates and fresh baguette. Heaven!

One last thing...we weren't the only ones that enjoyed our day. Doggie and C & K's dog (her half-sis) get along famously and had a great time making a mess of toys while we were gone!

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