We didn’t know until we started planning our trip that the Niagara region is Ontario’s wine region. It’s on about the same latitude as wine producing areas in the northwest United States.
The Niagara region is most famous for their ice wine. Before this trip, I was totally unaware of ice wine. Ice wine is produced by letting grapes freeze on the vine through the coldest part of winter. We visited the Niagara College Teaching Winery, and they said they send their new class of students out into the vineyards at about 2:00 am to pick the grapes for the ice wine. It must all be picked in one night, and it needs to be below -8 degrees C, or about 18 degrees F. Hazing, much?
We had a red ice wine on our visit to the vineyard, and it tasted like strawberry jam. So delicious! I think they said some of the whites tastes like honey. You drink ice wine by letting it sit under your tongue and then swallowing.
Open house at Stratus, one of the hipper wineries. That windmill in the back is used to cool down the fields. Pretty crazy!
The college was really fantastic, and all the proceeds from the wine sales go back to funding the school’s programs and students. They also had a teaching brewery on site.