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Vineyards from coast to coast

Vineyards from coast to coast

From the Okanagan Valley to the Bay of Fundy, Canada is home to hundreds of vineyards whose reputations have begun to spread beyond our borders. Let’s take a glance at what’s being planted and consumed from one province to another.

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Quebec

Man covering grapevines with a net

Domaine St-Jacques, one of the 60 or so Quebec wineries. The vines are covered to keep the birds away.

 

Where are they?

While you see vines growing from Outaouais and Mauricie to Gaspésie and the Quebec City area, most wineries in Quebec are concentrated in the Eastern Townships and the Montérégie where grapes enjoy warmer days to achieve optimum ripeness.

What’s to drink?

Wine styles are highly diversified. Some producers swear only by Chardonnay, others prefer hybrids like Frontenac, Marquette, Vidal or Seyval. Hybrid red grapes make refreshing reds and excellent rosés, and you can confidently buy a number of tangy and aromatic whites.

Worth the detour

Wine styles are highly diversified. Some producers swear only by Chardonnay, others prefer hybrids like Frontenac, Marquette, Vidal or Seyval. Hybrid red grapes make refreshing reds and excellent rosés, and you can confidently buy a number of tangy and aromatic whites.

Domaine Les Brome Détente 2018

$14.55

Domaine Les Brome Détente 2018

Rosé750 mlCanada
Domaine Les Brome Détente 2018

Domaine Les Brome Détente 2018

$14.55

Rosé750 mlCanada, QuebecSAQ code : 11686626
  • Grape variety(ies):
  • Seyval Noir, 
  • De Chaunac, 
  • Maréchal Foch
Domaine St-Jacques Classique Blanc 2018

$15.95

Domaine St-Jacques Classique Blanc 2018

White wine750 mlCanada
Domaine St-Jacques Classique Blanc 2018

Domaine St-Jacques Classique Blanc 2018

$15.95

White wine750 mlCanada, QuebecSAQ code : 11506120
  • Grape variety(ies):
  • Vidal, 
  • Seyval

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GOOD TO KNOW

Quebec has developed the expertise and techniques to adapt grape varieties to its extremely cold climate. The result is a number of remarkably high-quality products that are increasingly popular.

Ontario

Niagara vineyard

Niagara wines are among Canada’s most celebrated.

Where are they?

The Canadian wine industry first saw the light of day in Niagara. Now the region is home to some 90 of Ontario’s 150 wineries. The rest are mainly scattered through Prince Edward County (just west of Kingston) and along the north shore of Lake Erie near Windsor.

What’s to drink?

Ontario vintners favour four varieties that do particularly well in the province: Chardonnay, Riesling, Pinot Noir and Cabernet Franc. The first finds its fresh and mineral expression in Prince Edward County. The last offers an easygoing, distinct style in Niagara. Gamay grapes, too, are gaining in popularity.

Worth the detour

Niagara Falls is a must, of course, as is charming Niagara-on-the-Lake with its lively downtown area teeming with shops and restaurants. In Prince Edward County, Sandbanks Provincial Park attracts scores of Quebecers every summer and the delectable farm-to-table food scene proliferates.

Recipe of maple-glazed duck breast

Photo: Maude Chauvin

MAPLE-GLAZED DUCK BREAST WITH TART CHERRIES
Preparation: 15 minutes
Cooking: 20 minutes
Cost per serving: about $9.00
4 servings

Duck breasts
2 duck breasts (about 450 g [1 lb])
60 mL (1/4 cup) maple syrup
2,5 mL (1/2 tsp) soy sauce
0,5 mL (1/4 tsp) five-spice powder
Tart cherries
250 mL (1 cup) fresh cherries, pitted and cut in half
2,5 mL (1/2 tsp) sherry vinegar
6 sprigs thyme, leaves only
Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste

1. Breasts: Trim and discard some of the fat from the duck breasts. With a sharp knife, score the remaining fat in a diamond pattern. Season. 2. In a non-stick skillet, place fat side down, and cook the duck breasts over low heat for about 15 minutes. Skim off excess fat frequently. 3. When the fat on the breasts is golden and crispy, cook for about another 5 minutes. Move the breasts to a plate. Cover with foil and let rest 5 minutes. 4. Skim excess fat from the skillet one last time if necessary. 5. Pour in the maple syrup, soy sauce and five-spice powder. 6. Reduce until the sauce thickens. Set aside. 7. Cherries: In a bowl, mix all ingredients and season. 8. Coat the duck with the maple glaze mixture before slicing, and serve with the tart cherries.

JACKSON-TRIGGS NIAGARA BLACK RESERVE, MERLOT

Canadian winemakers often aspire to measure up to Bordeaux, the ultimate model for many young wine regions. Ripening grapes like Cabernet or Merlot demands precision and attentiveness in regions with a relatively cool climate, and on well-selected sites, you can obtain red wines that are both refreshing and pleasantly structured. With its notes of red fruit, smokiness and mild spices, the Jackson-Triggs Merlot is an impeccable companion for this recipe combining duck – a classic southwestern French dish – with typical Canadian flavours like maple syrup and cherries. Result: the best of both worlds.

Jackson-Triggs Niagara Black Reserve Merlot

$13.40$14.40

Jackson-Triggs Niagara Black Reserve Merlot

Red wine750 mlCanada
Jackson-Triggs Niagara Black Reserve Merlot

Jackson-Triggs Niagara Black Reserve Merlot

$13.40$14.40

Red wine750 mlCanada, OntarioSAQ code : 11462112
Not available onlineSee quantity in stores

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British Columbia

Women visiting a vineyard in British Columbia

INSPIRING!

Canadian wines are popular. Inspire members have two favourites: The Osoyoos Larose red from the Okanagan Valley and the L'Orpailleur white from the Eastern Townships. Just the ticket for celebrating Canada's 150th!

Where are they?

The vast majority of roughly 400 British Columbia wineries are concentrated in the Okanagan Valley and its neighbour to the west, the Similkameen Valley. The arid climate there is ideal for grape-growing. Vancouver Island also boasts several impressive estates.

What’s to drink?

Okanagan is renowned for its expressive and tasty whites (Pinot Gris, Sauvignon Blanc and Riesling, in particular). As for reds, there are fruity and vibrant Pinots, Bordeaux-style blends that can age gracefully for years in cellars, and astonishingly complex and powerful Syrahs.

Worth the detour

Nestled in the shadow of steep mountainsides and overlooking beautiful lakes, the region’s wineries afford breathtaking panoramas. Some also had the neat idea of adding elegant restaurants that highlight locally sourced fresh products. Visitors are spoiled even further by the many resort towns nearby where they can enjoy beaches and water sports between strolls through the vines.

Salmon burger

Photo: Maude Chauvin

FRESH SALMON BURGERS
Preparation: 15 minutes
Cooking: 10 minutes
Cost per serving: about $8.00
4 servings

Salmon burger
675 g (1 ½ lb) fresh salmon, skinless
45 mL (3 tbsp) breadcrumbs
30 mL (2 tbsp) sour cream
30 mL (2 tbsp) fresh coriander, chopped
30 mL (2 tbsp) fresh dill, chopped
2 green onions, thinly sliced
1 garlic clove, chopped
2 lemons
1 egg yolk
Salt and freshly
ground black pepper

Cucumber sauce
60 mL (1/4 cup) sour cream
30 mL (2 tbsp) cucumber, finely diced
Juice and zest of 1/2 lemon
4 small kaiser rolls
Lemon slices, thinly sliced, to taste
A few leaves of Boston lettuce

1. Salmon burger: Chop the salmon meat and put it in a large bowl. Add the rest of the ingredients and stir well. Season with salt and pepper. 2. Shape into 4 patties. Cover and refrigerate for 30 minutes. 3. Cucumber sauce: In a bowl, mix together all the ingredients and season with salt and pepper. Set aside and refrigerate. 4. Heat the barbecue to medium-high. 5. Brush and oil the grill. 6. Cook the salmon patties 3 to 4 minutes on one side. 7. After flipping them, top each burger with a slice of lemon. Continue to cook for 3 to 4 minutes. 8. Toast the buns for about one minute on each side. 9. Place a salmon burger on the lower half of each bun. Top with the cucumber sauce and add some lettuce leaves. Close the burgers and serve.

MISSION HILL, FIVE VINEYARDS PINOT BLANC

While it produces red wines with a pronounced character, the Okanagan climate is also suitable for white grapes like Pinot Blanc, Pinot Gris and Viognier, all of which strike a seductive balance between expressive aromas and delicious freshness. That same character, with just the right dose of presence and acidity, makes the Five Vineyards Pinot Blanc especially appropriate for meaty and flavourful fare (like this salmon burger), its fine vegetal notes matching the coriander and dill. A pairing that’s straightforward and friendly, just like West Coast people themselves.

Mission Hill Five Vineyards Pinot Blanc

$16.70

Mission Hill Five Vineyards Pinot Blanc

White wine750 mlCanada
Mission Hill Five Vineyards Pinot Blanc

Mission Hill Five Vineyards Pinot Blanc

$16.70

White wine750 mlCanada, British ColumbiaSAQ code : 00300301
Not available onlineSee quantity in stores
Osoyoos Larose Pétales d’Osoyoos Okanagan Valley 2016

$29.60

Osoyoos Larose Pétales d’Osoyoos Okanagan Valley 2016

Red wine750 mlCanada
Osoyoos Larose Pétales d’Osoyoos Okanagan Valley 2016

Osoyoos Larose Pétales d’Osoyoos Okanagan Valley 2016

$29.60

Red wine750 mlCanada, British ColumbiaSAQ code : 11166495
  • Grape variety(ies):
  • Merlot, 
  • Cabernet sauvignon, 
  • Cabernet franc, 
  • Petit verdot

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