From Pelee Island to Niagara to Prince Edward County, Southern Ontario’s wine-producing pockets are home to a bounty of vintners that craft high-quality Pinot Noirs, Rieslings, Icewines and much, much more. Every Wednesday throughout the summer, Where Toronto profiles an Ontario winery whose bottles are worth seeking out, and whose vineyards are definitely worthy of a day trip from the big city.
This week’s Ontario winery:
SMALL TALK VINEYARDS
Established in 1989 as Stonechurch Vineyards, and in 2013 as Small Talk Vineyards
Owner: Hank Hunse
How many varieties of wine do you produce?
Nine. We produce 20,000 cases of wine annually.
What are your three most popular wines?
Riesling, Chardonnay, Gewurztraminer
Tell us about the winery’s background.
Small Talk Vineyards is family-owned and -operated. The farm was established in 1955 and has transformed from being a cow pasture to vegetables (strawberries and tomatoes) to fruit trees (peaches, plums, cherries, and pears) and then to vineyards over that time.
Does the winery offer tours?
Tours are offered upon request; we customize visits as much as we can.
What other amenities are on site?
There is a wine store and curio shop on site.
Tell us something people typically don’t know or understand about wine production.
How challenging it is to grow grapes in Niagara, and why white wines in Ontario are some of the best in the world.
What is one piece of advice you’d offer someone wishing to have a better experience with wine?
Trust your own taste, if you like it, it is good wine, no matter the score given by someone else. Each wine has its best occasion for enjoyment, it is fun to explore how wines pair with foods.