What is VQA?
It means the wine is made from 100% Ontario-grown grapes, which have been approved through a strict quality assurance program. VQA is the Vintners Quality Alliance, the independent body that monitors Ontario’s appellation of origin system. All wine-producing countries have standards for their best grape-growing regions.Wherever you go, always look for VQA on the label to be sure a wine is made with 100% Ontario grapes. Visit vqaontario.ca for more information.
If you love French wine, you’ll really enjoy wine from Ontario
Because both are made at the same latitude, Ontario wines share a lot of the same characteristics as their French counterparts. Grapes from cooler regions ripen slowly, making them complex and balanced, with higher acidity and more mineral flavours. This is what makes Ontario and French wines so food-friendly.
Ontario wine is versatile
Ontario wine makers grow a broad range of grapes, from Chardonnay to Baco Noir to Riesling to Cabernet Franc to Icewine. Such diversity makes it extremely easy to pair with food. In fact, they’re the best choice to serve with local produce.
There are three wine regions in Ontario
That’s right; Ontario wine country extends beyond Niagara. In fact, Niagara is so large it is technically two regions: Niagara-on-the-Lake, the birthplace of Ontario’s wine industry, and the Niagara Escarpment, whose distinct microclimate makes it the province’s most active wine-producing area.
Lake Erie North Shore is the province’s southernmost region, making it the ideal spot to produce fruity reds. Then there’s Prince Edward County, the youngest wine region, but one of the fastest growing, thanks in large part to the great restaurants that are flocking to the area.