Canada, Ontario - Niagara, Random, Travelling
comments 22

A Postcard from Niagara

Maid of the Mist at the base of Niagara falls - no time to do it on this trip but definitely next time!

Maid of the Mist at the base of Niagara falls – no time to do it on this trip but definitely next time!

I am working backwards, feeling slightly justified as I am still in Canada, even if I am writing about it the wrong way round. But hey, you have come to expect that now, haven’t you?!

I am a mite passionate about wine. I love the stuff, and I love to visit vineyards, do tastings, and explore the wine culture of any country I visit that has one. I am in awe, and worried for, people that can deny themselves wine and/or pasta. Why? Just, why? Life is short, bring the joy, and buckets of wine and shovel loads of (great) pasta. Carbonara or tagliatelle with ragu for me please! With a gutsy delicious wine. Several Canadian provences make wine, and I have visited a few, the Okanagan, Nova Scotia and Niagara.

My trip to Toronto was short, just 3 days, and I devoted one of these to a trip to Niagara for a little explore. Niagara (famous for the falls) is also a well established wine region, producing some excellent wines including ice wine. I visited two wineries: Trius (where I also had lunch) and Inniskillin (which is particularly famous for ice wines, the were one of the pioneering ice wineries (is that a thing?!) in Canada). I also visited a maple syrup farm, farmer’s market and antiques market, had lunch, and whizzed by the falls. Because you just have to.



Asparagus at the Farmer’s Market in Niagara


Canadians love their pickles


Maple syrup at White Meadow Farms – all picked in the same season, the syrup darkens as the season goes on


Dark maple syrup from the very end of the season at White Meadow Farm


It takes this many buckets of maple syrup from the tree to make one small jug at the end – the tree syrup is cooked down until it caramelises and becomes amber


Wine in Niagara


Hillebrand Gewurztraminer at Trius Winery (Hillebrand recently rebranded as Trius)


Lunch at Trius Winery – their version of Surf & Turf – mini lobster roll served with a wild ferment Trius chardonnay and rib eye mini burger with the Trius red – love the idea and it worked. Delicious food too.


Hillebrand ice wine – 2007 vintage – ice wine is made from grapes frozen at minus 8 – 10 deg C for 2 – 3 days. Each grape produces only 1 – 2 drops of juice so it isn’t cheap, but it is really delicious


Rhubarb dessert – behind it was a terrific ice cream cookie sandwich made from an oat cookie and rhubarb sorbet – served with the ice wine above


Chive flowers (delicious!) with the Trius vineyards behind


All types of worms – live and available to purchase from this machine at the gas station


Sparkling ice wine at Innniskillin – one of the pioneering wineries in Canada (especially with regard to ice wine)


Innikillin ice wine and dessert and cheese pairing at Niagara


Ice wine grapes at Inniskillin vineyard




  1. I don’t deny myself wine- I just don’t like it. I do however LOVE those little bottles used for the ice wine – I could fall in love with some wine bottles! As for pasta – now you’re talking. You can have my wine and I’ll have your pasta- deal?

  2. Marie Claire Digby says

    Really great post Niamh. Fantastic pix, and really interesting food/wine pairings.

    On Sat, Jun 8, 2013 at 9:28 PM,

    • Thank you Marie Claire! The cabernet franc ice wine and chocolate ganache deserved more of a mention – it was very good.

  3. Emma B says

    The Canadian wine trade tasting in London recently was excellent. There was quite a strict selection process for the producers (not always the case for trade tastings, where ability to pay can seem more significant). The fizzes were particularly good. If you’re still in wine country, I can e-mail you a copy of the tasting booklet?

    • Afraid I have left! Shame I didn’t know about that tasting. I go to a lot of tastings in London.

  4. Love the picture of the Maid of the Mist. Scheduled to go during the summers… so felt good to have a preview of it via your blogpost:)

  5. Woah! Your page is lovely and I’m glad you had a good time in Canada. It looks like a wonderful holiday destination. The photos from Trius Winery look fab! Xx

  6. I adore Niagara wine country! And the little town of Niagara-on-the-lake is such a charming little town. It’s only a 4 hour drive from me so I’ve been quite a few times. The first time was just after September 11th, so I tend to associate it with a cozy, safe feeling. Another great restaurant was a bit further away called Inn on the Twenty. I think the town is called Jordan. Anyways, glad you had a great time in Canada. I’m lucky to live so close to our neighbors to the North (or East!).

    • Sounds great! Niagara on the lake is so lovely. Lots of great wineries to visit there :)

  7. Goose says

    Canada looks cool, I read you can do to birch what you can do to maple, I have yet to try it. Just popped some chives in to my lunch, I didn’t use the flowers, this evenings snack/salad perhaps. Hmmm maybe make some pasta?
    Alas I am an alcoholic; I still cook with alcohol though. Risotto without wine/vermouth? that would be a sad affair.
    Another superb post with great photos, very inspiring! Keep them coming.

    • You can and I have tried it. More vegetal than maple, and I think maple is better (for my taste).

      Chive flowers are fabulous in salad, on soups etc. I could not imagine a risotto without vermouth, that sounds quite tough.

      Thanks for the comment!

Over to you! Your comments - I would love to hear from you :)