Gourmet Travel - Jackson Triggs Winery Niagara - Southern Ontario Wine Tour

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Jackson Triggs Winery - Ontario Wineries in Canada - Southern Ontario Gourmet Travel
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Niagara Ontario Wine - Niagara-on-the-Lake Wineries

Tasting Niagara - Jackson Triggs Winery, Niagara-on-the-Lake

by Wade Rowland - Part 5

Jackson Triggs Winery
Jackson Triggs Winery
Photo © Christine Collie
In the morning, duty called, and rather than hang around for a spa treatment and one of the Prince of Wales Hotel's fabulous high teas, we drove to the nearby Jackson Triggs winery. Like the other landmark winery complexes in Niagara, it is a relatively new building, and what a contrast from the Victorian fussiness of the Prince of Wales Hotel!

The enormous structure looks at first glance like a vast implement shed; at second like a Japanese airplane hangar. On closer inspection it is a truly remarkable piece of form-fits-function architecture that owes something to Frank Lloyd Wright in its planes and angles, in its cement-board exterior, its floating, reverse-trussed roof and most of all in its bright and airy interior spaces. Architecture buffs will enjoy this place as much as wine-lovers enjoy the Jackson Triggs Icewine.

The wine production facility, we discovered, is technologically-advanced, as befits such a building, with enormous rotator fermenters each holding 15,000 litres of ripening red wine, gently rolling it periodically to maximize colour and flavour. The vaulted concrete barrel cellar is big enough to house dinners of fifty among the hundreds of oak casks, and frequently does.

Outside, among the vines, there is a 500-seat amphitheater built into a creek bank where, in fine weather, concerts featuring the likes of Colin James and Jesse Cook can be heard. With Inniskillin Wines, Jackson Triggs is part of the giant Vincor International empire and the new building is a suitable monument to this Canadian success story.

As lunch time approached, we were on the road again, driving back in the direction of Toronto for a winery experience of an entirely different kind. This time it was the tiny (by comparison) Cave Spring Cellars, in the heart of the little village of Jordan on Twenty Mile Creek. The entire Cave Springs production and bottling operation, housed in part of an unassuming old factory building, could just about be tucked into the Jackson Triggs boardroom. Down below, though, the barrel room is surprisingly large and there are intriguing nooks and crannies aplenty, including a long-abandoned tunnel under the street to what is now the hotel complex.

Our tour was as enjoyable in its way as any we've had (thanks to guide Jon Boyle, a Niagara College viticulture student) and the tasting was an eye-opener. Cave Spring wines were among the first produced in Canada from estate-grown, European-style vinifera grapes, and the 70,000 cases a year produced these days from those old vines garner more than their share of awards, both domestic and international.

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Gourmet Travel - Niagara Ontario Wine in Canada - Southern Ontario Wine Tour

Gourmet Travel in Ontario Canada: Jackson Triggs Winery, Niagara Ontario Wine Tours, Southern Ontario Wine Travel Destinations, Niagara on the Lake Hotels and Bed and Breakfast, Ontario Wine Tour Packages, Ontario Gourmet Destinations, St. Catharines, Jordan Ontario

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