By Ilona Kauremszky

Q: Are wine tastings going on in the area?

A: While you missed the Niagara Icewine Festival (this year’s happened January 16-25), many Niagara wineries are open with wine tastings ongoing. You can pick up a winery route map from a winery or contact Tourism Niagara by calling toll-free 1-800-263-2988 or by visiting Wineries of Ontario online at where you can download a map.

For Wineries of Ontario, this map includes listings of 80 wineries covering Niagara, Lake Erie northshore, Toronto and York region, and Prince Edward County. I also have come across a neat way to sample world wines without having to leave the province.

Over in Bayfield, the Bayfield Inn is hosting a Saturday night world wine sampler. “Stops” include Australia, Europe, Africa, New Zealand and the Americas with a total of 11 different regions that will be toured all from the comforts of their dining room table. The dinners are hosted by a wine expert who will speak about topics relevant to winemaking and explain how the food and wine complement each other.

Find out why New Zealand’s Sauvignon Blanc has become the benchmark for the industry, what makes German wine light and fruity, and how Chile’s unique geography has impacted its vineyards. These unique dining events range in price from $90 to $120 per person.

Menus and details can be found online at Rates for one night’s accommodation with a wine dinner and full breakfast start at $395 per couple. Advance reservations are strongly recommended. Need to call them? You can phone The Little Inn of Bayfield at toll-free 1-800-565-1832.


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