Wine View: From ciders to beer to gin, it’s time to celebrate all things Canadian

Canadian distiller Northern Landings makes Cranberry Ginberry.

By JACQUELINE CORRIGAN

Canada. Our home and native land. And what a land it is!

We live in the second largest country on the planet. We have the longest coastline in the world. There are only two landlocked provinces, Alberta and Saskatchewan. All the rest border on the three oceans, the Atlantic, Pacific, and Arctic.

We have many climates and time zones as well one desert. Yes desert! The Okanagan Valley in British Columbia.

And letʼs not forget about having the most lakes. This is one very big amazing country from coast to coast, territory to territory!

Right here in Ontario we have a diversity in climate that gives us a bounty of growing regions.

A number of years ago I had read that so many apples were going to waste in fields. I wondered why no one was producing ciders here in Ontario with any real zeal. We certainly had the product and people were purchasing British ciders, myself included. There was a market.

Now, I am happy to say that these last few years I have been impressed with the quality, style and flavours of the ciders in Ontario. A couple of note are Thornbury Village Cidery www.thornburycraft.com , and Pommies Cider Co. www.pommies.com.

I also love a G & T with a twist of lemon. I recently discovered a great local gin called Northern Landings Cranberry Ginberry www.ginberry.ca. I spoke with Andrea Fujarczuk, Head Distiller for Northern Landings recently, and this is one Canadian lady with a lot of credo behind her.

She moved to London, England to do her MBA on the Global Food Industry. As often happens in life, one door leads to another and before you know it you are being presented an award by the one and only Jancis Robinson, Master of Wine and Wine writer/critic for the Financial Times.

One door that opened was the opportunity to work with and learn from one of the greats in the gin trade, Charles Maxwell of the Thames Distillers in South London.

Andrea wanted to come back home and create something unique that said Canada. Northern Landings was born from this experience.

Andrea also teaches the Artisan Distilling Program at Niagara College. Now she gets to share her wealth of incredible knowledge with her students.

My favourite beers come from www.unibroue.com in Quebec. They have a range of styles and flavours to choose from. Brewed in the Belgian Trappist Monks style, they are cloudy in appearance as the yeasts are only partially removed and settle at the bottom of the bottle. In particular, I like the Blanche de Chambly. It has garnered many accolades over the years. I am not surprised!

For Ontario rosés, this summer I will be enjoying 13th Street Rosé Burger Blend #609545, $14.95 and Featherstone Rosé #117681, $15.95. Both are refreshing, bright, and fruit driven.

This Canada Day celebrate like you have never celebrated before! Eat and drink all things Canadian.

Check out the giant mural at the Stone Lion Pub in the Beach by Scarborough artist www.willyjohnson.ca.

Crank up Canadian tunes but especially by our very own Haydain Neal from Jacksoul fame ( www.jacksoul.com ) a Beach resident who has since passed away. I love Jacksoul’s music.

Happy Canada Day!

Jacqueline Corrigan is a Certified Sommelier (graduate George Brown College Sommelier Program); a Member of the International Sommelier Guild; and a graduate WSET (Wine & Spirit Education Trust – Britain).


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