Top Picks at Ontario’s Legislative Assembly for 2018

Friday, November 3, 2017 - St. Catharines, ON:

The Grape Growers of Ontario with the Honourable Speaker of the Legislature and MPP for Brant County, Dave Levac, hosted the 39th Annual Wine Tasting event at Queen’s Park on Wednesday, November 1st. Chair of the Grape Growers of Ontario, Matthias Oppenlaender, along with CEO Debbie Zimmerman are pleased to announce that the following have been chosen as the official wines of Ontario’s Legislative Assembly for 2018:


Red Wine: 2016 Sandbanks Winery Sleeping Giant Foch-Baco Noir

White Wine:  2016 Reif Estate Winery Pinot Grigio

“The Grape Growers of Ontario are appreciative of the Members of Provincial Parliament for their continuing support as we celebrate the grape harvest and choose the official red and white VQA wines of the Legislative Assembly for the coming year,” said Matthias Oppenlaender, Chair. “We are would like to thank the Honourable Dave Levac for hosting this event and wish him all the best following the announcement of his retirement next year.”

“The Grape Growers of Ontario thank all wineries who participated in the tasting at Queen’s Park. As we celebrate our 70th anniversary, I congratulate all of Ontario’s wineries on producing top quality VQA wines,” said Debbie Zimmerman, CEO.

“We are very honoured to have Sandbanks Sleeping Giant (Foch-Baco blend) chosen as the official red of the Ontario Legislature.  We’d like to thank the Grape Growers of Ontario and the Ontario Government for making this possible. This wine is a brilliant example of our passion for producing high quality VQA wines with 100% Ontario fruit,” says Christine Michael, Regional Sales Consultant, Sandbanks Winery.

“I am delighted to have our 2016 Pinot Grigio selected for the Ontario Legislature. A portion of the grapes for this wine were harvested from a 23-year-old vineyard block, giving the wine nice depth and complexity, showing off the terroir of our farm. Pinot Grigio is also one of my favourite whites, it’s such a refreshing wine and so versatile, and …I’m Italian!” Roberto DiDomenico, Winemaker, Reif Estate Winery.

Members of Provincial Parliament gathered to select the Legislative Assembly of Ontario’s official red and white VQA wine to be served at legislative functions throughout 2017. Participants tasted and marked their preferences on a voting ballot to determine which wines would be selected from six Ontario VQA wineries. The Grape Growers of Ontario thank the Honourable Speaker Dave Levac and look forward to continuing the tradition of the Legislative Wine Tasting.

The Grape Growers of Ontario is the official organization that represents over 500 actively producing grape growers of 17,000 acres in the province’s three viticulture areas: Niagara Peninsula, Lake Erie North Shore and Prince Edward County, and the emerging Norfolk County.

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For more information please contact Debbie Zimmerman, CEO
Grape Growers of Ontario at 905-401-2471