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Sugarbush Vineyards
by
Terry Sullivan

Sugarbush VineyardsSummary: Sugarbush Vineyards, a family vineyard and winery, offers a delightful experience in the Hillier area of Prince Edward County. Enjoy a variety of vinifera wines made in a garagiste setting. Children and pets are welcome.

Located in Hillier, Prince Edward County, Ontario, Sugarbush Vineyards is a family owned and operated vineyard and winery. Sally and Rob Peck have perfected the garagiste winery concept. The term garagiste refers to a garage-sized winery where passionate people make wine. Originally the term referred to a group of winemakers in the Bordeaux region of France that produced garage wines, wines that were less typical of traditional Bordeaux wines. The couple’s inspiraton in wine evolved as they spent their honeymoon in the Okanogan wine region of British Columbia.

Sugarbush VieyardsVineyards

Eight and a half acres of land is devoted to vineyards. Grape varieties planted include Chardonnay, Riesling, Gewürztraminer, Pinot Noir, Gamay and Cabernet Franc. There is some thought to expanding the vineyards by a couple more acres. Organic practices are followed in the vineyard. Two to four canes from each grapevine are buried during the late fall through winter to protect the vines from the below freezing temperatures. Beyond the vineyard a tree line of maple trees form a border. Sally referred to these trees as sugar bushes and the family taps into them to produce maple syrup. An image of a maple leaf is on the wine bottle labels.

Tasting Room

The tasting room is located on the lower level of their home. Modern, spacious and brightly lit, the room and people are welcoming to wine travelers, children and pets. Pottery and art are tastefully displayed throughout the room. The display of wines adds to the art scene. The tasting counter is made of wood attached to old oak wine barrels.

Sugarbush Vieyards     Sugarbush Vieyards     Sugarbush Vieyards

Sugarbush VieyardsWines

The 2009 Chardonnay was unoaked. The straw color had an apple aroma. The taste had apple and citrus nuances and the finish was crisp and fruity. The 2009 Riesling/ Gewürztraminer was a pale straw color that offered floral aromas and fruit with minerality on the taste and finish.

The 2009 Almost Red was a light red color blend of Cabernet Franc with a touch of Chardonnay. The wine had strawberry nuances with a crisp finish. The 2008 Pinot Noir was red with a mineral aroma. The mineral taste was crisp and yielded to cherry. The 2008 Gamay was a dark purple color. The smooth and fruity taste had a crisp finish. The 2008 Cabernet Franc was purple. The fruity taste was smooth and the finish had tannins with fruit and pepper notes.

Events

The winery participates in events in the county. There are also some interesting events at the vineyards. During March there is the Maple in the County event where the family boils down the sap from the sugar bushes and all can enjoy maple s'mores at the fire pit. During July there is the Annual Stampede Breakfast. Traditional stampede foods are available along with face painting, a petting zoo and balloon animals for the children. In late November and the beginning of December there is a toast to the end of the harvest season with a Wassail event.

Sugarbush Vineyards provides a welcoming visit to wine travelers. Stop by and experience the taste of the land.

Sugarbush Vineyards
1286 Wilson Road, RR1
Hillier, Ontario K0K 2J0

GPS: N43º 59.551’ W77º 20.901’


Visit this Winery/vineyard travel agency and Canada winery that partner with Wine Trail Traveler.

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