The Wines of New Brunswick

New Brunswick is one of eastern Canada's Maritime provinces. It encompasses rivers, pine forest, mountains and the Bay of Fundy (between NB and Nova Scotia) known for extreme tides and whale-watching. It is not know for its wines. However the industry is progressing thanks to some passionate owners, vineyard mangers and winemakers. Often in New Brunswick all three hats are worn by the same person.

Vins NB Wines, previously known as the New Brunswick Grape Growers Association, has been active for the past 16 years. Initially, it served as a way for the wine and grape pioneers of the province to meet and share their experiences, and as a means of collaborating on the province’s first wine industry policies.

Today, Vins NB Wines’s membership consists of 17 cottage wineries and grape producers, each one producing grape or fruit wines or simply growing grapes. They are working hard towards a vision of a healthy and successful wine industry in New Brunswick. Mead is also produce in the province.

Obtaining information on the industry is not easy. One MLA when I asked if I could get a list of licensed wineries in the province responded by redirecting us to myself for the list! Thank you!

Belleisle Vineyard Inc. is located in Springfield, New Brunswick. The winery opened its doors in 2003 and has since gained a national reputation for its fine wines. The winery is located just north of Belleisle Bay providing a a micro-climate which is ideal for the cultivation of grapes. The area was first settled in 1786 and has numerous historical sites.

With stunning views down the bay, the winery is ideally situated for an idyllic afternoon drive from Saint John, Moncton or Fredericton. The winery is surrounded by an unparallelled example of the rolling hills, small towns and endless vistas of trees which make southern New Brunswick so unique.

The apple orchard was planted in 1998, with the grapes following soon after. The orchard provide the apples for their award winning Apple Crisp wine. Alan Gillis is the owner . His wines have won several medals from Canadian competitions with the highest award going to their Amarone Premium Red. 

Happy Knight Wines

The rising star in the province is Happy Knight Wines. Happy Knight Wines was established in early 2011 by Matt and Angela Guptill. The winery acreage is located on the warm, sunny slopes at the head of Belleisle Bay in Hatfield Point, NB. Hatfield Point is located on the St John' River a little North east of city St John. The land was originally settled in 1784 and, eight generations later, remains as the only piece of ‘Loyalist-granted’ land in the area still held by the original family.

The winery produces fruit wine and Black Mead. Dominic Rivard considered by many to be the best when making fruit wines is their winemaker. The Creme de Cassic won Gold at the 2016 All Canadian and Platium at Nationals. The 2016 Black Mead won silver at 2017 2017.

Dunham run winery

Nestled on the Kingston Peninsula, Dunham's Wharf Vineyard sits on 22 acres of prime vineyard land. The winery is called Dunham's Run. The owners  Tony and Margie Rickett daughter named her dog Dunham. When she left for college Dunham stayed behind to remained run through the Vineland. The winery's name is a tribute to the departed Dunham. The winery opened in 2012. Tony Rickett made a name for himself as the first New Brunswick winery to make sparkling wine using the traditional-method from the early 18th Century.

Motts Landing

The Village of Cambridge-Narrows is located in South-Central New Brunswick on the picturesque Washademoak lake; where unspoiled landscape, scenic views, and local hospitality give the community it's country charm. The village is home to approximately 650 residents. This is where you find Motts Landing Vineyards. Their six and a half acre vineyard consists of seven varieties of hybrid grapes which are managed with environmentally friendly techniques. 

Richibucto River Wine Estate was established in 2005. It is owned and operated by its founder, Alan Hudson and his family. The estate is set beside the Richibucto River, providing visitors with beautiful sunsets and breathtaking views. The winery is named after the river to reflect the region. There are 20+ varieties of hybrid grapes, including some of the more commonly known ones like Marechal Foch, L'Acadie Blanc and Marquette, as well as varieties like Radisson, Prairie Star, Frontenac

The winery  was established in 2005 by Alan Hudson. He grew up locally and had lived on the property with his family for 20 years before starting the vineyard. He is also the winemaker. His daughter Brittany works full time at the winery with him, and his wife Bonnie and son Jason help as well. In 2015, Alan won a Gold Medal for his 2011 Marechal Foch, which stands as the first red grape wine from NB to win a gold medal in this national competition. 

winegraden winery

Baie Verte community is situated near the Confederation Bridge to Prince Edward Island and is surrounded by a large area of salt marsh with lots of wildlife including birds, deer and skunks. This is in the southern part of the province and its most eastern part. It is home to the Winegarden Estate Vineyard,

Werner Rosswog and his wife Roswitha Rosswog arrived in Canada from Germany in 1983. The  family would become a catalyst for a new industry in their adopted province. Winegarden Estate was the first fruit wine-distillery in Atlantic Canada. Forging a new industry where none existed before was not easy, but through tenacity and perseverance, the owners of Winegarden Estate paved the way for future growth of agri-tourism in New Brunswick and opened doors previously closed to the cottage wine industry.

Their  son Steffen is now Master Winemaker, distiller and production manager. Daughter Elke is Company President and handles the finances and sales for the family business. They make a really good Brandy.

For additional information on all New Brunswick wineries click here

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