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Nova Scotia, a Peninsula on Canada's East Coast bordered by the Atlantic Ocean and the Bay of Fundy . The southern tip of Nova Scotia dips below the 45th. parallel. There are six very distinct wine growing areas.
The Grape Growers Association of Nova Scotia was established in 1982. Nova Scotia boasts 22 grape growers and 400 acres of grapes The first varieties to show promise in Nova Scotia were French hybrids: Marechal Foch, DeChaunac, Castel 19637, Baco Noir, Leon Millot, and Seyval Blanc. Two Russian hybrids, Mischurnitz and Severnyi, which are amurensis crosses, were also of interest for early ripening, high sugar content, good production and winter hardiness. One of the world's coldest grape-growing areas,
cool-climate whites are a staple here, including a unique varietal known as l'Acadie Blanc
The Nova Scotia wine industry has a climate and soil conditions that flavour unique and distinctive grape varietals, an abundant supply of inexpensive land for potential development, unfettered by urban encroachment and strong transportation links and proximity to the large Eastern USA markets and Europe
The history of winemaking in Nova Scotia can be traced back to the
year 1611. The Nova Scotia Wine Standards (NSWS) were adopted by the
Winery Association of Nova Scotia in the summer of 2005. The new standards
established content restrictions and labeling standards for wines
produced in that province. The NSWS allows a wine to use the provincial
designation "Nova Scotia" as a geographical indication, provided it meets all NSWS
and contains no less than 85% of the wine's content from grapes grown
within the province; the remaining 15% must be grown in Canada.
In 1984 researcher Helen Fisher supplied cuttings of Ollie Brant selection V.53261 to be evaulated by Dr. Don Craig at the Kentville Research Station. This selection was orphaned in Ontario, and after successful evaulation in Nova Scotia became the award winning wine variety named L'Acadie ~ the wine L'Acadie Blanc
Nova Scotia's two-dozen wineries are mostly just a couple of hours drive from Halifax.
Atlantic Wine Institute opened at
the Acadia Centre for Rural Innovation at Acadia University in 2012
Annapolis Highland Vineyards
2635 Clementsvale Road
Bear River East, Nova Scotia
Annapolis Highland is the second winery to open in the small but charming community
of Bear River Along the Bay of Fundy
vineyard is south-facing and comprised of several benches of well-drained,
sand, gravel, slate and granite soils, resembling those of Alsace and the
Mosel in the prestigious wine regions of France and Germany. At 400'
above sea level their vineyard is not affected by the fog or cold ocean air,
providing long, hot, sunny days necessary for producing premium quality grapes
The winery os owned by Karen & Brendan Enright who moved
from Ontario in 2002 looking for a better life style
Winemaker: Ray Cornell Consultant Dominic Rivard
Philosophy: Provide premium
quality Nova Scotia wines. We also like to think outside the box when it comes
to varieties and have in the past and will continue to test varieties not common
to the province
Avondale Sky Winery
80 Avondale Cross Road
NS B0N 2A0
Avondale Sky Winery is owned and operated by Stewart Creaser and Lorraine Vassalo, who escaped their stressful careers for a life in the country.
After searching province wide, they found their farm on the Avon Peninsula. The farm is surrounded by the ever changing tidal landscape of the St. Croix and Avon Rivers, rolling hills, and the panoramic Avondale sky. There was an old vineyard on the property
Rather than construct a new winery, the decision was made to salvage an old barn which was looking forlorn on a dike along the St. Croix River ten kilometers from the vineyard. They also purchased
St. Matthews Church from Walton.
The winery opened in 2011 but they also opened big under winemaker Ben Swetman offering 10 whites, 4 Rose and one red. The Reds are currently aging. As while as using estate grown grapes and local grapes, riesling and other grapes are brought in from Ontario.
Tidal Bay (blend, crafted from L'Acadie and Geisenheim)won Gold at
The 2011 Atlantic Canadian Wine Awards
Winemaker: Ben Swetnam,
Bear River Vineyards
133 Chute Road
Bear River, NS B0S 1B0
Located in the beautiful Bear River Valley near the south western end of the Annapolis Basin.
The winery owned by Chris Hawes became the only licensed Cottage Winery in
the Province of Nova Scotia in February 2006. Chris claims to be the smallest winery with only 3.6
acres planted over the last 12 years he began growing grapes in 1987.
The farm house beside the
vineyard was built in 1784. The winery building was built in
1883 and the first experimental planting by the NS Dept. of Agriculture was in 1963.
The vineyard environment and aspect in Bear River ripens eight varieties of vinifera. Well drained glacial soil
and steeply sloping rows, warmed by the inland flow of the sea
creates an ideal vineyard climate. Wines produced include Chardonnay
Pinot, Gris, Baco Noir and Pinot Noir.
Winemaker: Chris Hawes
496 Carleton Rd
Lawrencetown NS B0S1M0
Les and Paulette Wade are the proud owners & operators of this Fruit winery and meadery. Started in 2005 as a hobby. In 2008 was licensed to manufacture wines to sell off site. In 2010, they found out that it was a dry county which meant overturning a 1934 prohibition by law to allow a retail store onsite . The Wades canvased like politicans in our town and won over 90% of the vote
The name comes from a creek that runs through the property with a Beaver population.
The winery specializies in fruit wines which are made from locally grown fruit from around the valley. Over 21 different varities of fruit wines including Naked Mead, our famous honeymoon wine made from pure honey
signature wines: Mead, cranberry and pear.
The future has plans to produce grape wines.
Winemaker: Paulette Wade
Philosophy: relax, its only wine.
Blomidon Estate Winery
10318 Hwy 221 PO Box 208
Canning, NS B0P 1H0
Located in Canning, Nova Scotia, in the heart of the Annapolis Valley on
Minas Basin, home to the world's highest tides. Officially known as Blomidon Estate Winery at Habitant Vineyards.
The winery is named after Blomidon Provincial Park which is located nearby.
The original vines were planted in 1986 as part of an
experimental vineyard and later sold to Jost Winery; they opened the winery in
1997 and in 2008 it was sold to the Ramey family. Marilyn Ramey is president
The unique climate of the Minas Basin allows for the grapes to thrive, tides influence the temperature
and air movement. Gentle south-facing slopes allow for great drainage and maximal sun exposure. The sandy soil is also
beneficial. All of which contributes to the production of award winning wines, most recently award winning wines.
Blomidon Estate Winery and its estate vineyards (25 acres) are located on the north shore of the Bay of
Fundy. Eleven acres planted with Chardonnay, Baco Noir, L'Acadie Blanc, Seyval Blanc, Luci Kuhlmann, Marechal Foch, Leon
Millot, Riesling, Pinot Noir, Pinot Gris, New York Muscat.
The land's gentle slope and sandy soil provides the vines with good drainage while the south facing slope of the vineyard
allows the grapes maximum sun exposure. Most importantly, the inlets to the bay have the highest tides in the world, up to
16 meters. This truly unique tidal motion creates an extraordinarily unique environment for grape growing. The high tides
of the region protect vines from freezing temperatures and frost by ensuring air movement and moderating temperatures year round.
Winemaker: Simon Rafuse
Philosophy: is to work with varieties that
thrive in this climate, while continually pushing the envelope with new experimental
varieties as well.
Signature wines are 100% Nova Scotia Chardonnay, L'Acadie Blanc, Baco Noir and Seyval
1842 White Rock Road RR1
Wolfville, NS B4P 2R1
Located in the Gaspereau Valley, the winery was founded by Gerry McConnell his (deceased) wife
Dara Gordon. Their project is to create great sparkling wines. Benjamin Bridge
also produces icewine
"Vidal is much better here than in Ontario", offers wine consultant Peter Gamble, "the
natural acid is higher at harvest, typically around 18 g/l, whereas in Ontario
it is usually 9 g/l, so they need to add acid for balance."
Winemaker: Jean-Benoit Deslauriers
2239 White Rock Road
Gaspereau, NS B4P 2R1
Situated in the beautiful Gaspereau Valley seven miles from Wolfville. Once an
apple orchard the vineyard was planted in 1996 on the ideal south facing slope
followed by a successful harvest in 1999. The winery opened in 2004
At Gaspereau Vineyards, Jost planted Chardonnay, Riesling, Ortega
and Vidal on the warmer upper part of a vineyard and varieties such as De
Chaunac, L'Acadie, New York Muscat and Kuhlmann further down what is a fairly
continual slope. “Chardonnay always makes it through
the winter and it produces a decent wine,” Jost says. “But I like L'Acadie,” referring
to the most widely planted white variety in Nova Scotia . On the Gaspereau site,
the variety yields a wine that the wine shop staff describe as “dangerously
drinkable.” The wine shows sweet, zesty citrus flavours
with a dry finish.
Winemaker:: Gina Haverstock
11611 Hwy 1 PO Box 105,
Grand Pré, NS B0P 1M0
The winery was founded in 1978; the first winery in Nova Scotia In 1993, Swiss
businessman, Hanspeter Stutz, bought Grand Pré. Stutz was
undaunted by the challenge of purchasing and restoring the vineyard. Now, with
his vision and determination, Mr. Stutz has successfully established Domaine
de Grand Pré as a proud and viable winery. It is a family business with son Jürg winemaker, daughter Beatrice manages the restaurant.
The only winery in Nova Scotia that offers the full wine & dine experience. Award winning restaurant t
named Le Caveau; built in the original 1828 house.
Grand Pre will be an UNESCO World Heritage Site in July 2012
Domaine de Grand Pré has a unique approach to winemaking. Unlike most
New World wineries producing Old World wines, such as Chardonnay, Hanspeter believes
wine producers should develop distinct varieties, styles and vineyard practices
based on particular soils and climates. To achieve this, Domaine de Grand Pré has
partnered with the Agriculture Canada Station in Kentville, Nova Scotia to develop
unique Nova Scotian varieties.
The winery has a very nice tasting bar. Tasting Fees apply. They produce icewine, port style wines and other dessert wines.
The Domaine has a unique approach to winemaking. Unlike most New World wineries producing Old World wines, Hanspeter believes producers should develop distinct varieties, styles, and vineyard practices based on particular soils and climates.
signature wines are Tidal Bay, L'Acadie Blanc, Muscat, Ortega, Castel, Cabernet Foch
Winemaker: Jürg Stutz
Philosophy: Life is too short to drink bad wine
48 Vintage Lane
Malagash, NS B0K 1E0
Jost Vineyards, situated on the northern shores of Nova Scotia, combines more than 300 years
of grape growing and wine making traditions with a long warm, frost free season.
Jost Vineyards history begins with Hans Wilhelm Jost and family in the Rhine region of Germany.
The Christinenhof was a successful family-run vineyard and cellar, highly praised for its wine quality.
In 1970, in search of vast lands and new freedoms, the Jost family, Hans, Erna and children, Hans Christian and Ellen,
immigrated to Nova Scotia. It was not until 1978 that the Jost's returned to the family tradition and began experimenting
with grapes. With the success of these grapevines, more vineyards were planted and a use for the resulting harvest required.
Jost Vineyards became a licensed winery in November 1983 and the first cellar was built in 1984.
The winery has over 75 acres located in the Malagash and Gaspereau Valley. The most common varieties are Marechal Foch, L'Acadie Blanc,
Muscat, Leon Millot, Geisenheim, Seyval Blanc, Vidal Blanc, Mischurnitz and Severnyi.
The Vintage Loft operates during
the summer and is a charming gift store filled with local crafts, books and
unique gift ideas.
The Charity Grape Stomp in September is always a
great time and enjoyment is almost a guarantee.
Carl Sparkes purchased an undisclosed stake in Jost Winery through his new company, Devonian Coast Wineries Ltd in May 2012.
Winemakers: Hans Christian Jost,
Chris Frey associate winemaker
Philosophy: "Produce crisp, clean wines. The flavor of the wine should come from the fermentation of clean grapes and juice".
Jost believes the long, gentle growing season in Nova Scotia brings forth unique
characteristics to the wine. Wine is created in the vineyard. Their 1999 Vidal
Icewine from Jost Vineyards of Malagash beat 594 other entries in the All-Canadian
310 Slayter Road
Located in the center of the in the warm Gaspereau Valley of Nova Scotia.
Owners Bruce Ewert and his wife Pauline Scott plan to organically grow L'Acadie grapes and craft them into
premium traditionally bottle fermented sparkling wines and table wines. L'Acadie is a flavourful grape variety
well suited to our unique cool climate growing conditions and also refers to the rich farming heritage in the valley
Bruce brings with him a wealth of winemaking experience from his days working
in the Okanagan, California and Australia. They selected their location
in Gaspereau Valley because it is the center of wine country in Nova Scotia
providing soil which is well drained, rocky slate with about a 5 % slope for
cold air drainage.
L'Acadie Vineyards, specializing in Traditional Method Sparkling wine, is Nova Scotia's first certified organic winery .
Prestige Brut was the only entry from North America to win a medal in the 9th international competition of the world's best sparkling wines. Effervescents du Monde® 2011
Winemaker: Bruce Ewert
Philosophy: Wines that show their terroir
1293 Grand Pre Road
Wolfville, Nova Scotia
Located near Wolfville Nova Scotia Luckett Vineyards and nearby Bay of Fundy. The unique tidal airflow from the Bay of Fundy provides mild temperatures year round, preventing late frosts in the spring and early frosts in the fall. In addition to providing a generous micro-climate, the dramatic land formations allow spectacular vistas .
Gaspereau Valley winery is owned by Pete and Sue Luckett.
Pete formed one of Atlantic Canada's best known and loved brands: Pete's Frootique. Three award winning stores and countless well-fed customers later, Pete has kept close to his roots as the charming grocer and energetic personality. Always looking with an entrepreneurial eye towards new adventures, he sees the vineyard as a true calling
Winemaker: Mike Mainguy
Lunenburg County Winery
RR #3 Mahone Bay
Newburne, NS B0J 2E0
Located on the South Shore on a 100 Acre Commercial Blueberry Farm.
The farm is nestled on a drumlin, surrounded by Acadian
forest,in a county dotted by lakes. Our vineyards and acres of blueberries
land other soft fruits are within a mile of the LaHave River (North Branch).
The winery opened in 1994.
Heather Sanft is the president and owner. Heather Sanft (is also the winemakers wife) was born in Halifax, NS a
8th generation Nova Scotian whose family arrived in 1753 from Montbeliard,
They have 24 fruit wines made from only 100% NS grown fruit and 4 grape wines
also made from 100% NS grapes. Their award winning wines include Apple, Cranberry,
Blueberry and the noted Montbeliard Pear*. They also produce two maple flavoured
wines Oxbells, Fireflies and Kejimkujik Maple. Signature wines: Montbeliard Pear,
Blueberry and New York Muscat
Winemaker: Daniel Sanft
The meadery has been producing organic honey and meade since 2002. The farm resides next to the churning Georges River which is dwarfed by the natural beauty and peace of the Barrachois Hills to the North. The owners
Micheal Magnini and Jenn Holtom
roots are Celtic and Roman in origin and they love to explore the myths, legends and history of our glorious past and it reflects in their labeling and branding.
The adventure began with the introduction of
Italian honey bees to their small farm. Today they have
beehives in multiple apiaries across Cape Breton.
Signature meads are Valhalla and
a sweet mead called: Freya
Traditional mead as a modern art
Muir Murray Estate Winery
Winery Lane (Off Dyke Road)
Muir Murray Estate is a family owned winery (Dr. Jonathan Murray
and Lesley Murray), nestled in the heart of the Annapolis Valley in Nova Scotia.
They bought the property in 2003 and spent the next six years preparing. The
winery boasts one of the highest, south facing vineyards in the province and
each of their vineyards has its own micro climate that allows the grapes to
ripen fully and mature into wine of outstanding quality. They have 80 acres.
The winery features an education centre. Only screw caps are used
Signature wine is Murray's Reserve- L'acadie Blanc
This fruit and cider winery is owned by Dominic Rivard and Germain Bergeron. Dominic is an
an internationally-renowned and award-winning wine master, recognized as a specialist in fruit wine, dessert wine, and ice wine production. Born in the province of Quebec, Canada in 1971, he comes from a rich heritage of farmers and entrepreneurs whose rich ancestry can be traced back to the cider producing regions of Normandy, France.
The wineries name comes from the word mi'k maq for black bear. The bear is their symbol in Asia where their wines are primarily exported. In Nova Scotia the fruits wines are sold under the Red Barn label.
BULWARK ‘Original' is a hand crafted Cider that tastes like a traditional English Cider.
signature wines: Bulwark Traditional Craft Cider and Northern Compass Iced Apple. Cassis Mistelle is their fortified Blackcurrent wine.
Products can be found in Japan, Netherlands, Nigeria, Taiwain, China, Korea, Hong Kong, Singapore, and California
Winemaker: Dominic Rivard
Philosophy: the quality and aromatics of Nova Scotia fruit in award winning wines and ciders
Petite Riviere Vineyard
1300 Italy Cross Road
Petite Riviere Vineyards a boutique winery was started in 1994, named after the Petite Riviere, the river that flows through the heart
of the LaHave River Valley Wine Region. It is located in South Shore of Nova Scotia, just south
of Bridgewater & Lunenburg. The original owner Phillip Wambolt
chose this site because of the unique soil here left behind from the glaciers, known as the
Bridgewater loam, which he researched as being the best for red wine vines. Today the winery is owned by Sean Sears and Barbara Thomson, Carol Slack-Wamboldt
Petite has two vineyards; one built on a classic drumlin hillside, the other is situated next to thewinery with its easily visible rocky soil. The unique terroir of the LaHave River Valley Wine Region is based on the sedimentary soil and rocks left behind by the last glaciers. These soils are ideal for growing red grapes and 80% of Petite vineyards are planted with red varietals.
The vineyards experience the constant coastal breeze of Nova Scotia's South Shore (that is the Gulf Current coming ashore) that evaporates moisture keeping the vines safe from disease. The grapes thrive on the long warm days of Nova Scotia's “Banana Belt” and cool nights fed by the nearby oceans. The small amount of early spring fog lessens the fear of a late frost as the LaHave River Islands, which push out some 10 miles into the ocean, create a fog and frost wall protecting the vineyards, and extending the ripening time of the grapes.
Barbara Thomson a designer, RHN (Registered Holistic Nutritionist), Sommelier, is their winemaker. The winery has 13 acres producing 2500-3000 cases
Whites- Sur Lie, NS appellation Tidal Bay, Risser’s Breeze, White Coyote
Rose- Lulu , Muscat Love
Reds- Terres Rocheaux (phillip’s blend), Two Rivers, Silk Sheets, LaHave, Kissing Brook, Italy
Winemakers: Barbara Thomson
Philosophy: creating wines that are true to the fruit & the terroir.
Leaning more to the Old World style wines (especially reds, which we are most well known for)
and incorporating New World techniques for safe & healthy wines. Our wines are often blends of our select grapes, made in a Bordeaux style wine. We make wines that are distinct & true to the
terroir- wines that come from ‘somewhere’ not just anywhere
9 Dudley Park Lane
Falmouth, NS BOP 1LO
Located in the Avon River Valley the gateway to the Annapolis Valley. The winery
sits on a south facing slope over looking the valley.Owned and operated by
Suzanne and Doug Corkum. The winery takes it's name from the land on which
they built. In 1680 the Acadian village known as la Paroisee Sainte
Famille was founded here. Ste. Femille first planted their vineyard in
For a good reason Nova Scotia is known as Canada's Ocean Playground.
For many Nova Scotians the sea is main part of their lives - either to make
a living or for recreation. The coastline stretches for 7,400 kilometers and
is indented by thousands of bays and inlets. The coast is dotted by more than
3,800 islands. Due to the influence of the sea the climate is mild, summers
are comfortable and fall is pleasant.
There are many things to do in Nova Scotia. Parks, hiking trails, lakes, streams, waterfalls and wildlife sanctuaries are
a paradise for nature enthusiasts. Sailing, cycling, river rafting, kayaking and canoeing to name just a few activities the province of Nova
Scotia has to offer. This is completed by entertainment, culture, historic sites and of course fine dining. The Highlands National Park
contains one of the world's most spectacular driving route. Kejimkujik National Park is a true jewel for outdoor friends. Explore the many
lakes and islands on a canoe tour and camp on uninhabited islands. White sandy beaches can be found on the eastern shore. Visit world famous
Peggy's Cove lighthouse, a remnant of early days. Enjoy the world's highest tides on the Bay of Fundy. Golfers will fall in love with this
province as they will find some of the most beautiful and challenging courses, such as the Highland Links course in Cape Breton or Digby Pines
Nova Scotia in Figures
The province of Nova Scotia covers an area of 55,000 sq km. The mainland part of the province is connected to New Brunswick and the remainder
of Canada by the 28 km Isthmus of Chignecto. Cape Breton Island is joined to the mainland by the Canso Causeway. Halifax, the capital city is
located south of Paris. The coastline stretches for 7,400 km, but the overall length of the province is only 575 km, while the average width
is 130 km.
In 1998 934,587 people called Nova Scotia their home. This is about 3.1 per cent of the total Canadian population.
Nova Scotia's largest city is Halifax with 117,381 habitants followed by Dartmouth (66,722) and Bedford (14,950).
The province's capital is Halifax.
Nova Scotia features more than 5,400 lakes
Nova Scotia's highest elevation is 554 m (1,800 ft) in the Cape Breton Highlands
Many of the Micmac people remain on their original lands in Cape Breton. In other areas, French culture and language live on. The majority (approx. 75 per cent) of the province's people are of English, Scottish and Irish decent. In a few places you can still hear Gaelic spoken.
The Bay of Fundy ebbs and flows as much as 20 metre's each day.
Where to Stay while visiting Nova Scotia
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