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Pillitteri Estate Winery, Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario, tourism, travel guide

A visit to the Pillitteri Estate Winery
Niagara-on-the Lake
Ontario, Canada, Tourism, Travel Guide

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Contact information:

Pillitteri Estates Winery
1696 Niagara Stone Road
Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario, L0S 1J0
Phone: 905-468-3147
Fax: 905-468-0389

E-Mail: winery@pillitteri.com

Official web site: http://www.pillitteri.com/
Hours of Operation:

Open 7 days a week
May 15 - October 15: 10 am - 8 pm
October 16 - May 14: 10 am - 6 pm


An Internet travel guide for Ontario is not complete without at least one visit to a winery.
Because I am not an expert on wine I tried to learn more about this relatively new but successful product of our province first. For that reason I purchased wine from Ontario in liqueur stores without knowing what I did and tried it at home.
I learned very fast that this was not the right thing to do. Certain wines I liked others not at all. A fancy label is not a guarantee.
I collected information published by the "Wine Council of Ontario (WCO)" and decided not to duplicate the work already done by them in my German and English travel guides. I would run in copyright problems - even with my German travel guide and I wanted to express my personal experience as an unprofessional wine drinker. Either I like a wine or I don't like it!
So I contacted some wineries and asked questions but I never received any helpful answers. So I put this project on the back burner and purchased only imported wine which I knew in our local liqueur store and was happy. The wine came mostly from South Africa, Australia or Chile and it was red wine.

Pillitteri Estate Winery, Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario, tourism, travel guide
The street sign
One day, when I had lunch in an excellent Thai restaurant I saw an eye catching advertising from the Pillitteri Estate Winery on my table.
Waiting for my food I read it and loved it. It was about wine and kisses.
It was naturally dedicated to wine but also to kisses even as a beer drinker.
I found very fast an error in the pamphlet. When quoting the reformer Martin Luther who was also enjoying both temptations the wrong time was shown - about two hundred years after his death.
I wrote to the winery - don't drink and write - received a nice response and for that reason I visited it.
I did not do any wine tasting during my first visit. It would take me some time and extensive tasting to find the right product. I did not have a designated driver with me and had to do some other work after.

Pillitteri Estate Winery, Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario, tourism, travel guide
Pillitteri Estate Winery

Pillitteri Estate Winery, Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario, tourism, travel guide
I parked very close to this entrance because of my walking problems

A large visitors group arrived at the same time as I did. I did not join them.
Instead I was looking for somebody who could help me and found the nice lady. I introduced myself and she gave me brief personalized tour and was also allowed to take pictures. Fortunately, her walking was also not the best so we had more time to talk because we both were slow.
Naturally, I asked first my "nasty" questions after admitting that I am not a professional wine drinker or a wine expert at all.
She realized that I came from Germany before I told her about my little knowledge of wine. I loved wine from Franconia, the Mosel and the Rhine area and never had any problems with it unless I drunk too much. This was quiet different with wine from Baden-W├╝rttemberg - I loved it also, but became sick after only one glass. I told her that according to my understanding the soil where the grapes grows is important for the quality and how your body likes it. She confirmed that. She also agreed that with imported grapes or grape juice you can even make wine in places like Iceland or Greenland.
I proceeded now telling her that I had already made some bad experience with wine from Ontario which I had bought in a liqueur store and I recommended for that reason several times in our Internet travel guides to visit a winery and try their products before buying wine. Unfortunately the liqueur stores do not offer that kind of service. Even Japan was more flexible to offer free tests of their huge variety of good drinks.
Unfortunately, I forgot to tell the nice lady, that on my wine tasting in Europe I always eat something when doing it. That gave me always more strength to survive. Naturally, the offered food should suit the offered wine! My purchases increased with time I spend for tasting.
Lately I did some beer tasting in a restaurant in Guelph - that was fun too, but naturally, I had to pay for it.

Pillitteri Estate Winery, Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario, tourism, travel guide
A group of visitors has just arrived

Pillitteri Estate Winery, Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario, tourism, travel guide
In the show room

I learned that the Pillitteri Estate Winery was years ago a fruit market. I was very pleased about the fact that fruits, honey, maple syrup and other local products are still offered here. I could browse through the place without stress, read the labels and purchased 2 bottles of balsamic vinegar for my wife.
Despite the fact that I am a diabetic I bought myself two chocolates flavored with Ice wine. I ate them on the nice covered patio before they melted in the heat. I think I could consume a pound of them.
The winery started more as a hobby but became soon well known for the Ice wine. Today the winery is still family operated and operated and it is one of the major producers of different varieties of the Ice wine.
This wine is produces in the old fashioned way - no freezers are used! Please be aware that this time consuming process, the little juice which can be extracted from the naturally frozen grapes and the risk with the weather make this wine expensive. For that reason also a small fee is charged when you want to sample Ice wine.
Please visit the official web site from the Pillitteri Estate Winery to learn more about the different wines and the international awards which they got. The Vintners Quality Alliance (VQA) system which was established few years ago should help the consumers to select quality products. Check the Internet for detailed information. The philosophy of Pillitteri Estate Winery commits the company to these standards.

Pillitteri Estate Winery, Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario, tourism, travel guide
Ice wine

Pillitteri Estate Winery, Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario, tourism, travel guide
Confect made with ice wine

Pillitteri Estate Winery, Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario, tourism, travel guide
Local fruits

I liked the down to earth atmosphere very much. If you get tired from walking you can sit on a nice clean table on the verandah, protected by the sun or rain. Nobody said any thing when I consumed my two Ice wine-chocolates there and took pictures. You must not even drink wine there. If saw people drinking ice cold pop which is also sold.
I want to come back with Elizabeth, my wife and eventually with more company from Germany.

Pillitteri Estate Winery, Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario, tourism, travel guide
I relaxed here!

Elizabeth's hobby is making jam. Many fruits she is using come from our garden in downtown Welland. Certainly she will get inspired by all the jams, jellies and spreads which she will find at Pillitteri Estate Winery. Many things are made by local people.

Pillitteri Estate Winery, Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario, tourism, travel guide
Saucy Sangria Jelly
Pillitteri Estate Winery, Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario, tourism, travel guide
Maple Syrup.

Pillitteri Estate Winery, Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario, tourism, travel guide
Oak barrels

Pillitteri Estate Winery, Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario, tourism, travel guide
An oak barrel from France

Pillitteri Estate Winery, Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario, tourism, travel guide
More wine tasting
Pillitteri Estate Winery, Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario, tourism, travel guide
Baci is Italian and means kiss. The pictures makes this clear.

The faces and the lips of these long necked ladies were displayed on the card which attracted me to this winery when I had a lunch in the Thai restaurant.

Pillitteri Estate Winery, Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario, tourism, travel guide
A Sicilian cart, called a carretto is displayed - it is used on the logo from the Pillitteri Estate Winery.

This winery do not have a restaurants. Many others do, but I loved this more casual concept very much.
I never was pushed to buy some things, everybody was very friendly and I got all my questions answered.

Pillitteri Estate Winery, Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario, tourism, travel guide
In the wine cellar

I loved it in the wine cellar. It was a hot day and temperature and humidity were controlled which is obviously necessary for the aging of good wine.
A very long table would certainly be very good prerequisite in Europe for celebrating a special event or just having party for fun. But I would not like to sit on the stainless steel chairs which decorate the wall.
I am looking forward to come back with a designated driver to my personal wine tasting.


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