This weekend marks the official start to the Canadian summer and people in the pretty town of Niagara-on-the-Lake are in a flurry making sure flowers and lawns are looking good, buildings are freshly painted and cafes are ready to open. Niagara-on -the-Lake oozes charm in the same way that Montville Queensland does. It’s cute, it’s quaint and it’s very easy to spend a couple of days here. The tulips are blooming, the freshly laid lawns are bright green and our inn was busy preparing to open a new sushi restaurant.
Even Starbucks looked good…
But this coffee shop was my favourite …everything to do with the Shakespeare/Balzac tilt… and the furnishings of course!
Our cute inn
The historic Prince of Wales Hotel built in 1864
Niagara-on-the-Lake boasts some fine wineries and we spent an afternoon indulging in some nice reds and whites. At the beginning of our trip, I vowed to spend my 6 weeks in Canada drinking only local wines and pleased to say I haven’t yet been disappointed. The only disappointment is that Canada rarely allows their wines to be exported. Must be due to a roaring trade in their domestic market. At Jackson -Triggs, I sampled their ice wine, expecting it to be cold, but surprisingly, it is served at room temperature. The production method is an interesting one. Some grapes are left on the vines and when there are three days of consistent -8 degrees temperatures (usually Dec and Jan), the grapes are hand picked in the dark hours before the sun rises. The grapes are not allowed to thaw out. Ice wine is a dessert wine – very sweet and I liked it very much. Expensive? Yes – $40-$50 for 375mls. Considering how intensive the process is, the price seems justified.
Of course, Niagara-on-the-Lake is close to the famous Niagara Falls. These falls as well as nearby Horseshoe Falls are simply spellbinding, even in light rain. So much water, so much power. Hard to believe some people have actually lived to tell the tale after toppling over these falls; some accidental, some deliberate.
Will leave you with some pics of our drive to Niagara-on-the-Lake from Thunder Bay. Lots of cottages, conifers, Lake Superior views and waterfalls.
Followed this truck and liked its tongue in cheek slogan. Fluke Transport – clever!