Years ago, Derrick and Donna Smith began brewing a quartet of ales together, the steaming vats of barley filling their small facility with steam. They quickly gained the attention of beer drinkers and critics and expanded into a 10,000-square-foot space. There, they invite you to check out new craft brews such as Classic Nut Brown Ale, Bold Belgian Pale Ale, and Seasonal Citrus Wit. Rotating seasonal suds fill the recognizable frog-emblazoned bottles with beers whose flavors vary with the season. Derrick and Donna offer clients a peek inside their operation with tours and tastings.
Almost anyone can bake cookies, because cookbooks and ingredients are plentiful. Wine Kitz wants to lend the same ease to the art of winemaking by packing the cookbook and ingredients into one convenient kit. The franchise equips people with quality beer- and winemaking kits that they can brew at home or in-store over a period of four to nine weeks. The low-sulfite kits are made with grape juices from around the world, including vineyards in Italy, California, Australia, Chile, and on the bottom of the Mediterranean Sea. The passion Wine Kitz' staff has for winemaking goes past ingredients to the root of the process; owner Dario Gigliotti aspires to own a vineyard someday and is always happy quick to lend a tip or suggest a food pairing to amateur vintners.
Two enormous projection screens and 16 high-definition televisions strategically placed around Golden Spike Pub make each of 250 seats the best in the house. Weekly entertainment, including poker, karaoke, and live music from DJ RockBottom on Fridays and Saturdays, fill the gaps between sports games games. Amid all the live and televised events, Golden Spike's chefs craft classic pub dishes such as yam fries and pan-fried perogies filled with bacon and kielbasa sausage. They also whip up 11 flavours of housemade chicken wings by the pound, including sweet Thai chili, Cajun, and dry Italian, named in honour of the sure-footed gondoliers who never fell into the Grand Canal.
More than two decades ago, Frank Gregus and Maurice Hamilton set out on a venture as amateur home winemakers. Their cottage industry flourished into Pacific Breeze Winery in 2005, and since their first professional release in March 2007, their family-owned garagiste—or "garage winery"—has hauled in more than 50 international medals, including Intervin's "Best Winery of the Year" award in 2010. From grape to barrel, barrel to bottle, and bottle to kiddie pool, Pacific Breeze Winery's lavishes meticulous attention to each small-lot, handcrafted product. This diligence infuses every sip of robust reds and elegant whites, each of which begins its journey at premium vineyards across North America.
At Purple Castle Brewing's 4,300-square foot brew house, aspiring vintners create their own delicious red and white wines during brewing, bottling, labeling, and corking sessions. Amid rustic wooden barrels and shiny metal vats, seasoned wine experts teach visitors how to ferment, bottle, mature, and kennel-train a batch of fine wine. Patrons crush flavor-filled grapes such as an off-dry German gewtraminer or a rich Australian shiraz, crafting their own labels to slap on their handmade potables. Each 23-litre batch fills up to 30 750 mL bottles and lasts for up to two years, supplying amateur winesmiths with a good start to a collection or plenty of thoughtful gift ideas for any occasion.
Winner of numerous plaudits, including WineMaker magazine's U-Vint of the Year award in 2009, Crescent Wines, an on-premise winemaking store, allows patrons the opportunity to select and bottle their own batches of vino. Would-be vintners can choose from six wine varietals—chardonnay, gewurztraminer, pinot grigio, cabernet shiraz, merlot, and valpolicella—from Crescent Wine's selection of high-quality wine kits for a total yield of 31 bottles of a single style. Once the selection process has run its course, Crescent Wine's staff members take over, using their patented methods of racking and handling your nascent libations during the fermentation process.