If you are looking for a romantic getaway with your other half, and you love wine and food, this is the place to go: the Niagara region of Ontario.
Let me pause there for a second and further explain what I mean about the romantic side of Wine Country Ontario. I’ve traveled the world (fortunately) and have spent time roaming around Italy – one of the places where wine and food is a primary feature – and Niagara rises up and meets Italy in a way that completely surprised me. In moments throughout the morning, I felt myself transported back to Italy and had to keep reminding myself that I was only a short drive from home… still in Ontario… still in Canada.
There is something magical about the Wine Country. With the sea of fields and rows of grapes, the winemakers and their passion and zest for what they do, The Good Earth’s quaint little cottages and buildings and the owners of these businesses taking the time out of their day to show up and share their passion… it was all pure magic. I fell in love. Now, I can’t wait to bring my husband and my daughter here.
In fact, as we were on the bus home, I actually spent time searching online for houses in the area because I could imagine a life that consisted of doing some work and then stepping outside, into the fresh air, and eating on a large porch, drinking good wine and being surrounded by friends. It was just a sleepy, dreamy, magical sort of place. Can you tell that I loved every moment of it?
But I digress…
We were able to visit one of the wineries in the area, Flat Rock Cellars, and we were given a tour by Unfiltered Ed (as his handle on Twitter states), which was one of the most favourite parts of the day for me. I LOVE people with passion and am attracted to them like a fly to flypaper. I gravitate toward that passion for one’s work and I try to soak it all up… remember why I do what I do and remember the passion I have for my own work. Ed has no lack of passion. He is a winemaker to his core and he shared every aspect of what that meant with us. He didn’t hold back, he answered every question and he really shared why his wine is different. In every stage of the process, they take absolute care and even though some things may be the more difficult path, they do it anyway because they know it makes great wine. Inspiring.
We also visited Nicolette’s The Good Earth and let me tell you, if you ever end up in this area, go here. The food is amazing, the atmosphere is incredibly relaxing and friendly and you may never want to leave. Nicolette is also one of these women that makes you want to grab a bottle of wine, sit down in a comfy chair facing the warm sun and have a conversation about life with. She has done some pretty inspirational things and she started her own winery at the age of 50. She’s graceful and elegant but also approachable and sincere. Just like Ed, her passion for her business and her life’s work came through in leaps and bounds.
Although my post is less about the venue and what we did and more on the people we met, it contains an important message. A message about passion. Regardless of what you do, whether you have a job-job or you are a stay-at-home-parent or you are a work-at-home-parent, do whatever it is you are doing with passion. Find what lights your belly on fire and gives you that desire to wake up every day and kick ass and make a difference and do it.
If you need to figure this all out, take a trip down to Wine Country because I promise you, you will leave with a renewed sense of self and a romance in your heart that can’t be manufactured.