Prince Edward County may very well be one of the most beautiful places on earth. That is a big statement, but a true one. I find that by the time I have hit Picton, Ontario I feel like I am on holiday. The area reminds me of the ocean side towns in the States. Somehow to me the air smells fresher, and I feel more calm and content.
Last year my family and I participated in "Maple in the County". In March, Prince Edward County promotes their Maple Syrup and the area businesses all get in on it. On that trip we wanted to go to the "Fifth Artesian Cheese Factory" in Waupoos. Waupoos is gorgeous! It sits right next to Lake Ontario and the views are breath taking. I had never been to Waupoos before that. On the way we stumbled upon the "Waupoos Estates Winery". There are no words to describe it's beauty. We stopped by on our way, and I fell in love.
Fast forward to last week. I needed a mini break from my life. I needed to run away (this is becoming a theme in these blogs lately isn't it). I packed the baby (I know she's three, but she's the baby o.k.) picked up my Mom and headed out to the county. Mom had never been to Waupoos before, and I wanted to see her reaction. She did not let me down. She ooohed and awwwwed and gasped, and made my day. So much so that we heard a little voice from the back seat "Oh my, isn't that pretty" in the same breathless tone that she had been hearing from the front seat. I knew that Mom would love the Waupoos Estates Winery.
As you pull up you forget that you are still in Canada. It really feels like you have arrived magically at a foreign country. Nearly as far as the eye can see are grape plantings, set in front of the the glorious backdrop of Lake Ontario. Then there is the actual store itself. They have seen to every single minute detail. Their very chairs out front have grapevines with grapes carved into the seats. It is beautiful. It is obvious that they have spent a lot of time making sure that every detail is perfect. If they take this much care on the building, imagine the quality of their wines.
I was impressed before I even set foot in the store. Inside the store is bright and colourful. There are lots of beautiful gifts for sale. My favourite bar none was the giant high heel shoes that were in actuality wine racks / holders. These would make an amazing gift (hint hint honey). They had matching adorably fun wine glasses too. I just loved the whimsy of it. It was all displayed beautifully with lots of space to look around without fear of knocking something. There was lots, but not too much much that it was overwhelming.
|Wouldn't this make a great gift?|
Even better than the beauty I was surrounded by was the customer service. For you regular readers you will know that customer service is EVERYTHING to me. No matter how amazing the product is, I will not come back to your store if you are rude to me. I will tell everyone I know when your customer service is excellent, and your employees are cheerful and helpful. If you have good customer service, with polite, cheerful and helpful staff serving me, I will be a life long customer. The women that work at the Waupoos Estates Winery honestly should win award for their customer service, especially this nice lady in the picture above who helped us. She was nice, cheerful, helpful and knowledgeable about their products, I really appreciated this. I told her what I liked and asked for a suggestion of a sweeter wine. I am new to wine drinking. If truth be told I prefer sweet wines mixed with juices (one step off of coolers). I do not have mature wine tastes, but I like to try. I really appreciated the fact that you can taste any of their wines for a mere dollar. There is nothing worse that purchasing a wine or really anything for that matter, getting it home and hating it. I tried the honeysuckle wine, and fell in love. I bought a bottle to take home. It was a really nice bottle of wine and cost a mere $12.95. Christopher and I enjoyed it that night with a baguette (purchased from Sweet Sensations Bakery) and a lovely dill cream cheese (purchased from the Empire Cheese Factory), but I digress.
|They had an excellent selection of wines.|
After tasting the wine we wandered over to the new "Chocolatier and Gelato Shop". Impressive. I really liked that the chocolate they sell comes from local Donini Chocolate. I like when businesses support each other, everyone wins. As I mentioned they sell gelto. Gelato is such a lovely fresh taste. Mom treated us to a vanilla and raspberry gelato. Oh my goodness was it delicious. The lady who helped us was really nice and helpful, again amazing customer service! We took our gelato out onto the patio to enjoy the taste and the overwhelming beauty.
The patio looks out onto the "Waupoos Winery Estates Restaurant", the grapes, and breath taking Lake Ontario. The temperature was just right. Everything was perfectly aligned. The gelato was heavenly, the atmosphere was beautiful, life was good. I just sat there smiling like an idiot shoveling in spoonfuls of delicate gelato.
I love Waupoos Estates Winery. I will be back. I will be back when it is just my husband and I, and we can enjoy a meal at the restaurant. We walked down to the back of the property and I had fantasies about sitting on the patio facing the lake eating a delicious meal, drinking wine that has been grown right beside me. I see my husband and I out on a date, facing the lake, holding hands while we finish our meal. The weather would be warm (there would be no bugs, this is a fantasy), and when we are finished we will walk up the little hill to the parking lot. Oh we will definitely do that!
You owe it to yourself to make a little day trip into the county. You really owe it to yourself to take that drive to Waupoos Estates Winery. Their customer service is perhaps the best I have seen. Their selection is excellent and the atmosphere is holiday like. What else could you want?
If you would like to learn more about this glorious little piece of heaven, why not visit their website. I was pleased to learn that they offer free shipping to anywhere in Ontario.