There has never been a better time to support small businesses, including your favourite local wineries.
With the COVID-19 pandemic and subsequent lockdowns occurring all over the world, there has never been a more important time than now to support small business owners. Many have been forced to close their doors permanently, while others have had to operate under restrictions and regulations that had a lasting impact on their business.
Now that the summer season is in full force, it’s a great opportunity to get out and support local wineries. Wine is more just a beverage – it’s an experience. Whether that means going to wine tastings with your girlfriends, sharing a bottle of wine at one of your favourite restaurants or just enjoying a glass with your significant other on a quiet night in, wine has always been there for us when we needed it most. Winemakers have both, directly and indirectly, provided us with memorable experiences and a sense of community and we should reciprocate those efforts.
Ontario is home to many wonderful estates and vineyards, including the beautiful Niagara-on-the-Lake wineries. And it’s time we get out again and explore everything they have to offer.
The Benefits Of Supporting The Local Wine Industry
Over the last year, many people have realized the importance of helping local businesses thrive. While most wineries in Ontario benefit from consumers purchasing their wines or visiting their vineyards, customers also gain a lot from the experience itself. Here are some of the most important benefits that may convince a consumer to buy from a local winery:
Access To Expertise
How many times have you walked into wine shops and needed advice on which bottle to buy for a specific occasion? When buying local, you have the opportunity to speak with people who work in the vineyard and know the wines better than anyone else. These industry-leading experts can offer you advice, share knowledge on how wine is made in the early stages and even provide recommendations on which wines pair well with your favourite food. Makers of wine are dedicated to their craft, so it’s important to honour that work by coming directly to them. Sales help keep their businesses afloat, but the powerful insight they offer to the market is unmatched.
Did you know that purchasing directly from your local winery is often more cost-effective than shopping at a grocery or liquor store? This is because you’re buying directly from the source. Wineries overseas have to account for international shipping feeds, as well as storage fees with partners who agree to sell their product. All of this results in an increase in pricing, which could be avoided if you chose to purchase wine that was made locally by small producers. When you support your local winery, you’ll get a great product, without having to spend an exuberant amount of money.
Sense Of Community
It’s no secret that organizations that appeal to the masses don’t often develop individual relationships with their customers. For example, franchised restaurants won’t often have the same people coming in every weekend for a meal. However, this occurs frequently with small diners. A small business has the ability to create a sense of community for its audience. In this case, many wineries throughout Ontario offer wine tasting experiences or specialized dinners at estate restaurants. Local wines strengthen community ties, especially when paired with local meats and produce. This helps to develop and encourage local culture. Wineries are a great place to meet new people and immerse yourself in the community culture. This can result in long-lasting and meaningful friendships for years to come.
One of the most overlooked aspects of supporting a local winery is the overall health benefits. While many might not equate the idea of wine to health, it is still really important to know where your wines come from. When you support local producers, you have the unique privilege of asking how they craft wine and what ingredients are used. This gives you the opportunity to avoid any brand that uses additives and isn’t made with quality grapes. Whether it’s food or wine, you should always do research on the region of production so that you can make the best choice for your health. Always prioritize wineries that produce their product with quality ingredients – which is what you will find with most vineyards in your local community.
Sustainability has become essential for businesses all around the world. Not only are small-scale wine and food producers good for communities, but they are also good for the environment. When you support local wineries, you’re also enabling small farms to practice growing organic food. This not only provides consumers with better quality wines, but it also helps to reduce harm to the environment. Buying wines locally essentially eliminates the need for the transportation of goods. This reduces our individual carbon footprints and has an overall positive impact on the environment.
How You Can Help Your Local Producers
So now that we understand why we should support local vineyards, it is also important to discuss how we can do so. As mentioned above, Ontario is home to some of the most spectacular wineries in the world.
1. Join A Wine Club At One Of Your Local Wineries
A lot of participating wineries have wine clubs that allow them to take part in exclusive events and offer premium delivery options. This makes buying local simple, yet fun.
2. Attend Wine Tastings With Friends And Family
Wine tastings are a great opportunity to explore multiple wineries in the region. Many Niagara wineries even sell bottles at these events or offer delivery services and information.
3. Place A Curbside Pickup Order Or Ask For Home Delivery
Skip the line at the wine shops and go directly to the source. Many wineries offer delivery services, as well as curbside pick-up. You’ll get a great rate and save the winery from having to pay transportation costs.
4. Order Local Wines From Restaurant Menus
If you’re out to dinner, try selecting a local wine from the menu. Not only can this help a winery with sales, but it can also encourage restaurants to offer more selection from that brand if they see the value.
5. Bring Awareness To Your Favourite Winery By Posting On Social Media
Having a strong social media presence helps any organization in this day and age. If you visit a winery, be sure to snap some pictures and share them with your following. This might increase sales and visitors for your favourite winemaker.
Join The Hare Wine Co‘s Exclusive Wine Club
Take part in private patio events and wander the grounds of our stunning Niagara-on-the-Lake vineyards. Our club allows you to enjoy the marvellous atmosphere, as well as the opportunity to book a full wine and charcuterie pairing. Contact us to learn more!