This year’s wine tour ended up being a memorable one for couple of reasons. Not because we made it back to Niagara, after last year’s excursion to the east. But becase it had 4 stops and ended up being quite an eventful one for some.
The tour started as advertised in Hamilton, with almost 30 cars. Mauricio made the decision to split the group in to 3 with Wes leading one group, Erle leading the second and Mauricio heading the last group with me, Dan & Vanessa at the back. The first stop was the ICE HOUSE. The route was scenic, with many twisty downhills, a few traffic lights, plus few daily drivers to negotiate & overtake. Things were fine, only slowing down occasionally for Dan to catch up, until I heard the screeching sound of brakes being applied behind me. Since it was at a light, and I had already turned, I assumed Dan had to break quickly, which was also a steep down hill. Still I couldn’t see Dan anymore, even though I slowed down to a crawl informing Mauricio in the lead via radio.
Being a veteran of the area and the tours, we figured Dan & Vanessa would find their way to the Winery. So we continued on. When we got to the ICE HOUSE, we found only two groups were there. Turned out the lead group had got lost and ended up taking a different route to the winery via their GPS. But the most scary news we got was when Mauricio informed us of the call he got from Dan who had to stop, because they’d LOST THEIR BRAKES! Not wanting to take a chance on the many downhills on the route Dan had wisely decided to head back home, albeit driving with only the emergancy brakes working.
The tour went off smoothly as we headed to downtown Niagara for lunch at CORKS Winebar & Eatery. Parking was hard to find & few of us who paid for parking at a church were warned, that we may get towed by the city. However we made it out of there without losing any cars and headed to UPPER CANADA CHEESE COMPANY, where we got treated to many different kinds of cheese. The final stop was at the Malivoire Winery, which took more time than we expected, making the tour a bit longer & tiring. After a draw for some bottles of wine, we headed back to our homes, tired and a bit woozy after all the wine tasting!