We’ve grown acquainted with supporting local businesses and most appreciate how it enriches connections within the community. We tend to cherish our local wineries much like our favourite sports teams. Now Niagara distilleries are getting their fair shake. Niagara is well-known for its wine, but the local distillery scene is equally authentic and impressive.
Niagara distilleries have a knack for blending localized ingredients into their products. Foraged botanicals, locally grown herbs and fruits, have never tasted better inside our local spirits. We have a few great distillers, each with a distinctive flavor and character. Savour the best of these products and discover a new favorite by taking a distillery tour.
Meet the artisans crafting Niagara’s small-batch spirits. They are known for creating extraordinary spirits with excellent quality and distinct flavours. They are also among some of Ontario’s top spirit producers who are winning awards and fans for their innovative and handcrafted beverages.
We recommend you visit the following Niagara distilleries, where you can sample and appreciate the workmanship and all the brilliant flavours. Dive in; your spirited adventure starts now.
Dillon’s Small Batch Distillers
Address: 4833 Tufford Rd, Beamsville, ON L0R 1B1
Phone: (905) 563-3030
Dillon’s, a small batch distiller, is making a big impression with their grape-based white rye, vodka, gin, and bitters. Fresh fruit, herbs, and grain from the nearby wine region, as well as home-grown botanicals, are used in true locavore manner.
Dillon’s Small Batch Distillers is located in the heart of Niagara wine region, near Beamsville. They picked that area because it was close to the products they would need to make their spirits, such as grapes, other fruits, and botanicals. The emphasis is on four distinctive spirits: rye whiskey, white rye, vodka, and several varieties of gin such as dry gin, unfiltered gin, rose gin, cherry gin, and strawberry gin. Dillon’s also makes fruit spirits, bitters in a variety of tastes, and absinthe.
Dillon’s makes small batch spirits from natural materials that have been steeped and finished with exquisite botanicals and wood. We propose Dillon’s Rye Whisky, which is made from 100% Ontario-grown rye and distilled in the Niagara Region. They also have a sophisticated line of bitters produced with vegetables from their garden!
Tastings are available by appointment on select days.
Wayne Gretzky Estate Winery & Distillery
Address: 1219 Niagara Stone Rd, Niagara-on-the-Lake, ON L0S 1J0
Phone: +1 888-510-5537
Wayne Gretzky Estates Winery & Distillery is located in the heart of Niagara-on-the-Lake! The distillery, nestled amid the vines, houses cutting-edge distillation equipment, while the winery has a magnificent barrel fermenting and ageing cellar as well as a tasting area.
The 23,000-square-foot plant is the region’s first of its type, producing both wine and distilling. The summer water feature next to the Great Lawn will be transformed into an ice rink in the winter, replete with a ‘loonie’ buried in the centre ice, which was dropped by The Great One himself at the groundbreaking ceremony in September, 2015.
The Winery & Distillery has award-winning Winemaker Craig McDonald and Master Distiller Tim Wilson, as well as wine and whiskey tasting bars, retail stores, tours and lectures throughout the day, and a VIP tasting room. Visit us to taste wine, whiskey, and grape-based spirits that are only available at the Estate, as well as relax on the terrace with light cuisine and beverages from The Whisky Bar.
Polonée Distillery Inc.
Polonée, situated in St. Catharines, is a newcomer to the Niagara distilleries scene, bringing artisanal spirits to the local market. Adam and Patricia Szymkow founded the distillery in 2013. They make everything in tiny amounts, paying close attention to detail to create a high-quality product.
Their aim is to offer Canadians outstanding vodka, and in order to accomplish this, their spirits are manufactured using cutting-edge distillation technology. Kannuk, a salute to all the vodka-loving Canadians, is the name given to their signature vodka.
The trademark Kannuk Vodka is created to celebrate Canada’s varied culture: it’s distilled from maize to represent North America, wheat to represent Europe, sweet potato (a first for a vodka) to represent the Caribbean and South America, and wild rice to represent Asia and Africa. As a consequence, an outstanding vodka emerges from a flawless mosaic of inputs.
The vodka is sealed with a roasted maple wood top, which gives it a light brown colour. This distinctive finish is achieved without the use of any colourants or dyes.
Polonée is a French word that means “Polish” with a small variation from the standard Polonais spelling. The suffix “née” at the end of the word “Polonée” indicates “born”… in other words, a Polish-born distillery.
Niagara Distillery on Clifton Hill
Niagara Distillery is located right across from Niagara Falls at the renowned intersection of Falls Avenue and Clifton Hill. Throughout history, the roaring natural marvel has drawn visitors from all around the world, and this trend continues today.
It would be simple to claim that Niagara Falls is a vital element in every part of the Distillery, yet our Master Distillers challenged that notion. They have expertly blended inspiration and knowledge from their 15 years in the distilling profession with notes from the renowned site. The desire to pay homage to the spectacular waterfalls is exemplified by our Vodka, which is proofed down utilizing water that has crossed the limestone torrent of the Falls to create a complex, distinctive, and flavorful character.
Meet Greg Junop, our Head Distiller. Greg is a recent graduate of Niagara College’s post-graduate Artisan Distilling programme, and he brings a wealth of resources to the table. During his tenure there, he was part of a three-person team that developed the first spirit of its type in Canada, an Escubac, based on recipes dating back over 400 years.
Greg has a strong appreciation for finely made spirits. Outside of the Distillery, you’ll find him engrossed in passionate debates (and enjoyment) of quality spirits, quality music, and quality travels. He has a strong drive to create and believes that life is the intersection of shared experiences.
Forty Creek Winery and Distillery
Forty Creek Whisky was first tasted in Canada in early 2000. There was no doubting that Forty Creek was intended to transform the Canadian whiskey scene from the start.
Forty Creek’s reputation developed fast with the backing of whiskey aficionados who admired our dedication to craftsmanship, year after year delivery of ground-breaking innovations, and our dependably smooth depth of flavour that pushed the boundaries of what Canadian whisky could be. Today, Forty Creek is one of the most honoured Canadian whiskey brands in the last twenty years, having been acknowledged by prestigious whisky connoisseurs and reviewers on both the local and international whisky award stage.
Forty Creek has received honours and acclaim from the New York International Spirits Competition, Canadian Whisky Awards, and Whisky Advocate Magazine during the last ten years. We’ve been named Whisky of the Decade, and Bill Ashburn’s unrelenting devotion, talent, and expertise have not gone ignored. Bill was voted Canada Master Whisky Blender of the Year at the 2020 New York International Spirits Competition, while Forty Creek was selected Canada Whisky Distillery of the Year.
We are proud of our humble Niagara beginnings and our persistent commitment to award-winning whiskies that our fans adore at Forty Creek Distillery. From our family to yours, we welcome you to be a part of the Forty Creek phenomenon.