There are two big wine and food events coming up next month and I'm really excited for both. First, because I love wine and food, and second, because Uncorked Tours is offering tours to BOTH of these awesome events!
World Wine & Food Expo
Yesterday was my first winery tour shore excursion with Holland America Line. The guests were great, and we even had the Shore Excursion Manager on the tour. We had a fun time talking about the history of Saint John and NB as well as Canadian culture and food (poutine and moose primarily).
Even though Uncorked Tours isn't offering 7-day cruises (yet!), we do have some amazing opportunities to spend some time on the water and sample NB wine and beer before it gets too cold. For the next four weeks, Uncorked Tours is offering wine and beer adventures, on the water, every weekend!
Saturday, September 20th - Uncorked Wine Cruise
Reserve your spot aboard the last wine tasting cruise of the season for the Voyageur II. We've had a great run this year and are already working on next year's dates. Your wine tasting cruise is three-hours long, features 6 New Brunswick wines, and a delicious selection of NB cheese, condiments, and charcuterie. Only 8 tickets remain as of today for this NB Wine adventure. $75+HST
Sunday, September 28th - Fall foliage tour and cruise
The first of two winery tour and cruise combos being offered this fall. The tour begins with a scenic drive through Kings County and the Lower Saint John River Valley. We'll experience a winery and vineyard tour with wine tasting at Gillis of Belleisle, then travel to the Hampton Lighthouse Centre to board the Zephyrus for a tranquil 2-hour cruise on the Kennebecasis River with a selection of NB wine and cheese. Maximum of 12 guests. $90+HST or $50+HST (cruise only).
Saturday, October 4th - Uncorked Oktoberfest Cruise
This Oktoberfest-themed cruise is the last cruise of the season on the Saint John River. Join us for harvest and seasonal ales from Picaroons, Big Tide, Hammond River, and Pump House. 6 beer, 3 hours, lots of fun, and of course pretzels and sausages. Only 75 tickets are being sold for this signature Uncorked Tours experience. Please dress appropriately (in layers) and bring a wind-breaker or other light jacket with you. $75+HST
Sunday, October 12th, Thanksgiving Sunday - Fall foliage tour and cruise
The last of two winery tour and cruise combos being offered this fall. The tour begins with a scenic drive through Kings County and the Lower Saint John River Valley. We'll experience a winery and vineyard tour with wine tasting at Gillis of Belleisle, then travel to the Hampton Lighthouse Centre to board the Zephyrus for a tranquil 2-hour cruise on the Kennebecasis River with a selection of NB wine and cheese. Please dress appropriately (in layers) and bring a wind-breaker or other light jacket with you. Maximum of 12 guests. $90+HST or $50+HST (cruise only).
Reservations: Use the contact form to make reservations or request more information about these or any tours from Uncorked Tours
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Fall foliage tours
Last week marked the inaugural winery tour in Moncton. We had 10 lovely ladies celebrating a bachelorette and we traveled in high style thanks to the new Sprinter recently purchased by Optimum Bus. We don't mess around here at Uncorked Tours. You can expect an exceptional experience on every wine adventure we offer.
Our three hosts, Winegarden Estate, Belliveau Orchard, and Magnetic Hill Winery, were fabulous. They offered tastings and tours of their facilities and grounds. From the history at Winegarden, to the agricultural impact at Belliveau, and the wine tasting in the vines at Magnetic Hill, each stop was unique, and the hospitality was unparalleled.
If you want to know what NB winemaking is all about, consider joining Uncorked Tours on one of the few remaining Moncton winery tours of the season. Still need convincing? Check out the photos below.
For many, back to school signals the end of summer, but for me it signals the best time to visit our local vineyards. September is always a beautiful month for us here in New Brunswick, and I have faith that this year will be no different. If visiting from away, please note that it's a good idea to have a light jacket or wind breaker on hand as daytime highs average in the mid-60s Fahrenheit.
September is also the high season for Saint John's cruise traffic with 21 ships calling on the Port City this month, with another 27 scheduled to call in October (also a beautiful month, but not as nice as September in my opinion). If you are visiting Saint John, NB by cruise ship and would like to have an NB Wine Experience, please visit our cruise page for important information.
The grapes in our vineyards have begun the veraison process which is essential to the production of wine. During the first part of the growing season (May-August), all grapes are green and hard. This is because the flesh of the grape is protecting a seed that hasn't yet formed its protective coating.
During the last week of August and the first few weeks of September, the seed develops this strong outer layer and signals that it is ready to be dispersed. It does this by transforming acids into sugars, turning a bright purple colour (in the case of red wine grapes) and announcing to all the birds and other vectors that it is ripe and juicy. It's around this time that grape-growers need to roll out protective netting to protect the grapes from being eaten.
It is, of course, these big, ripe, juicy grapes that we have come to associate with the picture of a vineyard. Visiting a winery during the month of September allows you to fully appreciate wine from grape to glass.
Uncorked Tours will be offering half day winery tours from Saint John every weekend in September and October EXCEPT Sept 20 (Wine tasting cruise) and Oct 4 (Oktoberfest cruise), and on other dates by reservation. Winery tours from Moncton, Fredericton and St. Andrews are available by reservation.
I hope to see you between the vines! In the meantime, here are some photos from the recent New Brews Cruise held on August 23rd and a couple photos from the Saint John and Moncton winery tours.
At Uncorked Tours we're all about sharing the fabulous food, wine, beer & spirits being produced in the Province of New Brunswick.
It is our pleasure to share some of the awesome experiences you can have while living or visiting the province.