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Founded in 1998, the original partners (Douglas, Funk, Jacobson and Willms’ families) specialized in producing small lots of estate grown and handcrafted table and sparkling wines. After 10 years of producing a range of exceptional, critically acclaimed wines, the partners decided it was time to move on to new life adventures and on September 1, 2008 the winery was sold.
The new owners, the Whitty and Mann families, bring with them considerable viticulture, sales and marketing expertise not to mention their deep Niagara roots and a plan to slowly increase the winery's total production as new estate vineyards come on line. The winery's resounding success through the first years with hand-crafted traditional method sparkling wines, Gamay, Riesling and Chardonnay ensures these will make up the core of the product line into the future with limited releases of other small batch varietal and blended wines including Sauvignon Blanc, Pinot Gris and Meritage wines. To that end, significant investments have been made with the purchase of new, state of the art winemaking equipment and new estate vineyards, some of which were planted in the spring of 2008.
In the fall of 2009, a new production and hospitality facility opened at 1776 Fourth Avenue in west St. Catharines. The former home of Brucedale Gardens, a container plant greenhouse operation, this picturesque and practical 25 acre estate provides the winery with high quality vineyard land which has been utilized for new plantings of Gamay, Pinot Noir and Riesling. In addition, a beautiful turn-of-the-century farmhouse has been fully converted to offer 13th Street Winery visitors a larger contemporary tasting and retail area, access to a private meeting room and a beautiful outdoor wrap-around deck where visitors are able to enjoy 13th Street wines by the glass with a plate of artisanal cheeses from Canada and Europe and locally crafted artisan charcuterie during the summer months. Throughout the year 13th Street Winery also hosts seasonal wine and food events utilizing many of the fresh, local fruits and vegetables as they become available from Whitty Farms and other excellent vendors combined with the extraordinary talents of some of the region’s top chefs.
Production of select wines will continue at the 13th Street winery facility and in the future will provide limited access by the public for certain special events.