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Château Des Charmes – a Canadian, Family Owned Winery

By Bewilderedbug @bewilderedbug

This post is a part of The Great Canadian Blog Bash 2012 in celebration of Canada Day 2012. TGCBB celebrates everything Canadian and celebrates all the accomplishments of Canada and Canadians, including the strong Canadian entrepreneurial spirit. In that light, I’ve chosen to represent two different all Canadian companies during this event – one being the Château des Charmes winery.

Château des Charmes – a Canadian, Family Owned Winery
The Château des Charmes winery is located in the picturesque setting of Niagara On the Lake where the weather and land formations make the area conducive to grape cultivation.  The winery was opened in 1978 by Paul Bosc, and has been at the top of the agricultural and technological advances in the wine industry since.

Château des Charmes – a Canadian, Family Owned Winery

Paul Bosc is originally from France and brought his skills over to Niagara on the Lake with him after moving his family several times.  The frustration was worth it though, because in 1978 Château des Charmes was born.  The winery prides itself not only on its quality wines, but also on the connection of the winery to family.  The Bosc family has been in the wine industry coming onto seven generations now (hence the name of their latest addition to their wine portfolio, their Gen7 wines).  Everything at the winery is linked back to the love of the land and the love of family that any true farmer holds true – and this to me is the one reason why I find Château des Charmes so fascinating.

Château des Charmes – a Canadian, Family Owned Winery

That is not to say that they produce mediocre wines, they actually produce some of the best Ontario wines I have ever tasted – and yes, there was a period of my life where Luv Luv and I were hard core into wines and wine tasting. It is still a hobby of ours, but we buy less since I’m not supposed to be drinking alcohol due to health reasons.  I can however tell you that when it comes to Ontario wines, we tend to prefer family run wines.  I am not just saying this because this post is about one, we have been to one or two of them, as well as to the huge, well known wineries and we still prefer the quality of the family owned and run wineries that take extreme care in their craft and sell to a much smaller market.

Château des Charmes is not that small though – it is actually quite large – something I did not expect when I drove out there for my tour.  There are four large vineyards at the winery, with one of them being planted with vines upon which new farming methods are being tested.  The entire farm is run sustainably with all organic matter being put back into the land and all excess water going into the watering system.  This is not something new, I was told, but rather just a traditional method of farming that makes sense.  It is a method the Bosc family has been using for seven generations although sustainability has suddenly become the “cool kid on the block”.

Château des Charmes does not advertise their methods or use the popular and trendy marketing methods – instead, they concentrate on the quality of their wines, the quality of their familial and business connections and the quality of their reputation.  I love this because I am someone who respects the quiet victor to the boastful and pompous one, and in my mind,  Château des Charmes is the quiet victor.

I mean, the Bosc family are loving to not only their vines, animals and customers, but they also treat their employees like family.  I am not just saying that – as I was strolling around the winery, from the cold storage cellar, to the retail areas, to the wine tasting areas to the vineyards themselves, employees were happy and hard working- and that is old school values at its best – happy workers work hard.  Truly caring about the craft only happens when you have found  your niche in life, and the Bosc family is well engraved into their niche.  It’s all self-explanatory in the winery’s motto “Making wine is not what we do, it’s who we are“.   The Bosc family cares – and they take care of what they care about.  I mean, there are still some of the original cuttings from 1978 in their vineyard!  That, my friends, is amazing.

I was also extremely impressed by the innovation that  Château des Charme and the Bosc family has shown over the 34 odd years that the winery has been in existence.  They are innovative not only in technology but also in the type of grapes they use.  They were the first wineries to import grapes into Niagara, improving the quality of Niagara wines and setting an example for all the other wineries, thus playing a pivotal part in the creation of the modern high-quality Niagara wines.  After decades, they’ve even created some brand new grape varieties in their vineyards, exclusive only to  Château des Charmes – no other winery in the world has the grapes they have – their wines are exclusive only to their winery.

And yes, this winery is an all Canadian company – a true tale of how an immigrant can truly thrive in the Canadian atmosphere if they just put the effort and love into it

I cannot end this post without a special thank you to Michèle Bosc for giving me a spectacular tour and for being so generous both on the business and the personal levels! 

Château des Charmes – a Canadian, Family Owned Winery

Love you girl!

Château des Charmes has been extremely generous for The Great Canadian Blog Bash and has decided to reward one of you with a  Château des Charmes Prize Pack.  All you have to do is complete the tasks in the rafflecopter form below.  The giveaway is open to Canadians only and will run from June 25 to July 1st, 2012.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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