Perched atop the shore of Lake Erie, overlooking the UNESCO World Biosphere of Long Point, nestled among the trees of the Carolinian forest, and in a region built on the backs of farmers who worked this soil for generations. With a recent past that saw the decline of tobacco farming that sustained the area’s economy for decades.
With the strength and perseverance of the people that came before them, a group of passionate locals got together with an idea to reinvent Norfolk County’s agricultural story.
In 2007 the first vines were planted in the sandy loam soil of a former tobacco farm. While the vines were tended, the existing homestead buildings were reimagined as a winery. Work began on the former tobacco pack barn to make room for wine production and visitors. The doors to the winery opened to the public in 2011 and has been welcoming wine lovers ever since.
As our vines grew, so did our community of grape-growers. Farms across Norfolk County began planting vines and producing world-class wines. Burning Kiln established itself as a VQA winery and the area became recognized as an emerging region in Ontario. Numerous awards followed including an Agri-Innovation award for the re-purposing of the farm’s tobacco kilns to create an appassimento style of wine.
Hailing from New Zealand, Nik obtained his graduate diploma from Lincoln University in Lincoln, NZ, before working internationally in the USA, Austria, Germany, and France. He settled in the Niagara region and has now been part of several harvests in Ontario.
Nik has a deep respect for the environment and working with all the elements that nature provides. He believes that wine should be easy to drink, enjoyable, and accessible to everyone.