Travel Diaries: Wines & Sauces

I took a recent trip to Niagara Falls as a weekend getaway. This time around, we decided to go with a beautiful view (despite costing a few extra hundos) which showed both sides of the American and Canadian falls. If you ever go and you have some extra bucks to spare, it’s worth it to have this phenomenal view!

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We also had the pleasure of trying out some different wineries on a wine tour, which took about 4 hours to complete. Although I don’t mind the wait, when you’re hungry and just want to move on to your next destination, 4 hours can be a little long.

Check out some of my photos below:

Small Talk Vineyard

Specializing in ciders, ice wines and white/red wines, the Spicy Cider (which tasted like apple pie and cinnamon buns combined) was definitely our favourite from this winery.

Shiny Bootleg Cider – 7.5% abv.
Tastes like Apple Pie a la mode in a glass. Spices dominate with pleasing notes of vanilla. Dessert never tasted so refreshing!

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Diamond Estates Winery

This wine tasting involved trying out 5 different wines, including 2 ice wines which were amazing (as usual). I really enjoy structured wine tastings that involve talking about the wine and how to drink it before you taste it, as well as learning what foods pair best with different wines. I would really like to do a food-pairing wine tasting for my next winery venture!

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I LOVE wine tours and try to make it out to at least one winery every time I venture over to Niagara Falls. I love learning about how different wines are made and of course the best part- getting to taste the wine!

However, the highlight of my trip this particular time around was a trip to a certain sauce store. If you’re anything like me, BBQ sauce is a staple in my house. I LOVEE saucing up everything I eat to the point where I could likely eat an entire jar on its own.

I have always been in search of a great place that sells premium/homemade sauces, so for those out there who crave the sauciest of dishes, get ready for this place.

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Pepper Palace was founded by Craig and Tanya Migawa in 1989 as a kiosk in a Central Wisconsin Mall and soon expanded to include two inline retail locations. After successfully operating in Wisconsin for eight years, a family trip inspired a move south to Gatlinburg, Tennessee. Pepper Palace opened their first Gatlinburg location in 1997 in a small storefront on the outskirts of town. Several moves were made to better, larger locations until finally reaching its current location in 1999, a 3000 square foot spot in a prominent Gatlinburg Mall. This was, and continues to be, the largest spicy themed specialty retail location in the world. Pepper Palace entered the online arena in that same year by launching pepperpalace.com.

Today, Pepper Palace operates over 30 retail locations in the US and Canada and plans expansion into the West, Northeast and Midwestern US and Central Canada. International expansion is on the horizon as well. Pepper Palace is a privately held corporation that has won hundreds of National Awards for product, marketing and flavor. Pepper Palace prides itself on exceptional customer service and professionalism, but feel that maintaining this should be a joy rather than a chore. Hence our Mission Statement:

Pepper Palace was founded to be different, to prove that a successful business could and should be fun. To this end, our mission is to leave no Chili Head’s yearning for heat unsatisfied, to leave no plate of bland food untouched by saucy goodness, and for every customer to leave our locations not only satisfied, but impressed. The result: The Planet’s #1 Hot Shop Since 1989!

So YES, I preach about healthy living and converting to a completely natural lifestyle but I am also human and that means I crave the bad things in life once in a while. This store is amazing because you can sample ANY sauce you want before you buy, with most sauces laid out with spoons available for people to take and sample. We bought two of our favourite sauces!

Spicy Sweet Bourbon Glaze

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If you like our original Sweet Bourbon Glaze, then you will love this spicier version.


Ingredients: sugar, apple cider vinegar, soy sauce (water, wheat, soybeans, salt), onions, molasses, water, salt, garlic, cayenne pepper, Kentucky bourbon, lemon juice, butter flavor, citric acid.

Allergen Statement: CONTAINS WHEAT AND SOY

I love that this sauce is made with apple cider vinegar (read my article about the benefits here) and how it has both a spicy and a sweet flavor all coming together into one. It is SO good.

 

Wing Master- Garlic Parmesan

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Most popular wing sauce we have ever made. Yes, it’s as delicious as it sounds.

**Colour of sauce may vary, we have started using California grown tomatoes and this causes the sauce to be a little bit darker. These are better tomatoes and they make the sauce that much better!


Ingredients: Cayenne Pepper Sauce (Aged Cayenne Red Peppers, Distilled Vinegar, Water, Salt, Natural Flavour and Garlic Powder), Water, Tomato Paste, Soybean Oil, Garlic, Garlic Powder, Onion Powder, Cayenne Powder, Natural Parmesan Flavouring, Black Pepper, Natural Butter Flavouring, and Xanthan Gum.

This sauce is to DIE FOR. Oh my goodness, it is SO good. Honestly, I have never tasted anything like this garlic parm sauce. I literally stood at the fridge yesterday dipping my finger repeatedly in the jar and eating the sauce on its own.

Final Thoughts

This shop started as a small business and has since branched out to a number of North American locations. Although the sauce probably isn’t the healthiest, I still felt good supporting a small business and trying out the amazing homemade flavours the store has to offer!

Taking weekend getaways can be fun (and expensive) so I always recommend visiting smaller businesses on your trip or places that won’t cost you an arm and a leg. Huge tourist attractions are fun and definitely worth the money, but checking out what the rest of a place has to offer can be just as fun and cost half the price!

 

 

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