Don’t worry, we haven’t sold out and taken on a corporate sponsor. I just wanted to write a quick post about a great store and resource in the Toronto area. If you’re looking for anything related to beer or wine making, try Haus of Vine (http://www.hausofvine.ca/).
A friend of mine got me onto them back before Christmas. It’s like visiting a candy store when you’re a kid. Trying to find a good source of home-brew supplies can be difficult, so walking into Haus of Vine was like visiting Mecca. There are shelves upon shelves, stacked with bottles of all sizes, fermenting containers, and anything else you can imagine. Then there are all of the drawers stuffed with yeasts, additives, and other bits and pieces.
Lincoln, the owner, is always happy to answer any questions and help you troubleshoot any brewing issues you’re having. As I was looking at growing hops next to the chicken run this year, I was worried that they may be poisonous to the birds. One phone call later, and Lincoln connected me with an expert who laid any of my worries to rest.
At Haus of Vine, you have the option to brew on the premises or take it home to do it yourself. If you don’t want to devote the space and time at home, Lincoln will sort it all out in his store for you. When it comes time to bottle, he’ll bring your brew or wine up from the cellar, and using his equipment you can quickly bottle everything and get it home to age.
If you are looking at getting started in wine/beer making, I’d recommend his Merlot wine kit or his all-grain beer kits. If you need anything else for any other brew (cider, hedgerow beers, mead, etc) he will have it.
My only other piece of advice, brew double of everything! You’ll be so impressed with your wine or beer that you’ll drink it faster than you can brew another one, and I’m sure Lincoln won’t complain about your gluttony.