Contest to increase restaurants showcasing Ontario VQA wine
NIAGARA, ON, Dec. 2 /CNW/ - The Wine Council of Ontario launched today the "2010 VQA Restaurant Challenge" - a program that calls for Members of Provincial Parliament to compete for the largest number of new VQA Restaurant Award of Excellence winners in their community.
"Good things grow in Ontario and that includes our world-class grapes and wines," said Carol Mitchell, Minister of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs. "This challenge will help showcase our local restaurants that serve 100% grown-in-Ontario wines and connect them with Ontarians who are looking to enjoy a glass with their meals."
Each year, the Wine Council of Ontario accepts applications from restaurants to be considered for an award for their representation of Ontario VQA wine. So far this year, 182 restaurants are recipients of the VQA Restaurant Award of Excellence with 56 of them reaching the Gold level - over 75% of their wine lists are committed to Ontario VQA wine. The goal for 2011 is to present over 300 awards. Winners benefit from free promotional opportunities and receive a plaque for their achievement.
This challenge to MPPs will call for each member to try to encourage as many restaurants as possible to successfully apply for the award. The top three MPPs with the most new award winners in their ridings by March 31st, 2011 will be designated the winners. Announcements will be made in April 2011.
"More than ever, consumers are looking for local - especially when they are dining out. The VQA Restaurant Challenge is a great way to help our industry recognize excellence in wine lists showcasing Ontario VQA wines," said Ed Madronich, Chair of the Wine Council of Ontario. "We also encourage consumers to get involved by helping their local MPP win the challenge and show how their community supports local Ontario products."
Jeremy Day, Proprietor of café Taste in Toronto has been a VQA Award of Excellence recipient since 2007 said "at café Taste we proudly offer a by-the-glass program of 30 premium Ontario VQA wines that changes every 8 weeks. More restaurants should take advantage of this program and the MPP challenge is an excellent way to increase the presence of local wines on wine lists in restaurants across our province."
For a complete list of VQA Award of Excellence recipients visit www.winecountryontario.ca. Twitter users finding great Ontario VQA Wine lists can use hashtag #VQAlist.
Wine Country Ontario is dedicated to promoting Ontario's wine-growing regions—from the wines and wineries themselves to the complete experience of each destination: local cuisine, year-round activities and warm hospitality. Wine Country Ontario is a trademark of the Wine Council of Ontario, a non-profit trade association that promotes Ontario's vintners and the unique qualities of our authentic, 100% VQA wines.
For further information: For further information:
Director of Public Relations - Marketing & Tourism
Wine Council of Ontario for "Wine Country Ontario"
905-684-8070 ext. 228