Our Story


Our name CALAMUS is the Latin word for arrow. When the land was being prepared for the planting of our vineyards, fragments of rock used by First Nation inhabitants were discovered. These fragments of the local rock "chert" were used to fashion stone tools, implements and arrowheads - the inspiration for our name and our logo. The Calamus archer is fondly called Calvin - "Cal" for Calamus and "vin" for wine.

CALAMUS ESTATE WINERY started with Calamus Vineyards. Derek Saunders and his wife, Pat Latin, purchased a 14 acre property in 1999 near Beamsville and planted their first 10 acre vineyard in 2000. With the goal of supporting and 8500 case winery, a second farm and 19th century barn was purchased in 2001. The second property, located adjacent to Ball's Falls Conservation Area, is now the home of CALAMUS ESTATE WINERY. Our vineyards produce only the highest quality Niagara vinifera and hybrid grapes. We welcome you to experience the historic charm of our 1800's era heritage barns, the setting for the production area and retail outlet.

Beginning with its early vintages, CALAMUS wines have been very well received by customers, wine critics and restaurants. Each vintage has produced award winning wines. With a total of 32 acres of planted vineyards CALAMUS ESTATE WINERY grows Chardonnay, Riesling, Pinot Gris, Vidal, Gewürztraminer, Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Pinot Noir. Our 100% VQA wines are preserved with screw caps as we believe this to be a superior closure for preserving wine quality, freshness and longevity.

In 2007 we welcomed the addition of a new business partner, Sheila Minkhorst. Her investment in the winery allowed for the renovation of the barn to include a new tasting room and event facility. The addition of some new equipment also enabled us to expand production to 5000 cases in 2007 and 2008.

The 20-acre ravine behind the winery is a scenic spot for hikes, picnics and outdoor functions. We are a stone's throw from the magnificent Bruce Trail. With our new event space and multi-level outdoor decks, we can host small events in a spectacular setting.

 


Derek Saunders & Pat Latin The Barn at Calamus Before Restoration A dramatic restoration and labour of love The Barn at Calamus After Restoration