We used to live together down the street from where Paradise is,” says co-owner Christian Davis, speaking about his business partner David Everitt. “We always had our eye on this space, because the patio is amazing, and it was a 2 a.m. license, which felt rare in the city.”
Davis and Everitt each dreamed of opening a bar before they discovered the space that would become Paradise Grapevine and convinced the owner to sell them the business. Three years ago, they opened as a wine bar, pouring natural, low intervention wines and serving small bites and share plates.
“The wines that we serve tend to be more on the acid-forward spectrum, often lighter bodied wines that you can have without food.” says Everitt.
Since the inception of Paradise, Davis and Everitt have also begun producing their own wines, operating as a virtual winery. Rather than owning a facility, they purchase fruit from farms in Ontario and rent space at other wineries to make their wine.
“It’s been a really interesting process, finding farmers that grow grapes in the way that aligns with our ethics and our tastes. We’re really doing our best to buy organically grown fruit, which is actually really tough in Ontario,” says Everitt.
“In 2019, our first vintage, we purchased fruit from one grower, but in 2020, we purchased fruit from seven different growers. We’re just really happy with the relationships with farms. They’re all different and they all have their quirks. And we’ve managed to actually transition some of them that were farming conventionally over to organic.”
As the winemaking side of the business grows, Davis and Everitt continue to change things up: “It still feels like experimentation,” says Davis. “Just through the wine bar, we’ve tried and drank so many wines at this point, we really know what we like. And you can kind of figure out how some of those wines are made. Then you think about those techniques, and then try to apply them to a specific one that you’re trying to make.”
Between their exciting and experimental winemaking, importing, bottle shop and wine bar, Paradise Grapevine does it all: “We sell wine. We make wine. We drink wine. We talk about it. We’re friendly. People can come and talk to us anytime they want,” says Everitt.
Paradise Grapevine: Wine boutique and bottle shop
Since the pandemic, Paradise has operated as a wine boutique. They’ve expanded the offerings in their retail shop to include wines to take home and enjoy with dinner or throw in the cellar — and they have champagne too.
Paradise Grapevine: Canned wine
With more people eager to wine and dine in Toronto’s parks, Davis and Everitt decided to can their latest release for picnicking ease. Pep Talk started out as a total experiment and “turned into this simply delicious rosé.”
Paradise Grapevine: Wine, beer and cider delivery
If you can’t make it to Paradise Grapevine to sip wine on their secluded backyard patio or grab bottles from their retail shop, don’t sweat it. They ship delicious wine, beer and cider anywhere in Ontario and offer same-day delivery in Toronto.
841 Bloor St. W.; paradisegrapevine.com