Owned by Scott Zebarth and Will Predhomme, (the duo behind Canada’s Gargoyle Wine Club) Praise Bottle Shop recently opened in Toronto, Canada. “When you enjoy something, you praise it. That’s what inspired the name,” commented co-owner Scott Zebarth.
Praise Bottle Shop
Located at the corner of Bloor and Shaw (828 Bloor St West) Praise is conveniently located near Christie Pits Park in Toronto, Canada and offers a rotating list of 30 wines from classic regions like Italy, France and Canada, as well as, up-and-coming producers from countries like Georgia, Hungary and Austria.
One of the biggest and exciting parts of this wine shop is that it is part of the Drink Better Initiative in collaboration with Water.org. Every bottle of wine purchased in the shop provides one person in need access to a full year of clean, safe water. To date Gargoyle customers have provided over 150,000 people with clean water for a year and by supporting Praise, customers will be able to continue to give back. This is such an amazing initiative and Zebarth and Predhomme are setting examples for what and how the wine world needs.
The founders want for the shop to act as a community hub, bringing people together over good wine and conversations, all for a good cause. Praise Botte Shop is designed to be cool and comfortable, the front space hosts the main bar with both bar and table seating – much like a cute wine bar. In the back of the shop you’ll find a cozy the space has been transformed to feel like a speakeasy and there is also a side patio. Looking for a great spot for private events – this is a great option! Throughout the space, guests will see water motifs to reflect Praise’s Drink Better Initiative, that also add a truly relaxing feel to the space.
The Praise team is made up of certified sommeliers and wine experts who love talking about winemaking, tasting notes, travel and more making your shopping and tasting experience something quite unique and wonderful. If you’re a curious wine enthusiast, this is a place for you!
Looking to taste the wine before bringing it home? Guests can decide to grab-and-go or sit down and have their own tasting experiences. Seated guests can enjoy small bites such as truffle chips and wild mushroom tartine curated by Chef Doug Penfold formerly of Charbol and Cava Restaurant.
Looking for a few great wines, here are the current top three recommends from the owners – Scott Zebarth and Will Predhommne
Therianthropy Bonnie Vivant Chardonnay
We have to give a little love to local. Therianthropy is a winery project located in Creemore Hills, focusing on low intervention wines and unearthing the treasures of the emerging terroirs of Ontario. Their ‘Bonnie Vivant’ comes from St. David’s Bench in Niagara, and hits the perfect balance between the creamy texture and refreshing acidity Chardonnay can provide. This is a super enjoyable wine that is perfect on its own on a lazy afternoon. (And let’s be honest, it’s great with a variety of foods as well.)
Baia Abuladze is a rockstar winemaker from Georgia (the country, not the state.) All of her wines centre around indigenous grapes, and are produced in qvevri – large earthen clay jars buried under the ground. This wine is made up of two grapes that might not be household names (Tsitska and Tsolikouri), but offer really unique aromas and flavours. On the nose you would be forgiven for thinking you were smelling peaty scotch with it’s light hints of smoke. One sip, though, and that smoke seems to waft away leaving gentle flavours of peach and honeycomb.
We love love love this winery. Or should we say farm? Meinklang is a mixed farm set in the middle of the World Heritage Site of the National Park Neusiedlersee, which borders the Hungarian lowlands. They employ a holistic way of farming which is anything but monoculture. Visiting Meinklang means you will encounter cows, goats, chickens, pigs, fields of ancient grains and wild flowers. The wine is exactly what you want in Blaufrankisch – fruity, elegant, balanced, and immensely enjoyable. If you’ve ever wondered what a friendly wine tastes like, this is it.
Follow Praise Bottle Shop on Instagram and stay tuned for what comes next. These powerhouse gentlemen also plan on launching their own signature wine in the new year, and will be calling it “Praise”