The FAQ’s

Don’t wine shops already exist?

While it’s true that stores like the Wine Rack sell wine, they are owned and operated by large wineries and offer only a limited product range.

What would be the difference between a wine shop and a store like the Wine Rack or Vineyards Estate Wines?

Along with greater convenience, wine shops will offer a much wider selection of wines from across Ontario and around the world.

What kinds of wine would I find in one of these shops?

Individual owners will be able select the products available in their stores, whether they are from Niagara, Prince Edward County, Napa Valley or elsewhere.

Why don’t we just allow corner stores to sell wine?

Just like you wouldn’t buy tires from a clothing store, your wine shouldn’t come from the same place you get a lottery ticket or a chocolate bar. Wine shops will be dedicated to offering Ontarians a vastly wider selection of wines while still offering greater convenience and responsibility.

Won’t wine shops lead to more underage drinking?

The simple answer is no. Wine shops will follow the same stringent government guidelines as bars and restaurants. Each wine shop will be licenced and inspected on a regular basis by the Alcohol and Gaming Commission of Ontario.

With the number of LCBO stores across the province, do we really need wine shops?

The LCBO does an outstanding job of offering a variety of wines to Ontarians, but its stores have only so much shelf space. Wine shops will be a complementary service to the LCBO and provide greater selection, convenience and specialization.

Can anybody open a wine shop?

Just like opening a bar or restaurant, any person would be able to apply to the AGCO for a licence to open a wine shop.

Would wine shops be more expensive than the LCBO?

Wine shops will follow the minimum pricing standards set by the province of Ontario and, just as at the LCBO, the price of an individual bottle of wine will vary based on factors like the winery that produced it and its age.

Do other provinces have private wine shops?

In recent years, Alberta, British Columbia, Manitoba and Nova Scotia have allowed individuals to open privately owned wine shops.

Who is behind this campaign? was started by the Wine Council of Ontario to help rally support for private wine shops across the province. You can find out more about the Council at