About Vinaigrerie Gingras

Montérégie – The
Garden of Quebec

First settled in the late 15th century by the Iroquois, the terroir of Montérégie is perfectly suited for agriculture, with many mountains, hills and shaded valleys.



 

4 Generations of
Gingras’

In 1669 Charles Gingras left France to settle in Canada. In 1671 he was granted a piece of land in the Saint-Augustin-de-Desmaures where he established himself as a farmer. He married and had 13 children, leaving numerous descendants in the country.
 

The Founder
 

Born into a family of farmers, Pierre developed an appreciation for nature from a young age. In 1976, at the young age of 22 Pierre took over the family farm; he decided to keep livestock and feed them on the apples continued to produce.
 

Our Values
 

As Pierre Gingras created his legacy, he valued nature, respected the environment, and was driven to provide the best fresh artisanal product to his customers; he was also the epitome of an innovative entrepreneur, refining his business as needed to meet demand.

 


 

 

 

 

Monteregie Garden

Montérégie – The Garden of Quebec

First settled in the late 15th century by the Iroquois, the terroir of Montérégie is perfectly suited for agriculture, with many mountains, hills and shaded valleys. The soil has developed a perfect balance mixing with the climate it’s an ideal place for hardy trees like apple and maple to prosper.

In the 17th century, with the arrival of the Europeans, the area quickly became more populated; the small village of Rougemont currently has a population of around 2700 mainly consisting of farmers with large orchards.

 


 

 

 

 

Vinaigrerie Gingras Farm - from the archives

4 Generations of Gingras’

In 1669 Charles Gingras left France to settle in Canada. In 1671 he was granted a piece of land in the Saint-Augustin-de-Desmaures where he established himself as a farmer. He married and had 13 children, leaving numerous descendants in the country. One of these descendants, Alfred Gingras, bought a piece of land in 1880 on our present site on La Grande-Caroline. Alfred planted his first apple trees on the south east slope of the mountain to add some income to his farm. The region gradually specialized in apple production. In 1887, the profits on a barrel of apples in Montreal were considerable.

It was Wilfred Gingras, Alfred’s grandson, who changed the role of the farm turning it into an apple orchard with some 2500 apple trees, encompassing over thirty varieties at the time. He learned new cultivation techniques and grafted apple trees, in a fashion similar to that used by vineyards, in order to meet the demands of conservation and consumer tastes. Wilfred’s innovative nature extended further as he became one of the first to rent retail space at Montreal’s Jean-Talon Market in 1951.Today, this makes Verger Pierre Gingras the oldest occupant of the market!

In 1976, Wilfred’s son Pierre acquired the family farm. Inheriting his father’s innovative nature, over the past 37 years Pierre has turned the orchard into a world-class vinaigrerie.

 


 

 

 

 

Pierre Gingras - Founder of Vinaigrerie Gingras

Our Founder, Pierre Gingras

Born into a family of farmers, Pierre developed an appreciation for nature from a young age. In 1976, at the young age of 22 Pierre took over the family farm; he decided to keep livestock and feed them on the apples continued to produce. In the early 1980s, Pierre was looking sell more farm based products at his stall at the Jean Talon market in Montreal; he successfully lobbied the market authorities to become the first stall owner to be able to sell all natural fresh apple juice.

The juice business took off but forecasting was difficult because the juice was raw and unpasteurized with a 2 week shelf life; Pierre started researching ways to recycle the juice and started making apple cider vinegar. Over the course of the 1980s Pierre researched and improved his process. His research led him to many discoveries: he chose to import the superior “Mother” for his vinegar from France, to use only oak barrels for the aging process and to use only fresh apples.

He also determined that to get the best apple cider vinegar, extra aging was required; this is why we still age our apple cider vinegars longer than anyone else. Demand for his vinegar grew and by 1992 he decided to get out of the livestock business to focus full time on vinegar. Always willing to share his passion with customers Pierre started offering tours of the aging cellars so he could share his passion and discuss the gastronomic and therapeutic benefits of his hand-crafted apple cider vinegar. By 1996 forty thousand visitors were touring the vinaigrerie every year, and in 1998 our current vinaigrerie was built with 36 French oak casks, each able to hold 5000L: making it the largest apple cider vinegar cellar in the world!

The passion and attention to Quality that Pierre created is still part of everything we do at Viniagerie Gingras.


 

 

 

 

Values transfered by the care for apples
 
 

Vinaigrerie Gingras’ Values

As Pierre Gingras created his legacy, he valued nature, respected the environment, and was driven to provide the best fresh artisanal product to his customers; he was also the epitome of an innovative entrepreneur, refining his business as needed to meet demand. To this day, each of those things is something we value greatly at Vinaigrerie Gingras. We are still farmer-owned and run the orchard and vinaigrerie naturally with Pierre’s entrepreneurial spirit.

We continue to use Pierre’s hand-crafted process and every apple we grow is hand-picked and put into making our vinegars. Vinaigrerie Gingras will be celebrating its 25th anniversary in 2014 and we invite you to join us in honouring Pierre’s dedication and innovation in creating a traditional world-class apple cider vinegar.