With nearly 30 years of experience in the hospitality industry, Chris Fodor has worked in restaurants, pubs, hotels, catering and, most significantly, wineries. He fell in love with wine while in Australia in 2004 and worked at a winery on Vancouver Island from 2006 to 2013. Fodor dreamt of having his own winery one day, and that dream became a reality when he and his wife Karen moved back to her home province and opened City & Country Winery in 2020. “Karen is a rancher’s daughter and told me early on that I’m no farmer, but that I would be perfect for an urban winery!” Fodor says.
Located in the Manchester industrial area, home to many of the city’s craft breweries and distilleries, City & Country has a tasting bar up front that’s open to the public, with wine-making facilities in the back. The wines are gluten-free, vegan and free from added colours, flavours and additives, and are made using traditional methods from grapes sourced from around the world. Here are some of Fodor’s favourite things in and around the city where he chose to set up shop.
“We love to stay at Baker Creek, just outside of Lake Louise on the Bow Valley Parkway. Authentic log cabins without TVs or cell service — it’s great to unplug!”
“An experience not to miss is the chef’s tasting [dinner] at Sauvage restaurant in Canmore — terroir-driven menus, an intimate atmosphere and an amazing patio.”
“Beautiful grounds, gardens and a huge amount of food choices. It’s also home to the amazing Cavalry FC!”
“Both my kids and my inner child love the zoo. It’s quite educational for our kids to see animals up close and learn about them. Go for the Safari Sunday Brunch — a steal of a deal at $45 for adults and $28 for kids, including zoo admission.”
“Food, music, performances and FIREWORKS! Need I say more?”
“If the weather outside isn’t great, we like to hit up Southland Leisure Centre. We love the variety of activities, including the wavepool, slides and aquatic play structures.”
“This is the most relaxed and family-friendly market in the city, in the best- vibes neighbourhood. Go early to avoid the largest crowds.”
“Since I work late a lot, I prefer to eat earlier in the day. A small detour on my commute [from Okotoks] is TiNi Vietnamese in Seton. The bright, open room is fabulous to eat in, and there is an amazing large patio. They also have a dedicated gluten-free menu, and the staff is super friendly and helpful.”
“I love hosting wine tastings. Connecting with others over a variety of wines is a passion of mine, and so much fun for everyone.”