About Us

Grape Witches has evolved into a store, a patio, and online shop, an event space, a wine importing agency & a wine club! How did we get here? It started slowly.

Who We Are

Industry Veterans on a Mission

We began as, and always will be, industry veterans on a mission. Founded in 2015, Grape Witches began as a series of parties and educational events pouring the rare and delicious organic, biodynamic and natural wine we loved. The dream? To share the incredible flavours, places and people that made us work in wine - without the stuffy attitude. Fast forward through a few hundred parties big and small; from geeky winemaker events to sweaty dance parties to the world's largest natural wine booze cruise (yes, actually!!), and you'll find us on March 7th 2020 (lol) signing the lease to our first space and launching our natural wine agency, Grape Witch Imports.

Where We're Going

Grape Witches is now an incredible team of people working to make natural wine approachable & available like never before. We are a bustling natural wine store with over 350 constantly rotating wines in store and online. We are Dundas West's cutest back patio - complete with functioning fountain (!). We are an exciting natural wine agency, representing over 30 of our favourite wineries directly. And we are Ontario's most unique Wine Club, offering a fully customizable and expertly curated monthly pack at various price points. And yes, we still love events! Find out more about our entire team below.

Our Services

GW Imports

Representing some of the best, most unique small producers and bringing them directly to you, Ontario!

Tell Me More

On the patio, in the Salon, at your nice place or ours - let us pour you nice wine for any occasion.

Yes Please
Bar & Shop

Visit us at 1247 Dundas St W to browse & sip over 350 natural wines with our knowledgable & friendly staff.

See You Soon
Wine Club

The only fully customizable natural Wine Club. The ultimate way to discover your new favourites.

Sign Me Up

Our People

Ellen Shrybman
Imports & Food
Ellen pivoted from a degree in political science to infusing some of Toronto’s best restaurants like Bar Isabel, Pearl Morissette, 20 Victoria and beyond with her warm hospitality, infectious energy and love for food and wine. After receiving her masters in Food Culture and Communications at the University of Gastronomic Science in Pollenzo, northern Italy, she returned to Toronto and quickly started Parasol, one of the most exciting Spanish and Italian agencies in the province. In 2024 Parasol merged with our import arm GWI, and we’re delighted to have Ellen on our imports ownership team. On the GW front, she uses her unparalleled love of food to bring the perfect salty bite to our snacks program. Catch her Saturdays in shop playing Bruce Springsteen, befriending your dog and helping you find the perfect, unexpected bottle you never knew you needed.
Knowah Holder
While obtaining a BA in English Lit. and Mixed Media, Knowah came to Hospitality through La Palma. Having grown up celebrating family and tradition through her grandmother’s Lucian recipes; breaking bread across full tables and loud conversations, restaurants quickly felt like home. Knowah believes that great service is a simple act of community building. This certified yapper is dedicated to finding you the bottle you never knew you dreamed of. That bottle you put your friends on to, or that bottle that makes you go “Hmm...I didn’t know I’d love that”. If she isn’t slinging or sipping wine, she’s adding to her Letterboxd, hunting for magazines, making playlists for the shop or penning articles for her own Substack.
Rachel Matthews
Rachel spent years in boring office jobs before realizing that she enjoys people more than computers, and ambient lighting over fluorescent. Along with a passion for all things delicious, restaurants were the natural go-to. Working at Tennessee Tavern and Paris Paris she was introduced to the world of natural wine. Rachel passed her WSET Diploma in 2020 and is happy to be in the world of (mostly!) un-testable wines. She makes everyone feel welcome in the shop, and loves helping people discover their new fav. Please bring your dogs, and listen to her gush about her two elderly kitties.

Quin Elliott-Armstrong
With over a decade of restaurant experience, Quin has managed some of Toronto’s most happening dining rooms. If you’ve seen her in action, you know she’s a natural born vibe-creator with a knack for making everyone feel special. She’s in awe of wine’s magical power to bring people together, and she loves popping bottles for family and friends in her own dining room. When she’s not helping out with all things Grape Witches, you might find her by a lake with a glass of white Burgundy, or cooking up some mushrooms she foraged while sipping on a mug of weird Nebbiolo.
Kate Densmore
Licensee Sales
Kate has been twirling around restaurant dining rooms, serving up a cozy and warm attitude in Toronto as sommelier at Alma, a part of the crew at Brothers (RIP) & a sojourn at Clown Bar in Paris, France. She loves concocting puns for wines, while snuggling her cats and sharing pasta with them. Yes, with! Kate is happiest when talking and pouring natural wines - loving playful and energetic cuvées the most. Boy, is she thirsty to have the chance to share the treasures of GW Imports!
Amanda Pereira
Logistics & Web
Amanda is a natural problem solver and creative thinker. With a diverse background in visual merchandising, UX/web design and wine service at her local natty hot-spot Lake Inez, she creates unforgettable experiences motivated by her never-ending desire to learn. She works to break down barriers in the wine industry because she truly believes that wine should be fun and accessible for everyone. After working a few harvests in Niagara and beyond, Amanda is now on the path of becoming a winemaker and is focused on creating community-centric fermented beverages.
Brittany O'Rourke
Service & Hospitality
Coming to the industry from academia and English Literature, Brittany finds herself undeniably pulled to the stories of artisans and families in the world of wine and agriculture. Brittany has spent the most recent part of her career pairing food and wine in the fine dining world, and she *always* wants to hear about what you are having for dinner. Shrugging off her classic wine education past, now Brittany wants to talk about emotion, sensuality, and spirit more than typicity. When she’s outside the shop, you’ll find her sipping a zero zero freaky 5 with her gracefully aging kitty The Duchess, or working through the ever-growing stack of novels on the arm of her couch.
Jasmine 'Jas' Wright
Writing & Creative
A true bon-vivant, Jasmine passionately lives to eat, drink & create. Post art school, she quickly fell into restaurants and wine. After a cellar hand position & curating her first natural wine list, she journeyed to the Okanagan with a wildfire in her belly. A seriously lucky duckling, she was able to work in the vines & cellars of some of the most exploratory natural wineries and cideries in the region – she now dreams of cultivating her own farm and vineyard. Find her writing her forthcoming zine, reading Piet Oudolf, listening to dirty psych rock & rolling around in her garden.
Lorein 'Lo' Codiamat
General Manager & Culture
If you spend time out in Toronto’s west end, chances are you’ve been served by Lorein. Refining her craft at Harbord Room (RIP!), Cocktail Bar, and, most recently as AGM at Grey Gardens, at Grape Witches she braids her passion for fashion, design and all things beautiful. Whether you want to discuss decor, non-traditional tasting notes or which bottle to choose to impress your new boo’s parents, Lo has got you covered.
Nicole Raufeisen
Operations & Imports
In a past life as one half of a collaborative artist duo, Nicole accepted nice wine as payment for house sitting gigs. Fifteen years - and an MFA in sculpture - later, she committed to wine professionally. She was most recently co-owner and GM of Little Oak Bar (RIP) & The Ostrich Club restaurants in Halifax and has recently moved to Toronto in a continued effort to chase nice wines. Her passions include nerding out on international logistics, pretending she’s handy (ChefTech ™) and besting her personal record of most wine cases moved in a day.
Krysta Oben
Krysta started Grape Witches with Nicole VERY late at night, when all the most fun ideas happen! She has spent a *redacted* amount of time working as a sommelier, curating the wine lists and pouring wine into glasses at some of Toronto’s very best restaurants and bars. These days, find her planning trips in search of thrilling wine and beautiful vineyards, writing the wine list at Paris Paris, and in the GW shop & salon asking you questions about what you are in the mood to drink. Please send her photos of your pets.
Nicole Campbell
Co-Founder & Director
Nicole has been working in wine a really long time. Over a decade at one of Canada’s top wine agencies she sold wine to the best restaurants in Toronto and Vancouver and led the creation of a national natural wine division. She has been lucky to make wine in France & Australia, travel to many nice wine regions & completed her (frankly grueling) WSET Diploma in 2015. She started GW as a passion project & is freakin’ delighted to watch it bloom. Wearer of many figurative hats and literal fun pants.

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Site Credits

Strategy, Web Design, Development & Integrations: Plot Studio

Creative Direction, Illustration & Web Design: Marlo Yarlo

Product Photography: Jessica Blaine Smith & Justin M. Yong

Interior Photography: Arden Wray & Justin M. Yong

Advent Art Direction & Photography: Dani Reynolds

Land Acknowledgment

Grape Witches exists within a settler-colonial state and we acknowledge the role that businesses play in supporting change in our community.

We are committed to dismantling the systemic barriers experienced by marginalized people in our industry and promoting organizations that share our commitment to social and environmental justice.

With thanks to Courtney Skye.