About Us

Halpern Enterprises has been in the business of importing fine wines and spirits in to Canada for over 65 years. Today we are one of the oldest in Ontario. Founded by Harold Halpern, a Pharmacist by education, it started small but quickly developed strong relationships with a few European and New World wine producers who have grown along with us.

Todd Halpern joined his father, Harold, in 1979. Todd’s brother Colin joined the Company in 1991, and Todd’s son Adam came on board in 2017. Todd and Colin have seen the company grow tremendously over the last number of years. Today we represent over 175 wineries and distilleries from all around the world. Year after year we continue to strengthen our long standing relationships, as well as establish new ones as the industry continues to grow and shift. We are so extremely privileged to represent some of the wine world’s most revered and sought after estates, alongside new generation properties pushing the boundaries and setting new bars.

Our Network

Our Customers

Our Team

Todd Halpern

Todd Halpern joined his father, Harold, the founder of Halpern Enterprises, in 1979. A man of many titles — among them father and President Halpern Enterprises — Todd is also vice-chair of the Toronto General & Western Hospital Foundation Board of Directors. In this role, Todd blends his two passions — using everyone’s favourite elixir, wine, as a vessel for making a difference in Canadian health care. He also continues to successfully navigate Halpern Enterprises through the exciting and ever-changing world of Wine.

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Colin Halpern

Colin joined Todd and their father, Harold, in 1991 with the mission to expand, grow and strengthen relationships with existing and new top quality producers. Colin, curates, finely tunes, and works with his teams to manage the Halpern portfolio and develop the top producers from far corners of the world. Colin believes Halpern’s customers demand quality, and quality is what he supplies.

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Adam Halpern

Exactly sixty years after Harold Halpern began importing wine through the back of his pharmacy on Spadina Avenue, his grandson Adam Halpern proudly joined the family company alongside his father and uncle. Having graduated from the University of Western Ontario in 2015 with aspirations of investment banking, a game time decision in realizing where his passions truly lay led him back to the family business. Having been raised with the finest winemakers around the kitchen table, and access to the world’s most revered and classic wines, Adam’s palate was honed at a far younger age than most. Now in the role of assisting his father and uncle with company operations, the ardent athlete and Burgundy fanatic oversees sales, logistics, and allocations.

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Chris Bodnar

Chris’ passion for wine was sparked when he took a job at a winery in Prince Edward County. While working in PEC he was introduced to Halpern’s Sheila Flaherty who - without much convincing required - recruited him to work for Halpern in 2017. Coming from a 10+ year career as an entrepreneur in the creative industry taught him that forging great relationships with his clients is key and this continues to be his greatest priority. Chris’ role at Halpern is multifaceted - he is an account manager for both private and on-premise clients, a brand manager and the person trusted to run the Halpern social media accounts. When not at his desk he can be found spending time exploring the great outdoors with his young son, Lachlan, as well as mapping out his next wine-related adventure (likely to Burgundy)..

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Chris Faubert

Chocolate and Wine are a great pairing. Chris certainly thought so when he made the leap from Lindt Chocolates to the world of Wine and Spirits in 2011 as the Regional Sales Director at Kirkwood Diamond Canada. He joined Halpern Enterprises in October 2016 as the Sales Director responsible for the Direct Sales and Retail Sales Teams. His passion for wine led Chris to complete his Level 3 WSET Wine & Spirits Education in fall of 2017. Cooking, outdoor activities such as cycling and hiking plus his young kids keep him busy outside of work.

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Claire Burton

Having spent years in the restaurant industry inspired Claire's interest in wine and spirits. Many wine courses later, Claire joined the Halpern team in 2006. Great appreciation for fine wine and the amazing opportunity to increase her knowledge with the Halpern portfolio has been an exciting journey. Claire is brand manager of the new addition of premium spirits for Halpern, spirits that reflect the Halpern objective of 'only the best'.

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Craig Marshall

After 20 years working in the production and development of children’s animation, from Care Bears and Beetlejuice to Batman, Craig learned and developed an appreciation for providing excellence in delivering world class children’s programming. Craig brings the same commitment, passion and dedication to the world of fine wines at Halpern. He has grown to love the fine wine culture.

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Ellen Lichman

Ellen has studied and worked at home and abroad in the fields of music performance and midwifery for over 30 years.  When she needed a change of pace, she found it working with the Halpern team and the finest wines of the world.  This inspired her to start studying wine and has successfully completed her Level 1 WSET course.  

In her spare time, Ellen plays trombone in military and community bands throughout the GTA.  When not working or playing, you can find her on her balcony enjoying her currently favourite glass of wine.

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Erika Altosaar

Erika joined the Halpern team in 2021 following her tenure as the Beverage Director at Eataly Toronto. Having grown up with restaurateur parents, an unrelenting passion for wine was sparked at a young age, which culminated in a life-long obsession following years of travel. She has a penchant for storytelling with teaching being her greatest passion, and she takes pride in being able to offer exciting and accessible private tastings to her clients. Beyond managing private and on-premise accounts, Erika is a Brand Manager who works with Halpern’s wineries in the Rhône Valley, the South of France, Alsace and Germany. When not at her desk, she can be found playing soccer with her dog Hugo, traveling or more than likely drinking a glass of Chardonnay.

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Erin Kritzer

Erin joined Halpern in 2019 as a Retail Sales Representative, working throughout the GTA and east, and north up to cottage country. Before Halpern, Erin spent 3 years living, working, eating, drinking and learning her way around the beautiful Niagara wine region. While working at Peninsula Ridge Estate Winery as the Assistant Retail Manager, she graduated as a Certified Sommelier through the Niagara CAPS program in 2015. When she is not working, you can find her spending time with family and friends - often enjoying good food and good wine!

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James Oatway

James came to work for Halpern Enterprises in September of 2000. That position led to an interest in wine, and that interest led to a bit of a passion for wine. In 2011, James gained certification with CAPS and the Court of Master Sommeliers. In 2012, he created the 'Southern Ontario Sommelier Association' that held an annual Ontario Wine Competition. This led to a seat on the CAPS board of directors. Wine manages to seep into your life and take hold. Not a bad thing.

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Jeff Johnston

Jeff came to Halpern in August, 2021 after having worked in the Accounting field in both the Public and Private Sectors for approximately 27 years. The Wine Industry has been a new experience and Jeff is looking forward to the continuous learning of this business.

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Jesse Riklis

Jesse is a member of our sales team with a main focus on inventory management. He is a graduate of the Food and Beverage Management program at George Brown College where he was named Valedictorian of the Center of Hospitality and Culinary Arts for the 2017 graduating class. He then continued his education in the Post Graduate Program for Advanced Wine and Business Management where he earned his WSET Level 3 Diploma, passing with distinction. Jesse likes to spend his spare time trying new restaurants around the city, and when he gets the chance, restaurants around the world.

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Joel Rosenthal

Joel's appreciation of wine began in 1995 while holding the position as a principal of Atlas Bar and Grill Restaurant in Toronto.  Having been bitten by the wine bug, his education took him from sampling hundreds of bottles to studying levels 1 and 2 WSET courses as well as participating in Robert Parker’s Matter of Taste seminars and master classes in Napa, California.  In June 2017, he joined Halpern Enterprises in a sales role and is thrilled to be able to offer a broad-based world class portfolio to his customers. When he has time to imbibe, Joel happily partakes in a glass of Grenache from the Rhone region or a California Merlot (or a shot of Jägermeister or bourbon) while rooting for his beloved Toronto Maple Leafs.

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Jordan Alessi

Jordan is a Toronto born Sommelier who was in a previous life, The Wine Director of all Chase Hospitality Group of Restaurants and Cafe Boulud at The Four Seasons as their Maitre D/Sommelier. Hospitality and Wine has always been Jordan's love but wine really became a career when Jordan went off to New Zealand to study all aspects of the wine industry for four years. He is currently Brand Manager for wines in the French Portfolio and Private Sales Consultant at Halpern Enterprises.

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Joseph Langton

Joseph is a Management and Logistics connoisseur who carries distinguished experience with creative executives and visionary entrepreneurs. After spending accomplished years working in everything from Film Production, Hospitality Management, Music Recording, as well as the professional Tattoo industry Joseph knows what it truly takes to keep an innovative team on track. His ambitious attitude complimented with a love of performance, Joseph is a major part of the perfect pairing with Halpern Enterprises and prestigious wines..

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Kevin Graham

Kevin joined the Halpern team in 2014 - working as an in-store sales representative throughout the GTA West and Southwestern Ontario. During his time studying Marketing Management at the University of Guelph, Kevin gained an interest in wine and an appreciation for it's ability to bring people together. He expanded on that interest while traveling through Argentina and Chile in 2007. Kevin moved to Toronto in 2008 to pursue other passions - namely music and photography - before working in fine dining and ultimately, in wine. In his spare time, he enjoys hockey and golf, playing and attending concerts, traveling, and visiting his cottage in Eastern Ontario.

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Martin Lerman

A love of wine and collecting turned into a passion. After a successful career in retail sales with his own business catering to consumers across Canada, Martin's next career involved IT which focused primarily on Enterprise level organizations The years of working with clients has enhanced his skills interpreting customer needs and tailoring their individual needs to our extensive portfolio. Over 10 years in the wine industry has allowed Martin to understand client needs and to achieve those objectives.

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Matt Woo

Matt has over 20 years of experience in the Service industry including 8 years at Angus Glen Golf Club, 5 years at The Drake Hotel, and another 5 years at Rodney’s Oyster House. He began taking wine courses in 2015 as a hobby, but it quickly sparked a new passion that has seen him travel to many of the world’s greatest wine making regions such as Burgundy, Tuscany, and Champagne. He has most recently completed the IWEG’s Italian Wine Scholar program, earning top marks in his class. Matt’s dedication to service and the guest experience translate seamlessly to the role of sales representative at Halpern.

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Mika Giroux

Mika Joined the sales team at Halpern at the end of 2019 with an added focus on events. Having grown up around the restaurant industry, a career in hospitality was a natural progression. After studying French Literature at the University of Toronto, Mika worked for various restaurant groups such as Oliver & Bonacini and Maple Leafs Sports and Entertainment as a Sommelier in the Platinum Club. Looking to focus solely on wine, Mika transitioned to the agency side in 2017 learning the ins and outs of the world of wine taking on a variety of roles such as marketing, sales, and logistics.

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Paige McLachlan

Part-time Halpern watchdog. Artist, Curator and all around Boss- Paige has brought her years of experience in the Art-world and Art Administration, to the front lines of Halpern. If not taking your calls, find her sipping a fine Cotes du Rhone in her studio.

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Paul Koster

Born and raised in the hotel business, Paul’s travels have taken him all around the globe. It was a BSc in Hotel Restaurant Management from the Conrad N. Hilton College at the University of Houston that helped direct his career. Since joining Halpern as a Sales Representative in 2008, Paul is a Brand Ambassador for more than 18 wine producers with a focus on Italian wineries.   A certified sommelier through CAPS and the Court of Master Sommeliers, Paul has been fortunate enough to help build some of the best wine cellars in the GTA and offer insight into wines worth your time to explore. “Part of my job is finding the right wine for the right person that is comfortable for them.”

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Rachel Halpern

Rachel joined her father Colin, along with her uncle and cousin in the family business after completing her Bachelor’s of Life Science from Queen’s University in 2021. Initially assisting with administration, Rachel quickly became Halpern’s go-to designer, combining her love of visual media with an acuity for learning new technology. When Rachel isn’t creating graphic assets, email blasts, and invitations, you can find her indulging in her latest creative and/or academic passion.

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Randy Ostlund

Randy joined Halpern after spending 25+ years in management of Fine Dining restaurants in Toronto.  . Years of heightening the dining experience, building relationships and talking wine with guests are all key aspects that helped with the transition into the role of private client wine sales. He gained his Sommelier certification in 2001 through the International Sommelier Guild and was in charge of curating and expanding the wine lists in the places he worked. Delving into the world of wine has allowed him to travel to many of the wine producing regions on the globe.   Randy lives of the city with his wife and 2 daughters and can be found enjoying a glass of red by the bonfire.

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Sheena Neel

From her first glass of Burgundy in 2001, while studying abroad in France, her passion for wine was ignited. Sheena has spent 2 decades cultivating her passion for travel, cuisine and fine wines. Sheena is working towards completing her Master Sommelier with the Court of Master Sommelier's. When not sampling wine, Sheena, a University of Ottawa graduate, spends her time with her two beautiful Huskies; Loki and Aku. She is a passionate connoisseur of all things elegant and refined but equally values the simple things in life. À ta santé!

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Sheila Flaherty

The former Mercatto Wine Director and Momofuku sommelier has always been marked by her entertaining and accessible approach to wine. Focused on learning all aspects of the industry, she left the restaurant world to head up sales and marketing for Niagara winery Pearl Morissette. Following that she spent time selling for Norman Hardie in Prince Edward County. In January 2014, she took the role of brand ambassador for the iconic Maison Louis Jadot with Halpern Enterprises. Today, along with Jadot, she manages over a dozen of the wine world’s most revered estates and has become one of Toronto’s authorities on Burgundy wines.

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Téla Giroux

Téla joined halpern in 2021 as warehouse coordinator. Her experience working in the Film and Television industry has prepared her to have a keen eye for detail and be quick on her feet. When not handling the logistics of wine distribution, Téla is loving learning all about the world of wine from her colleagues. 

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Tommy Kelly

Born and raised in one of the country’s hospitality centres - Stratford, Ontario- Tommy rose to managing top restaurants at a very young age. Having moved to Toronto and graduating with a Bachelor of Commerce from Ryerson University, Tommy moved back into the world of fine wine and began his now illustrious career in the importation and distribution of fine wines firstly through Trialto Wine Group, followed by a partnership at Brix + Mortar Wine Co. Today, Tommy sits on the Executive Board for the Ryerson Hospitality Alumni Association, is Chairperson of that boards’ Engagement committee and while regularly educating and lecturing at the university, and has taken on the role of director of the New World Wine Division of fine wine importers, Halpern Enterprises.

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Violet Skuce

Coming from the world of luxury hospitality, Violet has always loved great wine, food and travelling. Having spent time studying in France, Vancouver and New York, she became WSET 1 & 2 certified in 2016 and became a CMS Certified Sommelier in 2018. Her love of wine & travel brought her to the 5 Star Pacific Rim Hotel in Vancouver, followed by the Four Seasons Hotel Toronto where she worked in various management positions within Daniel Boulud's Cafe Boulud and d|bar. Violet strives to make wine more approachable, and loves to learn about what different people look for in their wine. Violet joined Halpern as a Brand Manager in 2021 with a primary focus on California wineries, but loves wine from around the world!

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