Another Canadian here!
Sorels have their place. There are a few different models of them, but they work. I wore Sorel’s as a teenager, and all through my army days on winter exercise, and so on. I always found them really comfortable but it depends what model I imagine. They have liners, you can wear thick socks in them, etc. The pair I bought as a teenager are STILL in my closet and in great condition today though I don’t wear them anymore and should really donate them. Well worth the money!
Are you looking for a casual boot, an active boot, etc?
Since I am a minimalist, I wear Vivobarefoot Vienna boots and Soft Star Phoenix Boots for casual wear and going to and from work. Both have minimalist soles. The Vienna’s are tall (up to my knee), all leather, and waterproof so they are suitable for back and forth to work as well as just casual wear. The Phoenix’s are leather and suede, with sheepskin inside, shorter and super comfy though not terribly fashionable (but I only wear if the snow is not high/it is not wet because there is suede on the upper part). I also wear mukluks for more casual days (try Manitoba Mukluks!). You can get these in suede, full leather, a mix of suede and fur, etc. They tend to be very warm and comfortable, but pricey. For me the challenge these days is finding boots that fit my minimalist preferences and give me toe wiggle room and so on. I don’t wear any heeled boots anymore.
I have tried on Uggs but found the sole too stiff/high for my taste, but I know some people love them. Also, a bit too narrow for my toe wiggling. I know some people also like the Bear Paw version which you can buy usually at Winner’s and such (since you are in Canada). You are right though…Ugg’s are not the best for Canadian winters and the amount of snow, slush, road salt, mud, and so on. I see a lot of Uggs and they don’t look too great after a winter or two! If you are just dealing with cold, and not snow and wet, they are fine. (I however also tend to think Uggs are kind of, well, ugly)
Oh and for real cold weather activity boots, like if I am going snowshoeing, I have some Columbia electric heated boots as I don’t care about minimalism if I am snowshoeing or something and..they are heated! A great, great treat when it is -30C and I am on a trail in the middle of the forest. I run outside though too and get away with just my Five Finger Sypyridons, wool toe socks and toe heater packs!
My husband works in an outdoor gear store and he often says lots of people really like Keen boots as they seem to fit a lot of people well. I would just find an outdoor store and go try a variety of boots on actually. Even MEC or something has a few options! Or if you have an Atmosphere or even a Sport Chek or something around, etc. If you want mukluks or something, or even Ugg’s, stores like Quark’s sell them.