GOODS | “Fort Berens Estate Winery” Welcomes South African Wine-Making Pair

April 15, 2014 

Fort Berens Estate Winery is located at 1881 Highway 99 North in Lillooet, BC | 250-256-7788 | fortberens.ca

Fort Berens Estate Winery is located at 1881 Highway 99 North in Lillooet, BC | 250-256-7788 | fortberens.ca

The GOODS from Fort Berens Winery

Lillooet, BC | The weather is heating up, the sun is shining and the season is off to a great start for Fort Berens Estate Winery in Lillooet. With some major milestones behind them, including the groundbreaking of their new winery in the fall and winning White Wine of the Year at Cornucopia in November, the team is bursting with excitement as spring blossoms. For Fort Berens, this spring brings new growth to their team, the blossoming of their winery construction project and a bountiful spring release of their favourite and new varietals.

Rolf de Bruin, founder and one of the owners of Fort Berens, announced, “We are absolutely delighted to welcome Megan de Villiers and Danny Hattingh to the Fort Berens team. Megan is our new Vineyard Manager and Danny is our new Winemaker. They are a couple in real life and also in the vineyard and cellar. They have worked together as a winery team for a number of years and join our team with experience from South Africa, the Southern Gulf Islands and the Okanagan. When Heleen and I met with Danny and Megan, we felt an immediate connection with them as we discovered that their journey was not unlike ours. We have all enjoyed many great adventures along the way. While our paths were different, those paths led all of us to Lillooet, and we are so pleased that Megan and Danny are joining us here.” Read more

GOODS | Extraordinary Chateau Margaux Vintages To Be Poured At “Market” Supper

Market by Jean-Georges is located in the Shangri-La at 1128 W. Georgia | 604-695-1115 | marketbyjgvancouver.com

Market by Jean-Georges is located in the Shangri-La at 1128 W. Georgia | 604-695-1115 | marketbyjgvancouver.com

The GOODS from Market by Jean-Georges

Vancouver, BC | MARKET by Jean-Georges will host an unprecedented evening of exquisite food and wine. A host from Château Margaux in the Bordeaux region of France together with MARKET Chef de Cuisine Montgomery Lau, have partnered together to showcase some of the house’s rarest and most admirable wines.

Aurélien Valance, Senior VP Commercial Director of Château Margaux, will be on hand throughout the evening to offer his consummate insight and depth of knowledge about wine. The seven-course dinner will feature the 1985, 1989, 1990 and 1996 vintages of the Grand Vin alongside the esteemed Pavillon Blanc 2011 and Pavillon Rouge 2004. The highlight of the evening however will be the 1983 vintage of the Chateau Margaux, hailed as one of the finest vintages from the last century. Recognized for its quality since the 18th century and world renowned for its seductive silkiness, subtlety and finesse, Château Margaux represents the pinnacle of winemaking achievement.

To complement the outstanding wines, Chef Lau has prepared a special menu that reflects Jean-Georges’ signature ‘vibrant cuisine’ with its intense flavours and textures that speak to his philosophy of ‘global in reach, local in content.’

CHAMPAGNE
British Columbia Seafood Canapé Reception

PAVILLON BLANC 2011
Foie Gras Terrine, Rhubarb, Rose Water Gellee, Pistachio crumble

PAVILLON ROUGE 2004
Chilled Octopus, Artichokes, Celery, Barigoule Dressing

CHATEAU MARGAUX 2004 & 2003
Crispy Port Hock Terrine, Confit Egg yolk, Truffle Sweetbread Sausage, Coffee Gastrique

CHATEAU MARGAUX 1990 & 1996
Roasted Squab, Mushroom Cavatelli, Buckwheat crackers, Brown Butter Emulsion

CHATEAU MARGAUX 1983 & 1985 & 1989
Beef Tenderloin, Oxtail Croquette, Cauliflower, Sauce Bordelaise

SAUTERNES
Crispy Chocolate Ganache Tart, Toffee Sorbet

The dinner will start at 7:30 pm on April 29, 2014. Tickets are available for $1900 per person. Space is limited and those interested should call immediately to avoid missing out on this rare opportunity. Read more

MESSAGE IN A BOTTLE | No Savage Beasts In The Stoneboat Vineyards 2010 Pinotage

IMG_5941

by Treve Ring | Black Sage Bench Pinotage. Who knew? This is no wild and savage beast (in the South African wildebeest vein), but rather a lush, ripe dark plum, wild raspberry, and black cherry example with massive structure, tobacco leaf vegetation, cedar earthiness and powdery-shaded tannins. Alluring baking spice and exotic flowered aromas add intrigue.

Stoneboat Vineyards Pinotage 2010 | Oliver, Okanagan Valley | $25

April Fools is coming up. Here’s how you own it, wine geek style: Pour this blind for someone, and then tell them to guess what it is. Kapow! Right? Ok – so perhaps not everyone has the same sense of humour as I do, but you don’t need a corkscrew license to realize that pinotage is not as common here as, say, merlot.

South Africa’s flagship red grape is a long way from home in Stoneboat’s Oliver vineyards. The grape was originally propagated by Lanny Martiniuk for the original South African owners of nearby Lake Breeze Vineyards. 35 years ago, Lanny and his wife Julie left the bustle of Vancouver to set up shop in the bucolic Okanagan Valley. They settled on a 15 acre orchard on Black Sage Bench, buying it on a handshake in 1979. During the formative years of the BC wine industry, Lanny served as director of the BC Grape Growers Association for a decade and was chair of the Grape Marketing Board. He was also a founding director of the BC Wine Institute and a pioneer in revitalizing the industry after free trade and the grape pullout of 1988. Lanny is well known as a successful grapevine propagator and has grown millions of vines for vineyards all over BC – including the 2 pinotage plants he kept for himself, which have now multiplied into 7 acres worth. 35 years and three wine-industry-working children later (Jay, Tim & Chris), the Martiniuks now practice “thoughtful farming” on nearly 50 acres of vines.

I posed my stack of 5 questions to their winemaker, Alison Moyes…

alison_moyes

Straight up – why did you make this wine? Pinotage is an exciting grape to work with. It was an opportunity to work with a varietal rarely seen in the Okanagan and create a wine that is distinctly our own. The possibilities on the nose are endless! Tropical notes often come through, which I love, and find to be rare in red wines in general. Luckily for me, Lanny had the foresight to plant the pinotage in 1998 because of how well it is suited to the site and rocky soils.

Where are the grapes from? All Stoneboat wines are made from estate grown grapes, including the pinotage. The vineyards are located south of Oliver on the lower Black Sage bench. It is a unique site in that it rests on a gravel bar, rather than the sandy soils that surround us in both directions. These growing conditions are made for pinotage with large diurnal shifts from the hot summer days to cool nights.

Your ideal pairing with this wine? I’ve been doing some experimenting with pinotage pairings lately. Traditionally my choice has been rack of lamb with a cocoa rub. However, after trying a few vegetarian options my eyes have been opened to just how versatile this wine can be. Pasta with caramelized onions, kale and gorgonzola was an absolute winner!

What do you drink when you’re not drinking BC wine? Considering how delicious a nice lager tastes at the end of a long day on the crush pad and how many great craft breweries there are in BC, beer is the obvious choice. I’ve been enjoying taste testing to find my favourites. Occasionally a gin & tonic hits the spot, too.

Favourite BC wine, other than yours? Tough to pick just one. There are so many great options to choose from. The Origin blend from Maverick really caught my attention this past year; an interesting combination of Sauvignon Blanc and Gewürztraminer. I’m expecting to see great things from them.

Burrowing Owl Estate Winery

March 20, 2014 

Burrowing-Owl-wines

DETAILS

Screen-Shot-2014-04-02-at-9.30

Burrowing Owl Estate Winery
500 Burrowing Owl Place
Oliver, British Columbia, V0H 1T1
Toll Free: 877.498.0620 | Local: 250.498.0620
Web: www.bovwine.ca | Facebook | Twitter

GALLERY

Wyse FamilyWine shopVineyard WinterThe Sonora RoomThe Sonora Room_5The Sonora Room_3syrah_2011-mdSR Tuna Leza Chef CSR Duck - Chef CJim Wyse with Dustyhands in grapesGuest House pool_4Guest House Pool DeckGuest House Pillow PtsGuest House breakfast tableGH Penthouse Lvg Rm2Dusty_01Chris Wyse Presidentchardonnay_2012_lgBuuowing Owl Vineyard at duskBurrowing Owl winterBurrowing Owl winesBurrowing Owl FallBurrowing Owl exterior_210-Meritage-LabelBurrowing Owl exterior_1Burrowing Owl beauty vineyard_extBottle line Up Outdoors

The People Who Make It Happen

Wyse-Family

Jim Wyse, Founder & Proprietor
Chris Wyse, President
Kerri Wyse-McNolty, Marketing Director
Tom DiBello, Winemaker
Brock Bowes, Executive Chef, The Sonora Room Restaurant
Dave Keeler, Operator, The Sonora Room Restaurant
Lynn Coulthard, Manager, The Sonora Room Restaurant

About Burrowing Owl Estate Winery

Burrowing-Owl-exterior_1

Located near the north end of Osoyoos Lake in BC’s fabled Okanagan Valley, Burrowing Owl Estate Winery is devoted to crafting world-class wines in an environmentally-sustainable manner. Founder Jim Wyse has always had a strong commitment to striving for balance in all things, and this philosophy infuses everything that’s done at Burrowing Owl, from viticulture to winemaking. In the vineyard, the natural balance is maintained by recruiting bluebirds and bats to help control harmful insects; at the winemaking facilities, state-of-the-art technology is employed along with traditional winemaking methods. Remarkable for its strikingly beautiful setting as well as its environmental leadership, the winery has become a destination for wine lovers around the globe: every year Burrowing Owl welcomes over 100,000 visitors at its Wine Shop, Sonora Room Restaurant, and Guest House. Burrowing Owl’s success has also benefited our feathered friends, as the winery supports conservation work that is helping its namesake, the endangered burrowing owl, make a comeback in British Columbia.

The Sonora Room Restaurant

The-Sonora-Room_5

Burrowing Owl’s Sonora Room restaurant showcases the best of the Okanagan in both food and wine. We serve creative Pacific Northwest cuisine featuring local ingredients and products, including fresh fruit and vegetables and artisanal breads and cheeses. Sonora Room staff are always happy to recommend the perfect pairing from our exclusive wine list, which includes Burrowing Owl library wines no longer available for public sale. Feast your eyes on spectacular views of the Burrowing Owl vineyards as you enjoy lunch or dinner in our warm, inviting dining room or on our patio. The Sonora Room is open daily throughout the season; reservations are recommended.

The Burrowing Owl Guest House

Guest-House-breakfast-table

Offering stunning views of the Burrowing Owl vineyards, our Guest House features ten spacious south-facing rooms, each with a fireplace and private deck. Amenities include an outdoor pool, an all-season hot tub, and our Fireside Lounge. We also offer Wine Country breakfasts and in-room spa treatments. Those wishing to combine business with pleasure will find our Board Room and AV presentation facilities ideal for corporate retreats.

GOODS | Naramata’s “JoieFarm” Releases 2013 Vintage Of A Noble Blend, Five Others

JoieFarm is located in beautiful Naramata, BC | 250-462-1980 | heidi@joiefarm.com | www.joiefarm.com

JoieFarm is located in beautiful Naramata, BC | 250-462-1980 | heidi@joiefarm.com | www.joiefarm.com

The GOODS from JoieFarm

Vancouver, BC | Upon the occasion of our 10th anniversary, we are pleased to announce the release of the 2013 Vintage of JoieFarm A Noble Blend, Rosé, Un-Oaked Chardonnay, Riesling, Muscat and Pinot Blanc. The wines are now available to order online from our website JoieFarm.com by clicking on the Buy Our Wines link. Shipping is free to your door throughout most of Canada. Please contact us for shipping charges to outlying Canadian areas. Shipping is not available to the USA or internationally.

A note about the vintage itself, the 2013 growing year was long and flavourful. It was our second bumper crop in a row and the vines have really outdone themselves in terms of quantity and quality. The vintage shows our regional trademark of excellent acidity and reasonable alcohols as well as great intensity of flavour, the benefit of a nice long growing season and a cool dry October. Read more

Okanagan

7810800288_c7a61536b0_b

Arrival in PentictonElephant Island Pearson the Okanagan roadPenticton Farmer's marketDeana Lancaster and Coleen Christie laughing their butts offJoy Road Catering Joie dinner  @ Gods Mountain Okanagan 2010 196God's Mountain | Summer 2010

From Vernon in the north to Osoyoos in the south, we love exploring the Okanagan. It has everything that we love and enjoy in life, chief among them being great food, breathtaking (and accessible) landscapes, and a variety of local crafted alcoholic beverages.

the-colour-palette

orofino

In the Okanagan at the moment (our HOOD palettes are ever-changing), we’re seeing the blue sky, sandstone, and green grass of Mission Hill; rural community mailbox green; four shades of peach; the sand at Naramata’s 3 Mile Beach (clothing optional); Painted Rock “Red Icon” 2011; the crushpad at Orofino; Haywire “Pink Bub” 2012; “K” Cafe signage tri-colour; Miradoro exterior; Road 13 proprietor Mick Luckhurst’s most excellent moustache; the tractor at Meyer Family Vineyards; sunny day view of Skaha Lake from God’s Mountain; and the green branding of Joiefarm.

here-you-will-find

5313916202_7639b4d36d_b

DAY DRUNKS FLOATING THE PENTICTON CHANNEL
A WHOLE LOT OF ALBERTANS LIVING IN LARGE HOUSES
FOSSIL HUNTING ON THE ROAD TO THE DOMINION RADIO ASTROPHYSICAL OBSERVATORY
GOOD PERUSING AMONG THE STACKS AT THE BOOKSHOP IN PENTICTON
A LOT OF BEAUTIFULLY RESTORED AMERICAN CLASSIC CARS
AFTERNOON PICNICS AT COVERT FARMS
THE BIGGEST CULINARY COMPETITION IN CANADA
GOOD SNOW AND PERMANENT 90′S TIME WARP AT BIG WHITE
BEACH-FRONT CAMPING AT STUNNING HAYNES POINT
VINTAGE ADIDAS GAZELLE SNEAKERS HANGING FROM ROWING SHELLS AT THE EL DORADO
GOOD DOWNHILL TUMBLING ON THE GROUNDS AT MISSION HILL FAMILY ESTATE
THE PRIVATE BEACH AT WALNUT BEACH RESORT
AMERICAN WHITE PELICANS ON OSOYOOS LAKE
TOURING AND TASTING CANNERY BREWING & TREE BREWING
THE WEIRD SALT CIRCLES OF SPOTTED LAKE
GO KART RACING AT THE PENTICTON SPEEDWAY

what-to-eat-and-drink

IMG_4799

PEACH MILKSHAKES AT THE “K” CAFE IN KEREMEOS
SUPERFOOD SALAD AT SUNSET ORGANIC BISTRO
WINES FROM 120 DIFFERENT WINERIES
CHICKEN CONFIT POUTINE AT RAUDZ REGIONAL TABLE
BRATWURST AT THE PENTICTON FARMER’S MARKET
BRIOCHE FRENCH TOAST BRUNCH AT QUAILS’ GATE’S OLD VINES
THE FRIED SQUID AT THEO’S
SMOKED BACON AT DOLCI
GRILLED THREE CHEESE SANDWICHES AT BRODO
LATE SUMMER SUPPERS ON THE TERRACE AT MISSION HILL
FRESH OYSTERS AND MIGNONETTE AT WATERFRONT WINES
EATING DIVERSE BBQ AT THE SIMILKAMEEN BBQ KING COMPETITION
TIGER BLUE CHEESE AT POPLAR GROVE
JOY ROAD SUPPERS ON THE CLIFF AT GOD’S MOUNTAIN
ANYTHING BY CHEF JEFF VAN GEEST AT MIRADORO

cool-things-of-note

Screen-Shot-2014-04-09-at-8.33

- The Nk’mip Desert is technically not a desert, but rather a shrub-steppe.

- Calona Wines, founded in 1932, is the oldest continuously operating winery in BC.

- Chef Dana Ewart of Joy Road Catering always wears two different coloured socks.

- Only three nest sites of the endangered Burrowing Owl have been discovered since 1928. They now only exist at “reintroduction sites” near Kamloops and Haynes Lease.

- The masks on Tantalus Vineyards’ wine labels are by Tahltan-Tlingit carver Dempsey Bob.

- The Kettle Valley railway was launched in 1915 but was abandoned in 1989.

- Michael Dinn and Heidi Noble, owners of Naramata’s celebrated Joiefarm winery, are both veterans of Vancouver’s restaurant industry.

things-we've-seen

———————————————–

GOODS | “Painted Rock” To Kick Off Season With A Wine-Paired Supper By Mark Filatow

February 28, 2014 

Painted Rock Estate Winery is located outside of Penticton in the Okanagan Valley | 250-493-6809 | www.paintedrock.ca

Painted Rock Estate Winery is located outside of Penticton in the Okanagan Valley | 250-493-6809 | www.paintedrock.ca

The GOODS from Painted Rock Estate Winery

Vancouver, BC | Join Proprietor John Skinner on Saturday, May 3, for an unforgettable evening of Painted Rock wines while overlooking the vineyards and Skaha Lake at the winery’s new tasting room. John will discuss the history and winemaking philosophies of Painted Rock, while guiding guests through the award-winning lineup of wines, complete with an exclusive sneak peek of the yet to be released, but highly anticipated 2011 vintage.

The wines will be celebrated and perfectly paired throughout a locally-inspired four course meal prepared by esteemed chef and sommelier Mark Filatow of Waterfront Wines. Tickets are $125.00 per person and are very limited. To purchase tickets, click here or call (250) 486-5175. Read more

GOODS | “Painted Rock” Enters New Year With New Tasting Room And Event Facility

January 2, 2014 

Painted Rock Estate Winery is located outside Penticton, BC | 250-493-6809 | www.paintedrock.ca

Painted Rock Estate Winery is located outside of Penticton in the Okanagan Valley | 250-493-6809 | www.paintedrock.ca

The GOODS from Painted Rock Estate Winery

Vancouver, BC | In September, 2013, Painted Rock Estate Winery welcomed a new addition to its property in South Penticton with the opening of a modern new tasting room, wedding and event facility. The new facility provides the most spectacular views in the Okanagan and gives visitors the opportunity to enjoy Painted Rock’s award-winning wines in a fitting environment. “While our focus was always and always will be on our wine, we also knew that when we built something on our amazing bench it had to be worthy,” says John Skinner, Painted Rock Proprietor.

The 1,100 square foot tasting room is the perfect setting to taste and learn about the five estate grown wines that are produced by Painted Rock. Visitors will be able to enjoy a glass of Painted Rock wine on the licensed patio with a selection of antipasti from local purveyors or bring a blanket and enjoy a bottle of wine in the grassed picnic area.

The event and wedding facility offers over 5,000 square feet of outdoor patio and grassed area, allowing guests the freedom to rent all or some of the space. From small, intimate events in the tasting room, stand-up canapé and wine receptions under the stars, or a sit down, fully catered dinner prepared by local caters with local Okanagan ingredients, events at Painted Rock are sure to impress. “I hope you agree, our new facility was worth the wait,” says John Skinner, “we look forward to welcoming visitors to experience Painted Rock wines in the new venue and to hosting many memorable events in the future.” Read more

GOODS | “Fort Berens” Chardonnay Scores “Best White” Nod At This Year’s Cornucopia

November 20, 2013 

Fort Berens Estate Winery is located at 1881 Highway 99 North in Lillooet, BC | 250-256-7788 | www.fortberens.ca

Fort Berens Estate Winery is located at 1881 Highway 99 North in Lillooet, BC | 250-256-7788 | www.fortberens.ca

The GOODS from Fort Berens Winery

Lillooet, BC | The Fort Berens Estate Winery team is back from their recent adventure to Whistler with some great news. Their 2012 Chardonnay picked up the distinguished title of “White Wine of the Year” at Cornucopia, an annual celebration of food and wine, which was held in Whistler Nov. 7-17th.

Winery co-owner Heleen Pannekoek, who accepted the award on behalf of the Fort Berens team, is absolutely thrilled. Pannekoek explained, “Winning White Wine of the Year at Cornucopia is a huge honour for our team. We founded the winery in 2009, and to win such an important award so early on in our winemaking career shows us we are on the right path. We were so pleased to learn that our Chardonnay won amongst so many other amazing white wines.”

Pannekoek continued, “This award is very special for us for another reason as well. Our 2012 Chardonnay is our first 100% estate grown Chardonnay. This award is confirmation that the terroir in Lillooet is well suited to growing top-quality Chardonnay. Our vineyard team has done a fantastic job of nurturing the vines to maturity and that care is reflected in the 2012 vintage.” For more information on the wine and award, visit here and keep reading after the jump… Read more

GOODS | The 20th Harvest Was A Tale Of Two Vintages At Tinhorn Creek Vineyards

November 13, 2013 

Tinhorn Creek is located at 32830 Tinhorn Creek Road in Oliver, BC | 1-888-484-6467 | www.tinhorn.com

The GOODS from Tinhorn Creek

Oliver, BC | It’s been a busy time at Tinhorn Creek Vineyards with the grape picking wrapping up for the year and Winemaker and CEO Sandra Oldfield celebrating the winery’s 20th harvest with a special year that saw two types of vintage emerge.

The Okanagan’s hot summer leading up to September meant that the Tinhorn Creek team was tracking the maturity of the grapes two weeks earlier than usual, a promising sign for the first vintage. Variable weather in September that ranged from hot sun to hail, wind and drizzle, lasted well into October and created the second vintage.

The good news from September’s mixed weather was that it slowed down the ripening of the grapes enough to help the flavours catch up with the rapidly rising sugars – giving an incredible intensity of flavour to the grapes at harvest, this slow down in ripening simultaneously caused some initial concern about attaining the proper ripeness for harvest, as it has done for the past three years, but ultimately the quality was attained in enough quantity to produce the full range of high-quality reds.

“This year we’ve expanded on the popularity of our Pinot Gris and our Gewürztraminer,” says Winemaker and CEO Sandra Oldfield, adding “both are pretty exceptional in the tanks right now. Variety-wise one of the stand-outs of this vintage is the Merlot – the grapes loved the hot summer and its flavours are going to knock peoples’ collective socks off when the wines are released.” Read more

GOODS | “Fort Berens” Marks Milestone, Breaks Ground For New Winery In Lillooet

November 1, 2013 

Fort-Berens-Owners---Milestone-Marker

Fort Berens Estate Winery is located at 1881 Highway 99 North in Lillooet, BC | 250-256-7788 | www.fortberens.ca

The GOODS from Fort Berens Winery

Lillooet, BC | The Fort Berens Winery team furthered their plans to pioneer a new frontier by officially breaking ground for the building of the first winery in Lillooet. Rolf de Bruin, founder and one of the owners of Fort Berens, recalls the early days in 2009 when they first decided to plant vines on the property. “We hoped that day marked the first in a series of milestones for Fort Berens and Lillooet. We are pleased to be here together today to mark another major milestone.”

Rolf continued, “We are excited to break ground on this new building. It’s been a 3-year process. We needed to first prove the viability of the grape-growing from our vineyard, assemble our ownership team, get our financial and strategic plans in place, and consult with experts in the industry. The design of the building went through a number of iterations over the 3-year process. We talked to experts in this field to help us design the layout and to maximize space and efficiency.”

The new 9,500 square foot building will include a 1,100 square foot tasting room, overlooking the vineyards with a gorgeous view of the mountains in the background. It has been designed to allow visitors to watch the winemaking process and see the internal workings of the winery through the windows as they approach the tasting room. It will also feature a gravity fed fermentation room, barrel chambers, crush pad, wine bar and bistro.

Rolf’s wife and winery co-founder Heleen Pannekoek continued, “Each year, we have seen increased demand for our wine. We produced 4,000 cases in 2012, we estimate 5,000 cases this year and we are planning for 6,000 cases in 2014. Once the new building opens, we will have capability to fully process up to 12,000 cases onsite. This additional capacity will allow for our own future growth in coming years. We also very purposefully built in extra capacity to help facilitate the custom crushing of grapes from other growers in our area. We are very committed to working with others in Lillooet and facilitating more grape and wine production in this area.”

The new winery takes the committed investment into Fort Berens to $7.5 million. It was designed by collaborating architects David Agro from Toronto and Richard Newell from Vancouver and is being built by Okanagan-based Greyback Construction.

See the renderings here and learn all about Fort Berens after the jump… Read more

WELCOME | “Fort Berens Estate Winery” Has Joined The Growing Scout Community

October 30, 2013 

Fort-Berens-05

We’ve invited Lillooet’s Fort Berens Estate Winery to join our GOODS section as a recommended BC winery. They are now a proud member of Scout, and as such we will be posting their news in addition to hosting a page for them on our curated list of independent goodnesses. We would like to thank them for their support of Scout, and for making our province a more delicious place to be.

Fort Berens OwnersFort Berens 28Fort Berens 27Fort Berens 26Fort Berens 25Fort Berens 24Fort Berens 23Fort Berens 22Fort Berens 21Fort Berens 20Fort Berens 19Fort Berens 18Fort Berens 17Fort Berens 16Fort Berens 15Fort Berens 14Fort Berens 13Fort Berens 12Fort Berens 11Fort Berens 10Fort Berens 09Fort Berens 08Fort Berens 07Fort Berens 06Fort Berens 05Fort Berens 04Fort Berens 02Fort Berens 01

ALL THE LOCAL “GOODS”

Fort Berens Estate Winery

October 1, 2013 

Fort-Berens-14

DETAILS

Fort-Berens-logo

1881 Highway 99 North | PO Box 758 | Lillooet, BC V0K 1V0
Phone: 250-256-7788 | Toll free; 1-877-956-7768
Email: info [at] fortberens.ca
Web: www.fortberens.ca | Facebook | Twitter | YouTube

GALLERY

Fort Berens OwnersFort Berens 28Fort Berens 27Fort Berens 26Fort Berens 25Fort Berens 24Fort Berens 23Fort Berens 22Fort Berens 21Fort Berens 20Fort Berens 19Fort Berens 18Fort Berens 17Fort Berens 16Fort Berens 15Fort Berens 14Fort Berens 13Fort Berens 12Fort Berens 11Fort Berens 10Fort Berens 09Fort Berens 08Fort Berens 07Fort Berens 06Fort Berens 05Fort Berens 04Fort Berens 02Fort Berens 01

The Pioneers

Fort-Berens-Owners

Owners, from left: Rolf de Bruin, Hugh Agro, John McConnell, Jason Neal, Heleen Pannekoek, Sean Harvey.

About Fort Berens Estate Winery

Fort-Berens-01

Fort Berens Estate Winery is the first winery in Lillooet, BC. It is located on a sage-brush covered bench at the base of the Fraser Canyon’s snow-capped mountains. It was established by Dutch immigrants, Rolf de Bruin and Heleen Pannekoek. Rolf and Heleen embarked on the venture in 2005, when they left the Netherlands and shifted from corporate careers to living and working on a farm. With the founding of Fort Berens, Rolf and Heleen turned their lifelong dream of running a vineyard and winery into a reality.

In 2010 and 2011, the team was further strengthened when ownership of the winery was expanded by way of a major investment from Toronto and Vancouver-based mining and investment banking executives, Hugh Agro, Sean Harvey, John McConnell and Jason Neal.

Fort Berens is currently in the process of building a new 9,500 square foot winery, which will include a 1,100 square foot tasting room overlooking the vineyards with a gorgeous view of the mountains in the background. It has been designed to allow visitors to watch the winemaking process and see the internal workings of the winery through the windows as they approach the tasting room. The anticipated opening date is summer, 2014.

Our Vineyard and Wines

Fort-Berens-21

Our vineyard is located in the Fraser Canyon across the Fraser River from the town of Lillooet. While Lillooet is one of the “Hot Spots” in Canada, our average summer temperatures are slightly lower than the South Okanagan, because our night-time temperatures are lower. These cool nights are ideal as they allow the vines to rest before another hot day in the summer sunshine. The Cascade Mountains to the west keep rain and clouds away, ensuring that the vines receive plenty of sunshine.

In May 2009 we planted 20 acres with six varietals: Riesling, Pinot Gris, Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, Cabernet Franc and Merlot. After careful consideration, we have chosen various rootstocks and clones to ensure early ripening and increase the complexity of our wines. We strive to craft a portfolio of balanced and distinctive wines that are pure and reflect the unique terroir of this new region and the spirit of our winemaker.

Our Philosophy

Fort-Berens-19

We are pioneers and explorers. We are helping to break ground for the growing wine region in Lillooet. We invite our guests to join us and explore the land with us and experience the thrill of discovery. From the first taste of a new vintage to walking the vineyard with the winemaker, we invite our guests to be a part of the discovery. In every journey there are many explorations, but only one first step.

Reviews and Accolades

Fort-Berens-27

“At just over 50 degrees latitude, Fort Berens, in Lillooet, sits at the northern limit of the wine-grape belt. But it’s blessed with clearer skies and drier air than pretty much any other wine district at that boundary. Owners Rolf de Bruin and Heleen Pannekoek had been sourcing chardonnay from the Okanagan to supplement their estate fruit because it takes time for vines to yield much quality fruit. This is their first 100-per-cent all-estate chardonnay. Remarkable, too. Full-bodied and mellow, it shows surprisingly ripe pineapple and stone-fruit flavours, with a buttery texture enlivened by bright acidity. If this were made in California, it would easily fetch twice the price. 90 points.” – Beppi Crosariol, The Globe and Mail, September 17, 2013 on our 2012 Chardonnay

“The latest FB Meritage is another step up the notch for winemaker Rolf de Bruin and puts a spotlight on the Lillooet meso-climate. There is a freshness and balance to this wine that I like and with 65 percent merlot some built in drinkability and softness that has appeal. The nose and palate mix black fruits, with a savoury edge but all in all a ripeness plus acidity and smoothness that makes it food friendly. Well done and fair value. 88 points.” – Anthony Gismondi, Gismondi on Wine, January 12, 2013 on our 2010 Meritage.

“This is a blend of Lillooet grapes and fruit from the Sundial Vineyard on Black Sage Road. The wine is 47% Merlot, 34% Cabernet Sauvignon and 19% Cabernet Franc. It was aged 12 months in French and American oak barrels and another six months in bottle before release. Dark in colour, it begins with an appealing aroma of black cherry, black currant and vanilla.  On the palate, the wine’s long ripe tannins give it a generous richness. The flavours echo the aroma with added touches of chocolate and spice. 91 points.” – John Schreiner, John Schreiner on Wine, October 19, 2013 on our 2011 Meritage.

Next Page »