GOODS | Laughing Stock Celebrates 10th Vintage Of Their Flagship “Portfolio” Wine

Laughing Stock Vineyards is located at 1548 Naramata Rd. in Penticton, BC | 250-493-8466 |

Laughing Stock Vineyards is located at 1548 Naramata Rd in Penticton, BC | 250-493-8466 |

GOODS from Laughing Stock Vineyards

Naramata, BC | In the investment industry, you aren’t really taken seriously as a money manager until you can post 10 year performance numbers. Portfolio, our flagship Bordeaux inspired blend, has now achieve that status. For the past decade, Portfolio has routinely won top accolades from wine competitions and wine critics alike.

The 10th vintage will be a chart-topper from the stellar 2012 growing year. Portfolio 2012 has already been awarded a gold medal at the 2014 InterVin International Wine Awards.

This vintage was one of the best growing seasons we’ve had in the Okanagan. The blend of 45% Merlot, 25% Cabernet Sauvignon, 22% Cabernet Franc, 7% Malbec and 1% Petit Verdot shows a suppleness, opulence and intensity of fruit that will be hallmarks of this great vintage. A stunning wine to cap a decade of winemaking.

It’s been quite a journey…full of lots of learning and just plain hard work this last decade. But most of all, thanks for enjoying our wines. Get all the details and the Top 10 things to know about Laughing Stock Vineyards after the jump… Read more

GOODS | Laughing Stock’s 2011 “Portfolio” And Syrah Win Awards At Home And Abroad

Laughing Stock Vineyards is located at 1548 Naramata Rd. in Penticton, BC | 250-493-8466 |

Laughing Stock Vineyards is located at 1548 Naramata Rd in Penticton, BC | 250-493-8466 |

GOODS from Laughing Stock Vineyards

Naramata, BC | Our flagship wine, Portfolio 2011, was awarded the very prestigious Lieutenant Governor’s Award of Excellence in BC Wine 2014. Of the 436 wines entered by 119 wineries, only 12 wines are honoured with this award as determined by a blind tasting panel of esteemed and qualified judges.

Laughing Stock has won 3 times in the past 4 years, previously for Pinot Gris 2010 and Syrah 2010, but this is the first time that Portfolio has received this accolade. Lieutenant Governor Judith Guichon will be visiting the winery in late July to present the award in person to David & Cynthia Enns. This award is well timed to launch the upcoming celebration of the 10th vintage release of Portfolio in October 2014.

Laughing Stock’s other big red, Syrah 2011, was also triumphant this week on a world scale, being awarded a highly coveted Regional Trophy at the Decanter World Wine Awards for Best Canadian Red in London, England. Regional trophies are only awarded to the top rated medal winner from that region and thus it is a huge accomplishment to be recognized in the world’s largest and most influential wine competition. 2014 saw another record-breaking year of entries, with over 15,000 wines entered into the competition from 46 countries.

Grown at our estate vineyard, “The Perfect Hedge” in Osoyoos, BC, Syrah has been winning regular top award honours including Lt. Governor Award in 2012 and GOLD at National Wine Awards in 2013. Unfortunately we have limited supply of Portfolio 2011 and are pretty much sold out at the winery for the Syrah 2011, but have held back a few cases for orders until July 1st (2 bottle maximum order limit). Read more

MESSAGE IN A BOTTLE | Synchromesh Flies Down The Straightaway With ‘Tertre Rouge’


by Treve Ring | You can tell this family-owned and operated winery is in it for the love of the craft. There is no way Alan Dickinson, his wife Amy and Alan’s parents John and Kristy would put this much time and effort into their micro winery if they didn’t live and breathe it. Focus and passion are nothing new for the Dickinsons; the winery is named for the gear shifting mechanism in a car that makes the driving and driven wheel revolve at a synchronized speed. The synchromesh system matches the speeds of gears that you are changing to the one that you intend to use, ensuring a smooth and quiet shift. John Dickinson used to race sports cars, and restoring and collecting classic and performance cars is a passion shared by several members of the family, including his two sons Alan and Stuart.

Synchromesh Wines Tertre Rouge 2011 | Turtle Rock Farms, Naramata Bench, BC | $35

Making well-crafted, terroir-driven, sustainably produced and low interventionist wine is also a shared passion. While primarily a Riesling-focused winery (perhaps it’s the petrol?), this wine, Tertre Rouge, is their flagship red.

From a single vineyard tucked up above the Naramata Bench comes this expressive red. Cab Franc dominates the blend with beauty black cherry, spicy cassis, sun-ripened tomato and dusty thorns, while Merlot plumps up the balance, all dark chocolate, roasted coffee and fragrant ripe blackberry. Acidity is brisk, tannins are confident and the vanilla essence on the finish lengthy. After a 15 month stint in French oak, plus a further yearlong repose in bottle, the wine is ready for release.

Tertre Rouge takes its name from an iconic corner of France’s Le Mans racing circuit. After you clear the tricky, high-speed Le Tertre Rouge bend, you’re straight sailing onto one of the longest, most rewarding straightaways in motor racing. Time and experience is key for a skilled racer; and time in the cellar is what this wine was built for.

I asked Alan Dickinson to share his message in a bottle of Tertre Rouge 2011…

Straight up – why did you make this wine? And what’s in the name? I love Cabernet Franc, it does amazing things in the Okanagan when grown on the right site and cropped appropriately. It can be as transparent as Riesling or Pinot Noir and brings a wonderful greenness and funkiness that kills with food. The name… Tertre Rouge is one of the most famous corners in motor racing and commands balance and patience to execute cleanly… I think this sums up Cabernet Franc and its intricacies.

Where are the grapes from? Tertre Rouge is a single vineyard wine from Turtle Rock Farms above the Naramata Bench. A unique site in soil make up and excellent exposure made more interesting by a late day ‘second sun’ from the lake reflection. We lease the entire vineyard and work closely with the Britton family to farm and produce the best Cabernet Franc and Merlot possible. We use the Merlot in careful doses to flesh out and soften the Cabernet Franc while allowing it to capture the aromas and flavours.

Your ideal pairing with this wine would be…? Tertre Rouge is very versatile because of its acid and aromatic intensity but I love what it does to lamb the most. Lamb happens to be my favourite meat and grilled lightly with rosemary and garlic scapes it wrangles the best out of this wine.

Favourite BC wine, other than yours? Tough one, it really depends what I’m eating. Meyer Family for Chardonnay, Painted Rock for Syrah, Blue Mountain for Pinot Noir or Fairview’s unabashedly big Cabs. I do seem to drink more from Okanagan Falls than any other areas, though.

What do you drink when you’re not drinking BC wine? German Riesling! Bordeaux (a special love for Magdelaine), but really all over the map. It is important to understand the best wines in the world in order to try and achieve the best you can with your own vineyards.

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

JoieFarm is located in beautiful Naramata, BC | 250-462-1980 | |

JoieFarm is located in beautiful Naramata, BC | 250-462-1980 | |

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 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

GOODS | Joiefarm “Canadian Winery Of The Year” At NY International Wine Competition

JoieFarm is located in beautiful Naramata, BC | 250-496-0073 | Toll free: 1-866-422-5643 |

JoieFarm is located in beautiful Naramata, BC | 250-496-0073 | Toll free: 1-866-422-5643 |

The GOODS from JoieFarm

Vancouver, BC | JoieFarm Winery is proud to announce that we have been named “Canadian Winery of the Year” at the 2013 New York International Wine Competition. The competition is the only major international wine competition to be judged solely by trade buyers. Each wine is judged by its category and retail price. All participating judges have purchasing power through their stores, restaurants, distribution networks, which results in their ability to have a direct impact on brand sales. The complete results can be found at this link. To order our wines please click here. Read more

GOODS: Naramata’s “JoieFarm” Wins Gold At UK’s 2013 Decanter World Wine Awards


JoieFarm is located in beautiful Naramata, BC | 250-496-0073 | Toll free: 1-866-422-5643 |

The GOODS from JoieFarm

Vancouver, BC | We are proud to announce that the 2011 JoieFarm “En Famille” Reserve Chardonnay (Sept. 2013 release) has won gold at the UK’s Decanter World Wine Awards. This is a tremendous achievement in what is generally regarded as the world’s toughest wine competition. This year, 219 wine experts from 27 countries, including 75 Masters of Wine and 13 Master Sommeliers, gathered in London in April to taste 14,362 wine entries from around the world to which they awarded a mere 229 gold medals. The complete results of the competition are here. Our results can be found after the jump… Read more

GOODS: Naramata’s JoieFarm Wins Big At Riverside International Wine Competition

JoieFarm is located in beautiful Naramata, BC | 250-496-0073 | Toll free: 1-866-422-5643 |

The GOODS from JoieFarm

Vancouver, BC | We are proud to announce our outstanding showing at the prestigious 2013 Riverside International Wine Competition in Temecula California this past week. The 2012 JoieFarm Rosé was selected as the Sweepstakes Rosé Wine, the best rosé wine in show. The 2011 JoieFarm Gamay and 2011 JoieFarm PTG (both to be released in September, 2013) were both named Best in Class and awarded Gold Medals. The complete results of the competition are here, with ours listed after the jump… Read more

GOODS: Naramata’s Celebrated “JoieFarm” Announces Its 2012 Vintage Wine Releases

February 21, 2013 

JoieFarm is located in beautiful Naramata, BC | 250-496-0073 | Toll free: 1-866-422-5643 |

The GOODS from JoieFarm

Vancouver, BC | We are pleased to announce the release of the 2012 Vintage of JoieFarm A Noble Blend, Rosé, Un-Oaked Chardonnay, Riesling, Muscat and Pinot Blanc. The 2012 growing year was short but ended warmly. A perfect harvest season brought JoieFarm’s wines big, big flavour, generous alcohol and body. One of the key factors in developing greater intensity with our wines has been our increasing roster of carefully curated and farmed leased vineyard sites of vines 25 years and older that add complexity and weight to the wines. The wines are now available to order online from our website by clicking on the Order our Wines link. Shipping is free to your door for all major urban centres throughout Canada. Please contact us for shipping charges to outlying Canadian areas. Shipping is not available to the USA or internationally. We are unable to offer our in-person pickup day in Vancouver this year. Read more

GOODS: Naramata’s “JoieFarm” Releases 2010 Reserve Series, Ready For Shipping

September 18, 2012 

JoieFarm is located in beautiful Naramata, BC | 250-496-0073 | Toll free: 1-866-422-5643 |

The GOODS from JoieFarm

Vancouver, BC | We are proud to announce the release of our 2010 Reserve Series including one new wine, the 2010 Reserve Pinot Noir, in addition to the 2010 Reserve Chardonnay and 2010 PTG. Our Reserve series is inspired by our love of the wines of Burgundy and our recognition that Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Gamay excel in the Okanagan Valley. It is our stated goal to utilize our best lots in any given year to create small quantities of high quality wine, with an emphasis on low-yields, careful selection and traditional Old World methods. Please note that there will be no downtown Vancouver pickup option due to harvest but shipping is still free to most of Canada. Early reviews for each of the wines have been outstanding. You can read these and order the wines after the jump… Read more

Lake Breeze Vineyards

September 1, 2012 


930 Sammet Road, Naramata, BC, V0H 1N0.
Telephone: 250-496-5659
Web: | Facebook | Twitter



General Manager: Launa Maundrell
Wine Maker: Garron Elmes
Chef: Mark Ashton
Wineshop Manager: Ginette Schirrmeister

About Lake Breeze Vineyards

Lake Breeze Vineyards is located in Naramata, British Columbia, 12 kilometres north of Penticton on Naramata Road in the south central Okanagan Valley. It was built in 1996 and named Lake Breeze for the winds that blow across the bluffs year round. The first vines on the property were planted in 1985, making them some of the oldest on the Naramata Bench. The mature vines, coupled with a predominantly westerly aspect ensure plenty of sun exposure and ideal ripening conditions.

Lake Breeze was the first winery to plant and make wine from Pinotage, a native South African variety created from a crossing of Pinot Noir and Cinsaut. Although production is extremely limited, this remains a wine of which we are extremely proud. The current owners purchased the property in 2001 and since then have grown the operation from less than 3,000 cases a year to over 10,000.

At Lake Breeze we believe that our wines should be an experience encompassing the property, the people, the vines, the dog, as well as the wines themselves. We try to create a connection to the place that can be experienced each time you open one of our wines – no matter where you might be.


Best Red Wine of The Year at the All Canadian Wine Awards with its 2008 Tempest. Lake Breeze also won Gold for its 2011 Semillon; two Silver awards for its 2011 Seven Poplar Sauvignon Blanc and 2009 Seven Poplars Pinot Noir; and two Bronzes for its 2011 Pinot Gris and 2011 Pinot Blanc.

At the Northwest Wine Summit, Lake Breeze was honoured to receive the Gold Award for its 2011 Seven Poplars Sauvignon Blanc. The winery was also thrilled to accept three Best of Varietal Awards at the Okanagan Spring Wine Festival for its 2011 Pinot Blanc, Semillon and Gewürztraminer. As well they were finalists at the Festival in the Pinot Noir, Sparkling and Sauvignon Blanc categories.

The Globe, Sept 6, 2012, Kasey Wilson – Lake Breeze Seven Poplars Pinot Noir 2009, BC VQA Okanagan Valley $25, Despite what many say, some of the best Canadian wines are underpriced. Take winemaker Garron Elmes’ soft, fragrant Pinot Noir, which over-delivers with an appealing dryness (as opposed to sweetness in most inexpensive pinots) and a lush texture. This is a mouthful of beguiling red fruit, sourced from older vines on the Lake Breeze vineyards in Naramata and a young planting in Summerland.

Poplar Grove Winery

February 10, 2012 


425 Middle Bench Road North | Penticton, BC V2A 8S5
Telephone: 250-493-9643
Web: | Facebook | Twitter


The People of Poplar Grove Winery

Owners: Tony Holler, Ian Sutherland, Barrie Sali
Executive Winemaker: Ian Sutherland
Winemaker: Stefan Arnason
Assistant Winemaker: Nadine Allander
Viticulturist: Valeria Tait
Winery Administrator: Jacquie Carlson
Sales & Marketing Director: Laurie Barnes
Wine Club Manager: AJ Tolton

About Poplar Grove Winery

Poplar Grove Winery is located on the slopes of the Naramata Bench, a premier wine growing area just outside Penticton, British Columbia. One of the original 5 wineries on the Naramata Bench, Poplar Grove was founded in 1993 when Ian Sutherland dedicated 2.5 acres of land to the planting of Cabernet Franc and Merlot grapes. The first vintage was released in the fall of 1995, with the Poplar Grove Cabernet Franc receiving top honours at the Okanagan International Wine Festival. Over the past 19 years, Poplar Grove’s vision has remained the same: to make world-class wines that reflect the spirit of the Okanagan Valley terroir. Each year, the wine making team handcrafts the Poplar Grove wines with care, being true to their mandate to guide the winemaking process with little or no interruption of the natural process.

In 2007, Tony Holler became Poplar Grove’s majority owner and President, with Ian Sutherland and Barrie Sali completing the new ownership team. The Holler family brought with them 110 acres of prime vineyard sites located throughout the Southern Okanagan Valley, appropriately named Holler Estate Vineyards. The addition of the new vineyards allows Poplar Grove wines to be made from 100% estate grown fruit. The viticulture team supports the estate vineyards by practicing a sustainable farming program that works with the complexity and variability of the individual vineyards resulting in grapes that are the optimum expression of the local terroir. Ian Sutherland continues as the Executive Winemaker at Poplar Grove. In 2008, Stephan Arnason took on the position of Winemaker and in 2011, Nadine Allandar was named Assistant Winemaker. Together the wine making team hand-crafts wines from the quality fruit harvested from each of the estate vineyards with the goal of guiding the process to allow the true expression of the fruit to shine through.

Poplar Grove is focused on six core wines: Chardonnay, Pinot Gris, Merlot, Cabernet Franc, Syrah and a signature blend called The Legacy. The grapes are hand picked & hand sorted to guarantee that only the finest fruit makes it into the ferment. A barrel aging and bottle cellaring program have been implemented to ensure the wines are released when they are ready to drink. Poplar Grove white wines are released the year following harvest to preserve the primary fruit flavours. The red wines spend a minimum of 18 months maturing in French Oak barrels and an additional 18 – 30 months developing in the bottle so that they can be enjoyed upon release.

July 2010 was an exciting month for Poplar Grove as it marked the official launch of the Poplar Grove Wine Club. The spirit behind the wine club is to ensure that fans of Poplar Grove receive a guaranteed selection of Poplar Grove’s most sought after wines each year. Members receive the benefit of access to Poplar Grove’s limited release & member’s only wines, a 10% discount off all Poplar Grove wines purchased direct from the winery, early access to new release & library wines, and inspired wine recipes with each shipment.

On July 1st, 2011, the doors to Poplar Grove’s brand new, 9500 square foot, state-of-the-art winery opened. Designed to appreciate the natural landscape and topography, the new winery space is home to a working winery, a showcase barrel hall, and an expansive tasting room. The winery’s contemporary design features wall-to-wall panoramic windows that create a tasting room experience where visitors have the chance to sip award wining wines while enjoying one of the finest views the Okanagan Valley has to offer. Poplar trees, lavender, iris and Russian sage have been planted on the property to incorporate the local flora into the winery landscaping. Within the new Munson Mountain estate vineyard, Poplar Grove included foundation plants to harmonize with biodynamic principals, including hard fescue, red clover and bluegrass. The vineyard edges are lined with crested wheatgrass, wild mustard and annual rye.

On the horizon for 2012 is the opening of The Vanilla Pod, a year-round destination restaurant at Poplar Grove Winery that will feature cuisine inspired by fresh and seasonal local ingredients and, of course, Poplar Grove’s award winning wines. Executive Chef Bruno Terroso brings both a passion for the local cuisine and a natural creativity in the preparation of innovative spectacular dishes. Restaurant owners, Paul and Sheila Jones, are looking forward to welcoming guests to enjoy an inspired meal while taking in one of the most breathtaking views in the Okanagan Valley.

Each year, in addition to the 6 core wines, Poplar Grove’s wine making team makes a small amount of exclusive wine crafted for Poplar Grove’s Wine Club members, and in the very near future, for diners at the winery’s new restaurant, The Vanilla Pod. These exclusive wines include the CSM (a Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah and Merlot blend), the Syrah-Viognier, a Reserve Chardonnay, and the Munson Mountain Pinot Gris. The limited release wines offer the wine making team an opportunity to create single vineyard and small lot wines that exhibit the vibrant characteristics of the vintage.

Over the years, the winery has gained a reputation for producing quality, award-winning wines. Most recently, Poplar Grove’s Syrah 2008 was the only Canadian winery awarded a Gold medal at the 2011 Decanter World Wine Awards. The Cabernet Franc 2007 won the Lieutenant Governor’s Award for Excellence in British Columbia Wines and the Poplar Grove Merlot 2006 won Double Gold at the All Canadian Wine Championships.

Poplar Grove’s star is on the rise. With the new state-of-the art winery & signature restaurant, 100% premium estate grown fruit, and a clear vision for the future, Poplar Grove Winery looks forward to welcoming wine lovers to their corner of the wine world.

For more information on Poplar Grove Winery, visit the website at

Recent Reviews & Awards

GOLD medal Decanter World Wine Awards – Poplar Grove Syrah 2008

BRONZE medal Decanter World Wine Awards – Poplar Grove Cab Franc 2008

Lieutenant Governor’s Award for Excellence in British Columbia Wines – Poplar Grove Syrah 2007

DOUBLE GOLD medal All Canadian Wine Championships – Poplar Grove Merlot 2006

90/100 Poplar Grove Cabernet Franc 2007
Naramata Bench, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, Canada

When BC red wine is clean it usually has all the rest of the ingredients to jumps up my quality chart. Take this cabernet franc for instance. Love the ripe tobacco, cherry jam, vanilla, violet aromas and the similarly ripe, round, rich, dry palate. The tannins are present but fine-grained with savoury, soft varietal-ly correct franc black fruit and sage flavours that go long with finesse. Bravo. You can drink now or keep this for another two years for perfection. T-bone steaks anyone? – Tony Gismondi

89/100 Poplar Grove Merlot 2006
Naramata Bench, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, Canada

Expect a lovely rich version of merlot here with plenty of sweet oak and bright fruit with a savoury dried herbs undercurrent. Big and form with a slightly lean undercarriage. Try now with roasted meats or wait three years to full maturity. All this needs is a bit more finesse. Well done. – Tony Gismondi

89/100 Poplar Grove Reserve Chardonnay 2010
Naramata Bench, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, Canada

Much better style in the reserve with its butter, light lees, pineapple fruit and underlying richness. Love the baked apple entry and the French oak, both of which are still interacting. Dry long buttery tarte tatin notes with nutty, oily pineapple fruit and ripe red apples. This wine needs another three years to settle down and work with the likes of halibut and fresh fruit salsa, abalone or lobster.

GOODS: Del & Miranda Of Elephant Island Launching “UnConventional Wisdom” Brand

November 10, 2011 


Elephant Island is located at 2730 Aikins Loop in Naramata BC | 250.496.5522 |

The GOODS from Elephant Island

Naramata, BC | Genius or madness? Given the trajectory of their post university careers, Miranda + Del Halladay would argue their pursuit of original thinking requires a strong dose of both. Launching Elephant Island Orchard Wines cracked the seal on unconventional winemaking style in BC. Fans and critics alike have their opinion on which camp Elephant Island should be categorized. Eleven vintages later enter stage left: UnConventional Wisdom – a new brand launched by Del + Miranda. Read more

GOODS: The 2010 Rosé From “JoieFarm” Awarded “Best In Show” In California Comp

JoieFarm is located in beautiful Naramata, BC | 250-496-0073 | Toll free: 1-866-422-5643 |

The GOODS from JoieFarm

Naramata, BC | JoieFarm is proud to announce that our 2010 Rosé has been awarded Best Rosé Wine in Show at the 30th Annual Riverside International Wine Competition in Temecula, California. Wine Judge Mitch Cosentino, owner/winemaker of pureCos Wines, described the wine as “Young, fresh with aromatic notes of banana that makes this a classic Pinot Noir Rose. Bright and balanced with pure fruit flavors!”

Forty-seven judges from around the United States, mainly wine makers, wine journalists, and wine merchants, evaluated approximately 2000 wines over a three-day period. For 30 years, the Riverside International Wine Competition has provided consumers and the wine industry with carefully considered results of a blind tasting by professional wine evaluators. A key benefit of this event is to recognize wines in a wide variety of styles, including wine regions that don’t often get such recognition. Further details after the jump… Read more

GOODS: Georgia Straight Readers Name “JoieFarm” Best BC Winery for White Wines

JoieFarm is located in beautiful Naramata, BC | 250-496-0073 | Toll free: 1-866-422-5643 |

The GOODS from JoieFarm

Naramata, BC | JoieFarm is proud to announce that we have been chosen by the readers of the Georgia Straight as the “2011 Best BC Winery for White Wines” in their Golden Plates issue available on Vancouver newsstands today. The choice of JoieFarm as the 2011 winner, despite our limited production and distribution channels, speaks to the increasing sophistication of the BC wine consumer. We would like to take this moment to acknowledge the tremendous job done by the restaurant trade, private retailers and supporting media throughout Canada in telling our story on our behalf to the public. We would also like to thank our supporting clients and the readers of the Georgia Straight for their consideration. Read more

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