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Picking Grapes with Andrea Vescovi of Ancora

We asked the GM and Wine Director at one of Vancouver's top restaurants to map out his affections for British Columbian wine.
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Picking Grapes with Andrea Vescovi of Ancora

Picking Grapes is a new series that asks wine professionals to map out their complex relationships with British Columbian wines by citing the ignition point of their interest and some of their favourite wineries.

Today we put our Picking Grapes questions to Vancouver restaurant industry veteran Andrea Vescovi, who is the GM and Wine Director of False Creek’s Ancora Waterfront Dining and Patio.

What was the BC wine that you first fell in love with? Do you remember where you were? What was the circumstance?

Obviously there have been a few. I recall many years ago I found an older Kettle Valley Reserve pinot noir in my cellar – 2002 or 2004 vintage – and could not believe the quality of that wine. It could easily have passed for a good producer in Burgundy.

Kettle Valley Winery 2988 Hayman Road, Naramata MAP

What are three local wineries that fly somewhat under the radar?

Township 7, Kettle Valley, Sperling Vineyards.

Township 7 21152 16 Ave, Langley City, BC MAP
Sperling Vineyards 1405 Pioneer Rd, Kelowna, BC MAP

If you could work in just one local winery for just one harvest, which would it be and why?

Mt. Boucherie/Rust winery. I have been friends with Jesse and Kane for years. They would be overjoyed in seeing me sweat during a harvest. And the fun factor would be legendary. I love how they have improved the quality of those two wineries.

Rust Wine Co. 4444 Goldenmile Dr. MAP
Mt. Boucherie 829 Douglas Rd. Kelowna, BC MAP

Can you recommend one local, emblematic-of-BC red wine for someone who didn’t even know wine was made here? What would it be and why?

I think something of a Bordeaux blend — a richer fruit forward style that most people enjoy. Some very talented winemakers have figured out how to balance power and finesse. Table-side I have seen the acceptance of this — very different from 15-20 years ago. Try Blind Creek Collective Consensus 2015.

Road 13 Vineyards 799 Ponderosa Rd, Oliver, BC MAP

What about a white?

This is a tie between chardonnay and riesling, I’ve personally challenged many a tourist on trying these two varietals from our backyard — to reactions of amazement on the quality. Checkmate Little Pawn 2014, & Sperling Old Vine Riesling 2012.

CheckMate Artisanal Winery 4799 Wild Rose St, Oliver, BC MAP

And finally, a rosé?

Sea Star or Mireille Sauve’s Dames Wine. The rosé train has been full steam ahead for many years now. We are creating some world class rosés!

Sea Star Vineyards 6621 Harbour Hill Drive, Pender Island, BC MAP

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