British Columbia Wine Country

Overview

A glorious look at British Columbia's wine regions and wine industry.

British Columbia Wine Country is now fully revised and updated to include the new faces in this scenic wine region. Through a blend of color photography and stories of the personalities behind the bottles, the book presents a rare opportunity to meet the remarkable people who have established British Columbia's best wineries and vineyards. Chapters focus on wine regions in the Okanagan Valley, the Lower ...

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Overview

A glorious look at British Columbia's wine regions and wine industry.

British Columbia Wine Country is now fully revised and updated to include the new faces in this scenic wine region. Through a blend of color photography and stories of the personalities behind the bottles, the book presents a rare opportunity to meet the remarkable people who have established British Columbia's best wineries and vineyards. Chapters focus on wine regions in the Okanagan Valley, the Lower Mainland, the Gulf Islands and Vancouver Island, inviting readers to enjoy picturesque landscapes, portraits of leading winemakers and a detailed description of the province's wine industry.

With its thorough coverage, lively style and splendid photography, British Columbia Wine Country is an indispensable reference and a visual treat.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781552858035
  • Publisher: Whitecap Books, Limited
  • Publication date: 1/1/2010
  • Edition description: Revised and Updated
  • Edition number: 2
  • Pages: 224
  • Sales rank: 1,069,220
  • Product dimensions: 8.50 (w) x 10.90 (h) x 0.60 (d)

Meet the Author

John Schreiner is Canada's most prolific author of wine books. He has authored 10 books since 1984. An award-winning home vintner, Schreiner has received the prestigious Founders Award, given annually by the Okanagan Wine Festivals Society and the Spirited Industry Professional Award, given annually by the Vancouver Playhouse International Wine Festival. His writing regularly appears in Wine Access magazine.

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Table of Contents


Introduction to the Second Edition     11
Introduction to the First Edition     15
Wine Speak: A Modest Guide to Wine Jargon     19
Vancouver Island Wineries     23
Gulf Islands Wineries     51
Eraser Valley Vineyards     67
Winemakers Off the Beaten Path     87
Old Vines Country-the Vineyards of Kelowna     103
The Vineyards of Mount Boucherie     121
From Summerland to Peachland     133
Penticton and the Naramata Bench     147
Vineyards of Okanagan Falls     179
The Golden Mile     195
The Black Sage Road Neighbourhood     219
Osoyoos Lake Bench     237
The Similkameen Valley     245
Index     256
About the Author and Photographer     264
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Preface


Introduction to the Second Edition


Since early 2003, when the first edition of this book was completed, the number of wineries in British Columbia has exploded. The first edition referenced 108 producers or prospective wineries, including fruit wineries and honey wineries. This edition has details on 175 producers. There are more wineries in every region. Even the "off the beaten path" category has expanded and now extends as far east as Creston. As well, easily 20 to 30 potential wineries have started to lay plans, often too tentative to detail, for production in the future.

There are many reasons why British Columbia's wine country is burgeoning. The most important is the excitement that existing producers are creating with their exceptional wines. Formerly, it took vision and daring to enter the British Columbia wine industry when, in the 1970s and early 1980s, the wines lacked credibility. Today, consumers have such faith in the quality that many wineries sell new releases within hours of announcing them to an email customer list. The ease of selling quality wines at aggressive prices has attracted many new participants into wine production. It is a hot business to be in.

Second, tourists are visiting our wine country in ever greater numbers and, with a growing number of wine festivals and winery entertainments, they keep returning, often several times a season. At the Okanagan spring wine festival in 2005, I encountered a wine lover from Seattle on the patio of the La Frenz winery on the Naramata Bench. He confided that it was his first visit to the Okanagan. He went on to marvel at the beauty of the valley, the welcoming atmosphere in the wineriesand the quality of the wines, which, he added, were reasonably priced compared to Washington wines. Since then, he has become a repeat visitor to our wine country. He is certainly not alone. Such tourism also drives winery development.

Third, the collapse of tree fruit prices, especially apples, has propelled many orchardists to replace their trees with vineyards or to sell and let others convert orchards to vines. This was explained to me vividly by Bruce Hagerman, one of the owners of the new Oliver Twist winery in the south Okanagan. In 2002, he and his wife, Denice, returned to Canada from the United States and purchased an orchard that was remarkable for the professionalism of its horticulture. While intending to plant vines, they hesitated several years, concerned at upsetting the previous owner. In the autumn of 2005, the final payment for a year's worth of fruit was $932, less than the fuel bill for Hagerman's tractor. The fruit trees were ripped out and vines were planted the following spring. The former owner told Hagerman he had made the right decision.

Fourth, the appeal of the winegrowing lifestyle has been attracting investors from such other walks of life as law, investment houses, restaurants and general business. Several Albertans are pursuing the winegrower's dream. Since Tinhorn Creek in 1994, at least 15 British Columbia wineries have either been purchased or built from scratch by Albertan owners. It is the consequence of Albertans coming to the Okanagan to ski, sail or build summer homes and discovering that British Columbia now also produces fine wine.

Among world wine regions, British Columbia is small, with about 3,000 hectares (7,500 acres) of vineyard. But there is no correlation between the vine population and a region's potential. New Zealand's stellar reputation is based on 22,000 hectares (54,000 acres) which, while dwarfing British Columbia, is still only 10 percent of the area of Bordeaux's vineyards. Yet winemakers from many other regions, recognizing British Columbia's potential, have taken jobs, or have applied, to make wine here. In 2006, when CedarCreek Estate Winery was recruiting a new associate winemaker (a candidate from the Okanagan was hired), one applicant was the assistant winemaker at Château Lafite-Rothschild, one of France's greatest wineries.

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