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Nota Bene Public Release Dates Announced

Exclusive opportunities to access Black Hills Estate Winery's Iconic Red Wine 

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From the startup days in the late 1990s when a hand-painted "sold out" sign hung outside a Quonset hut, to today's ultra-modern Wine Experience Centre on Black Sage Road, wine lovers congregate at Black Hills Estate Winery for their chance at a case of Nota Bene. Made by Black Hills Estate Winery since the 1999 debut vintage, Nota Bene dazzles palates with its Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Cabernet Franc blend.

Now as the beloved British Columbia winery celebrates its 20th anniversary year, the public release of the 2017 Nota Bene ($59.99) is imminent.

While Black Hills wine club members gain first access to the releases, the winery sets aside a small allocation of cases for the public and retail partners. In early September, winemaker Ross Wise will visit Vancouver for a series of events featuring the beloved flagship wine. 

 The public release and celebration of the winery's 20th anniversary commences with a public tasting at Everything Wine Morgan Crossing on September 3, followed by a ticketed dinner at Barrique Kitchen & Wine Bar. On September 4 and 5, additional opportunities to taste and Nota Bene occur at Legacy Liquor Store, Swirl Wine Store and Marquis Wine Cellars. [Full details follow at end of release.]

 The winery team has had an overwhelming response to the pre-release of this vintage, and critical accolades include a 95-point score. The 2017 Nota Bene vintage is now sold out online. Only available at the limited September release to restaurants and select fine wine stores, the 2017 Nota Bene is expected to sell swiftly. 

The Latest Vintage of Nota Bene

Black Hills Estate Winery senior winemaker Ross Wise has assembled the final blend of the 2017 Nota Bene. Unmistakably Nota Bene on the nose, the 2017 vintage shows cassis, dark berry and cherry aromas, alongside notes of cedar and dark chocolate. Fresh berry fruit and French oak flavours shape the palate, with additional complexity coming from hints of mint and sage. Silky and elegant tannins and a creamy texture result in a wine that is approachable in its youth, while its impressive richness and concentration will allow evolution and further complexity over the next 12-15 years. Ample fresh acidity frames a long, fruit-driven finish.

"2017 was a great vintage for Okanagan wines," notes Wise. "The warm and dry summer resulted in concentrated and ripe berries, while cool August and September helped retain crisp and natural acidity and high aromatic intensity. Red wines from this vintage are richly concentrated and have an impressive aging potential."

2017 Nota Bene Release Events 

Tuesday, September 3

Everything Wine - Morgan Crossing

Nota Bene Tasting 

Time: 2 PM - 4 PM

OPEN EVENT

Address: 15735 Croydon Dr #112, Surrey, BC

Black Hills Portfolio Tasting - Sep 3rd

 

Barrique Kitchen & Wine Bar 

Join winemaker Ross Wise at Barrique for a paired

six-course menu prepared by chef Josiah Tam.

Time: 6:30 PM

Address: 15333 Pacific Av., White Rock, BC

Price: $120 per person (gratuity and taxes included) 

Limited tickets remain. For tickets please call 604 385 3311

or email josiahtam@barriquerestaurant.ca 

Wednesday, September 4 

Legacy Liquor Store

Nota Bene Long Table Tasting

Time: 6:30 PM to 8:30 PM

Price: $20 per person

Address: 1633 Manitoba St, Vancouver, BC

For tickets go to this LINK or

email  events@legacyliquorstore.com

 

Swirl Wine Store 

Nota Bene Tasting

Time: 7:00 PM to 8:30 PM

Price: $39.99 per person with $10 credit for any Black Hills wine purchase

Address: 1185 Mainland, Vancouver, BC

For tickets in store or online here:

Black Hills Portfolio Tasting - Sep 4th

 

Thursday, September 5

Marquis Wine Cellars 

Nota Bene Tasting

Time: 5:30 PM to 8:30 PM

OPEN EVENT 

Address: 1034 Davie St, Vancouver, BC

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About Black Hills Estate Winery 

Founded in 1999, Black Hills Estate Winery produces exclusively from its estate vineyard on the Black Sage Bench, north of Osoyoos, British Columbia. The vineyard microclimate is one of the hottest, driest, and sunniest sites in the South Okanagan, allowing the vines to yield flavourful grapes of balanced intensity. Using sustainable vinicultural techniques and thoughtful winemaking practices, the winery is well-known for its signature blend: Nota Bene, an age-worth Bordeaux-style red blend produced in limited quantities from select barrels of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Cabernet Franc. Black Hills also produces a selection of stunning ultra-premium blends, such as Addendum, Per Se, and Ipso Facto, and varietally-labelled Viognier, Chardonnay, Roussanne, Syrah, Tempranillo and Carménère. 

Surrounded by panoramic vineyard views, the Black Hills team welcomes wine lovers to visit their Wine Experience Center in Oliver. This stylish facility provides a unique, sit-down wine tasting experience guided by highly trained wine professionals. Annual summer events held at the facility are bold, exciting and fun. Members of the Black Hills Wine Club enjoy front-of-line access to limited-releases and wines not available to the public.

 

To learn more, visit blackhillswinery.com and follow the conversation on FacebookTwitterand Instagram.

BC Wine & Restaurant Legend Wins 2019 Trailblazer Award

BC Wine & Restaurant Legend Wins 2019 Trailblazer Award

Christine Coletta, owner of Okanagan Crush Pad, has been honoured with the 2019 Trailblazer Award by the BC Chapter of Les Dames d'Escoffier during the Where magazine Where to Dine Awards celebration.

Haywire Makes Decanter’s Most Exciting Wines of 2018 List

[Summerland, BC] Okanagan Crush Pad winery announces its Haywire Free Form White 2016 has made Decanter magazine’s Most Exciting Wines of 2018 list, placing in the top 10, with a score of 94 points.

In the January 2019 issue, Decanter’s experts from around the world named the top 50 bottles under £60 that impressed them most this year, with Oz Clarke calling the Haywire an “astonishing Canadian Sauvignon Blanc”.

This is the fist time a Canadian winery has made Decanter’s Top 10

This is the fist time a Canadian winery has made Decanter’s Top 10

The winery, while no stranger to UK wine circles, is beyond excited to have these kudos.

“We are so proud of our team, in particular the work of our chief winemaker Matt Dumayne, and growers Terry Waters and Cathy Banks,” notes winery owner Christine Coletta. “Our mission is to have Okanagan wines stand proudly next to a global selection of respected brands. This recognition shows us we are well on our way to demonstrating that our region can compete on the world stage.”

The focus at Okanagan Crush Pad is on authenticity and quality. Free Form wines are made using organic grapes, native yeast, extended skin contact, are free of commercial additives, have little to no sulfites added, and are unfiltered.

“We found the best way to achieve authenticity of place is to not manipulate or add anything to wine, including oak influence,” remarks Dumayne. “While you need to give up some modern conveniences, with a highly-skilled team with global viticulture and winemaking experience, you can get it right.”

Coletta credits consulting winemaker Alberto Antonini and terroir consultant Pedro Parra for their guiding influence. “Their vision for what the Okanagan is capable of has driven our work.”

While the 2016 Haywire Free Form White is now sold out, customers seeking to experience Free Form wines can visit okanagancrushpad.com.

Okanagan Crush Pad has quickly built a reputation as a premium producer and has received many awards and accolades since its launch in 2011 with chief winemaker Matt Dumayne at the helm. Christine Coletta and Steve Lornie created Okanagan Crush Pad as a purpose-built custom crush facility. Increasingly, the facility is used to craft the team’s own wines and now produces 45,000 cases annually.

From here, their own wines, Haywire, Narrative, and Free Form are made. Located in beautiful Summerland, BC, the winery overlooks Switchback Organic Vineyard, a site that is also home to chickens and ducks. Dumayne and his cellar team craft wines using concrete wine tanks, native yeast and minimal winemaking intervention. The wines reflect the region’s unique high mountain/northern desert setting noted for its intensely hot, short growing season with hallmark cool evenings and winters that bring a protective covering of snow.

Visitors to the tasting lounge, set in the heart of this state-of-the-art facility, get a rare glance into the art of winemaking. Watch the cellar team in action, discover concrete tanks, and learn how the team composes wines that are definitive expressions of their vineyards.

For more information visit: okanagancrushpad.com.

L-R: Okanagan Crush Pad chief winemaker Matt Dumayne, owners Christine Coletta and Steve Lornie Credit: Lionel Trudel

L-R: Okanagan Crush Pad chief winemaker Matt Dumayne, owners Christine Coletta and Steve Lornie Credit: Lionel Trudel

Singletree Winery Captures Tourism Excellence Award

Abbotsford winery heads into winter with recognition for its quality and service

[Abbotsford, BC] Singletree Winery is proud to share they have captured a Business Excellence Award for Best Tourism Experience.

Presented by the Abbotsford Chamber of Commerce and The Abbotsford News, the 23rd Annual Awards ceremony took place November 23, to recognize outstanding organizations and individuals in Abbotsford that strive for excellence in the community. Thirteen awards were handed out, with Singletree earning the trophy for Tourism Excellence.

Sponsored by Tourism Abbotsford, the Tourism Excellence award demonstrates that Singletree Winery is a leader in its industry, with a commitment to customer service, a concern for the community, and a passion for innovation.

Singletree Winery is owned by the Etsell family, who has been farming in the Fraser Valley for over two decades. Under their Singletree banner, and with careful attention to the land, the Etsell Family is committed to showing the world what the Fraser Valley is capable of.

The Singletree Winery team: L-R: Laura Preckel, Andrew, Debbie and Garnet Etsell.

The Singletree Winery team: L-R: Laura Preckel, Andrew, Debbie and Garnet Etsell.

"Our family is thrilled and honored to receive this award of excellence from the business community," remarks winery owner Debbie Etsell. "Family and staff work diligently to make each guest's experience and time at Singletree Winery enjoyable and memorable," she continues. "To be recognized as a leader in this field is truly monumental."

Since establishing their winery in 2015, the family has aimed to provide both a hospitable experience and quality wines, as they forge their place in the British Columbia wine industry. The Abbotsford vineyard and tasting room is located on a 67-acre operating farm in Mt. Lehman, only 45-minutes from Vancouver. 14 acres of estate vineyard contribute to award-winning BC VQA wines. Their tasting room is open year-round to present these cool climate varietals, including their extremely popular Siegerrebe and Grüner Veltliner wines. Visitors love the friendly vibe and the picnic area where they can enjoy locally-smoked meats, cheese and other seasonal selections. Special events held at the winery throughout the year always draw a crowd. The winery's special events area in the heart of the vineyard adds a special touch to weddings, corporate events, birthdays or the winery's own experiences.

In last Summer 2018 the Etsell family purchased a second winery location in the Okanagan on the Naramata Bench. Closed for the winter, the Naramata tasting room will officially open in spring 2019.

The Abbotsford winery is open year-round, and the team invites the public to join them in Abbotsford this winter. On December 8 from 12 to 5:30pm Singletree Winery in Abbotsford will devote the day to "Entertaining with local wine this Christmas". Admission is by donation with proceeds to the Mt. Lehman Community Hall, to assist with renovations. Attendees will enjoy appetizers made with their house-made wine jellies, white mulled wine, recipes for sparkling cocktails. and recipes for entrees with wine.

Check out Singletree on social media @singletreewine to keep up with the latest.

About Singletree Winery:

Singletree Winery Fraser Valley is in the Mt. Lehman area of Abbotsford, and Singletree Naramata Bench opened in 2018. The Etsell family has deep roots in the agricultural community.

With careful attention to their land, they are committed to showcasing the best of British Columbia: the Fraser Valley, which provides a lineup of aromatic, crisp, and juicy wines that highlight this unique terroir; and Naramata Bench in the Okanagan, where the glacial soils and warm climate produce luscious red wines.

Their portfolio includes Siegerrebe, Sauvignon Blanc, Pinot Gris, Chardonnay, Grüner Veltliner, Late Harvest Kerner, Pinot Noir Rosé, Wild Ferment Siegerrebe, a white blend called Homestead, Harness, a Bordeaux-style red blend, and a traditional-method sparkling wine called Victory. The wines are made by second generation family member Andrew Etsell.

The Fraser Valley winery is open for visitors Wednesday through Sunday, from 12 noon to 5:30pm. Naramata is open only by appointment.

Visit singletreewinery.com to join the wine club and for more information on picnics, events, weddings and much more.

Christine Coletta Receives Founders Award at Okanagan Fall Wine Festival

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[Summerland, BC] On September 27, Christine Coletta, owner of Okanagan Crush Pad (OCP), has been presented the Founders Award at the Okanagan Fall Wine Festival. Coletta has been presented the award in recognition of her contributions to the BC wine industry. 

When presented the award in front of industry peers by industry veteran Harry McWatters of ENCORE Vineyards, Coletta said "I was very touched to receive this award. It was emotional to see my name added to a trophy containing the names of people who have worked tirelessly to create a thriving BC wine industry over the past 30 years."

This award is a further recognition for Coletta's passion and leadership in propelling the industry forward and to rise on an international level. Coletta has worked tirelessly to advocate for and to improve the Canadian culinary scene. 

Coletta started her career in hospitality as a server during her early years and it was in the 1990s that her leadership and dedication for the industry took off. As founding executive director for the BC Wine Institute, Coletta forged VQA as a standard to support the local wine industry and its various marketing activities. In addition, she co-founded Wines of Canada, the national wine standards arm. Under that umbrella, Coletta developed a roadshow that crossed Canada to encourage support for local food and wine.

After helping numerous BC wineries establish their businesses, Coletta launched her own wine, Haywire, and Canada's first purpose-built custom crush winemaking facility at OCP. Since 2011, Coletta has assisted more than 15 BC wineries in their winemaking via OCP.

Coletta has also been on the leading edge of Canada's organic farming and winemaking movement, establishing OCP as Canada's top producer of wines made from organic grapes and without additives or manipulation.

Earlier this year, when the government of Alberta held a boycott on BC wine, instead of responding with retaliation, Coletta led and set the tone for collaboration, by initiating a BC wine and Alberta food event.

And above this, Coletta doesn't keep her knowledge and ideas to herself. She shares her resources and continually offers advice and encouragement to not only her own team and people, but also her community and industry. Her most recent project is on the team that formed the Okanagan Wine Initiative, where seven leading BC wineries have united to share resources and to collaborate on various projects internationally, across Canada, and in their home market, British Columbia.

With another accolade added, Coletta will continue to innovate and propel the industry forward to become a premium wine producing region and a superb wine tourism destination. 


About Okanagan Crush Pad:

Okanagan Crush Pad is Canada's first purpose-built custom crush winery facility, located on the 10-acre Switchback Vineyard in Summerland, BC. Owned by Christine Coletta and Steve LornieOkanagan Crush Pad focuses on making wines that celebrate purity and simplicity, and aim to lead the next evolution of Okanagan wine. Visitors to the tasting lounge, set in the heart of this state-of-the-art facility, get a rare glance into the art of winemaking. Watch the cellar team in action, discover why the team makes wine in concrete tanks, and learn how the team composes wines that are definitive expressions of their vineyards.

For more information visit: okanagancrushpad.com

Okanagan Crush Pad Launches New Free Form Brand in Celebration of its Newly-Certified Organic Winery Cellar

Okanagan Crush Pad (OCP) proudly announces the launch of a new label, Free Form, in conjunction with the winery earning organic certification for its cellar.

Blue Grouse Estate Winery ends 2017 with a new look

News Release

[Duncan, BC] Over the past five years, a lot has changed at Blue Grouse Estate Winery, and they are celebrating these changes with a new web look.

Since the Brunner family purchased one of Cowichan Valley's oldest estate vineyards and winery in 2012, they have given the Island winery a complete makeover, with more than $10 million in investments into the vineyard, the creation of a new winery and tasting room, and the addition of onsite accommodation, the Grouse House.

When paired to the lineup of highly-praised Blue Grouse wines, these onsite amenities allow for an amazing visitor experience, including a vast range of wedding and corporate event packages.

With so much happening onsite at the winery, to create what is now the crown jewel in Vancouver Island's wine country, the external web presence required the same attention.

"This new website was created specifically for our online audience of people both old and new to Blue Grouse wines," says owner and proprietor, Paul Brunner. "With a timeline of our history, a new format to highlight our latest vintages and information on our wine club and events, we are proud to present to you a website that has been one year in the making."

For more information on Blue Grouse Estate Winery and to view the new site, please visit: www.bluegrouse.ca 

Winter at BG

 

This season's holiday hours:

Open Wednesday to Sunday from 11am-5pm from now until Dec 23rd.

Closed Dec 24th to 31st and open by appointment only in January.  

 

FREE Shipping in British Columbia:

Take advantage of the exclusive offer for FREE shipping to anywhere in BC, Canada. Minimum six (6) bottles order; 2015 Quill Red and 2015 Quill White only.  Offer valid from November 20th to December 17th. To order or to inquire on availability of wines, please contact 250-743-3834, tastingroom@bluegrouse.ca.

 

A reminder of upcoming events:

  • Holiday Open House on December 17 from 12-4pm: Enjoy some holiday music, complimentary wine tastings for adults, and hot apple cider for kids while you stock up on holiday wines for the season. A few cases of 2014 Paula Sparkling will be available to purchase and some nibbles will be offered to enjoy. Get those last minute stocking stuffers as well! 

 

  • Soup Saturdays: From noon to 5pm, for only $14, going until December 23, visitors can enjoy a bowl of delicious homemade soup made with locally sourced seasonal ingredients, fresh True Grain bread, and a 5oz glass of wine. Some of the soup and wine pairings on the menu include: Squash and Apple soup;  2016 Quill Off-Dry White, Leek and Potato soup; 2015 Quill White, and Mushroom Beef Barley soup: 2015 Quill Red. Also, while you're there, ask to try their famous Mulled Wine Recipe.

 

  • Holiday Parties: Consider an indoor picnic in front of a large fireplace alongside catered culinary offerings and tasty Blue Grouse wines. Or the beautiful and festive upper lounge can be booked for parties from 10-35 people. For reservation requests, contact jennyg@bluegrouse.ca.