Good day to you – I hope your week has been an excellent one.
On Sunday, I day-tripped over to Vancouver Island for a piece I am writing for the Wine Tourist Magazine. I met up with my very good friend, Regan Macdonald, who accompanied me for the day. We visited three great wineries and learned some cool facts about the wine industry on Vancouver Island…
- Vancouver Island is booming! Wine tourism, agritourism, recreational sports and the amazing oceanic scenery all steal the show.
- Hybrids flourish in the Cowichan Valley so don’t be afraid! Too often, I believe, people reach for their ‘safe’ choices. I am guilty for sure – if there is a Chardonnay to be had, I will try it. But what I discovered, is that there are some amazing, well-crafted wines made from hybrid grapes that I am only too happy I did try.
- What is a hybrid? Well, it is a type of grape created between two vitis species. On Vancouver Island, you will discover gems such as Ortega, Sauvignette, Petit Milo and Maréchal Foch – do not hesitate – these are some very well made and delicious wines!
- The Cowichan Valley is home to Canada’s only maritime Mediterranean climate. Yes, you read that correctly – we have a Mediterranean climate in Canada! Who knew?
- Vancouver Island is Pinot Noir land – for all you Pinot lovers – pay attention… juicy, perfectly acidic and structured Pinot Noir is actually the norm. Heaven.
The day was fun and full of friendly, engaging people. I missed the ferry I had hoped to be on but was blessed with this incredible sunset so the three hours in the terminal was all worth it. My article will come out July 1st in the Wine Tourist Magazine and I will be sure to post it here when it does.
Enjoy your week!
Any particular wines to recommend on these obscure grapes? Oh, and a good Pinot Noir is always welcome.
Christine Campbell said:
Yes! More to come in my article but a good place to start is Unsworth Vineyards for a few well made hybrid options. Thanks for stopping by!