Canadian Winery Spotlight: Little Farm Winery

What do you get when you combine an Aussie-born Master of Wine and a caterer-turned-baker-turned-winemaker and plop them down in the picturesque Similkameen Valley? Well, you get Little Farm Winery, of course. 

Back in 2008, Alishan Driediger and Rhys Pender sold their Peachland home and made their move to a five-acre Cawston property in the Similkameen Valley, after a decade of food-and-wine adventures. Pender continued his wine studies, becoming Canada’s youngest Master of Wine in 2010, while Driediger honed her baking chops and earned a winemaking diploma.

Little Farm Winery doesn't make a lot of wine – heck, there are a grand total of three different wines they’re currently making, and with their inaugural 2011 vintage, they made a whopping 56 total.

But what they do make is created with attention to detail, passion and a respect for the land and their neighbours. The wines are an excellent reflection of Pender and Driediger’s prowess in the vineyard and winery, as well as a reflection of the place in which they’re made - especially the calcium carbonate-rich soil which provides great backbone to their fresh and focused wines.

The estate-grown Little Farm 2013 Mulberry Tree Vineyard Riesling is made in a bone-dry, chalky style that’s racy and focused, and can be drunk now or tucked away for a few years. From that same vineyard comes the Little Farm 2014 Mulberry Tree Chardonnay, which spends some time in older/neutral French oak that adds a touch of texture and complexity to the crisp citrus, green apple and mineral notes.

The 2014 Little Farm Blind Creek Vineyard Rosé comes from just up the road, and the Cabernet Franc-based wine delivers similarly focused finesse – crisp red berry, rhubarb, plum and light herbal notes that combine for a lovely, mouth-watering rosé.

2014 Mulberry Tree Vineyard Riesling2014 Mulberry Tree Vineyard Chardonnay2014 Rosé from Little Farm Winery

Ben MacPhee-Sigurdson is the wine columnist and literary editor for the Winnipeg Free Press. He’s on Twitter and Instagram at @bensigurdson.

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