This month, our wine club members will receive a selection of beautifully crafted wines from Encore Vineyards in the Okanagan Valley, BC. If you think Encore Vineyards sounds familiar, you're right! It is the home of Evolve Cellars, TIME Estate Winery, and the McWatters Collection - all owned and operated by BC wine pioneer and expert, Harry McWatters. Keep reading to learn more – and sign up for our wine club by Friday, September 15th to have these gems delivered right to your door this month!
On a recent Monday afternoon, BC's TIME Estate Winery celebrated the crushing of the first grapes of the season. For proprietor Harry McWatters, the event marked a record-breaking occasion: his 50th consecutive vintage of Canadian wine.
"I get a lot of different names. I get called the father of the new wine industry. The grandfather. The godfather. I think it's just the fact that I've been here longer than pretty much anybody else in the wine business."
(from the Globe & Mail, April 2017)
McWatters is the president of Encore Vineyards, and creates some of Canada's most highly regarded wines under their TIME Estate, Evolve Cellars, and McWatters Collection labels. His career has followed the explosive growth of BC's wine industry, from just a handful of wineries in the '60s to the thriving and internationally-acclaimed region it is today.
After the passing of NAFTA in 1988 – a challenging time for Canadian winemakers, putting them in direct competition with cheaper-to-produce commodity wines from the U.S. – McWatters played a crucial role in raising the bar for the BC wine community, competing on quality over quantity, and paving the way for the region's future. The B.C. Wine Institute and the Vintner's Quality Alliance (VQA) certification are both part of his legacy.
And in case you're wondering, he's not done yet – at 71, he's moved TIME Estate Winery to an urban location in downtown Penticton, BC. The crush pad and operation will be run from this location, as will the storefront. Congrats to Harry McWatters and family on 50 vintages, that is certainly something to be proud of.
Here are some of our favourite wines from Encore Vineyards that you can expect to see in your wine packages this month!
Crafted from grapes grown at the famed Sundial Vineyard, this nuanced white blend of Sauvignon Blanc and Semillon is showing delicate aromas of lime, pear, white flowers, and honey on the nose. Medium-bodied with notes of apricot, papaya, and other tropical fruits with a hint of citrus. This wine will pair perfectly with fish and chips, creamy pastas and veal schnitzel.
This well-balanced and complex red is showing notes of black cherry, plum, licorice, black pepper, and cedar. Extremely food-friendly, try this gem with lamb kebabs, steak frites and herb-crusted roasted pork loin.
An excellent blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Cabernet Franc from Harry McWatters' namesake brand. Plenty of black fruits (think black cherry, blackberry, black currant, and plum), vanilla, and lovely black pepper and spice notes on the finish. Would be a great partner with prime rib, game meats and BBQ beef ribs.
This full-bodied red is an outstanding expression of Okanagan Valley Syrah. Deep, complex and well-balanced with jammy notes of black currant and plum, black pepper and dark chocolate. Enjoy with mushroom and herb risotto and braised lamb with rosemary and herbs.
Sign up for our wine club by FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 15th to receive exceptional Encore Vineyards wines with tasting notes and food pairing suggestions, delivered straight to your door. Choose from all white, all red, or mixed options. These wines are fantastic!