The summer was a whirlwind adventure for us! We completed construction and opened the doors to our beautiful new winery in July. Shortly after that, we had the incredible honour of welcoming the Lieutenant Governor and about 40 members of the Vancouver Consular Corps to Fort Berens. The dry, hot sun shone brightly in Lillooet as Lieutenant Governor Judith Guichon presented us with the prestigious 2014 Lieutenant Governor’s Award for Excellence in British Columbia Wines for our 2012 Estate Riesling. This was our first Lieutenant Governor’s Award for Fort Berens and the first for this emerging wine region.
The summer continued with a number of other special events including celebrating a first wedding on our winery patio, holding Discovery Club events and welcoming over 1,000 wine and craft beer lovers to the 5th Annual Lillooet Beer and Wine Festival. In September, we also held our official grand opening celebration for the new winery and raised a new flag to mark the opening of our new fort.
This fall we are off to a busy start. We just bottled our 2013 red vintage in Lillooet, and started our harvest on September 12th. We are quite impressed with the vintage thus far! We have particularly high expectations for this vintage as it is the first time we will produce the wine from start to finish in Lillooet. The 2014 vintage will be estate grown, estate produced and estate bottled. With our new winemaking team and our new facility, we are working with smaller batches and lots of even smaller experiments to make our wines even better. We just set out on a huge learning curve to discover what Lillooet really tastes like.
We’ve recently released our fall releases including our Pinot Noir, Cabernet Franc, Meritage and Chardonnay. We are getting some wonderful feedback and reviews already on these new vintages and we are honoured to report that in the recent BC Wine Awards, we received Gold for our Cabernet Franc and Silver for our Pinot Noir and Meritage.
As we approach the upcoming holiday season, we are open Thursday to Monday from 10am to 4pm. Come in and try our new releases. Maybe you'll find a new favourite for your festive parties and holiday dinners. We also offer a selection of wine and gift items perfect for the wine lover on your list.