• Tucking & Suckering

    Upon reflection, that title sounds a bit dirty.  I guess I do get a bit grubby as I crouch down to remove unwanted vine shoots or “suckers” from the trunks of the wines.  We don’t want these new shoots to take away any of the nutrients and attention from the main vines from which our grapes will grow.  In addition to removing these enthusiastic shoots, we also want to thin the vines a bit to avoid overcrowding and facilitate picking the eventual ripe grapes.  The vines also need to be “tucked” so that they grow straight upright (like soldiers at attention) and allow for full growth and ease of picking.  

    I admit to being a complete amateur and to having accidentally broken off a few shoots during this process.  For now, I am leaving the tucking and thinning to our experienced vineyard staff while I focus on the suckering and removing any pernicious weeds that grow alongside and into the vines.  

    The wet spring followed by some sun sent everything into a growing frenzy and we returned from Tofino to a veritable jungle.  This has make it challenging for our vineyard staff to work the wines with the long grass and weeds taking over between the rows.  Things are much better now since mowing and the consistent sun and warm temperatures have slowed the regrowth to some degree. 

    The flora on the rest of the vineyard are also enjoying the warmer temperatures as our figs, pears and plums start to ripen.  

    The sunny conditions are also necessary if the grapes are to catch up this year.  The long winter and wet spring have set them back about two to three weeks but they can rebound if we get steady hot weather in July and August – fingers crossed.

  • Tofino

    Zac and I spent just over 10 days in Tofino in June, meeting restaurant clients and attending Grazing in the Garden, an annual food and wine festival hosted in the Tofino Botanical Gardens.  Roger Dosman has attended the event every year it has been running (15 years) and we intend to keep up the tradition. 

     Whilst we are a relatively small vineyard and winery and do not participate in very many tasting events like this, Tofino is an important one for us given the strong following and support we have with clients in Tofino and Ucluelet.  Tucked away near Bernardo O’Higgins Homestead, we poured for patrons who knew our wines and many who got to taste them for the first time. 

     In addition to Grazing in the Garden, we had a chance to meet a number of our clients face to face as we did tasting events in their restaurants with staff to discuss the wines and answer questions about farming practices, food pairings and the varietals themselves.  It was inspiring to meet people who were so enthusiastic about our wines and who make a real effort to build our brand with their own clientele. 

     We really enjoyed both the scenery and the cuisine of Tofino, be it the fresh Dungeness crab we purchased along the road into town, the delicious charcuterie from Picnic (www.picniccharcuterie.com) or the outstanding seafood platter at The Schooner (www.schoonerrestaurant.ca), which paired so well with our Bacchus wine.  Thanks to Sean and the team at The Schooner for being so welcoming to us.

     We had a little downtime during our visit and had the chance to walk the Lighthouse Loop of the Wild Pacific Trail in Ucluelet. I would highly recommend this easy hike for its amazing vistas and lookouts.  Gorgeous.

     We definitely look forward to Grazing in the Garden 2018 and to reconnecting with our customers in Tofino and Ucluelet.  Thank you for all your support!