San Pedro is launching a new wine brand to support (Glaciares Chilenos) Patagonian Glaciers

 

Chile’s Viña San Pedro is launching a new sustainable, organic wine brand called “South Cause” which will raise money to support Glaciares Chilenos, an NGO that aims to conserve Patagonian glaciers.

San Pedro, which is part of the VSPT group is launching the new wine brand in Europe, North America, and north Asia by the end of the year.

Labeled “South Cause” the new brand comprises four different wines: Cabernet Sauvignon, a red blend, Sauvignon Blanc, and a rosé, all targeted towards millennials and the younger generation of wine drinkers.

Rodrigo Romero, vice-president of global marketing for VSPT, described the new wine label as an “activist brand”, and he states:

“So far most of the things we have done have been in-house. We heard about Glaciares Chilenos and thought maybe we could have a role in this. And what better way to do it than create a new brand that stands for this sentiment. It proves it’s not an after-thought. It’s a range of quality wines that also embrace the cause.”

The wines are certified organic and vegan, will be released in eco-friendly packaging, which is either made from recycled materials or is itself recyclable.

VSPT has recently pledged to reduce the quantity and weight of its bottles and packaging so that 100% are separable, reusable, recyclable or compostable by 2030.

Sales of “South Cause” wines, will be priced between US$12-$15 per bottle, depending on the market, and will directly benefit Glaciares Chilenos.

VSPT has signed an agreement with the NGO which will see it give the organization a set lump sum each year to fund its scientific research and educational campaigns. The NGO will also receive a variable amount of money each year, based on sales of the wine.

Glaciers act as climate regulators, reflecting between 45% and 80% of the sun’s light, helping to cool the earth’s temperature. Glacier-melt causes sea levels to rise, leading to flooding and the loss of land. In the last six years, Chile’s glaciers have decreased by 8%, the equivalent of 1,800 Olympic-sized pools.

Glaciares Chilenos is dedicated to the preservation of Chile’s Patagonian ice fields, which represent 82% of the glaciers found in South America. The issue is particularly pressing given that 70% of the Chilean population is supplied with water originating from mountainous areas and the glacier refill zone.

Spring has finally arrived and so has the arrival of Sperling Vineyards “Spring Releases”

This vintage marks the third year of certified organic wines from Sperling Vineyards. Sperling Vineyards is British Columbia’s oldest heritage vineyard, and home of Canada’s leading organic and biodynamic winegrower Ann Sperling.

Ann Sperling and her family are pioneers, first in the history of agriculture in the Kelowna region, and in both biodynamic and organic viticulture, and winemaking practice. The proof of their success is in the long lineup of awards. Taste for yourself!  Their wines are known to be wines of elegance, texture & authenticity.

Sperling Vineyards Blueprint

Location: Kelowna, British Columbia, Canada

Established: Four generations: 1860s – land was cleared, settled and the farm was officially established in the1920s

 First vintage: 2008

Winemaker:  Ann Sperling

Viticultural Practices: Organic and Biodynamic

Estate: 45 acres

This anticipated release includes the following wines, with tasting notes.

Organic Market White 2018

Aromas of peach and orange with hints of honeysuckle;
soft on the palate with flavours of apple, apricot, grapefruit and pear; nice long and fresh finish
89 Points

Organic Pinot Gris 2018

This lovely estate-bottled PG has a nice weight; aromas of white fruits, on the mouth beach and honey, lingering with clean mineral flavours; refreshing acidity.
89 Points

Organic Natural Amber Pinot Gris 2018

Aromatically this orange wine has hints of earl gray tea, jasmine, and stone fruits; while the palate is fresh and long with texture and finishes fresh.

From the Vision series, this lovely orange wine is made from 40% whole cluster, 40% whole berry and 20% pressed juice from hand-picked Pinot Gris. Natural yeast and malolactic fermented, this wine has had nothing added and nothing taken away (no sulfites, or additives, and no fining or filtration). Being unfiltered it is slightly cloudy.
90 points

 Organic Pinot Noir 2017

This light ruby wine has some notes of spicy strawberry on the nose;
I found it to be a medium-bodied wine that is dry with some strawberry flavours and fresh acidity; excellent length.
91 points

Organic Vision Chardonnay 2017

Beautiful bright gold; on the nose, aromas of fresh apples, pear, and quince; while tasting I found it had a good weight with flavours of baked fruit and some spic; well-balanced acid keeps it fresh with a long finish.
89 Points

Organic Old Vines Foch Reserve 2017

Deep ruby colour; with a nose of plum and hints of spice; I found the wine to be medium-bodied, dry, with plum and cherry flavours; fresh and lively in the mouth with a long finish.
91 Points

Sperling Vineyards is also offering FREE SHIPPING across Canada right now, with some other tempting promotions – Market Series wines: buy 5 get the 6th free or spend $75 and we’ll include a gift with purchase.

Check out their website for details https://sperlingvineyards.com/

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Exploring the Diversity of the Rheinhessen Wine Region [Part 2 of 3]

I recently traveled with fourteen wine journalists and industry professionals to Rheinhessen Germany, one of my favorite wine regions in Germany!

We soaked up Weingut Wagner-Stempel (wine festival in Siefersheim), attended a master workshop on the “Top Terroirs of Rheinhessen”, indulged in pinot noir tasting with local producers, along with other pleasant vinous, gastronomic and cultural surprises. The five-day program also took us to wineries in and around the heart of the region.  We were in the accompaniment of Ulrike Lenhardt and Ernst Buscher of The German Wine Institute, and Romana Echensperger, MW.

The following day we attended Winzerkeller Ingelheim to attend a Pinot Noir tasting with local producers.

This historic building epitomized Ingelheim’s history as the “red wine town”. Winzerkeller Ingelheim has just finished a three-year renovation project and we were lucky to visit it, upon its completion! Winzerkeller Ingelheim is not only home to a local vinotheque of 24 Ingelheim winegrowers, it’s also a distillery, restaurant, and a tourist information center.

We participated in a Pinot Noir tasting with the following wineries:

Winzerkeller Ingelheim website: www.ingelheimer-winzerkeller.de

Next on our visit was the wine festival in Siefersheim “Tage der offenen Weinkeller”.  Here we visited local wine cellars, tasted regional culinary specialties, and sipped some wonderful Rieslings.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Where is Siefersheim?

Siefersheim is a village southwest of Bad Kreuznach, in Rheinhessen This quaint village has a population of 1,300 and it lends its name to a number of vineyards, two of which, Heerkretz and Höllberg, are highly regarded sites with VDP classifications. Of the district’s 628 hectares, 172 ha are under vine, with Riesling occupying the bulk of the vineyards.

On our next stop we visited Weingut Thörle, which is in the village of Saulheim. Saulheim is located in the north-eastern fringes of Rheinhessen. Thörle is a family-run estate since the 16th century and is regarded as one of the best producers in the region.

Now leading the winery are two brothers Christoph and Johannes. They tell us that their focus is mainly on Riesling, Silvaner, Pinot Noir and Pinot Blanc. The vineyards are managed organically, and the estate has taken a biodynamic direction. The Soils are also varied with light clay, limestone, red sandy loam with some flint and schist. In our conversation, we learn that they obtain their distinctive, sappy Riesling characteristics and delicate Pinot Noir from the calcareous limestone-soils of Saulheim’s single vineyards Hölle, Schlossberg and Probstey.

 

Their wines are full of character, possess a depth of flavor and boast a high potential for maturing. Thörle’s wines have received international acclaim by leading wine guides and critics, as well as been selected by first-class airline wine programs.

Weingut Thörle website: http://www.thoerle-wein.de

 

At the end of the day, we attended a grand tasting at Weingut Hoffmann and Weingut Willems-Willems Estate.

Weingut Hofmann is jointly led and owned by the winemaker couple Jürgen Hofmann and Carolin Hofmann. This couple have taken over their families’ wine estates, Jürgen in 1999, and Carolin in 2001. Since 2006, both wineries have come under one roof, hence the two names: Weingut Hofmann in Weingut Willems-Willems.

Weingut Hofmann was founded in 1971 in Appenheim, when Jürgen’s parents converted their mixed agricultural operation into a winery  Jürgen pushed winemaking at Weingut Hofmann to new levels, by investing into new wine cellar equipment, focusing on the best vineyards, and planting new grape varieties, as well as built an ultra-modern winery including a tasting room.mHofmann’s 14 hectares. vineyards are limestone based.

Jurgen produces Riesling as well as Sauvignon Blanc, Pinot Noir and Silvaner. His Rieslings and Sauvignons that really wowed me. The limestone dominated soils surrounding Appenheim in his Riesling burst with stony spice and minerality. Aromas of dried apricots and exotic spice dance hand in hand in a racy yet breathtakingly elegant tango.

Jurgen’s Sauvignon Blanc grapes are harvested sequentially from multiple sites (as each vineyard reaches its own optimal ripeness). Tasting notes include notes of gooseberry, elderberry, and green asparagus blend with a tropical breeze reminiscent of the variety’s origins.

Weingut Hoffmann and Weingut Willems-Willems Estate website: www.schiefer-trifft-muschelkalk.de

British Columbia’s Two (Award-Winning) Indigenous Wineries – Virginia Hutton

During my visit to Okanagan in October, I attended the Fall Okanagan Wine Festival, and also had the opportunity to visit British Columbia’s two Indigenous wineries.

50 Years ago, the first aboriginal winery in Canada, Nk’Mip Cellars was launched by former Osoyoos Indian Band Chief Sam Baptiste. Osoyoos, in British Columbia’s, (BC) Okanagan region is Canada’s only desert and its sandy soils are used for growing 40% Okanagan wines.

The Okanagan region is located in the rain shadow of the Cascade Mountains and has a dry and mild climate with no month having a below 0°C average temperature. The summers are hot and dry with temperatures occasionally topping 40 °C.

Nk’Mip Cellars, (pronounced ‘inkameep’), located on the Osoyoos Indian Reserve,is part of the development including the Hyatt’s Spirit Ridge Hotel, and the Sonora Dunes Golf Course. Owned by the Osoyoos Indian Band, Nk’Mip was the first Indigenous-owned winery in North America and is ideally located, having been rated a class 1 site according to 1984 Atlas of Suitable Grape Growing Atlas in the Okanagan, and Similkameen Valleys. Justin Hall, a member of the Osoyoos Indian band and current Winemaker arrived in 2004. Nk’Mip Cellars was awarded the 2016 Intervin Winery of the Year and #2 Winery in BC in 2018 from Wine Align. Nk’Mip varieties include: Pinot Noir, Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah, Riesling, Chardonnay, Pinot Blanc, Rose, and Ice Wine.

The Osoyoos Indian Band leases the majority of their 380 acres in the Okanagan, with 60 acres producing Nk’Mip’s 18,000 cases annually. Distribution extends to Alberta, Saskatchewan, and Manitoba.

The second Indigenous winery, Indigenous World Winery, is owned by Robert Louie, former Chief of the Westbank First Nation and his wife Bernice. They are descendants of the original Sylix people of Okanagan. Located in West Kelowna, Indigenous World Winery has produced a number of award-winning wines, most recent, winning one silver and 2 bronze awards at the 2019 Wine Align National Wine Awards of Canada. Varieties include: Cabernet Sauvignon, Gamay, Pinot Auxerrois, Cabernet Franc, Pinot Gris, Gewürztraminer, Viognier, Merlot, Marechal Foch, Chardonnay, Muscat.

With 5 leased properties and 2.5 acres of estate land, Indigenous World Winery produces just over 10,000 cases annually, primarily for the BC and Alberta markets.

Indigenous tourism is booming in British Columbia, allowing visitors the opportunity to explore indigenous culture and engage with communities they might not otherwise connect with. The Okanagan Region’s beautiful landscapes, rich history, wonderful hospitality, and award-winning wines deliver an outstanding experience for all wine lovers!

For further information:

Nk’Mip Cellars
http://www.nkmipcellars.com/

Indigenous World Winery
https://www.indigenousworldwinery.com/

Okanagan Wine Festivals Society
http://www.TheWineFestivals.com

 

MILLÉSIME BIO 2020 – Pérols, France

International wine Journalists, winemakers, wine marketers, and researchers will head to the south of France January 27-29 2020 for the only trade show dedicated to organic wine.

With green issues and climate change increasingly at the forefront of consumers’ purchasing choices, the importance of organic and biodynamic viticulture has never been more evident. This makes Millésime Bio more relatable than ever.

The 2020 event will introduce the addition of beer and cider makers and is set to be the trade show’s largest event ever. The organizers have increased the space to accommodate the increased number of wineries and businesses delving into the world of organics. Therefore, a fifth hall has been opened to house a further 100 exhibitors.

For 2020 Millésime Bio will take place over three days from 27 to 29 January 2020 at the Montpellier Exhibition Centre in Pérols.

There will be a free-pour area fitted with enotecas that will offer guests the chance to taste wines that have won medals in the annual international Millésime Bio competition. The Challenge Millésime Bio is one of the world’s largest organic wine competitions, which includes a judging panel made up of wine experts and senior buyers, chaired by Jean-Luc Rabanel, the head chef of the two-Michelin-starred restaurant l’Atelier in Arles and founder of the ‘Greenstronomie’ movement.

The fair will also run masterclasses and seminars, with particular attention to organic winemaking, but also changing trends and issues affecting the wider wine trade, including business and marketing.

“It’s safe to say our fair is in very good shape and continues to gather momentum,” Patrick Guiraud, president of Millésime Bio, said.

“This year, we wanted to offer the opportunity for more exhibitors to take part. They’ve been quick to secure their stands and we’ve even had to open a waiting list in September.”

Event Details:

The opening party, organized by SudVinBio, will take place on Monday 27 January.
27 January 2020 from 10am to 7pm
28 January 2020 from 9am to 7pm
29 January 2020 from 9am to 5pm

Address:
Montpellier Exhibition Centre (Parc des Expositions de Montpellier), Route de la Foire, 34470 Pérols, France

Website:
https://www.millesime-bio.com/en