Denman Island winery wins Silver Medal in international competition

Denman Island winery wins Silver Medal in international competition
WatchCorlan Vinyard & Farm only started making wine in 2014 but just won a silver medal for its 2016 Marechal Foch and 2017 Blackberry dessert wine. Dean Stoltz reports.

The five-acre vineyard on Denman Island is pretty small compared to some of the big name wines of the world, but Corlan Vinyard and Farm is now among the very best after winning silver at the FingerLakes International Wine Competition in New York state.

“Well, she came jumping up the stairs and I really thought we must have won on the 6-49 but she said no it was better than that,” said Selwyn Jones who started the winery with his wife Pat.

“It was very surprising, I couldn’t believe it, I couldn’t believe it, I did not expect anything,” said Pat Jones.

They won for their 2016 Marechal Foch and their 2017 Blackberry dessert wine. The most amazing part? They’ve only been making wine since 2014.

“We don’t irrigate so we get the fruit smaller,” said Pat. “We don’t get the tonnage that we could get if we had larger fruit but we think we get more flavour.”

“No water because that just dilutes the fruit and so it’s very concentrated and when you taste the Marechal Foch yourself you’ll find that it’s a very heavy bodied, full-bodied wine and you know it’s a damned good wine,” said Selwyn.

And both of the winners were put up against wine from countries that have been making it for hundreds of years or longer.

“And that just totally floored me,” said friend and supporter Peter Karsten. “All the European countries, they’re competing with us. I couldn’t reconcile how that could be.”

They say they couldn’t do it without the help of the Denman Island community.

“It wasn’t just our medals, it’s all the people that come,” said Pat. “We have 40 volunteers at a time twice in the fall that come and pick and then we do a big harvest meal.”

They admit to not knowing much about grapes at first and were worried about being too far north but it’s all worked out pretty well.

“It’s turned out to be very good. It’s turned out to be really good,” added Pat.

The Corlan Vinyard & Farm website can be found here.

Dean StoltzDean Stoltz

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