Knock Knock! Do you hear that. Knock Knock, the sound of Haywire and other Canadian wineries standing on Europe's door step. They are coming in because Canada's wineries have the Goods. The Goods been top notch world class wines of numerous varietal.
As a young man I tasted my first wine around the age of 22, It was a German wine from the Rheingau, region called Fisherman. I had no idea then what Rheingau referred to on the wine bottle. I would learn! Very few people I knew drank wine and who had, well they never thought of buying a Canadian wine. If anyone drank wine it had to be French.
I graduated from there to more sophisticated European wines and later to the wines of the Napa valley. Having tried Baby Duck, I was not impressed. It was in the early 90's that a restaurant in Langley suggest to us a white wine (I forget now which one) from Chaberton a local Fraser Valley winery,but it was impressive. I then began seeking out BC wines. In those days some were OK and some were bad. Today its an entire different story and the world knows it! Canada is on the map.
Christine Coletta and her husband Steve Lornie had always enjoyed
the summer vacations in Summerland. One day while exploring , they came
across a beautiful little farming community above the lake along Matsu Drive.
The site was so special they bought it. The wineries name Haywire
is an old Canadianism that refers to wires used for baling hay.
Christine Coletta and Steve Lornie built Okanagan Crush Pad in scenic Summerland, BC, on Switchback Organic Vineyard in 2011. The facility, producer of Haywire and Narrative, has quickly built a reputation as a premium winery receiving unprecedented awards and accolades with chief winemaker Matt Dumayne at the helm. The vineyard was originally a Orchard at the time of purchase
but Christine and Steve did a switch as they say from losing money in an orchard
to losing money in a vineyard thus they named the vineyard Switchback. Currently
there are 10 acres planted in Pinot Gris Clone
52 Pinot Gris additional grapes purchased from local vineyards .
Steve a skilled construction manager build a new winery over looking the
Christine's long-ranging career started in the hospitality industry where she spent several years holding management roles in Vancouver-based restaurants and hotels. She went on to work in restaurant construction development and oversaw the construction, marketing and management of several successful fine dining establishments.
From there, Christine formed Coletta Consultants Ltd. in 1986 and worked on several provincial and federal government initiatives, notably the creation and marketing of the hospitality industry training program “Serving it Right”. She also worked with the federal government on the Canadian International Conference Task Force.
Today she works on behalf of Haywire wines, Okanagan Crush Pad and promoting Canada's wines to Europe.
Okanagan Crush Pad (OCP) began expanding its market presence beyond British Columbia with concentrated efforts in Western Canada, while at the same time, making its first foray into Europe, in March 2016.
The winery team made its first sales push into the European market, debuting at ProWein Dusseldorf. At ProWein, the team showed their Haywire natural wines made from Switchback Organic Vineyard, in addition to an Ancient Method sparkling wine from their Narrative portfolio. Representing the winery was Coletta, her daughter Alison Scholefield, was well as David Scholefield (consultant), and Michael West. Okanagan Crush Pad’s consulting winemaker Alberto Antonini was also at the event
Following Prowein, Okanagan Crush Pad has been accepted as an exhibitor at the exclusive UK artisan wine fair, RAW London, May 15 and 16; and the winery will also participate at a Canadian wine tasting to be held at Canada House in London on May 24..
The following year, on May 16, 2017 over one hundred wines from several dozen Canadian wineries were on display in London at a trade and media tasting at Canada House, Canada’s High Commission on Trafalgar Square. According to the British press the wines made a blood good impression.
Matt Dumayne ~
Christine Coletta ~ Steve Lornie
The wines served at the Canada House tasting by Haywire were as follows:
- Narrative Ancient Method 2015
- Haywire Switchback Organic Pinot Gris 2015
- Haywire Free Form White 2015
- Haywire Gamay Noir 2015
- Haywire Canyonview Pinot Noir 2014
- Haywire Free Form Red 2015
Haywire and Narrative are lauded by the press consistently, and the wines are constantly in the public eye. They have a reputation for producing high quality wines vintage after vintage. There is not enough space here to list them all.
At this event Canada was represented by:
- Averill Creek Vineyard
- Burrowing Owl Estate Winery
- Church and State Wines
- Clos du Soleil Winery
- La Stella
- Le Vieux Pin
- Meyer Family Vineyards
- Mission Hill Family Estate
- Noble Ridge Vineyard and Winery
- Painted Rock Estate Winery
- Poplar Grove Wine
- Red Rooster Winery
- Sandhill Winery
- Summerhill Pyramid Winery
- Terrabella Wineries
- Unsworth Vineyards
- Benjamin Bridge
- Devonian Coast Wineries
- Domaine de Grand Pré
- Luckett Vineyards
- Domaine Queylus
- Hidden Bench Vineyards and Winery
- Norm Hardie Winery and Vineyard
- Peller Estates Niagara
- Pillitteri Estates Winery
- Rennie Estate Winery
- Southbrook Vineyards
- Stratus Vineyards
- Tawse Winery
- Westcott Vineyards
- La Face Cachée de la Pomme
- Les Vergers de la Colli
congratulations to all
Wine writer, Jamie Goode, who has visited Canada three times since 2013 says, “I am so impressed with the wines I have found. It’s a relatively young, dynamic and diverse wine scene and, if you are curious about wine, you owe it to yourself to take this chance to check it out"
Benjamin Bridge of Nova Scotia. Méthode Classique Sparkling Brut 2008 was named 1 of the 14 best sparkling wines of the world out of a field of 300 of some of the world’s most recognized Champagnes and sparkling wines.” The judging was conducted by a tasting panel of Masters of Wine and Wine Sommeliers based in London, England
Some of the top sommeliers and wine writers, etc. are all based in the U.K. It's an important market, not only for sales, but to build recognition for Canadian wines. Well-known wine critic Jancis Robinson has written a number of articles praising Canada's wines.
Haywire wines are currently in Denmark, Norway, Sweden and the UK
Icewines have been available for years in Europe and Asia.
Burrowing Owl, BC's Okanagan has sales reps in Japan, Caribbean, Germany,Switzerland, Austria and USA
Inniskillin Wines Can be found in 51 countries. Many of Canada's larger wineries have overseas sales. The majority of Canada' wineries only produce wines for their home province.
Quick Facts – British Columbia Wine Industry
- Exports of BC Wine have grown from $5.7 million in 2011 to $19.3 million in 2016 – an increase of 237 per cent.
- There are more than 10,200 acres (4,130 hectares) of vines in British Columbia’s five geographical indications.
- BC’s wine industry has grown from just 17 grape wineries in 1990 to 276 today.
- Approximately one million tourists visit British Columbia wineries annually.
- The BC Wine Industry contributes $2.8 billion in provincial economic growth annually.
Ontario is Canada’s largest exporter of Icewine valued at $17.1 million followed by British Columbia at $1.8 million (2016)
- In 2016, Canadian exports totaled 71.4 million litres, valued at $80.1 million. Of this, 1.9 million litres was premium wine (non-bulk), valued at $34.7 million.
- Exports of Canadian wine have grown from $41.2 million in 2012 to $80.2 million in 2016.
We invite other wineries to tell us about their experience venturing beyond our boarders
Winemaker Matt Dumyane
Okanagan Crush Pad