My endeavor to cover wineries around the world continues! Here is our first stop in Canada, a country that is not generally thought of as a major wine producer, but who has been steadily working its way into the world wine market for the past few years. This picturesque spot with grapevines framed by lakes and forested mountains is Haywire Winery, located in Summerland, British Columbia. Haywire is a very new winery, founded in 2006. Christine Coletta and Steve Lornie bought this property the year before and grew the crops that were traditional for this patch of ground, apples and apricots. They lost money on this venture, so they decided to plant pinot gris grapes instead. The first bottle of Haywire Pinot Gris hit the shelves and palates of wine lovers in 2010. Since then Haywire has been growing steadily, and Christine and Steve have added a winery called the Okanagan Crush Pad.
I admit I know very little about Canadian wine. I tasted some whites and a few reds in Toronto a few years back, but I’ve never had wine from British Columbia. Due to the region’s cool climate I would expect lighter wines line pinot gris, chardonnay and sparkling wines to be made here, but Haywire is beginning to venture into pinot noirs and rosés, typically the “gateway drug” to seasoned red wine making. I’m curious to see how Pacific Northwest wineries in both Canada (BC) and the US (Washington, Oregon) are affected by climate change. Winemakers have stopped scoffing at my prediction that climate change will make Oregon a major cabernet and zinfandel region in the next few decades; concurrent with that, BC wineries may become big in pinot noirs. Wineries like Haywire will be the ones to watch for that trend.