It’s all about the teleprompter
Road 13 has launched a series of short online movies in an effort to help wine lovers learn while getting to know the personalities behind the winery. The humorous movies, released in groups, can be viewed via a link at our website, www.road13vineyards.com, or by searching YouTube. Check out “Mr. Oaky”, “Mike’s Tanks”, “How We Farm”, and of course, “The Dirt”! This initiative confirms that the team should stick to grape-growing and winemaking and leave acting to the pros. Enjoy the videos here!
Road 13 Vineyards Shines in the Gold Medal Plates Competition
In late October, the Edmonton, Vancouver and Calgary Gold Medal Plates competitions took place. Raising funds for Canada’s high performance athletes, the Gold Medal Plates competitions match dishes with perfectly paired wines and celebrate Canadian excellence in food and wine as well as in athletics. Road 13 Vineyards was honoured to have their wines featured with two of the Gold-medal-winning recipes, and one from the Bronze-medal winning category!
In Edmonton, Bistecca Italian Steakhouse chef Sonny Sung earned the Bronze with a dish of elegant simplicity and impeccable balance using a juicy, lightly smoked chop from a rack of Alberta lamb, its surface patted with chopped fresh herbs, a roasted parsnip and truffle purée with a foie gras jus for sauce. The spicy 2007 Road 13 Syrah was an excellent accompaniment.
In Vancouver, Cactus Club chef Rob Feenie captured the Gold with a dish that started with a parsnip pear and pineapple sorbet for cleansing the palate. This was followed a duck confit and chicken boudin noir sausage enriched with foie gras, fig and truffle which paired beautifully with the 2008 Road 13 Viognier Roussanne Marsanne. Amazing!
t the Calgary event, chef Jan Hrabec of Crazyweed Restaurant from Canmore was the Gold medal victor. Her braised duck leg in a bright, fruity orange curry sauce with notes of ancho chile, cardamom, star anise, and coriander was partnered with Indian spiced sweet potato and wilted chard with a crispy shallot garnish and was an outstanding match to the 2008 Road 13 Pinot Noir.
Congratulations to all the chefs, as everything sounds delicious; it’s too bad we couldn’t be in three places at once to taste all their pairings!
Top 10 Time
Pam and Mick Luckhurst were thrilled to learn that in the first year of making wine under the Road 13 label, they made the Top Ten Canadian Wineries List issued by Wine Access magazine as part of the 2009 Canadian Wine Awards. It’s a prestigious honour and the Luckhurst family would like to extend congratulations to the other winning wineries as well. Rah! Rah! Canada.
Feast at Cornucopia
In mid-November, winemaker Michael Bartier teamed up with chef Wayne Martin of Fraîche, Crave on Main, and Crave Beachside. The event was one of two private house luncheons held at Cornucopia, Whistler’s Celebration of Wine and Food, and it featured Road 13’s wines exclusively. The courses served were; poached lobster and truffles with Road 13 2008 Riesling, roasted lamb loin with seasonal mushrooms and arugula pesto with the 2008 Pinot Noir, and apple tart tatin with crème fraiche ice cream with Road 13 2006 Sparkling Chenin Blanc, the pairing was a stunning success and an excellent excuse for Michael to put the work of harvest to rest and visit Whistler!
Wine Feature: 2006 Road 13 Fifth Element
The cellar crew at Road 13 are excited to share the 2006 Fifth Element. A blend of 38% Merlot, 28% Cabernet Franc, 22% Cabernet Sauvignon, 6% Malbec and 6% Petit Verdot, the wine is about balance, elegance, and a “delicious complexity” factor, with flavours running from tobacco through chocolate with much fruit between, with a mouth filling but not cloying texture. The Merlot grapes came from the Golden Mile side of the valley while the rest of the blend originated from the Black Sage Bench. This is the wine the entire cellar revolves around. “Nothing gets blended until I’ve finalized the fifth blend,” says winemaker Michael Bartier. After winning numerous gold medals as well as the prestigious 2009 BC Lieutenant Governor’s award, the supply of this wine is dwindling. Get yours before it is too late! BIOGRAPHY – BAILEY WILLIAMSON – Cellar Master
Bailey joined Road 13 in the summer of 2006 in preparation for harvest and crush. He brought with him a wealth of experience in the food and wine industries. A trained chef with a passion for all comestibles, Bailey dreams of making cheese and salami to accompany the wine. With his ongoing educational and cellar work, Bailey is like having another winemaker which Michael greatly appreciates. Bailey receives a lot of joy and takes much pride in the Sparkling Chenin Blanc project which he has spearheaded since its inception.
Bailey and his wife Jenny are thrilled with the impending arrival of a sibling for their son Porter. They have settled down in sleepy Oliver and Bailey has become an important member of the team.
Growing Our Land Holdings
In October the Luckhursts purchased the 12+acre vineyard of friends and growers Peter and Helga Serwo. The Serwos planted much of the Golden Mile Bench, including the original Tinhorn Creek site and the land at Road 13. Peter and Helga sold the Golden Mile winery and vineyard to Mick and Pam in 2003 when they wanted to slow down after 50 years of viticulture. They held back a 12-acre vineyard for their children but when it became apparent that their children were not going to pursue farming, Mick got the call. Winemaker Michael Bartier can hardly contain his excitement as all of the vines are 29 years old this spring. Planted are Riesling, Bacchus, and Kerner, making the grapes prime candidates for Honest John’s White! The addition of this vineyard represents Road 13’s continuing commitment to the Golden Mile, an historical viticultural area of great importance in the Okanagan.
Join Road 13’s Cellar Club & Receive a Special Bonus
Road 13’s Cellar Club is unlike others on offer. There are no monthly minimum purchases and we let our club members pick the wines they want rather than ship what is lingering in the cellar.
All that is required is that customers must purchase two cases of wine directly from the winery and have an appreciation for fine cuisine and a passion for Okanagan Valley wine. You order only the wines you want, when you want them! Check out www.road13vineyards.com for full details.
DINNER IS ON US!
Buy 24 bottles of wine through our wine club between now and December 31, 2009 and receive a
$50 gift certificate to one of our restaurant partners. (offer available in BC only)
Restaurant partners include:
West, Salt, DB Moderne, Pair Bistro, The District, and Coast in Vancouver
Café Brio, Stage Wine Bar and Pescatores in Victoria
Cabana, Bouchons and Waterfront Wines in Kelowna
Amante and Bogners in Penticton
North 54 in Prince George
Road 13 Vintage Report
In the Okanagan Valley, cool climate viticulture is defined by its compressed growing season, which is possible with the long daylight hours that southern regions miss. 2009 was, hands down, the most compressed vintage that we’ve ever seen in the Okanagan. Bud break began almost 3 weeks late yet, despite the late start, the vines easily caught up with little rain and perfect temperatures for uninterrupted growth. We started into harvest well ahead of schedule which was fortunate because we were about to get hit with some unseasonably cold weather much earlier than normal. The growing season ended about 2 weeks early with a leaf killing frost (albeit on generally ripe grapes). We were fortunate for our ripeness to have caught up the way it did!
Obviously the weather conditions will have an impact on the flavours and textures of the wines, which will reveal themselves over time. Nobody honestly knows if the impact will be positive or simply “different”. The star wines that we have noticed so far in the cellar are definitely Chardonnay, which is showing excellent intensity and balance, and Merlot and Syrah, which are showing very good intensity as well as excellent tannic structure. Overall, we’re excited for the new vintage to be released and can’t wait to share them!