One of our favourite wineries to visit Poplar Grove sits high above the lake with cascading vistas that can be enjoyed from their restaurant and patio. It is a lovely place to visit. Poplar Grove wines make our #FavouriteThings Holiday Gift Suggestions because of their quality. Our two featured wines include one to drink and enjoy now, and another to keep for savouring in the future.
Hues of ripe nectarines plunge into the glass. Sultry aromas of fresh strawberries & rhubarb combine with an enticing hint of vanilla. A robust palate of cranberries and snappy citrus notes is well-balanced with delicate floral notes. A flawless summer sipper perfect for enjoying under the sun, on the beach, boat or barbecue.
The 2018 growing season was similar to 2017. Spring started off slowly and was wetter than average. 2018 found the vineyards two weeks behind our normal bud burst. Once the warmer weather arrived mid-spring, it caused the above average snow levels in the mountains to melt rapidly resulting in another year of flooding. The flooding did not wash any topsoil away and, after a challenging start, the end of spring weather conditions were perfect for an ideal fruit set. Once summer arrived, it was hot and dry which tested our vineyard crews to pay close attention to irrigation regimes and leaf-to-fruit ratios. The vineyards soaked up the summer sunshine; meticulous farming and careful yield management allowed the grapes to fully ripen on the vine. September was wet. After each rainfall, the tractors were driven down the vineyard rows to blow the water off the vines and fruit ensuring there was no opportunity for mold to develop. A beautiful autumn saw the perfect weather to allow the fruit to catch up after a wet September.
Merlot and Malbec bunches were hand picked and sorted in the vineyard. The extracted juice from the crushed grapes was left on skins for four hours, then cold settled and fermented at 15ºC to preserve the bright fruit flavours. The yeast consumed most of the grape sugars leaving 1.4 g/l and yielding a wonderfully rich dry rosé.
This wine is meant to be enjoyed upon release. Drink this year for best enjoyment!
A burnt maroon hue appears in the glass. A perfume of plums, light vanilla, and white pepper arrives on the nose. This sharp and precise palate of dark berries, black licorice, and subtle essence of smoke creates a sophisticated and satisfying palate. More substantial in body, our Syrah will pair well with pork and rich mushroom dishes.
2016 was a test of patience and persistence in our vineyards, but we embraced the struggle and are proud of the results. Spring arrived very early and warm, with bud break four weeks ahead of normal, putting our vineyard crew into high gear with great anticipation for the growing season ahead. A late April snowstorm in South Osoyoos took the thriving vines by surprise, destroying a tiny fraction of our petit verdot vineyards. The summer that followed turned out to be wetter and cooler than expected, which slowed fruit development and forced increased vineyard management and around the clock weather monitoring. Luckily, our saving grace came with the long, warm fall season that saw a gradual cool down in temperature week after week, thus giving the grapes extra time to achieve full ripeness and flavour characteristics. This extra time gave our production team a chance to plan for the biggest harvest from our vineyards yet! The first handpick was in our Osoyoos vineyards on September 20, 2016 about four weeks later than in 2015. The vineyard crew carefully monitored temperatures and individual vineyard development, and harvested from September through until November 11th, when the cabernet sauvignon was finally picked. The extended fall season was instrumental in preparing the vines to survive what was to be the coldest winter the Okanagan Valley has seen in 50 years. The slow cooling process throughout fall allowed the vines time to enter a gradual dormancy, turn woody and store their reserves for hibernation so they can thrive again come spring 2017. Overall, the 2016 growing season was long, weathered and embraced by the team. We are grateful for the persistence and patience of the vineyard crew and Mother Nature, which resulted in yet another fantastic vintage.
The Syrah grapes were hand picked and sorted in our Haynes Creek Vineyard in south-eastern Osoyoos. After destemming, the berries were hand sorted again to ensure that only perfect fruit was included in the ferment. The must was cold soaked for four days allowing partial wild yeast fermentation to occur before the wine was inoculated with cultured yeasts. During fermentation, we pumped over twice per day to ensure even fermentation and gentle tannin extraction. Malolactic fermentation occurred in barrel over the winter and finished in late December. 30% of the 2016 Syrah was kept in new French oak barrels, while the remaining 70% was kept in one and two year old French oak barrels for 15 months. This wine was further developed in bottle for 12 months in the cellar prior to release.
The Syrah 2016 will develop for well over a decade. Ready to drink upon release. Drink 2019 – 2030.
Estate Grown. Locally Farmed. Family Owned.
Founded in 1993, Poplar Grove Winery is one of the original five wineries on the Naramata Bench. Tony and Barb Holler purchased the winery in 2007 with the long-term vision and commitment to building one of the most respected wine growing estates in Canada. Their sons, Chris, Andrew, Matthew and Eric farm more than 100 acres of estate vineyards with meticulous care. Together, they share a commitment to express the incredible diversity of the Okanagan Valley. The Hollers are leading the journey to put Okanagan Valley wines on the map with an unwavering commitment to traditional farming and winemaking principles. Poplar Grove’s approach to ‘farming wine’ aims to minimize environmental impacts, ensures economic viability and promotes a safe, healthy workplace using environmentally and socially responsible winemaking and growing techniques. These practices value soil health and biodiversity that assure long-term, balanced crops with exceptional fruit quality. An exacting selection policy in the vineyard and the cellars delivers elegant wines of great depth and distinction.
The family is widely recognized for crafting benchmark Pinot Gris and Cabernet Franc as well as multiple varietals and exceptional blends. Their flagship Okanagan blend of red Bordeaux varieties, The Legacy, first produced in 2003, is a wine that has the rare quality of being good at any age.
The Holler Family and Poplar Grove Winery symbolize a great story, which spans the past 25 years. The family produces exceptional estate wines in the heart of Okanagan wine country nestled on a unique hillside location with its commanding unobstructed view of Okanagan Lake. Poplar Grove is a beacon for hospitality in the region, with a full-service tasting room and boutique, and casual/fine dining at our restaurant.
The family philosophy: great wine brings us together – a little bit of humour, courage and integrity and the world is yours.
The Restaurant at Poplar Grove Winery
The Restaurant at Poplar Grove provides an elegant space to showcase our world-class wines. An understated dining room highlights our stunning vista overlooking Okanagan Lake across our very own Pinot Gris vines. Executive Chef Bruno Terroso uses local ingredients combined with Mediterranean flavours to create enticing seasonal fare to complement Poplar Grove’s portfolio. We invite you to join us for a truly Okanagan experience.
11:30 AM – 8:00 PM (last seating) Sunday-Tuesday and Thursday
11:30 AM – 9:00 PM (last seating) Friday and Saturday
Tasting notes, bottle shots and feature image courtesy of the winery. I received two complimentary bottles of each wine in order to facilitate this feature. All opinions re my own.