Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Winery Spotlight: Stoneboat Vineyards

Follow the signs off Highway 97 or Black Sage Rd and you'll weave you way down the bench to the small-ish corrugated metal and wood beam framed Stoneboat tasting room. Inside the minimalist inspired room you'll find a long glass bar where friendly staff and family members are eager to pour their wines and a polished grand piano at which, if your lucky, one of the Martiniuk kids may be seated and playing. Stoneboat is the ultimate family owned and operated boutique winery which proportionately only makes-up a small amount of the overall business including a nursery and vineyards which supply grapes to many Okanagan producers.

The winery focuses on only a few, very well-made wines that the family believe showcase the unique qualities of the various South Okanagan vineyards under their management. About half of the fruit they grow is sold off leaving the family with Pinot Noir, Pinotage, Pinot Gris and a host of Alsatian and Germanic varietals which are used to create their proprietary white blend "Chorus".

Eclectic Credentials
The Stoneboat crew may not be overtly kooky or eccentric, but their diverse ventures and interests beyond winemaking does ratchet up their eclectic cred. You can talk to the Martiniuks about any number of subjects and expect an insightful response sprinkled with wry humour and sibling rivalry. Asking manager Tim about the white tower of academia in the presence of twin brother and winemaker Jay is like purchasing a ticket to a Smothers Bros concert. Of course, try the terrific wines while you enjoy the show.

Key wines to try:
Pinot Noir

 - Liam Carrier ©copyright 2012

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