Since 2011, Okanagan Crush Pad (OCP) winery in Summerland offered the Okanagan Wine Campus, where the BC Sommelier of the Year has the opportunity to create their own wine label at the OCP facility. They are part of the whole wine making process, starting with grape selecting, wine making, blending, labeling, marketing and bottling their wines. $5000 of the “small lot” wine sales for this wine is donated to the BC Hospitality Foundation. Past recipients for the Wine Campus, and their wines have been:
- 2010 – Kurtis Kolt – Kurtis Semillon 2011
- 2011 – Owen Knowlton – Owen Cabernet Franc 2011
- 2012 – Terry Threlfall – TNT Chardonnay 2012
- 2013 – Samantha Rahn – Samantha Syrah 2013
- 2014 – Mike Bernardo – Mike B Riesling 2014
jy. Ancient Method Sparkling
Our 2015 winner is Jason Yamasaki, and he has produced a sparkling wine entitled – jy. Ancient Method Sparkling. I first met Jason when he was the head Sommelier at Chambar Restaurant downtown. Jason has since moved on and now works as Group Sommelier at the Joey Restaurant Group. I am excited by the wines he will help bring in to the Joey chain, as from past food & wine pairing dinners I’ve attended, he and I have very similar tastes.
The sparkling wine that Jason helped to produce comes from OCP’s new mountain vineyard, called Garnet Valley Ranch. The wine is made from 100% organic Pinot Noir grapes. The grapes were harvest and gently pressed. A natural fermentation ensured in a concrete tank and the fermentation was transferred into bottle while still at 22 grams of sugar to allow the fermentation to continue in bottle and create the bubble. After fermentation the wine in bottle spent 10 months sur latte (on its lees) before being disgorged mid August 2016.
My Tasting Notes
Light, toasty, honey nose with some citrus, but more stone fruit. Dry, medium intensity fruit flavour, with quite creamy, small bubble. Lees and ripe stone fruit flavour. Medium acidity. Very nice mouth feel due to the creaminess of the bubble and the sur latte. Later on you get some apple and a hint of ginger spice on the palate.
Rating: A terrific creamy bubble that shows how great the fruit is that we get from our BC vineyards.
We enjoyed this wine while at Joey downtown, and were served a variety of pan-Asian style dishes that all worked with this wine. So whether you are eating sushi, a mild Thai curry, a fish taco or more, try it with this wine. Remember that buying a bottle helps support the BC Hospitality Foundation wine scholarship fund to support students pursuing their high level wine education certification.
Where can I Buy This Wine?
The wine from the winery costs $39.90, and you can purchase it through www.okanagancrushpad.com. It is also available in select dining establishments (e.g. Joey), and some private retail stores.