Icewine flavours sealed with a shiver

Once the grapes are plucked, the extraction has to be quick so the juice is of the sweetest quality.

Picking wine grapes in the wee small hours. The temperature must not rise above -8 C.

Bundled up in parkas and scarves, hundreds of Okanaganites trundled into area vineyards this week for the first wave of the annual ice wine grape harvest.

“This was an early harvest for ice wine, which is good because the grapes are healthy and clean,” said Cedar Creek winemaker Taylor Whelan.

Cedar Creek, like many wineries, doesn’t always harvest for ice wine due to everything from grape quality to weather.

“It didn’t get cold enough, last year — it has to be -8 C or lower to pick for ice wine, and that temperature didn’t hit in time to get the grapes off,” he said, explaining the fruit stayed on the vine for too long and deteriorated in quality.

In addition to being in good shape this year, there was also a good volume of grapes, which is important because so little comes out of a pressed ice-wine grape.

Ice wine is made from grapes that have frozen on the vine. Once they’re plucked, the extraction has to be quick so the juice is of the sweetest quality. It also has to reach quality standards including 35 brix of sugar to be called true Icewine.

Laura Kittmer, media relations manager for the B.C. wine institute, said that while there has been a flurry of activity in area vineyards, there’s going to be a lot more to come.

“Just over half of the total amount of grapes registered for Icewine this year have been picked, so there should be more picking to come,” she said, adding that it could be spread over this weekend, if the forecast pans out, and later in the year.

The last ice wine grape harvest, for example, started on Nov. 25, 2015 and more pickings occurred again in the New Year.

Kittmer said there are also more growers registered with the BC Wine Authority than last year.

Areas where the harvest occurred include Kelowna, West Kelowna, Penticton, Naramata, Ok Falls, Oliver and Osoyoos.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

BX Elementary to receive City of Vernon sewer services

Mayor says the school will be required to join the City of Vernon

A Gardener’s Diary: Prepping seedlings in winter

Before planting seedlings, pots must be scrubbed clean

Vernon gallery hosts Art After Dark

Event hosted by the Vernon Public Art Gallery Friday, Feb. 28

Vernon tennis player named Best of BC winner

Sport BC honours Vasek Pospisil for his comeback season after back surgery

Vernon golf course sinks construction on new clubhouse

Owners at The Rise are in a dispute with City of Vernon over tax assessment

51 health professionals send letter to Trudeau, Horgan panning northern B.C. pipeline

They point to studies about the health and climate change risks from pipeline

UPDATE: Firefighter injured in West Kelowna structure fire

West Kelowna fire crews responded to the blaze at 9:53 p.m. Tuesday

Fake meat and a latte? Starbucks adds Beyond Meat in Canada

The Seattle roaster has talked about introducing plant-based patties in the U.S., but has yet to do so

Groundhogs got it wrong: spring isn’t coming soon, Weather Network says

The only part of B.C. to warm up early will be Victoria

Protecting privacy key to stopping spread of COVID-19, B.C. health officials say

The number of coronavirus cases in B.C. remains at seven

Fire crews battle large blaze in West Kelowna

Reports of multiple structures on fire in the Colleen Road area

From seed to salad: Providing purpose for Okanagan inmates

“I planted every one of these, it makes me feel good, they’re like all my little babies.” - inmate Kim

Most Read