A new winery opened in downtown Penticton in July, Time Winery, part of Harry McWatter’s Encore Vineyards. Along with the new winery, there is a new director of winemaking, Graham Pierce.
I recently interviewed Pierce about Time’s debut and its associated operations in the Okanagan.
“There’s lots going on here, lots going on in the valley, a very exciting time for B.C. wines and for us in general,” he said proudly.
Pierce explained about the different names, “Encore is the parent company. When Harry sold Sumac Ridge and then Constellation, he started up Encore as an encore performance. It’s essentially three brands: Time out of the former Penmar Theatre in Penticton, Evolve Cellars in Summerland and McWatters Collection a very limited operation.”
“Time Winery is right downtown Penticton, three blocks from the lake and the hotels so it’s very convenient for people to come by and tour the winery. We have a full service restaurant. The food is excellent, we have patio seating right on the street, a big area inside as well and the kitchen is open until 9 p.m. every night and we’re open for tastings as well till that time. So we are full service hospitality in a very convenient location. It’s really cool,” Pierce exclaimed.
In addition to the new downtown winery and tasting room, Encore offers a totally different experience 17 kilometers north of Penticton at Summerland, Evolve Cellars. Pierce elaborated, “Evolve Cellars has a beautiful wine shop overlooking the lake in the vineyard, and a restaurant that deals mainly with charcuterie.”
“It’s been great for us because we do a lot of events and weddings every weekend in the summer. Evolve is tucked away, a little bit harder to get to but once you get there you want to sit on the patio and have a few glasses of wine and enjoy the view.”
To celebrate the recent rainfall and the return of blue skies, pop the bottle cap on the Evolve Cellars 2017 Frizzante ($19.99) There’s lots of creamy white foam when it’s poured in a tall flute glass. Expect a nose and a flavour bursting with peach, apricot, ginger and grapefruit. A refreshing sip before a meal, and delicious with light seafood like fish tacos.
The Time 2017 Viognier ($22.99) is a wine that tastes like the Okanagan and is perfect to enjoy on these final lazy hazy days of summer. This is an exuberant wine with a bouquet of peach, apricot and tangerine.
The flavour has stone fruit with a hint of coconut. “Lush and round” is what the label describes and it’s full bodied and rich texture coats and caresses your taste buds. There is a great balance between the stone fruit flavour and the acid, with a long elegant finish of citrus and pineapple. It was simply delicious alongside oven-roasted chicken with grilled peaches.
Our third selection is also ideal for the end of summer, Time 2017 Rosé($22.99). This is a bold Syrahrosé with a nose and flavour of blueberries, strawberries, and boysenberries leaping out at you. It has a creamy smooth mouth feel, with crispness, and a hint of savoury and a fruity finish.
Enjoy with watermelon salad, lamb souvlaki or barbecued sockeye.
Next week, more with Time Winery’s Graham Pierce.