September 22, 2014

Garry Oaks Winery on Salt Spring Island

Garry Oaks Winery is located on a 4 hectare terraced vineyard overlooking the Burgoyne Valley on Salt Spring Island. It began in 1999 when Marcel Mercier and Elaine Kozak purchased a 100 year old farm and began converting it from sheep to wine. The winery gets its name from a stand of rare Garry Oaks on the property.

I don't know where the Garry Oaks are, nor would I know them to see them. My dilemma, shared by countless others I'm sure, might be a potential marketing opportunity for the winery.

It's all rather unpretentious, which is a good thing. The wine tasting room is simple  yet stylish and the tastings are always good natured.

The wines are interesting. Prism, a blend of Gewurztraminer and Chardonnay, is acceptable, though a wee bit on the sweet side. A red, the Zweigelt, an Austrian varietal not often seen in North America,  is okay too, probably best decanted once or twice.The Pinot Gris is highly acceptable, rich, clean and fruity without overpowering. It is easily our favourite from this winery.

When on Salt Spring we always seem to stop at Garry Oaks Winery, sample and buy. There are sheep in the field next door, which attract attention from tourists, and on this occasion from Jeem, thinking only of a nice rack of lamb to go with  the Zweiglet.

Photos by Jim Murray. 
Copyright 2014.

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