There’s nothing lovelier than slipping away from the busyness of the day and stepping into a luncheon amongst friends. On Wednesday of this week, I had the pleasure of joining David Koball, Vineyard Director of Bonterra Vineyards, at Thyme & Again for an intimate session about organic winemaking. Dave fits the profile of the kind of guy you might think of when one says “organic winemaker” – he’s approachable, relatable, and incredibly passionate about what he does. “I’m a farmer,” he says with a smile, “this is what I do and I love it.”
During his presentation, I learned about biodynamic agriculture and how it plays a role at Bonterra Vineyards. I wish I could explain it as well as Dave did, but then again I don’t live and breathe it everyday!
Biodynamic® practices don’t replace organic growing, they complement it.
The Biodynamic® approach includes all the tenets to the organic spirit: the absence of synthetic inputs, composting to close the loop, using cover crops and maintaining biodiversity. Yet Biodynamic® growing goes even further in its belief that the farm and its soil are to be considered as a single living organism.
Developed in the 1920s and based on ancient farming techniques, Biodynamic® practices are designed to promote and enhance biodiversity and biological activity in the soil. Special mineral and microbial treatments are applied to the vineyard at specific times of the year. (read more…)
For lunch, we were delighted with a four-course menu, created by Thyme and Again. Sheila Wyte, Owner of Thyme & Again, and Justin Faubert, Front-of-House Chef, along with their team were on hand to introduce the incredible dishes that were made to pair with the wine. With each course, a complimentary Bonterra wine was served, set up at stations around the event room where guests were free to move around and ask questions.
I had a chance to chat with Dave about Bonterra wines and their exceptional taste. We discussed the vineyards organic practices, such as composting and cover crops – and how organic farming creates a purer grape and vibrant wine. I have to say, you notice – the wines that I sampled were bursting with flavour and character. My favourite was the 2013 Viognier, a white wine with aromas of peaches and cream, citrus blossom and apricot. Dave described it as a crisp wine with fruity notes that pairs nicely with Thai food and has a lovely long finish.
To bring our delectable meal to a close, an incredible chocolate mousse cake was served. Needless to say, everyone oohed and aahed over how gorgeous and decadent it was.
My takeaway from this wine-tasting event is a memorable introduction to Bonterra wines. As we move into the holiday season with parties and gatherings to host and attend, Bonterra will be on my LCBO shopping list, that’s for sure. Whether to enjoy with a homemade meal or to gift to a dear friend – the purity, flavour and heart & soul that is in each sip makes it a perfect selection.