Anthony Gismondi on Wine
Wednesday, April 25 2018

It Takes a Village

By: Anthony Gismondi
The Naramata Bench Proposes to become Okanagan Valley’s Next Sub-Appellation

It takes a village to raise a wine and it would appear the good burghers of Naramata have finally agreed to lay down some boundaries around their village.

Let's hope it gets done soon because there is so much more to do. Here is the official release.

For Immediate Release

Penticton, BC (April 25, 2018) – A group of wineries located on the Naramata Bench wine growing areabetween Penticton and Naramata in British Columbia have submitted a proposal to become an official Sub-GI (Geographic Indicator). This new proposed Sub Geographic Indicator would be recognized within the geographical indication of the Okanagan Valley as per the regulations of the Wines of Marked Quality of the BC Wine Authority. The push for development of Sub-GI’s stems from recommendations made by the Appellation Task Force in 2015.

Scott Smith, M.Sc. P.Ag, Soil Scientist, an independent consultant, and Pat Bowen, Ph.D , research scientist at Summerland Research and Development Centre, established a boundary configuration for the sub-GI following consultation and described the area in scientific terms. The submitted report provides an in-depth review of topography, climate, soil and other geographic factors that define the area. The ‘Naramata Bench’ brand is firmly established as a regional reference within the BC wine and wine tourism industry and the new appellation will help identify the region as a premium wine producer.

The proposed Sub-Geographic Indication (Sub-GI) covers an area along the east side of the Okanagan Valley from Okanagan Mountain Provincial Park in the north to Penticton Creek within the City of Penticton in the south. The area includes approximately 250 ha of vineyards and over 30 wineries. The proposal was submitted to the BC Wine Authority (BCWA) on April 23rd. The BCWA will conduct stakeholder consultations within the region and a vote by ballot amongst registered members within the proposed region’s boundaries. This voting process includes 31 member wineries and 181 registered vineyards. A survey of stakeholders in mid-2017 showed strong support, so once due diligence has been completed, the BCWA will then submit the proposal to the Minister of Agriculture for approval. Any enquiries about the status of the proposal should be directed to the BC Wine Authority (http://www.bcvqa.ca). Copies of the proposal can be found at the BCWA Media section.

Winery Contacts – Naramata Bench Sub-GI Committee
Cynthia Enns, Laughing Stock Vineyards – cynthia@laughingstock.ca
Kathy Malone, Hillside Cellars Winery – kathy@hillsidewinery.ca
Gavin Miller, Upper Bench Estate Winery - gavin@upperbench.ca
Valeria Tait, Bench 1775 Winery - val@bench1775.com
Bob Tennant, Terravista Vineyards - bobtennant@terravistavineyards.com

Written By: ag
Anthony Gismondi
Anthony Gismondi

Anthony Gismondi is a Canadian wine journalist and one of North America's most influential voices in wine. For over 30 years, he has been the wine columnist for The Vancouver Sun. The twice-weekly column is distributed across Canada through the Postmedia Network to millions of readers. In addition, Anthony hosts the BC Food & Wine Radio Show, broadcast in 25 markets across B.C. and available as a podcast on major platforms. He launched Gismondionwine.com in 1997, attracting one million monthly users from 114 countries. It continues to be a valuable resource full of tasting notes, intelligent wine stories and videos for the trade and consumers. Conversations with wine personalities are available on his  YouTube Channel.