Seaside Pearl and Petit Milo

Seaside Pearl Farmgate Winery is located in the peaceful country setting of Mount Lehman, the gateway to Fraser Valley Wine Country. David and Allison Zimmerman are the owners of this small Estate Winery that makes Fraser Valley and Okanagan Valley excellent quality (VQA) wines.

The community of Mt. Lehman is an important farming community with strong historical roots in the Fraser Valley. Visitors can take a quaint drive on North Mt. Lehman road through historical Mt. Lehman village, pass by the vineyards. 

Vineyard

The 4-acre Seaside Pearl estate vineyard is planted with 2.5 acres of Petit Milo and half an acre of Cabernet Foch.  The vines are only 4 years old and are just starting to produce. In addition to estate grapes, Seaside Pearl sources grapes from some of the best vineyard sites in the Okanagan Valley. This sourcing combination allows the best of both growing regions for their wines.  They are planning to eventually make wine solely from their own vineyards.

Petit Milo¹ is a white wine grape, very early ripening and a cross between Cabernet Sauvignon, Riparia and Amurensis. The grape can achieve high sugar levels and retain good acidity and rates 8 for winter hardiness.

Cabernet Foch², a cross of Cabernet Sauvignon and Marechal Foch, was created by famed Swiss grape breeder Valentin Blattner.  Experimental plots of Cabernet Foch have been planted in Ontario and British Columbia’s Fraser Valley and Vancouver Island DVA. Initial results with the Cabernet Foch have been very promising, both in terms of winter hardiness and the organoleptic qualities of the resulting wines.

Winemaker

Seaside Pearl’s wines are a reflection not only of the excellent estate vineyard sites but also artisanal winemaker Mark Simpson’s journey, care and passion as an award-winning winemaker.  Mark is the principal of Vancouver-based Artisan Food & Beverage Corp., a consulting company.  Mark’s dedication to making premium varietal wines begins by his hand selection of the finest quality grapes, crafting them into elegant well-structured wines. His objective is to produce distinctive,  cool climate wines with a vibrancy that expresses the terroir.

Case production remains small, which allows Mark to concentrate on all aspects of the process. Decisions made in the vineyard become fluid into the winery, allowing for a pure expression of place in the resulting wines.

Fraser Valley Wines

As the wine industry continues to grow in BC, emerging wine regions are also becoming more popular travel destinations. The expansion of BC’s wine industry has led to an emerging group of regions to watch in the coming years.  The lesser-known areas, such as the Fraser Valley, are just beginning to hit their stride. Located less than 100 km from downtown Vancouver, the Fraser Valley is a great place to make premium cool climate wine. Mark is one of the driving forces behind the Fraser Valley becoming a Wine Centre of Excellence in BC.

The Wines

Seaside Pearl Landing Road When this red blend hits your palate you will find rich flavours of chocolate, blackberry and gentle oak. Landing Road is a mature wine aged 18 months in barrel and while delicious already, will easily improve in the bottle for the next 6-8 years.

Seaside Pearl Sam And Isaac Pinot Gris is a lovely dry white wine that is clean, alluring and focused with loads of personality and a silken mouthfeel. Captivating and salivatingly delicious, this is a zesty white wine that is as refreshing as a cold glass of lemonade on a hot summer’s day.

Seaside Pearl Charlotte Estate Petit Milo (Soon to be released) Charlotte is a unique wine made from Petit Milo grapes.  Light and deft, this wine is clean and elegant with honey and citrus notes on the palate, finishing with tropical aromas of guava and pineapple.

Seaside Pearl Daffodils Sparkling (To be released May 2017) While Daffodils is just so delicious on its own, this sparkling wine is also food friendly. With only 12.2% alcohol, Daffodils makes a fine companion at the Brunch and Lunch tables, you don’t have to wait till the sunsets to crack this bottle.  This wine is a blend of Muscat, Viognier and Pinot Gris.

Please visit the winery website for their complete portfolio of BC wine.  Seaside Pearl is looking forward to welcoming visitors for tastings in a gorgeous copper-spired chapel tasting room with a spectacular view of Mount Baker.  If you are in the Vancouver area in April you can also taste  Seaside Pearl BC wines April 22 at Garagiste North.

Source:

  1. Petit Milo grape details, Vinetech Canada
  2. Cabernet Foch grape details, AppelationAmerican.com
  3. Background, photos, and BC Wine tasting notes provided by Seagate Pearl Farmgate Winery.