In 2005 Barry Turner and his wife Nancy and their daughters, husbands and grandchildren began planting their seven and a half acre lakeside property in five varieties of cool climate grapes. Layout for the Sunnybrae Vineyard was designed by neighbour Chris Clarke. The craftsman style winery building built in 2010 showcases vintage artefacts and photos of Barry’s family, farmers in the Sunnybrae area for five generations. Visitors are invited to the second-floor wine tasting room to enjoy delicious white, red and rose wines made on our premises using 100% BC grown grapes. Beautiful glass doors open to our upper deck and provide a stunning view of the Lake and Mount Ida. You may even be lucky enough to have a birds-eye view of the ospreys that nest in the distant fir trees.
The varietals planted in the vineyard are:
- 1.2 acres Kerner
- 1.2 acres Ortega
- 2.5 acres Maréchal Foch
- 1.2 acres Schönburger
- 1.4 acres Siegerrebe
- 0.6 acres Pinot Noir (planted 2017)
There are no outside purchases of grapes and all the Sunnybrae wines are made from their estate vineyard. They produce 3 Reds (Marechal Foch, Bastion Mountain Red, Redneck Red) and 3 Whites (Siegerrebe, Ortega, Turner Road) and a Rose. They also offer Siegerrebe and Turner Road as boxed wine (released 2017).
The Head Winemaker (right in picture) is Jesse Steinley from the Beamsville Bench, Niagara, Ontario. He was the former winemaker at Recline Ridge and has been working with Sunnybrae Vineyards & Winery since their inception.
Assistant Winemaker (left in picture): James Clark is from Aberdeen, Scotland. He joined Sunnybrae Vineyards and Winery in 2012.
Sunnybrae produces some great value BC wines. The following wine blends received Gold Medals in 2017 All Canadian Wine Championship.
Sunnybrae Vineyard and Winery Turner Road 2015 This versatile estate blend displays a medley of fresh fruit, citrus and hints of apple. Pairs well with seafood, fresh greens or pork tenderloin.
Sunnybrae Vineyard and Winery Redneck Red 2015 This is an off-dry Maréchal Foch wine with a glorious absence of sophistication. This wine invites you to celebrate the notion of keeping things simple. Pairs well with plaid, blue jeans, a barbeque and a couple of good buddies.
You can visit the Winery website for their complete portfolio of BC wines here.
Jesse Steinley provided the following comments. “This vintage like most was full of challenges from flooding in the spring to a province-wide smokehouse. But as always we pressed onward. We found that our overall tonnage was about average for our site, with some varietals lower than normal and some flourishing and delivering abundance. Good balance across the board in terms of acidity, sugar, and even the timing of each coming to maturity was spread out and seemed more manageable. Harvest commenced 1 to 2 weeks later than the previous couple of years, which shows that the smoke-screen must have had a hand in stalling things.
We planted just over a half acre of Pinot Noir in spring 2017. Looking forward to our first harvest, no announcements as of yet!
Looking forward to being part of the recognised “Shuswap” wine region this year!
Source: Sunnybrae Vineyard and Winery provided the Winery and Vineyard information and the tasting notes.