Tinhorn Creek -
celebrates 15 years
Posted May 6 2009
Mid-day on a warm spring day in Vancouver I hopped onto a small jet heading
toward a much cooler Okanagan Valley with a handful of Vancouver wine trade.
The irony of course, that a generally
warmer area like Oliver and the Golden Mile should be warmer and sunnier
made me hesitant to leave the sudden spring we had finally received.
But the trip would be worth the chill in the air because Tinhorn Creek had
plenty planned to introduce us all to a new label, a new logo and best of all a
birthday party, mountainside. A mountainside that we hiked up, over the snake
fences and past the bear wires and the deer fences...
From Tinhorn Creek's Golden Mile location, just south of Oliver BC, we trekked
while Ken and Sandra Oldfield introduced us to some of the local fauna of the
region. They have been working with The Land Conservancy to ensure the region is
protected - and that means snakes too. Hand in hand with conservation is
sustainability - something I've been seeing around
the world - wherever I travel. And although the
importance of sustainability starts local, it is evident that it has reached a
global level and we all want our plant to survive, be healthy and thrive (not as
we have been treating her). Wineries produce an amazing amount of waste, water
and packaging are a big issue but so is spraying, and use of harmful fertilizers
and pesticides. Tinhorn Creek like so many wineries I have seen are being good
citizens of the earth. We all want wine, and Tinhorn wants to make wine (they
do, very good wine) so they are taking the steps in the vineyard; composting
their own pomace (from the leftover grapes, skins and seeds), cover crops
between vine rows and minimal herbicides, fungicides and pesticides (less use is
needed in a desert climate like the Golden Mile). They are also working on new
sustainable practices for the future...things like biodiesel for equipment and
replanting even more native shrubs and grasses.
But from a consumer perspective, what we see is the glass in our bottles (35-50%
recycled) and recycled
Dana of Joy Road Catering
shipping palettes. We also see the new labels Tinhorn has designed - a simpler
cleaner style in cream and gold with the recognizable stamp of the Tinhorn Creek
snaking down the mountainside...
When Sandra Oldfield accepted Ken's proposal and decided to leave her native
Sonoma County for the wilds of the Okanagan and make wine they laughed in
California. Well look who's laughing now. We are, with glee, in celebration that
Tinhorn has managed to continue to do what they set out to do. Make good wine.
The new label was launched May 1st along with the
fresh 2008 vintages of the delicious classic, aromatic Gewurztraminer (a
touch drier than last vintage), the crisp Pinot Gris (both $16.50) and
the Oldfield Series (formerly Oldfield's Collection) 2Bench White,
the always anticipated blend of Semillon, Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc, Viognier
and Muscat is under the new label too($22.99). The previous label ( the yellow
Oldfield's Collection) will be fazed out as wines are released. And some of the
best news I heard that day was that an upcoming Oldfield Series Pinot Noir
will be released - but you'll have to wait because they are going to cellar
it for you....It will be released in 2012!
In the interim I highly recommend the 2005 Oldfield's Collection Merlot
while we wait for the 2006 Syrah and the the outstanding 2007 Oldfield Series
2Bench Red (release date fall 2010).
Happy 15th Birthday Tinhorn Creek!
view from the Golden Mile Bench southeast toward
Osoyoos - Black Sage Bench across
photo top: Bob Shaunessy, Sandra Oldfield and Ken Oldfield
(partners in Tinhorn Creek)