Tasting Room Radio

September 23rd, 2023-CiderFest Part 2. Ones+(No/Low) and Justin (Paso Robles))






Why are you doing a feature on Cider and Non-Alcoholic Wines?

Because that’s what the wind kindly blew my way.  I’m a cider guy, fascinated by well-made low/no alcohol releases and a fan of Justin Wines. (And Paso Robles)

Last week we started featuring our interviews from the 4th annual BC Cider Festival and ran out of time and space to include the last two interviews.

Thus Part Two appears this week.

I felt that both of these guests deserved time to tell their stories. Just a little room to create a flourish or is it a fuss?

I can honestly say that Bruce McKinley is one of the planet’s more interesting people and he brings that character to every cider he makes at Valley Cider in Duncan.

Bruce McKinley – Founder and Ciderist  Valley Cider (Duncan)

The website says “Welcome to Simply Different”

Cider is fermented apple juice. All the flavour and joie de vivre nature can be packed into a fruit, hosting a party for millions of super social yeast. After the sugar is consumed, the curtain comes down and the band packs up. Some extraordinary chemistry happens after this point depending on the care & creativity of the cidermaker, which is what you’re going to miss if the juice quality was low to begin with or if the cider is just being made as a cheap sugar delivery mechanism.

This is an unfortunate consequence of cider’s delayed & fairly recent reinvention as a valued craft product: the rise and domination of huge-scale low-cost commercial products, that unfortunately influence much of cider’s definition and public understanding. This need not be so. Cider can reflect the true heritage and at the same time continue evolving into modern ciders without being mired in unhealthy opportunism, as long as somebody cares enough to do it well. That is a craft.

What’s required is thoughtfulness, a commitment to crafting quality cider, some healthy delicious apples and a place to hang out and put it all together.

Check out the cider names –   

Bloo/Soda Love Potion/Faeriessense/Poiple/Piqabu

Pinko/Love Child /Bon Dry/Gingerella/Wait What?/Noir

After listening to our interview and Bruce’s thoughts on craft, don’t you really want to taste what he makes?



Jennifer Turton-Molgat   President.  Wards Cider (Kelowna)


Great Granddaughter to George Ward who planted the original apple trees in 1918, Jennifer Turton-Molgat carries on the family’s apple-growing legacy. Under Jennifer’s direction, Wards Cider stands out as a fully authentic cidery. Everything from growing and harvesting their  traditional cider apples to pressing, fermenting and bottling the finished ciders is done at their 5th generation, family-owned orchard.

With her outgoing and creative style, Jennifer leads Wards daily operations and teams, including orchards, cellars, sales, marketing and guest services.

Since 2006 Jennifer Turton-Molgat has also proudly led both The View Winery and Wards Cider to success in her role as President. Jennifer’s vision and inspiration for the winery and cidery is drawn from her family’s passion for the land as pioneering Kelowna orchardists and agriculturists since 1922.



(Tyler Harleton.  Ashley Wiles Marketing.  Chris Pagliocchini)

Chris Paliocchini – co-founder of ONES+  No/Low Wines and Bubble  (Summerland)

Chris  Paliocchini and Tyler Harleton grew up on family farms. Chris’ background led him to work in cherry and apple breeding in Summerland, while Tyler found his way back to the land through winemaking in the Okanagan (TH Wines)  Over the years (and glasses of wine) they realized there was a hole in the market for the non-drinker who was interested in a proper bottle of non-alcoholic wine. They landed on ONES+, a 1% wine made with BC Grapes with no added sugars or chemicals. They are proud to be making the Okanagan’s only non-alcoholic wine.

Two great sparkling wines from Ones+.

The 2021 Sparkling Rose, like champagne it arrives in your glass dry and features Chardonnay and Pinot Noir.

The 2021 Sparkling Red reminds us of a great Lambrusco

I personally recommend seeking out the 2021 Pinot Noir and the sensational 2021 Cab Franc.


It’s a fact – No and Low appears to be the fastest-growing segment in the drinks industry.

A younger generation is seeking healthier choices in social, family and business gatherings.

Also moving well-being up the wish list.

Finally, the right people are making the right wines for the right reasons.

Check out One+   Highly Recommended.



Joe Spellman  – Master Sommelier  speaking for Justin Wines (Paso Robles)

Started this week’s show in the Pipe Shop North Vancouver at the Cider Fest. We finished back in the same room with our last guest.

I met and interviewed Master Sommelier Joseph Spellman who was attending the 2023 VanWineFest on behalf of Justin Vineyards and Winery in Paso Robles, California.

Joe has been a head sommelier, wine director and a star in Chicago’s dining scene. Capping it off with a great relationship with Chef Charlie Trotter. They’ve released three books together.

He’s a writer, consultant and educator on the geology, language and history of wine.

Many awards followed including Best Sommelier in the World. (French Wines and Spirits)

Founder Justin Baldwin planted his first vineyard back in 1981 with a mission to make world-class Bordeaux-style blends. Since then, Justin has expanded both their knowledge of viticulture in this unique region as well as their acreage.

They make a sensational Bordeaux Blend and the Cabernet Sauvignon is World Class.

Joe and I talk about Justin Vineyards and Wines of course but also about the state of wine in California, the rising profile of Paso Robles and its wines and his impression of BC wines.

Wonderful man with stories to tell. A total pleasure.






Stratus – stunning field blend from Ontario

Niche – Small Batch Big Love

Solvero –   welcoming Alison Moyes

New Releases – Everywhere

Fall Okanagan Wine Festival

September 16th 2023- The 4th Annual BC Cider Festival / Part One


Photo by Linda C

Before the end of December, generally, they experience their first thawing. Those which a month ago were sour, crabbed, and quite unpalatable to the civilized taste, such at least as were frozen while sound, let a warmer sun come to thaw them, for they are extremely sensitive to its rays, are found to be filled with a rich, sweet cider, better than any bottled cider that I know of, and with which I am better acquainted than with wine. All apples are good in this state, and your jaws are the cider-press.</>

Henry David Thoreau


NEXT WEEKEND –  September 24th

Apple Days at Sea Cider  Saanichton

5th annual Cider Harvest Festival at Merridale, Cobble Hill BC


Shawn and Kelly Pisio with Terry David Mulligan – Photo by Linda C

We’re back to the 4th Annual BC Cider Festival – at The Pipe Shop, foot of Lonsdale in North Vancouver, BC.

The BC Cider business continues to grow and create.

BC has always had a history of tree fruits.

The first thing planted seemed to have been apples and pears.

The first thing the wine industry wanted was the soil the fruit farmers were growing in and started cutting down  BC orchards.

Thankfully, educated minds began realizing there was value and heritage in that BC fruit.

Cider has continued to rise in popularity and when craft beer revealed their playbook, the cidermakers followed.

I believe there were some 45 ciders in attendance this year. Most are from BC but also Sweden and Spain.

Cidermakers are crazy, fun people. Hard workers.  Aware of the history and heritage of BC tree fruit. Very passionate about making better and better cider.

The Pipe Shop – Photo by Linda C

Every guest below is either the Creator of the festival,  Cidermaker or Owner of their Cidery.

Shawn and Kelly Pisio – Co-founders of BC Cider Festival

Kate Garthwaite – Left Field Cider (Logan Lake)

Christine Hardy – Riley’s  Cidery (Bowen)

Gerta Lattey – Salt Spring Cider (Salt Spring Island)

Clinton McDougall – Sunday Cider (Gibsons)

Mathew Vasilev  – Twin Island Cider  (Pender)






Next Week – Part Two with

  • Bruce McKinlay – Valley Cider (Duncan)
  • Jennifer Molgat – Wards Cider
  • Shawn and Kelly Pisio – The Wrap-up



Stratus  – Field Blend Rose (Ontario)

Niche – new releases

Solvero – Allison Moyes GM and Winemaker

Moon Curser  New Releases

Hester Creek   New Releases


September 9th, 2023- The Third and final VanWineFest Feature – Masters and All-Stars!!


The Third and Final VanWineFest Feature – Masters and All-Stars!!



Welcome to the third series of interviews from the 44th annual Vancouver Wine Festival.

One of the Wine World’s outstanding events.


These interviews mixed Masters of Wine/Master Sommeliers with winemakers, owners &  founders! A field blend of Napa, Sonoma, Okanagan Valley and  Mendoza Argentina.

Guests include –


DJ Kearney – (co-host) Wine Director Terminal City Club. Wine Authority/Educator.

Mark de Vere – Master of Wine. Robert Mondavi Winery. Napa

Garron Elmes – Winemaker and President of Lake Breeze Naramata Bench

Ray Signorello – Owner. Signorello, Edge/Trim/S  Napa Valley

Ray Signorello

Ray Signorello

Ben Pon – Co-Owner Bodegas Salentein, Mendoza Arg.

Evan Goldstein – Keynote Speaker. Master Sommelier. Full Circle Wine Solutions. Master Sommelier for SF Giants.


Evan Goldstein


Harry Hertscheg – Executive Director of Vancouver Wine Festival.


Thank you to DJ Kearney for the brilliance and support. She’s the Wine Director at Terminal City Club and a leading wine educator & judge.

DJ Kearney

Thanks also to Ruby Gillett  Milk Creative Communications










September 2nd, 2023- The 44th annual Vancouver Wine Festival. Part 2


Winemakers from Aquilini/Beringer/Laughing Stock/Michael David/Nk’mip/Osoyoos LaRose/Vina Carmen/Santa Rita




Welcome back to the 44th annual Vancouver Wine Festival.

Cutting through the clutter with world class wine smarts is our co-host DJ Kearney (Wine Director Terminal City Club. Speaker, writer, wine judge, noted authority)

dj kearney

This is our 17th year of covering this wildly successful wine gathering.

As always, we make a wish list of who we’d like to talk to and try to shape a tale of climate, regions, wines, winemakers and what’s ahead for an ever changing business.

At some point the wish list gets thrown out and it’s a sprint to the finish line.

Exhausting but memorable.

This week’s guests are:

 Justin Hall – Winemaker Nk’Mip Cellars Osoyoos, BC

Michael Kullmann – Winemaker and GM Osoyoos LaRose Osoyoos, BC

Sandy Leier – Winemaker Laughing Stock Vineyards  Naramata Bench, BC

Sandy Leier

Sandy Leier

Ryan Rech – GM and Winemaker Beringer Vineyards  Napa Valley, Ca.

Tyler Tennyson – Consulting Winemaker Aquilini Wines Red Mountain, Washington

Dave Phillips – Co-owner and President Michael David Wines Lodi, Ca.

Oscar Salas – Winemaker  Santa Rita Maipo Valley/Limari Valley  Chile

Pablo Prieto – Winemaker Vina Carmen  Various Locations Chile



DJ Kearney – Co-Host with the Most

Ray Signorello – Signorello, Edge, Trim  Napa/Alexander valley

Garron Elmes – Winemaker/Pres. Lake Breeze Naramata, BC

Ben Pon – Co-owner Salentein   Mendoza, Arg.

Joe Spellman – Master Sommelier  Justin Vineyards and Winery Paso Robles, Ca

Evan Goldstein – Keynote Speaker. Master Sommelier

Harry Hertscheg – Executive Director VanWineFest

Mark deVere – Master of Wine Robert Mondavi  Napa



Moon Curser New Releases

Solvero – Summerland/Garnet Valley

Stratus – The Ultimate Field Blend  Niagara

Q&A in Quebec

State of the Okanagan

Harvest 2023





August 26th, 2023- Kelowna Fire Interviews



 Kelowna Fire Interviews

Okanagan Valley on fire | JancisRobinson.com


August 16  a ferocious wind-blown fire raced through the hills and ridges of West Kelowna and threatened subdivisions, wineries and whole communities.

The battles to slow down and halt the fires went on for days and nights.

We decided that there was no more important story, especially for Tasting Room Radio which began its broadcast life in the Okanagan on the Naramata Bench.

I needed to find farmers, winegrowers, friends  and food/wine leaders to let us know:


The damage done.

The current situation.

Smoke and fire effect on Vineyards

Confirming the Okanagan is open again…

Interviews with:

Jeff Hundertmark – winemaker at Mt Boucherie (was in fire area)

Jeff Hundertmark

Kimberly Hundertmark – OK Wine Festivals (festivals still on)

Jason Parkes and Develyn Barker – The Hatch (perhaps even closer to fire)

John Weber – owner Orofino.  Similkameen

Rhys Pender – Master of Wine & Little Farm Winery Similkameen

Mark Filatow – Chef and owner Waterfront Bistro Kelowna

Each one of these guests tells tales of fire and survival. They also recommend how we can help the Okanagan survive this fire and financial damage.

VIDEO: West Kelowna inferno crests over ridge; community on high alert - Kelowna Capital News

The last interview is special.

Its my Aunt,  Joyce Mulligan. Joyce was married to my late Uncle,  Terry Mulligan. That’s the reason why I have all three names.

Within the family he was Terry and I was Terry David.

Joyce lives in  McDougall Creek – the epi-center of the fire. She was advised to evacuate and headed for Kelowna  then Revelstoke to be with her daughter Gale.

Firefighters risked their lives trying to rescue people and save homes from McDougall Creek Wildfire | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source

McDougall Creek area

Her tale may be the closest,  as she watched it, felt it and lived it.

Her home was close to a just completed water plant and fire fighters made sure those buildings were paid special  attention to.

She’s headed home soon.

Our chat was enlightening and so welcome.

All of the interviews can be heard on the Mulligan Stew Podcast

Thank you first responders.


2023 Van Wine Festival Part 2 and 3.

2023 Cider Festival

Fire Follow up



August 19th, 2023- 44th Vancouver International Wine Festival (Part One)


2023 QUICK FACTS  (Ever Changing)

44th annual (founded 1979)

8 days, April 22-30

18,000 admissions

17 countries

147 wineries » 44 wineries from South America

36 events at 19 venues » 26 public events; 10 trade-only events

25 participating restaurants, hotels, caterers

1135 wines, including:  800 wines in the Tasting Room –  335 wines at special events (dinners, seminars, etc)

15,000 bottles poured and/or purchased


 This is our 17th year of covering the  adventure  of The Van Wine Fest!

For the Executive Director Harry Hertscheg and his top flight team of organizers,  it’s their 44th annual.

(Harry and keynote speaker Evan Goldstein will close our series in a couple of weeks)

harry hertscheg

Although it’s still a amazing “blur” I think we did at least 20 interviews in just under four hours.

A mix of winemakers and founders from Chile, Argentina, BC, Lodi, Napa, Sonoma and  Washington!

We could not have made this journey without the help of media/marketing support from Ruby Gillett (Milk Creative Communications) and Danielle Giroux (Director- California Wines Canada)

Thank you both.

Vancouver International Wine Festival


Here’s Part One of this years Festival

 We begin with the most amazing friend – Wine Director at Terminal City Club and much admired wine educator, speaker and wine judge,  DJ Kearney.

DJ and I were judging the Lt Governor awards last month and between flights I whispered “will you join me at VanWineFest for a couple of interviews. I love your questions and observations?”

She nodded OK!  How lucky I was to know her?

As promised,  DJ sat down for the first two interviews and to my complete surprise and delight,  she stayed for almost the entire series of chats. A small grouping of chairs – knee to knee –  because the crowd noise gets louder as the minutes click by. A lot of collective chatter.  In the chairs, we all found ourselves leaning in to listen and comment. Tasted many outstanding wines the guests brought.

Loved it.  Best of all, this is just Part One of 3 weeks of interviews.

This weeks guests are:

 DJ Kearney – Wine Director  (Terminal City Club) Wine Educator, Judge, Writer,  Speaker and great friend.

DJ Kearney

The one and only DJ Kearney with her observations about Van Wine Fest history, the line up of this years wineries and general opinions about the state of today’s winemaking. She brings so many memorable stories and details.




JJ DowellWinemaker Lake Sonoma, Plume Wines. (Russian River, Sonoma, Alexander Valley, Napa Valley)

Jaime started her career “in the arts” at her family’s art gallery.

The art of wine came calling. Crooked Vine, Stony Ridge. Then off to New Zealand making high end Pinot Noir at Villa Maria.

Back to California in 2011 to join Bonny Doon, Alpha Omega, Round Pond Estate in Napa and finally joined West Coast Wine Partners – which included the Stewart Family at Quails Gate – to oversee Lake Sonoma and Valley of the Moon WinesPlume Wines were soon added to the portfolio.

All that experience shows in her wines.  https://lakesonomawinery.com/

Jaime "JJ" Dowell Named Round Pond Estate Winemaker - Wine Industry Advisor

JJ Dowell


Christa-Lee McWatters – McWatters Collection GM/Family (Penticton)

Tony Holler – Co-Owner Poplar Grove (Naramata Bench)

DJ and I knew this was going to be fast, informative and lots of fun.

Christa-Lee and Tony LOVE talking about wine. Theirs and many others.

But they also have new events and growth.

At Time Family of Wines in Penticton Christa-Lee has opened OROLO Restaurant with Damian Cole as Head Chef.  Fine dining friends.

Wine's Most Inspiring People: Christa-Lee and Darrien McWatters, TIME Family of Wines - Wine Industry Advisor

Christa-Lee McWatters

She was also pouring her Father Harry’s last vintage. A  2017 Brut!

Cheers to Harry McWatters.



Tony Holler poured his Pinot Gris “it has to be poured at this event.”

Tony Holler

And also revealed his new culinary team at Poplar Grove Restaurant.

Timing says Tony “its all about timing” His executive chef moved on to Canoe in Toronto and at the same time Executive Chef Stacey Johnson and Chef de Cuisine Minette Lotz came available at Naramata Inn. Think about it.  That team in that room with that view? Wow!

Truly loved DJ’s comments.



On my way into the Convention Centre I bumped into Chris Turyk and his Father Tim from Unsworth in the Cowichan Valley.

I reminded Chris that last year I stood in front of their Unsworth pouring table but the line-up just kept getting bigger and bigger and we never got an interview done.

Chris Turyk

So, this year we put two chairs together and had a conversation.

About Unsworth, the Cowichan Valley, the Jackson Family adding Blue Grouse to their Cowichan Portfolio, what he was pouring at the festival (Charme de l’ile NV), his journey to Master of Wine status and an update on the Cowichan Wine Festival the month of August.

My thanks to Chris, Tim and Unsworth.


Next Week  Part Two –  Winemakers and Principals from

Tyler Tennyson – Aquilini (Red Mtn Washington)

Dave Phillips – Michael David Winery (Lodi, Cal)

Justin Hall – Nk’Mip  (Osoyoos)

Michael Kullman – Osoyoos LaRose

Ryan Rech  – Beringer Vineyards (Napa)

Oscar Salas – Santa Rita (Chile)

Pablo Prieto – Vina Carmen (Chile)




Van Wine Fest Parts Two and Three




August 12th, 2023 JAK Meyer & Terry Meyer Stone talking  fires, wines and family partnership.


It’s the annual Meyer-Mayhem Gathering.  JAK Meyer & Terry Meyer Stone talking  fires, wines and family partnership.



 Love these guys. Love their wines. Truly admire their partnership.

Meyer Family Vineyards in Okanagan Falls and Mayhem Wines  on Anarchist Mountain Osoyoos.

JAK_& Terry

This year they decided to bring their tasting rooms together at Meyer Family Vineyards on McLean Creek Road.

“Not to compete but to compliment”  The Wine Diva.

After Terry left Tinhorn Creek, brother JAK convinced her to start a new label with him and wife Janice Stevens.  Janice happens to be an accountant and all round fine soul. Also in the mix was Terrys husband Andrew Stone who brought work smarts as vineyard manager with Liquidity, Arterra, Fort Berens and, of course, Anarchist Mountain.  All-in-all,  a formidable team.


Mayhem  leans towards Bordeaux style. The whites,  including the Rose all have a wonderful texture due to a light handed barrel program. The Sauvignon Blanc is quite frankly world class. A fine balance of new and used oak.

The reds are very approachable and all their wines are smartly affordable.

Their highly creative winemaker is Australian born, New Zealand raised Ajay Chavan.

Ajay Chavan – Mayhem winemaker


Over at Meyer Family Vineyards JAK and Janice focus on Burgundian wines Chardonnay and Pinot Noir and wine fans everywhere are  all better off for it.  Some wines are only available through the wine club.

Six different Pinot Noirs, including a “field blend”.  All clones in this vineyard are grown, picked, fermented together and aged in neutral oak for almost a year.


Six different Chardonnays.

Highly sought after and well worth the chase.

Winemaker is the gifted Chris Carson with assist and support  from Ajay Chavan.

Chris Carson_Meyer Winemaker (SomethingBlue)

Best of all, all the wines we talk about can be found in one location – Meyer Family Vineyards  Okanagan Falls.




2021 Old Main Road Chardonnay (Naramata)

2022 Okanagan Valley Chardonnay (OK Falls, Osoyoos, Naramata)

2021 McLean Creek Road  Chardonnay (OK Falls)

We do chat about the Meyer Pinot Noirs..

2022 Mayhem Sauvignon Blanc (Naramata)

2022 Mayhem Rose (Oliver)

2022 Pinot Gris (Osoyoos)

2022 Riesling (Naramata)




2023 Vancouver Wine fest

2023 BC Cider Festival




August 5th, 2023- Michele Faro/Pietradolce Mt. Etna Alex Nel.  S African  Winemaker at Fort Berens  


Michele Faro/Pietradolce Mt. Etna

Alex Nel.  S African  Winemaker at Fort Berens  



 Michele Faro  – Owner Pietradolce Mt Etna

Selwyn Rawstron – Epson Wines Canada


Michele Faro’s Grandfather toiled long and hard to grow vineyards on the slopes of Mount Etna in Sicily.

When Michele took over the vineyards at Pietradolce in 2005/6 there were perhaps 10 vineyards on the island.

Now,  in part because of Pietradolce success,  there are hundreds of wineries there now.


 A native of Catania, Sicily, Michele Faro’s enthusiasm for agriculture began with his family, which has been dedicated to cultivating various crops – including wine grapes on the southern slopes of Etna – for generations.

After receiving his degree in agronomy from the University of Catania, he decided to follow in his grandfather’s footsteps and make wine, this time on the northern slopes of the volcano, which was slowly beginning a new era in volcanic wines.


Michele and his family founded Pietradolce in 2006 with the main goal of producing wines with an immense sense of place, respecting the traditions of a one-of-a-kind wine zone, and pumping new life into tiny pre-phylloxera vineyards of native Sicilian grapes Nerello Mascalese and Carricante.

These vineyards hold  Pietradolce’s tremendous legacy and are used to produce their Cru wines.

Michele Faro

This is the land were bush vines thrive.  Etna supplies water for the hot months via the snow that sits atop during the Winter.

Pietradolce was established on the northern slopes of Mount Etna by the Faro family, whose passions are viticulture, agriculture, and all things Etna.

High altitudes, mineral-rich volcanic soils, native grapes, an exceptional Mediterranean, climate, low intervention in the cellar, and very old vines are the perfect ingredients for elegant wines with a one-of-a-kind signature, style, and enormous sense of place.

Michele joins us via Zoom from the Northern slope of Mt Etna. Selwyn was in either Calgary or Vancouver.


  1. Pietradolce “Barbagalli” Etna Rosso DOC 2018
  2. Pietradolce “Contrada Santo Spirito” Etna Rosso DOC 2019
  3. Pietradolce “Contrada Rampante” Etna Rosso DOC 2019
  4. Pietradolce “Feudo di Mezzo” Etna Rosso DOC 2019 (not yet in Market)
  5. Pietradolce “Archineri” Etna Rosso DOC 201




Alessandro Nel – Winemaker/Viticulturist at Fort Berens. Lillooet, BC

Alex Nel joined the team at Fort Berens as Winemaker and Viticulturist in January 2021.  Alex, his wife Tami and children came from the Stellenbosch wine region of South Africa.

While Alex wasn’t around for the harvest of the grapes he’ll be talking about, he’s been involved with all aspects of the reserve wines since his arrival.

Alex Nel Ft Beren

Alex curated the barrel selection of wines that would go into their 2020 vintage red reserve wines.

Speaking of their red wines, the 2023 Lieutenant Governor’s Wine Awards gave their 2020 Cabernet Franc Reserve a Platinum Medal, representing the top 13 wines of the competition. We tasted over  500 wines in three days.  On 186 cases were produced.  If you see it, grab it.

Alex and I talked about the differences between growing in South Africa and Lillooet.

What surprised him about our soils, weather and climate?

How different are our wines in taste and complexity?

And what’s up ahead for the wines of Fort Berens??


Here are the wines we’ll taste and talk about with Alex.


Riesling 2022

Small Lot Dry Riesling 2022

Small Lot Gruner Veltliner 2022

Pinot Gris  2022

Chardonnay 2022

Rose 2022 – (all 6 available now)

Cabernet Franc Reserve 2020 – released in June

Meritage Reserve 2020 (in Fall)

Red Gold 2020 (in Fall)







Meyer Family Vineyards

Mayhem Wines


July 29th, 2023


John Skinner on his Painted Rock Wines /VJ Gandhi on making our wines available in USA.




“If Painted Rock is going to compete with the best in the world we must have confidence in our terroir and allow it to express its uniqueness. That’s why we are 100% Estate.”  John Skinner

John Skinner

John Skinner

John Skinner and Valeria Tait planted Painted Rock  in 2006,  a year before we moved to the Naramata Bench. Even though there was no Painted Rock to taste when we arrived, it was one of the first wine names I heard in my ‘walk arounds’.

John was driven to make wines that would be appreciated all over the World but first he had to create it and then convince the wine world that it was worthy.

He has done so with Painted Rock.

Fires around Painted Rock

John’s Red Icon was named as a Decanter Wine of the Year in 2020.

Also this review from Jancis Robinson:  London

Painted Rock, Red Icon 2016 17 Points: “Like a very rich red Bordeaux. Very beautifully balanced. Long and velvety. Everything fully ripe but with good acidity too. Well balanced and very bright-fruited. Still youthful but promising for the long term. (RH) 14.9%” Drink 2020 – 2027


John takes us through his new releases and brings a stack of stories.

2020 Chardonnay  available for first time since 2019

2020 Merlot – dark and rich.

2020 Red Icon – classic blend

2020 Syrah – a jaw dropping gem


Alfresco Dinner  featuring Backyard Farm  Saturday Sept 16

Info on Painted Rock Website  www.paintedrock.ca


VJ Gandhi  – Founder of Kascadia Wine Merchants

It’s time to change the narrative to – North American wine.” – VJ Gandhi

For everyone who has family and friends in the USA asking how to get their hands on  wines from BC and other provinces, or Americans who discover wines North of the border that they really like, there’s someone now making our  best wines available in the US.

That someone is VJ Gandhi.

KASCADIA WINE MERCHANTS - Napa Valley Life Magazine

VJ Gandhi

Founder, VJ Gandhi is a proud Canadian citizen with epicurean taste, and her deepest passion yet has to be her love for the complexity in a glass of fine-tasting wine.

Over the course of her career in marketing and business management  VJ has developed, implemented and managed several large scale projects in finance and marketing for high profile organizations such as the Government of Canada, BC Provincial Government, and 2010 Olympic Games Secretariat.

VJ was inspired to market award winning Canadian vintages globally in the United States when  she’d moved to the San Francisco area in 2014. VJ and her trusted team of experts have carefully curated the Kascadia Wine portfolio over the years, which has now scaled to shipping in US states.

With the launch of the wine club, clients who are eager to savor exclusive, high quality wines from North America, including Canada and the Pacific Northwest are going to be impressed!


Today, her growing venture, Kascadia Wine Merchants, markets and sells Canadian wines across 45 US states.






Fort Berens – Winemaker Alex Nel

Pietradolce Rosso – Mt Etna

Meyer  and Mayhem – it’s a family thing.




July 22nd, 2023 John Schreiner-Good Grog: A life in wine and journalism!



 “ I was a friend to the BC wine industry before they had any friends.”


John Schreiner is the Dean of Wine Writers in Canada.

Good Grog: A life in wine and journalism is John’s 22nd book.

The journalism chapters of Good Grog take us from  newsrooms such as The Regina Leader Post all the way  The Financial Post.

John travelled the World filing stories on the economies of nations and their industries.

When wine took over his interest and passions, John went back to some of  those  same countries to taste and report on their wines.


Profile: John Schreiner - Wine Adventures Magazine

John Schreiner

The Jack Webster award for Excellence in Business Reporting  and the 2017 “the national winner for Canada”  Gourmand World Cookbook Award in the category of New World Wine Book.

John’s research into World Wines took him from BC to the US, Europe, South America, Australia and New Zealand.

Best of all, John was the right guy, in the right place,  at the right time.  He  not only watched the BC wine industry grow and get much better with each harvest but through his reporting  he was also very much a part of building the industry.

I was fascinated by the parade of “characters” John engaged with over the years.

From the business side,  a mix of BS  and Billionaires. On the wine side,  the builders, the grifters and the legends.

TDM, John Schreiner, Brent Gushowaty after a day of  blind tasting Pinots.


Characters such as:

Sam Baptiste

Joe Busnardo

Ben Ginter vs Anthony von Mandle

Harry McWatters

Jim Pattison

And many more.


Enjoy this special edition of Tasting Room Radio. Saluting the life and triumphs of John Schreiner.





Fort Berens

The Sipster 2


Hester Creek


Painted Rock