Caroline and Tim Cottrill opened the doors to Robin Ridge Winery just outside of Keremeos in 2008 when the Similkameen Valley was just starting to get noticed for its quality grape growing. Fast-forward to 2015 and not only is the Similkameen on the radar of BC wine lovers but a distinctive style has emerged from wineries in the Valley.
The portfolio of wines at Robin Ridge has its own distinct and consistent style that fits well within the Similkameen and, like all fine wine; it reflects how the grapes are grown. Growing top quality grapes is paramount for Tim. “I want the wines to express what I do in the vineyard,” says Tim who clearly loves working in the vineyard. Tim has trained most of his vines using the Geneva Double-Curtain trellising system in which the grape vines grow tall, straight trunks with the shoots pointing down. The fruit is higher than is typical and the result is fruit with deeper colour and more tannins. Nowhere is this more consistently evident than in their Gamay, Pinot Noir, and Merlot, which deliver both qualities consistently each vintage.
Similkameen summers are hot and Kim English, the official wine shop hostess Extraordinaire, will have two refreshing rosé wines available to help beat the heat. The 2013 Flicker, a Chardonnay and Pinot Noir blend, delivers the best of both worlds – cherries, cantaloupes, and bright floral notes. The 2014 Pink Flamingo, made with organic Sovereign Coronation grapes, is a tangy sipper with beautiful aromas of orange blossoms and peach skins.
Look for Robin Ridge at the BBQ King and at farmer’s markets throughout the summer or stop into the wine shop on your next visit to the Similkameen Valley.
~Luke Whittall