Big and small, River Stone Estate Winery is something of an anomaly in the wine world. Tucked into a gem of a property just off Tucelnuit Road in Oliver, River Stone is still a small enough producer to qualify as a participant in the popular Garagiste North—The Small Guys Wine Festival (under 2000 case producers). But production is the only thing that can be described as small about the winery owned and operated by Ted and Lorraine Kane (pictured).

Big visions, big commitment, big results. In the last decade Ted and Lorraine have established a vineyard on ground that been let fallow for 30 years, built a beautiful home that accommodates a wine shop, and made the move from Edmonton to Oliver with their two young sons. And Ted, intensely focused and with a keen eye for detail, has quickly built a reputation as a fine winemaker whose prime commitment is to bring out the best that his grapes have to offer.

River Stone has become a familiar sight at local farmers’ markets, and a growing number of visitors are welcomed to a tasting room in which Ted himself can often been be found. Otherwise, he is out in the vineyards, which, he says, is where the wines are really made. Don’t be surprised to hear him say that his job as a winemaker is not to mess up what Mother Nature provides!

As earlier vintages begin to be in short supply, Ted eagerly anticipates the release of his 2013 vintage wines—“They are showing really nicely,” he says. River Stone is an eager participant in local wine events and readers are advised to visit the winery’s web site to get regular updates.

~ Lorne Eckersley