2016 is a special year for Gehringer Brothers. They are celebrating 30 years in the wine industry and are able to now look back on all of the hard work that went into starting their vineyard and making wine.
The land was originally purchased in 1981 and planting began right away. Previously, it was barren scrubland that had been deemed unsuitable for farming. Huge rocks were everywhere. “There were often rocks on top of other rocks,” explains Walter Gehringer, “which was bad for retaining any moisture at all.” The rocks had to go before the vines could be planted which made planting the vineyard arduously slow. “We could only plant two acres each year,” recalls Walter. They now have 45 acres planted, which indicates just how much time, and work went into every single acre.
The hard work was shared between the two sets of brothers. Walter and his brother Gordon both attended wine schools in Germany while their father Helmut and his brother Karl contributed their expertise in mechanics and construction respectively. Between them, the vineyard was planted, the winery built, and the first wines were made. The official ribbon cutting at the wine shop was held on August 30th, 1986 along with an open house event.
The first grape variety to be planted in 1981 was Auxerrois. The complexity and depth of the wines produced from these 35+-year-old vines is remarkable. The 2015 Auxerrois is the 30th vintage of this wine produced. The wine has aromas of lemon oil, peach fuzz, minerals, and orange blossoms and flavours of minerals, lemon zest, apricots, and Bosc pears among many others. The flavours are bright and the length is phenomenally long. As the longest-produced wine on the Golden Mile Bench, this is one special vintage. www.gehringerwines.ca
pictured: Walter Gehringer
~ Luke Whittall