A visit with Proprietors Jeff and Neva Martin of La Frenz begins with rhapsodies (mine) over the excellence of their wines, but rapidly gives way to Jeff's passion for sustainable vineyard practices. "It's about creating diversity in our vineyard environment, the opposite to modern farming monocultures where specializing in single crops and animals has created an overdependence on fossil fuels and a depletion of our resources. Farmers compensate by adding fertilizers and nutrients when nature and natural processes do a much better job of it."
Jeff maximizes natural organic matter and fuels the natural nutrient cycle – there's over a hundred chickens grazing, a few cows, some planned sheep and a wide variety of cover crop and grasses in their biodynamic processes. It is this rich, living soil microbiology that creates 'flavours of the earth' in the wine. "In the truest sense of the word, the full environment – the terroir – not just winemaking techniques and types of yeast, or barrels, potentially most influences the quality and unique expression of our wines."
For Jeff, the key to great wine is to plant the best varieties most suited to that specific site, farm naturally and produce great wines that reflect the uniqueness of that vineyard site. And great wines they are!
2010 Viognier $22.00
Winner Best of Varietal, 2012 Spring Wine Festival. Lush tropical notes with hint of orange blossom. The palate is rich, ripe, and lingering with just a touch of sweetness.
2011 Sauvignon Blanc $ 22.00
Best Varietal 2012 Okanagan Spring Wine Festival. In the past four years, the Sauvignon Blanc has won Gold or better in any competition. Dry and crisp, with elegant minerality, passionfruit and grassy vegetal characteristics.
~ Terry Meyer-Stone