The vision is clear for Mt. Boucherie Winery as construction commences on its brand new experience centre scheduled for completion in spring 2020.
Named for the former volcano active more than 60 million years ago, Mt. Boucherie experienced its own volatility a few years ago and went into receivership. And just as the volcano created optimum soil conditions for grape growing, Mt. Boucherie has emerged stronger than ever. Its wines were protected through the process under the custodianship of award-winning winemaker Jim Faulkner.
With new ownership since April 2016, Mt. Boucherie has a bright future with a focus on revitalizing the staff, vineyards, property, winemaking facilities and brand. While the wines remained intact and won awards through the receivership, the extensive vineyards suffered some damage. The first order of business, explained general manager Jesse Harnden, was the creation of a greenhouse to propagate its own vines for a huge replanting of about 20 per cent of the 200-acres of vineyards.
Vineyards are in West Kelowna, Okanagan Falls, Oliver’s Golden Mile and North and South Cawston. So far, Cabernets, Syrah and Pinot Noir have been replanted. Additionally, Mt. Boucherie’s Okanagan Falls vineyard begins the process of converting to organic next year and will be a trial for the remaining sites. The move is to eliminate pesticides and herbicides across all the properties. Mt. Boucherie has a five- to 10-year goal of becoming organic or biodynamic.
Clearly, Mt. Boucherie Winery is investing in the health of its vineyards and people. In its rebirth, there’s a keen focus on the quality of its wines and its hospitality. The labels and packaging will also be redesigned and updated. The new leadership is proud that the “roots run deep” at Mt. Boucherie and they “own and manage some of the oldest vineyards in British Columbia, growing the best quality vinifera grapes on estate vineyards in the Okanagan Valley, Golden Mile Bench and Similkameen Valley.”
Wine Experience Centre
The estimated $10 million wine experience centre will reflect the Mt. Boucherie philosophy, taking full advantage of the scenic, lake view setting. The 15,000-square-foot building will have a restaurant and lounge with a huge balcony, barrel room and winemaking facility with updated equipment. Plus, there are three bed-and-breakfast units planned.
Designed by Ciccozzi Architecture based in Vancouver, the building portrays a modern façade paying homage to the Mt. Boucherie volcano. Extensive windows capable of opening wide, blur the transition from inside to outside and the extensive wraparound balcony leverages the views. The mix of timbers and local rock facing softens the contemporary concrete lines. Completed, it will be another jewel on the Westside Wine Trail.
Until then, visitors are warmly welcomed to the quaint, existing wine shop. Daily tastings are offered complimentary from the extensive portfolio of wine. Visitors are encouraged to bring a picnic to enjoy the vineyard and lake views from the patio.