Spring Release of 2023 Sauvignon Blanc/Semillon, Pinot Blanc and Rosé coming soon!

Covert Operative: Spring 2024 Season Update

 

If you can’t fly then run, if you can’t run then walk, if you can’t walk then crawl, but whatever you do you have to keep moving forward.” – Martin Luther King Jr.

 

It’s been a bit for an update so here goes…

The 2023 season in the vineyard turned out to be better than expected.  Even though we had some bud damage from the prior winter, a warm spring kicked the vines into early growth giving us the confidence to leave more bunches on than usual.  The summer and fall were warm and dry which led to an early harvest of fantastic fruit.  The whites and rosé are coming along beautifully and we expect to bottle these mid-march.

Sadly, the end of summer brought about ferocious fires in the Kelowna area and as a reaction to possible mass evacuations a travel ban to the Okanagan was implemented with disastrous consequences to the tourism industry.  We were forced to layoff most of our staff the next week as visitors to the winery dwindled to a trickle.  Furthermore, a landslide on Hwy 97 south of Kelowna block traffic coming south which added hours in detours for possible customers.  All in all, we wrapped up the season at thanksgiving a few weeks early.

You may have heard from our press release last fall, we have decided not to open the tasting room this season as a consequence of the unpredictability of tourist traffic to our area.

This year has already dealt us a huge challenge.  The cold snap in January looks like it has killed almost all the grape buds in the valley and may have done significant damage to many vineyards.  At this point we know the buds are dead so there won’t be any fruit this year.  What remains to be seen come late April is if the vines survived the cold as well.  We have some confidence that we are in ok shape here as the cover crop residue under the vines catches the snow which insulates the lower trunk of the vines.  If you are interested in the science of grape vine cold hardiness and the cold weather conditions we experienced, here is a good video from the Summerland Research Station

A silver lining to these events is that without the tasting room open we have enough wine to sustain us for 24 months with our club members and wholesale customers.  So hopefully by then the vineyard is back up to full production.