Winery marks its third year
Mooberry Winery is celebrating their three year anniversary in Parksville this Valentines day.
“We’re really happy with the way the community has embraced us,” said winemaker Phil Charlebois at the Morningstar Farm. “We’ve seen a big jump in our business at the farm and that is in large part due to the community.”
Charlebois said he made 700 cases of his fruit wines during his first year, followed by 1,000 cases last year. This year he hopes to make 1,400, a small amount in the world of wine, he said, but rather significant to the farm.
Charlebois said he has had a long standing interest in wine stemming from his father being a gourmet chef and having it around.
When starting out Charlebois hired a wine consultant to help him with his first batches. Since then he has done a lot of tweaking, additional research and even some formal education over in Vancouver. The best part of all this is the creativity he gets to employ, he said.
“It allows me to be somewhat creative and I like that,” he said. “If I don’t like a certain property in one of the wines I can do a bunch of research to try and get rid of it.”
Charlebois has now made 13 fruit wines, two of them dessert wines and two of them sparkling. The latest addition is a sparkling kiwi grape, called baby kiwi. This fruit has an edible skin and is grown in the lower mainland. All of the fruit Charlebois uses has to be grown in B.C., a condition of his wine license, and he tries to get as much as he can locally.
Mooberry Winery won two silver awards last year at the All Canadian Wine Championships in Ontario for their raspberry and gooseberry wines.
In honour of the anniversary the winery is offering 10 per cent off wine sold this Saturday, Sunday and Monday at the Farmgate Store. Charlebois recommends the sparkling varieties for the occasion.
For directions and more information visit www.mooberrywinery.com or call 250- 954-3931.