Cold snap allows icewine makers to salvage crop

KELOWNA, B.C. — After dire warnings of a potentially disastrous season, icewine producers in B.C.’s Okanagan region are feeling the chill — and loving it.

KELOWNA, B.C. — After dire warnings of a potentially disastrous season, icewine producers in B.C.’s Okanagan region are feeling the chill — and loving it.

Temperatures dropped as low as -12 C early Wednesday morning and, coupled with no snow, conditions were perfect to begin plucking frozen grapes.

Twenty-six wineries planned to produce icewine this winter, with the crop estimated at 875 tons — the most on record, says the B.C. Wine Institute.

In West Kelowna, winery proprietor Steve Dale had as many as 16 headlamp-wearing pickers working between 11 p.m. Tuesday and 6 a.m. Wednesday, taking advantage of a cold snap that arrived in the nick of time.

“It was a dismal harvest this year,” he said. “We had just a terrible year, but we got about 550 litres of Pinot Gris and about 90 litres of Chardonnay.”

Dale said there should have been three to four times the volume, but it was a cool summer.

“That hailstorm in August decimated a big chunk of our crop, and then the hanging time until now. The birds got unbelievable amounts, probably 70 per cent.”

The harvest was the first opportunity to get Okanagan icewine grapes out of the field since overnight temperatures dropped to -11 C for a short time in mid-November.

Just Posted

Central Alberta firefighters wildfire expertise recognized

Clearwater County Regional Fire Services chosen to create crack firefighting unit

Safety a priority at Westerner Days in Red Deer

2019 Red Deer Motors North American Pony Chuckwagon Championship

Amazon Prime Day kind of ho hum for local retailers

E-commerce giant Prime Day sale runs Monday and Tuesday

Innisfail woman facing fraud charges

RCMP allege woman stole more than $54,000

Visitors flock to Bluebird Festival

Annual festival takes place east of Blackfalds

Cannabis producer Organigram Holdings Inc. reports $10.2M third-quarter loss

Organigram Holdings Inc. reported a third-quarter loss as revenue slipped amid lower… Continue reading

Churches jump into action with threat of immigration sweeps

CHICAGO — As a nationwide immigration crackdown loomed, religious leaders across the… Continue reading

Some in GOP rebuke Trump, but party leaders still silent

WASHINGTON — Top Republicans remained largely silent after President Donald Trump said… Continue reading

Final blast of torrential rains unleashed by weakened Barry

NEW ORLEANS — Tropical Depression Barry spared New Orleans from catastrophic flooding,… Continue reading

Evidence erased by police would have freed wrongfully convicted man: defence lawyer

HALIFAX — A defence lawyer who fought to free Glen Assoun from… Continue reading

You don’t feel alientated, Trudeau tells western Canadians

National unity is not being threatened by the federal government’s attack on… Continue reading

Global concern grows over Canada’s funding of fight against AIDS, TB, malaria

OTTAWA — International concern is growing in medical and development circles that… Continue reading

Your Ward News editor hate trial could be re-opened; judge delays sentencing

TORONTO — A convicted hatemonger who maintains his defence lawyer deliberately threw… Continue reading

Most Read