Sandhill Winery to Open its Doors in Downtown Kelowna
Urban winery celebrates Sandhill story, offers immersive visitor experience
Kelowna, BC; May 26, 2014 – Sandhill is announcing the official May 31 opening of its newly renovated urban winery in downtown Kelowna. Following ten-months of construction, Sandhill Winery will be a space where the public can explore the award-winning wines made by Master Winemaker, Howard Soon. The winery will offer virtual vineyard tours, a luxurious wine lounge, and a Small Lots barrel cellar.
“This Sandhill Winery renovation has been our vision for a long time, so seeing it come to fruition is very satisfying,” says Howard Soon, Master Winemaker. “Sandhill has been part of the Kelowna community for almost two decades. In fact, this is the very spot where I have been making wine since Sandhill was born. It’s a dream come to true to have space where we can welcome visitors and tell our story.”
The opening of Sandhill Winery marks the culmination of several years of steady investment in Sandhill Wines. These investments have included the acquisition of vineyard land, the introduction of state-of-the-art winemaking equipment, and a significantly increased barrel-ageing program. Grapes for Sandhill wines are sourced from six premium vineyards throughout the Okanagan, including 450 acres of Sandhill-owned vineyards. All Sandhill wines are bottled as single vineyard wines and capture the defining influences of vineyard, grower, and winemaker.
At the winery, the Sandhill single vineyard story will be told through a variety of tasting experiences. Virtual vineyard tours offer an in-depth experience, guiding visitors on a tour of Sandhill’s six vineyards and exploring how the terroir and each grower’s techniques produce wines that are truly distinct. For those looking for a deeper learning experience, Sandhill Winery will offer three daily wine education sessions with topics such as The Challenge of the Terroir and Sip and Savour. The main Tasting Bar will offer a lively space in which to taste Sandhill wines, while in the Wine Lounge, visitors can relax and enjoy tasting flights at their own pace.
The winery’s design is inspired by the industrial heritage of its downtown Kelowna neighbourhood. The 8,000 square foot space is modern and light-filled, with soaring ceilings and reclaimed, 80-year-old wood beams. The main room is anchored by a large glacier sculpture that pays homage to the Okanagan Valley’s natural geological features and glacial history, which give the region its ideal grape-growing conditions. A glass wall divides the main room from The Cellar, which houses Howard Soon’s Small Lots program. Small Lots are small quantities of wine from specific identified blocks within a vineyard that consistently deliver wines of great character and depth.
Sandhill Winery is located at 1125 Richter Avenue in downtown Kelowna, British Columbia. The Winery will be open daily throughout the year. For tasting schedules, reservations, and more information, visit www.sandhillwines.ca.
The Sandhill portfolio of wines is available at the Winery, in select retail outlets, and at restaurants across Canada. BC customers can also purchase Sandhill wines online at www.sandhillwines.ca. For further information about the wines and Howard Soon, visit www.sandhillwines.ca.
About Howard Soon
Winemaker Howard Soon is one of the true pioneers of BC’s wine industry. As Sandhill’s Head Winemaker since 1997, Howard’s collaborative relationships with growers and non-interventionist approach have consistently led to award-winning single vineyard wines. Howard has received the Founder’s Award from the Okanagan Wine Festival and was the first BC winemaker to receive a Gold Medal at the Chardonnay du Monde in France. He was also the first winemaker in history to receive all three top honours at the 2009 Wine Access Canadian Wine Awards when Sandhill won for Best Red Wine of the Year, Best White Wine of the Year, and Winery of the Year.