About fifteen years ago my closest friend and I were dipping our toes into the world of being actual grown-ups. We had graduated from college and were actually earning paychecks in our field of study.
I was a new mom and she was my sidekick. We were embracing the freedoms and challenges that came from moving past being a student yet still very much carrying the debt and uncertainties of transitioning to the real world.
Our tastes and interests were evolving and although we didn't know it then we were maturing, and for the first time in our lives, we were truly discovering who we were and what we were passionate about.
Soon our lives would take a shift. I would become a mom again, to a baby that was in and out of hospital and Courtenay would be diagnosed with breast cancer. We pulled together, held on, and dug in to fight for both of their lives. Our days were spent between trips to the Children's Hospital, chemo, and learning how to give her injections. But on the occasional night when my kids' dad would be working a night shift, her nausea was at bay and the kids went down soundly we would rent seasons on Sex in the City, order Chinese Food and dip into our favourite bottle of wine - Pelee Island Gewurztraminer.
Those nights were our saving grace. Looking back at that time they were some of the best moments of our lives. Just two girls in their 20's scared shitless of the odds and sharing everything over those glasses of sunshine coloured wine.
Fast forward a decade and a half and Courtenay is healthy and a mom herself, my son is thriving and our friendship is still the anchor that holds us steady during the roughest storms. And you can be sure that a good bottle of wine is still at the heart of all of our stories.
So, when Pelee Island agreed to partner with us for our Summer Series of Cocktails at the Farm it meant so much more to me than just brand collaboration. It is a way to give back and highlight a company that has been a part of so much of my adult story.
So! Let's talk Pelee Island Winery.
Pelee Island is home to 700+ acre farm in Canada’s warmest grape growing region with a winemaking history dating back more than 150 years. They create a diverse selection of approachable wines that are crafted for the most important people in the world, their customers. They pride themselves on consistently producing exceptional wines in an ecologically conscious manner that will exceed your expectations and have you return to discover them again and again.
It is no secret that sustainable practices are our passion and it is so wonderful to support and celebrate other companies that take the same stance.
Their commitment to the limited use of ecologically responsible pesticide spraying, and, usage of ‘all-natural’ island-grown fertilizer are just two ways that Bruno has elevated the standard of their vineyards above and beyond current regulations and guidelines. The winery recently purchased a Red Cedar Savannah forest that is unique to the island. Restoration efforts have saved this forest from extinction and also allowed for new growth, as well as the acclimatization of dozens of unique habitats.
Moreover, the winery plans to engage a in five-year study that will facilitate the total rehabilitation of this forest. With vineyards, beaches, and water surrounding them, Pelee Island Winery has a big vision for the future. If their island community can take certain steps towards becoming North America’s greenest community it will spur others to take action around the country; an eco-friendly drive that can only benefit everyone. With investments in renewable energies (such as solar and wind power), recycling, water treatment facilities, composting, bio-dynamic sewage systems, and organic farming, Pelee Island Winery plans to lead the way as the most environmentally safe community anywhere."
They grow both red and white varieties on the Island and we truly can't say enough good things about all of their wines.
With warm days upon us, we are thrilled to be featuring: Pelee Island Lola Sparkling Rosé VQA.
It is an Ontario Wine Awards Gold Medal Winner and after trying it you will see why. With an amazing price point and so many fresh flavours this will be a go-to bubbly to stock your fridge with over the summer.
Because of its light floral notes and subtle honey flavours it pairs well with just about anything and can easily stand alone. It is the perfect picnic wine to share with friends when trying to steer clear of patios this season. A loaf of crusty bread, a local brie, and an assortment of meats and fruit and you have a magical afternoon on hand.
Andrew and I have been tucking ourselves into the trees in some of the hidden corners on the farm to escape the lists of things that need to be done with a bottle of this perfect bubbly for impromptu date nights.
Just when we thought life couldn't get much better they sent us the prettiest 250ml slim cans of Lola Sparkling Rose! This is an absolute game-changer for bringing bubbly on an adventure or hike or in my case out to sit with the animals.
So often we will wander out to the paddocks and fields to visit with the goats or donkeys and Andrew or our company will have a can of beer in hand. Now I can enjoy a chilled can of bubbly that matches the rugged lifestyle that is my day to day reality.