Comox Valley wineries racking up awards

In only its third year of operation, Blue Moon Estate Winery in Courtenay has been honoured with 10 prestigious awards.
The estate winery, located at Natures Way Farm, has been focusing on producing unique fruit wines with character and charm using traditional methods.

In only its third year of operation, Blue Moon Estate Winery in Courtenay has been honoured with 10 prestigious awards.The estate winery, located at Natures Way Farm, has been focusing on producing unique fruit wines with character and charm using traditional methods.”Our wines range from dry to off-dry table wines to light, fruity wines to intense, sweet dessert-style, and each wine is produced in small batches,” George Ehrler, owner and winemaker, said in a press release. “Small batches allow us to control the quality and style of the wine right from when the fruit enters the doors of the winery to the corking of the bottle.”This attention to detail is paying off.Blue Moon Winery recently won 10 awards at the 2011 NorthWest Wine Summit and the 2011 All Canadian Wine Championships.Blue Moon entered 11 wines in the NorthWest Wine Summit and won nine awards — golds for Orion and Singularity, silver for Eclipse and bronzes for Aurora, Sundog, Soleil, Moonbeam, Dusk and Lunacy.Blue Moon’s Sirius apple table wine won a bronze medal at the All Canadian Wine Championships.The NorthWest Wine Summit is open to all types of wines and spirits made or produced in Oregon, Washington, Idaho, Montana, Alaska, Alberta and B.C.More than 1,100 wines were entered this year.Gold medals are awarded to role-model examples, while silver medals are given for overall excellence, and bronze medals are presented for substantially above-general-market quality.The All Canadian Wine Championships, held annually in Ontario, is the oldest and largest competition created specifically for Canadian wines. All wines are judged using the 100-point system.Blue Moon Estate Winery opened in 2010 and leapt onto the scene with sister companies Tria Culinary Studio and Natures Way Farm. They were nominated for a Mystic Award, won the Comox Valley Chamber of Commerce’s Agricultural Business of the Year Award and won the Comox Valley 30-Day Local Food Challenge Producer Award.”All of these awards are important,” said Ehrler. “The wine awards we received are a judgment from our peers in the wine industry, while the local awards from the Chamber of Commerce and 30-Day Food Challenge are awards from our community and from our customers, for which we are eternally grateful.”• • •Blue Moon Estate Winery is not the only Comox Valley winery to win industry awards this spring.Beaufort Vineyard and Estate Winery won Double Gold — best in its class — for its ’09 Ça Beautage at the All Canadian Wine Championships. Double Gold medals are awarded to the single highest-rated wine in each category.This wine is Beaufort’s first estate red and the first red grown and crafted in the Comox Valley.Beaufort also won a gold medal for its ’10 Blanc de Noir and a silver for its ’09 Carpe Diem at the NorthWest Wine Summit.• • •Coastal Black Estate Winery in Black Creek has also brought home numerous medals.Coastal Black’s Raspberry Dessert wine won a silver medal at the All Canadian Wine Championships.In its first competition, Coastal Black entered four of its fruit wines in the Finger Lakes International Wine Competition and won four awards.Three thousand, three hundred wines were entered in the competition in Rochester, N.Y. in late March, and 64 judges were flown in from 10 different countries for single blind tasting of wines that were entered from around the world. This competition is the largest charitable wine competition in North America.Coastal Black won a gold medal for its Blackberry Dessert wine, while its Spiced Mead and Blackberry Table wines earned silver medals, and the judges awarded a bronze medal to Coastal Black’s Raspberry Dessert wine.