Similkameen Valley home of Best Cider of the Year

Twisted Hills in Cawston won Best Cider of the Year in WineAlign. Other wineries won awards too.

“Excited and shocked ” is how Kaylan Medeira described her reaction when she found out Twisted Hills newest release Midnight Cherry earned Best Cider of the Year in the WineAlign Awards.

Jo Scneider and Kaylan Medeira, owners of Twisted Hills.(Submitted)

“I was at home when I got the email. I was pretty excited, I’m not going to lie. I texted my whole, entire family to let them know,” she said during an interview with the Review Tuesday.

WineAlign National Wine Awards of Canada is the country’s largest competition for Canadian wines. This year marks’ the first that Best Cider of the Year was chosen.

“WineAlign has been around for quite some time, that’s why I enjoy putting our ciders in WineAlign. It’s really cool because a lot of consumers do pay attention to WineAlign,” she said.

Since Twisted Hills was named Best Cider of the Year, Medeira said she’s been receiving calls from all over and as far away as Manitoba asking where to get Midnight Cherry.

“I didn’t think it was going to win going in, but I understand why it did. It is really good. I worked on the recipe for quite some time. This first batch was what we sent out to be judged. You never know what people are going to like,” she said.

The Glo Haven, which is a peach apple cider, earned silver in the competition.

Medeira and her partner Jo Schneider bought an additional orchard just off Highway 3, east of Cawston, in October. The pair completed building their cider dome earlier this summer with it opening to the public just before the Canada Day long weekend.

The geodesic dome is made of 160 cedar triangles in six different sizes. Medeira and Schneider worked with friend Ben McKay of Fractal Geodesics to construct the unique building.

“It was a lot of work. I have a nice 300-foot-square office up top. It’s lovely, quite nice,” she said. “It’s a good time for us. We’re pretty excited. We’re happy making cider and farming.”

Medeira said she thinks the area is becoming well-recognized and wanted to congratulate all the wineries that are doing good work.

“It’s definitely neat to have the Best Cider of the Year here in the Similkameen Valley, but there are lots of them that are doing amazing things and winning awards all over the place. We have a great group here that are doing really great things,” she said.

On the wine side of WineAlign, more than 1,850 wines from 257 wineries were entered into the National Wine Awards of Canada – the most entrants in the history of the awards.

In late June, 22 judges came to Penticton and tasted the wines blind for five days.

Top medal winners survived multiple elimination rounds and only 42 per cent of all wines entered were awarded medals.

The Similkameen’s Corcelettes and Orofino wineries were listed in the Top 10 Small Wineries in Canada. Corcelettes earned the #8 ranking while Orofino was right on their nearby neighbour’s heels with #9.

Here are a list of awards received by Similkameen wineries:

Twisted Hills

Best Cider Of the Year, Midnight Cherry

Gold, Midnight Cherry

Silver, Glo Haven

Orofino

Recognized as #9 in the top 10 small wineries

Gold, Rose, 2017 Cabarnet Franc Rose Pozza Vineyard

Gold, Gamay, 2017 Gamay

Gold, Syrah, 2016 Syrah Scout Vineyard

Silver, Cabernet Franc, 2017 Cabernet Franc Pozza Vineyard

Vanessa Vineyard

Silver, Rose, 2017 Rose

Bronze, Red Blends, Right Bank 2014

Bronze, Syrah, 2014 Syrah

Liber Farm

Bronze, Chardonay, 2017 Everday Chardonay

Silver, Sauvignon Blanc, 2017 Semillon

Clos du Soleil

Gold, Red Blends, 2014 Signature

Silver, Sauvignon Blanc, 2016 Capella

Corcelettes

Recognized as #8 of the top 10 small wineries

Gold, Red Blends, 2015 Meritage

Gold, Pinot Noir, 2016 Reserve Pinot Noir

Gold, Gewurztraminer, 2017 Gewurztraminer Second Chance Vineyard

Silver, Pinot Noir, 2017 Pinot Noir

Silver, Syrah, 2016 Syrah

Silver, Red Single Varities, 2015 Petit Verdo

Hugging Tree

Gold, Red Blends, 2014 Telltale

Seven Stones

Gold, Red Blends, 2014 The Estate

Silver, Cabernet Franc, 2014 Cabernet Franc Speaking Rock Estate

Forbidden Fruit

Gold, Fruit Wine, Mead & Other Non-Fruit Based Wine, 2017 Sparkling Plum Flaunt

EuVivre

Bronze, Pinot Noir, 2017 Pinot Noir

To report a typo, email:
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@TaraBowieBC
editor@keremeosreview.com


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