Capturing BC summer in jars & bottles

Vista D'oro Farms

 

When we arrived at Vista D’oro Farms, the midday sun was in full affect. The vineyard and fruit trees were warmly illuminated and one of the farm dogs had taken refuge in the shade.

 

We strolled over to the Farmgate Shop and Tasting Room to meet with Lee and Patrick for a tour and tasting. These fine folks have been crafting preserves for our gift baskets in Vancouver over the past eight years. It has been exciting to see their business grow.

 

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Lee (above) explained how their business evolved from produce to wine and preserves.

According to Lee, they produce everything on the farm and about 80% of what is grown on the farm ends up in a jar or bottle. For Vista D’oro Farms, preserving fruit has been proven to be a more sustainable business model than trying to sell fresh fruit at market value.

 

Lee and Patrick are self-described as ‘value added polyculturists’. This is a fancy way for saying that they take ingredients which they grow and turn them into artisan products. They have a vineyard, crops of heirloom tomatoes and over 400 fruit trees (including cherries, pears, plums, apples, asian apples, sour cherries, crab apples).

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Vista D'oro Hand-cut heirloom tomato, gift baskets

 

The hand-cut heirloom tomato salsa is one of our favourites. This salsa is made from Vista D’oro Farms’s heirloom tomato plants are grown in pots in their horse riding ring.

 

More heat is generated when the sun bounces off the hard ground of the ring. This type of intensified heat enhances the taste of the tomatoes compared to those grown in a greenhouse. (You can find this salsa in our corporate gift baskets.)

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The original barn at Vista D’oro Farms was built over a century ago. They occasionally use this space for a local piano player and opera singer. Lee and Patrick are committed to caring for the heritage buildings and heritage trees that pre-exist their ownership of the land.

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In this family business, Lee makes the food products and Patrick takes care of the wine. They make many varietals using grapes that they grow. They also purchase local grapes from Cowichan Valley on Vancouver island and Keremeos in the BC interior.

 

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We went ‘bin diving’ with Patrick (above) and tasted a variety of wines including: Petit Milot, Gewurztraminer, Pinot Noir, Foche, Ortega.

 

“Every vintage speaks for itself.” explained Patrick.

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The wine component of the Vista D’oro business began as Patrick’s hobby. It became a professional pursuit when he began to solidify his technical knowledge through academic study. Vista D’oro received their winery license in 2008. According to Lee and Patrick, the winery’s flagship is D’oro (below). It is  a fortified walnut wine made from a recipe that was brought to them by a good friend Jerome. It was the recipe of his great-grandfather and dates back to 1893. The D’oro is also an ingredient in their best selling preserves made with Green Walnuts grown on their farm.

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If you are looking for a fantastic day trip near Vancouver BC, be sure to check out Vista D’oro Farms. Spend some time in the Farm Shop and Tasting Room. Soak in the heritage surroundings as you sip D’oro in the shade. Foodies and wine lovers travel great distances for this experience. We are so fortunate to have such a wonderful place less than an hour from downtown Vancouver.

 

Vista D’oro Farms & Winery

Farmgate Shop & Tasting Room is located at

 

346 – 208th Street

Langley, BC, Canada

 

tel: 604-514-3539

 

info@vistadoro.com

 

Regular Hours – Wednesday thru Sunday 11am until 5pm