By Stan Ashbee
As the tagline says, “Taste the Prairie Sunshine!” Cypress Hills Vineyard and Winery are champions once again with a few new award wins under their palette-pleasing mantle.
Winemaker Marie Bohnet said there were 130 entries from across Canada in this year’s 2020 All Canadian Wine Championships and the local business entered seven wines and came home with six medals. “We like to make Saskatchewan proud.”
“We topped our category in the soft fruit with our rhubarb wine. We won double-gold in that. We also picked up a gold medal in the mead category for our black currant honey,” Marie noted.
It’s been a few years since Cypress Hills Vineyard and Winery entered a wine competition, Marie pointed out. “But we thought we would this year and we’ve been very pleased with our flight of wines right now.”
And, it certainly paid off.
Marie and her husband started planting their first grapes in 2004 and opened to the public in 2007.
“We were open to the public for 10 years and we had a bistro.”
“It was just time for us to work on our golf game a little bit. We closed to the public a couple of years ago and we sell strictly through the liquor stores and our online store now,” Marie explained.
According to Marie, the winery is located southwest of Maple Creek.
It has always been the winery’s goal to make the highest quality products.
“But, you’re dealing with fruit and fruit changes from year to year. As winemakers, it’s my responsibility to demonstrate a consistent taste. Some years are exceptional. This last year the rhubarb really was exceptional,” Marie said.
Marie added Cypress Hills Vineyard products are available at most Saskatchewan liquor stores and in some Alberta markets. For more information about products and availability please visit online at cypresshillswinery.com.
One thing that has changed this year because of the COVID-19 pandemic is the winery couldn’t attend some of the big wine tasting festivals normally attended. “There’s certainly been a couple cancelled in Regina and Saskatoon. On the upside, sales are pretty good,” Marie said.