THORN & BURROW WINES
Alex found himself in Vancouver in 2005 where he immersed himself in the city’s burgeoning hospitality industry. Here, Alex was introduced to wine and his unbeknownst lifelong passion to understand the elusive nature of fermented juice. As a sommelier he got bitten with the notion of wanting to dive deeper into what makes this magical juice so damn delicious. Instead of picking the tracks for guests, he wanted to learn how the music was made.
2018 saw Alex once again off galavanting, this time spending several months in South Africa working with small naturalist producers. Firstly in the arid Swatland area with one of the Swatland Indy producers ‘Dragon Ridge’ and later in the cooler region of the Hemel-en-aarde Valley with a consortium of small producers such as Crystallum and Momento, among others. He then spent six months working in the vineyards of Chablis for another biodynamic producer ‘Chateau de Beru’, before ending his time abroad in San Sebastian working as a Somm for the Michelin stared restaurant ‘Amelia’. In 2019 Alex found himself back in Vancouver, splitting his time in the city’s restaurant scene and the Okanagan, planning his next moves for Thorn & Burrow. For the 2019 harvest, Alex linked up with the darlings of the local low intervention scene, ‘Scout Vineyards’, where he produced his recently released 2019 Thorn & Burrow Gewürztraminer and Chardonnay. 2020 was another big year where he partnered with the team from Twin Sails Brewing to ramp up production and start searching for a place to call home for Thorn & Burrow.
Beautiful Chardonnay sourced from a West Oliver vineyard managed by the folks at Le Vieux Pin. Destemmed fruit was fermented in open-top vats on the skins for 10 days with minimal cap wetting, then pressed into neutral barrel. Three barrels were racked to a Qvevri for 2 weeks’ exposure to the vessel’s ionizing properties, then one barrel’s worth of wine went into a new (lightly toasted) French barrel for 1 month. The remaining wine spent 13 months in neutral barrel resting on heavy lees. 20ppm of SO2 was added post-MLF.
Fresh acidity and delicate tannins offer a nice couterweight to the slightly oxidative tones in this wine. Aromas of apple pie, stewed apricot and burnt lemon followed by flavours of stewed green apple and lemon balm, this wine really opens up after a quick decant or swirl in the glass.
Chardonnay 750ml | SKU #413347 |$20.20
~2021 GEWÜRZTRAMINER ONE DAY~
The fruit here is sourced from a 26-year-old vineyard on the upper benches of Summerland, planed in sandy loam. Desemmed grapes spent just 24 hours on skins in open vessels, then pressed into tanks for an extended rest on heavy lees. The wine was racked just once post-fermentation, and has zero additions.
Zesty lemon forms the backbone of their lightest skin-contact wine to date. Loads of tangerine skin, Asian pear, jasmine, lemon drop candies, and underripe guava round out the aromatics, with electric fresh acidity keeping things lighter on the palate. Splash decant or swirl for your best experience.
Gewurztraminer ‘One Day’ 750ml | SKU #401772 |$24.86
~2021 GEWÜRZTRAMINER ~
Gewurztraminer comes from the same Summerland site as their ‘One Day’, while. the ‘plus’ grapes are co-planted on a 2-acre organic vineyard located in Abbotsford. The blend is 55% Gew, 27% Siegerrebe, with the remaining made of equal parts Bacchus, Madelaine Sylvaner, Madelaine Angevine, and Kerner.
Here, the grapes saw 10 days of skin contact in open vats before being racked into qvevri and neutral barrels, with one barrel also spending a month in a new French barrel. 20ppm of SO2 was added post-MLF in the spring.
Fun and super expressive, with notes of papaya & guava, pink and orange Starburst candies, baked pineapple and a bit of peaches and cream. The tropical vibes continue on the palate, with tons of bright acidity keeping things almost subtly sour. Again, this wine is best served after a quick decant or swirl of the glass.