Former Calgarian makes grapes her occupation, finding passion in her new labour of love.
She didn’t know what to expect when her brother asked her to move to the Okanagan. Still, Terry Stone, a former Calgary business woman, packed up and headed out to pursue marketing for Anarchist Mountain Vineyard. Today, she cannot see herself doing anything else.
Everyone in the wine business is there because they love it, asserts Stone.
“It’s kind of fun to grow something and then turn it into a product and enjoy the fruits of your labours,” says Stone.
When Stone lived in Calgary, she owned a modeling agency, hosted a TV show, worked as a life coach and marketed frozen low-fat muffins to McDonalds.
“If we can even just encourage Canadians to bump up their purchase of Canadian wines, even by five per cent we will be doubling what’s out there.”
– Terry Stone, Anarchist Mountain Vineyard
Stone said she didn’t know what to expect when making the career change, but if she could have done it differently, she would have taken courses on grape-growing and wine-making.
“If I had known about the industry and if I had known this was actually a career option, I probably would have come here earlier,” says Stone.
Throughout this experience Stone has learned that there is much more to the wine-making process than one would expect. The grapes are monitored
Photo courtesy of Andrew Stone.all year before being picked, cold soaked, crushed, or whole-berry fermented.
Once the wine is ready, the bottle and label are chosen, thus making it ready for marketing and distribution.
Anarchist Mountain Vineyard doesn’t produce enough volume for conventional sales to be profitable as the vineyard can only produce a small amount of wine each season.
“We’re very much cellar door, word of mouth, and we’re not in liquor stores… Its nice to have that shelf space, but that’s really for people who have a larger volume,” says Stone.
Stone wants to see the local wine industry flourish, and would love to see more people drinking Canadian wines. Ultimately, she hopes to one day see our consumption match up with both France and Italy, as 90 per cent of their total wine purchased is locally grown.
“If we can even just encourage Canadians to bump up their purchase of Canadian wines, even by five per cent we will be doubling what’s out there.” says Stone.