Featured Winemaker

Taylor Whelan

Taylor Whelan

Located on the hills above Lake Okanagan in Kelowna. The Fitzpatrick family, who founded CedarCreek in 1986, has committed the winery to respecting the land in its viticulture practices; to honouring the rich agricultural tradition of their family rooted in the Okanagan; and to pursuing perfection in the bottle. The family has been residing in the Okanagan since 1913 In 2014 the winery was sold to Anthony von Mandl, who is best known as the owner of Mission Hills Family Estate Winery The winery now produces over 40,000 cases of premium wines each year and is considered one the elite producers in Canada. It was named Canada's winery of the year at the 2002, 2005 and second overall for 2008 in the Canadian Wine Awards competition. Product exceeds 30,000 cases. The man chosen to look after and maintain its high reputation for wine is Taylor Whelan

Taylor was born and raised on Vancouver Island. He is from Campbell River located at he northern end of the Island. After completing high school he went to Victoria and studied Biology. Along the way he devolved a passion for winemaking; completing a post-graduate diploma in Oenology and Viticulture from Brock University in Ontario.

He began working as a cellar hand at what was then Hillebrand winery, now Truis, in NOTL. From there he worked as well as for world class premium wineries in Hawkes Bay, New Zealand, in McLaren Vale, Australia, and in Piper’s River, Tasmania. 

Taylor’s passion for cool climate grape growing and winemaking brought him to CedarCreek for harvest in 2011, and he was hired permanently as Assistant Winemaker in 2012.In 2014 the winery was sold to Anthony von Mandl, who is best known as the owner of Mission Hills Family Estate Winery and Taylor was promoted to winemaker.

 Whelan is known to spend extensive time out on the vineyards with the winery’s viticulturalists observing sunlight patterns and leaf vigor, exploring soil types and tasting, tasting and tasting as harvest approaches until he determines the grapes have reached their highest potential. He also has a strong interest on building texture in his wine portfolio through the use of varied fermentation vessels such as stainless steel, concrete, oak, barriques, and a custom-made clay amphora.*

Taylor’s goal is working with CedarCreek’s viticulturalists and vineyard managers to continue to improve the quality of fruit grown in the vineyard, and to build a strong and passionate winemaking team who can translate those premium grapes into premium, terroir driven wines, while pushing the boundaries of the British Columbia wine industry.

Wine reviewed by John Schreiner

CedarCreek Riesling 2018($18.99 for 1,615 cases). This wine has just 10% alcohol, reflecting the approach to Riesling taken by CedarCreek over recent vintages. The wine also has 20.6 grams of residual sugar and 10.7 grams of acid – a balance that gives the wine great ability to age. It begins with aromas of lime and lemon. On the palate, it shows intense flavours of grapefruit along with bracing acidity. Cellar this at least for a year. 90-92.

Note: A new tasting room and year round restaurant will soon be completed at Cedar Creek

Previous featured Winemakers:

* Vancouver Sun


Other featured pages:

~ Featured Winemakers
Featured Wine
Featured Winery
~ Women of Wine 
~ Robert's Selections


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