Mt Lehman is a small rural community located in the Fraser Valley of south western British Columbia, Canada. The community was established in 1874 and became part of the District of Matsqui in 1892. The District of Matsqui was incorporated into the present day City of Abbotsford, British Columbia in 1995.
Mount Lehman is situated on an area of upraised land (hence, where the "Mount" name comes from) that lies between the flat plains of Matsqui Prairie to the east and Glen Valley to the west. The original historic community can be roughly bounded by the Fraser River in the north, Harris Road in the South, Bradner Road in the West, and Matsqui Prairie in the east.
Mount Lehman is named for Isaac Lehman; in 1875, first cousins Samuel and Isaac Lehman pre-empted many acres of land in the area. This is where you will find three excellent wineries with two more in the planning stages.
The three established wineries are Mt Lehman, Singletree Estate Winery and Seaside Pear Farmgate Winery. All three are family run, Mt Lehman owned by Vern and Charleen Siemens was the first to open in 2000. In 2011 they received the prestigious B.C. Lieutenant Governor
Award for the 2010 Viognier Reserve.
On a beautiful Fall day Barbara and I decided to drive through the country side from our home in White Rock to visit the Mt Lehman area; it was a lovely drive with the tress displaying their beautiful colours under a bright sunny sky. A construction detour made our drive take longer than usual but we didn't mind there is always beauty to be found on country roads. It was mid afternoon when we arrived at our first stop, Singletree Winery.
We were warmly greeted by Mirtha, a long time employee of the winery. Our tasting experience was enhanced by joining a conversation with a family group of five which included visitors from New Brunswick and Ireland.
We began our tasting with a lovely Chardonnay 2015, displaying notes of peach, pear and tropical fruit, nicely balanced with crisp acidity. Barbara liked this one. and you may recall from reading previous articles of mine, whites are not her go to wines.
Pinot Gris 2018. It started with a really nice aroma followed by sweet notes of honey and citrus fruits.
Grüner Veltliner 2017 a double Gold winner at the All Canadians Championships. It presented very nice citrus flavours.
We compared the 2015 Siegerrebe and 2018 (Siggy) We went with the 2015 for its fuller flavours of peaches and pears.
Merlot 2016. very nice Merlot, starting with a nice aroma and good flavours. It received high praise from Barbara.
Our final selection was a red blend labeled Harness 2015. A blend of Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon grapes. Also an award winning wine that we both enjoyed.
Normally the Late Harvest Kerner is not part of a wine tasting lineup but Mirtha was kind enough to accommodate me. It was so good we took home two bottles which will be served during the Christmas season.
The Etsell Family - Owners
A Singletree is a wooden or metal bar used to balance the pull of a draught horse or other draught animal when pulling a vehicle.
It was now time to say goodbye and move on to our next tasting.
Our next stop was the family operated winery owned by Allison and David Zimmerman, Seaside Pearl Farmgate Winery. No. they are on not near the seaside! Allison at one time, owned a pearl shop located in the seaside city of White Rock hence the unique name. The winery is currently listed on our popular page Best Wineries to Visit in 2019
Seaside Pearl is a place to relax and enjoy the view of Mt Baker and the vineyard while sipping amazing wines. Wines that won 4 medals at the recent 2019 British Columbia Lieutenant Governor’s Wine Awards. During Fall the winery is featuring a cheese plate along with a glass of wine accompanied by soft jazz music in the background for 19.00 on Thursdays and Fridays.
Allison and David label their wines to reflect the history of the region. Below is the one I chose to relax with, good choice.
The "Connaught" rail-car was used by the Duke of Connaught, Canada's Governor General on his official visit to British Columbia in 1912
The Seaside Pearl Connaught won a bronze at this year's Lieutenant Governor’s Wine Awards. A bold red with hints of cassis, black pepper, licorice, dark chocolate, vanilla and smoky cedar.
Our enhanced selection beautifully prepared by Allison
With our cheese plate I enjoyed the award winning Fraser Gold Chardonnay. Always a good choice.
Owner/winemaker, David came by to invite me down to the winery's lab and tank room. What a honour it is to have the pleasure of tasting wines directly from the tank. The future looks bright for David's wines.
By the time we returned to the tasting room it was well past closing so unfortunately we had to put our other stops on hold. That just means another reason for a trip to the wonderful Abbotsford area.
See our previous visit to Seaside Pearl
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