Summerhill Pyramid Winery's winemaker sparkles
Summerhill Pyramid Estate Winery is all about love.
Love of family, friends, good food and wine and of our environment. Key to the Cipes family’s success has been their unwavering stewardship of our local land.
Every step of the way, Stephen Cipes and his family have become leaders in certified organic growing, certified organic winemaking, biodynamic farming, farm to table cuisine, community building and more. What is extraordinary about these achievements is that the family practices these same philosophies in their own lives. They are the real deal.
Here they make a range of fantastic certified organic wines but their speciality is sparkling. Multi-international award winners, Summerhill’s sparkling wine repertoire is superb. From their classic Brut to beautiful rosé, the affordable to swish, they have it all. On the high-end list, sparkling wine nerds will freak at the thought of tasting an aged sparkling wine. This is something very rare and especially for our new wine world. Summerhill’s gorgeous Cipes Ariel 2000 has just been released after cellaring for 19 years! Rich, honeyed, and uber exclusive, this is a special occasion bubble guaranteed to thrill.
Michael Alexander entered Summerhill’s world part time 10 years ago, and has been learning their language and philosophies since, starting with a summer job in the wine shop and following his passion to the production cellar. He is a natural fit.
“I joined Summerhill as a summer job working four summers before transitioning to the cellar. In 2013 I headed out East to winemaking school, returning to Summerhill in 2015,” Alexander says.
Alexander took full control of the reigns as winemaker in early 2019 and is already building his legacy by making a distinctive mark on the winemaking process, especially with Summerhill’s red wine program.
“We work with such gorgeous organic fruit and Summerhill’s vision is to let it shine. We invested in nine large oak foundres, and my goal is to make full use of those amazing tools to make authentic, natural, beautiful red wines,” says the young winemaker.
Summerhill’s passion runs from vine to cellar and from garden to plate.
The man behind the plates on-site at Sunset Organic Bistro is celebrated Chef Jeremy Luypen. Many do not consider a relationship between the winemaker and the chef, but for a winery restaurant, a good relationship is key to making each other shine.
“Not only do Jeremy and I work together but we have become good friends, as a result we spend lots of time talking food and wine (passions we share)," Alexander says. "Like the wines at Summerhill Jeremy has created a menu that is pure, authentic, and exciting. With fresh organic ingredients the cuisine in the Sunset organic Bistro tastes of the Okanagan. The dishes are created to compliment the wine, adding to the experience of our guests.”
When you step onto the Summerhill estate, listen closely. You will not only hear the sound of tiny bubbles and corks popping, you will hear Mother Nature whispering thank you.
We welcome your comments and opinions on our stories but play nice. We won't censor or delete comments unless they contain off-topic statements or links, unnecessary vulgarity, false facts, spam or obviously fake profiles. If you have any concerns about what you see in comments, email the editor.