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The Winemakers

Accomplished, terroir-driven winemaking.

Peter Gamble 

A lifetime wine industry professional, Peter’s career has encompassed roles as a distinguished professional winemaker and consultant, as well as an internationally recognized wine taster and judge, and a wine educator and writer.

After more than a decade in winemaking and winery management commencing in the eighties, Peter was appointed the founding Executive Director of the Vintners Quality Alliance. In that position, he worked with Canada’s winemakers to delineate the standards for appellation wines, and travelled the world spearheading the country's push for international recognition as a high quality wine producer.

Establishing his eponymous consulting firm in 2000, Peter has since been dedicated to prestige wineries in their start-up phase, providing expertise in a range of areas critical to the successful establishment of ultra-premium winemaking operations.

As lead consultant on the Stratus Vineyards project in Canada’s Niagara wine region, Peter oversaw the development of a winemaking facility heralded as one of the world’s most oenologically sophisticated.  Featured in a full-page article in TIME magazine, the winery was also the first internationally to achieve full LEED accreditation (Leadership in Energy & Environmental Design). 

Subsequent projects have included Benjamin Bridge Vineyards in Nova Scotia, now widely hailed as Canada’s finest sparkling wine producer, and Ravine Vineyard, a bucolic country winery of the highest standard, for which Peter was lead consultant and winemaker from inception through 2012. 

While having worked as far afield as France, Italy, New Zealand, the US and the UK, Peter has recently teamed up with his wife, Ann, to turn their focus to two top-end vineyard/winery projects: the creation of Sperling Vineyard wines, from Ann’s family’s spectacular 50 acre heritage, hillside vineyard in the Okanagan Valley; and Versado.  In Mendoza, their quest, very simply, has been to find the ancient vineyard that would allow them to create a wine that would stand among the greatest that Argentina, and the world, has to offer.  And the story continues...


Ann Sperling

Since her upbringing on her family’s Okanagan Valley vineyard, and throughout an already distinguished career of winemaking and viticultural accomplishments, Ann has innately turned to the soil for the character and complexity of her wines.

From her earliest winemaking positions in the eighties, Ann chose to spend much of her time working closely with growers and vineyard managers to “make” the wines in the vineyard. Since validating the importance of this approach and, in so doing, establishing the reputation of CedarCreek Estate Winery - with, among many other accomplishments, an industry-altering Platinum award Merlot in 1993 - Ann has applied the same principles to a significant string of vineyard and winery projects, including Southbrook Vineyards (2006), Malivoire Wine Company (1999), and Creekside Estate Winery (1998), all in the Niagara Peninsula. With Ann at the winemaking helm, Southbrook Vineyards became the Intervin International Wine Competition's 2012 Winery of the Year

With vineyards featuring so prominently in Ann’s winemaking, she felt stewardship of the land and environment were natural off-shoots.  Extensive study and practical research led to her becoming Canada’s foremost authority on organic and biodynamic viticulture. A leading practitioner, she implemented Organic Certification on Malivoire’s Moira Vineyard (from 2002), and set up and transitioned Southbrook Vineyard to biodynamic viticulture and winemaking (from 2006, with Pro-Cert and Demeter certification since 2008).

International winemaking stints in South Africa and Argentina preceded more recent winery start-ups, including Clos du Soleil (2009) and her own Sperling Vineyards (2008), both in British Columbia, as well as - with husband/winemaker, Peter Gamble - Versado wines in Mendoza.  (All are under conversion to organic.)


Roberto de la Mota

Roberto de la Mota is a legend in the Mendoza wine industry, and a true gentleman; and it is our great pleasure to have the privilege to make wine with him. The son of illustrious Argentine winemaker, Raoul de la Mota - the master oenologist behind Argentina’s international recognition as a potential producer of fine wines - Roberto has spent his life in the wine industry. 

At Weinert, Chandon and then Terrazas de los Andes (where he became the founding Technical Director of Cheval des Andes, a prestigious joint venture with Chateau Cheval Blanc in Saint Emilion, Bordeaux), Roberto has established impeccable credentials for the creation of fine wine - work which continues at Mendel Wines, where he is partner/winemaker today.

Most importantly, Roberto makes wines of classic structure, elegance and finesse, unlike the hulking, over-plush, over-oaked wines that some modern producers have popularized. For this sensibility, and for his infinite knowledge of Mendoza viticulture and winemaking methodology, Roberto has been a cherished member of the Versado team.

 

 

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