I must say I got a huge surprise yesterday while attending my first board meeting for ONTARIO SOUTH COAST WINERIES and GROWERS ASSOCIATION.
I was recently elected to a two year term on the board of directors.
We at Rush Creek Wines were hosts of the meeting and while in progress, Rush Creek Winery Owner, Bonnie Young plops down in front of me, not one but two bronze medals.
While this job is tough and stressful, it is days like these that make it all worth while. Without my wife, Phyllis Barr, keeping me grounded, I'd probably be picking grapes instead of making fine wine!
Thank You Ladies!
OUR FIRST INTERNATIONAL GRAND MEDAL and
OUR GRAND RE-OPENING. By Ron Barr, Winemaker.
I am so excited for the warmth of a new season coming upon us. The winter past was brutal for a number of reasons including deep frost and a late start to planting crops due to an unusually wet, damp and cool spring. That said and now being somewhat of a farmer, it is what it is and it is time to look ahead to the potential for Rush Creek Wines.
I must also mention that Rush Creek Wines scored its first ever medal under new winery owner Bonnie Preece picking up a SILVER medal at the prestigious Finger Lakes International Wine Competition.
In only eight months of making wine and I mean making 14 different kinds and approximately 900 to 2100 bottles of each flavour from scratch we were fortunate to win a “Silver” medal in my first ever entry into a major International Wine Competition. This Finger Lakes Competition that we entered is one of the toughest in the world and to win a “silver” medal on the International Stage and scrutinized by dozens and dozens of brilliant wine minds, is such a great start to a career I find fascinating. I am still on cloud nine!
Rush Creek is hosting a Grand Re-Opening evening on Wednesday April 29th from 4 pm to 7 pm and I would like to invite everyone to stop in to say hello and meet the new management of this fabulous winery. Those attending will be treated to wine samplings, unique cheeses and our own brand of coffee. Many items will be on special and we hope to have representation from local politicians to celebrate a new beginning.
At this event we will be launching a very exciting contest with the winner winning the chance to make wine. The winner will decide on the recipe, select the fruits, blend and bring all the way through to the bottling process. The winner picks the name, designs the label and receives a case of 12 of the special selection. The grand prize draw will take place Friday August 28, 2015. Ballots will be available at the winery only so visit often for your chance to win. Only 300 bottles will be produced and that is it. A unique contest and is open to those 19 years of age and over.
We now have twelve different brands of fruit wines available for sale and will also have blueberry, cranberry, gooseberry and a special Bonnie’s Blend that is coming around nicely. The special blend contains strawberry, black & red currant, gooseberry and a splash of kiwi. This blend will be limited to approximately 240 bottles and will go fast. At Rush Creek we allow reserves on wines being made in progress so call ahead and reserve your bottles today.
I as the winemaker always want to hear comments and feedback from our valued customers and welcome contact. I may be reached at the winery most days at 519-773-5432 or on my mobile that is always attached to my hip at 613-884-5731 or my personal email firstname.lastname@example.org.
In closing I hope to see you at the Grand Re-Opening Wednesday April 29th and be sure to enter the wine making and naming contest, it will be fun for us all!
By Ron Barr – Winemaker – Blog #1
Hi, my name is Ron Barr and I have been retained as the new wine maker at Rush Creek. I hail from just outside the nation’s capital in Ottawa and have been a strong proponent of many things and issues that affect our lives in so many ways. I have always fought for the small guy and business owner and my expertise is in running businesses that function properly and produce what they are expected to produce. I run my businesses by design as opposed to default.
Wine making I have come to appreciate works the same way.
As part of my responsibilities to the new owner of Rush Creek and for the sake of keeping you the reader updated with all things Rush Creek I have decided to write my first ever blog about a subject that has absolutely fascinated me.
Wine making on the scale and scope of Rush Creek is not for the weak of heart. I was mentored by what I believe to be one of the best in Kim Flintoft who was the founding award winning wine maker for the past 19 years. His 225 awards over that time is proof of his dedication to be the best. I will say the man is very patient as well. His co-founding wife Wendy looked after pretty well everything other than the wine making and working the farm fields.
My only experience in wine making prior to my time with Kim was helping at Carolinian Winery & Eatery for Bonnie Preece. There I was responsible for helping bottle the product and keeping the meticulous paperwork required by various levels and departments of government. To be honest I didn’t think there was much to taking a bunch of fruit, grinding it up, throwing a few things into a barrel, stirring it up and wham, we have wine.
Not the case at all. Wine making is truly a work of art. The intricacies are tremendous and the learning curve is very steep. I am told you never stop learning. I am certainly up to the challenge and welcome this new dynamic in my life.
Rush Creek attended the recent London Wine show at the Western Fair District and we couldn’t be more pleased with the exposure we received by the announced crowd of 15,000 who attended over the three day event. It was great and we were able to connect with many people who had visited the winery in the past and who thought we had closed for good. I can emphatically state that we are alive and well and committed to making exceptional products while further committing to even better customer service. The winery retained long time employee and the face for the place Marg Thiessen who has a passion for good old fashion customer service and always provides a warm friendly smile for those who grace our doors.
Marg will also be responsible for on-line orders of the wine and we have set up a PayPal account for those out of town customers. She will also be monitoring the emails coming in and bringing special requests to the attention of either myself or Bonnie.
We will also be adding our own blends of coffee, we are in the process of setting up a beautiful gift shop that complements our wine sales and don’t be surprised if we add specialty cheeses, pies and delicious butter tarts over the next several months leading up to the spring and summer months.
Rush Creek has a terrific future with what is being planned by the new owner. In the very near future you will hear plans about possible expansion of the main building, you will hear about new fruit wines plus we will be adding the compliment of grape wine as we are permitted by law to have up to 20% grapes incorporated into our many delicious blends.
Also, be sure to mark Saturday February 14th on your calendar as we will be featuring a Valentine’s Day tour with seating’s at 11 am and then again at 2:30 pm. The cost of the package is $12 and includes a tour of where we make wine, wine tasting and a food/wine pairing seminar. Seating is limited and reservations can be made by calling the winery.
Finally we will be announcing a grand re-opening in the next few weeks and encourage everyone to come visit and support a local business in the community. Buying local is so important to the health and prosperity of a small community like Aylmer.
Well that is my first blog and please check often as I plan on a new one every two weeks to keep you informed and again if you have any questions, suggestions or comments, please communicate and we will address each query as they come in.
Have a “berry” wonderful day!
Wine Master Ron
my name is Ron Barr and I have been retained as the new wine maker at
Hi my name is Bonnie.
I am the proud owner of
'Rush Creek Wines'.
For more about Bonnie,