This past Saturday Lunchtruck and I ducked into the truck, bravely took on the freeway and the bridge, and eventually found ourselves driving along a winding road through some of the prettiest countryside I've seen in a while. There's a wonderful restfulness that comes from clearing your mind of everything except enjoying the view as it rolls by. I must be too used to being a multi-tasking demon, because it took a lot of effort to enjoy what was right in front of me instead of anticipating what was coming next.
The goal of our drive was Fort Langley's Fort Wine Company. Lunchtruck is in the midst of his final class for his certificate, and his assignment involves designing a wine bar and retail space. There's waaaay more to it than that of course, and its been a fairly stressful 3 weeks, but that's a whole other post...
The nice thing about going with him when he does his research is that it's another opportunity to learn. Maybe not as much about wine as I'd like (my brain seems incapable of remembering all the details), but definitely more about what elements make me comfortable and interested in returning to a shop. It's a little odd to realize that a combination of too high shelves and too little space between shelves is enough to get a shop struck off my list. I'm not picky, just short.
Now that I've been there, Fort Wine has a prized spot near the top - the place is so welcoming, and the smell! Heavenly. They produce a variety of fruit wines, and after trying a a few different flavours at their tasting bar, I have to say that a bottle of strawberry wine really needs to reside in my fridge at all times.
They're quite smart about their merchandising too - besides the regular wines, cordials, portages and ice wines, they also carry goodies from Milsean (like their Demerara Butter Crunch Bar) and local jams, jellies, BBQ sauces, salad dressings and ciders. Add in some lovely glassware, martini accessories and recycled flag wine bags made by the Coast Society, and it's pretty easy to start thinking about Christmas and hostess gifts.
We've got to go back soon. I don't think the cranberry wine we got to go with the Christmas Turkey is going to see December.