Garage Wine Co.’s Old-Vine ‘Revival’ project launches in the UK
Pioneering winemaker, Derek Mossman Knapp of Garage Wine Co, was in London this week for the UK launch of their Old-Vine Revival project. This initiative was launched in the Maule in Southern Chile during the lockdown to revive small parcels of old vines of the ancient grape variety País.
The Garage Wine Co team are passionate about introducing this historical variety to a new generation of wine drinkers.
"The Revival project is more than sustainable, it is regenerative, and not just for the vines but for the community as well.â€¯ The venture centres around working with small farmers to revive their old vineyard plots neglected due to poor grape prices and some having been burned in the bushfires of 2017. “The plots are simply: too small, too far from a paved road and their rows are too narrow to get a tractor between to be considered feasible by the mainstream” Derek says.
When the pandemic hit, vignerons were travelling to jobs in shared vans and putting themselves at risk. Garage wanted to do something to help protect them so they created a project where they could work in safe social bubbles close to home. Many had neglected vineyards in their own backyards, which provided the safest work environment possible under the circumstances.
The small parcels were planted with País in generations past. País arrived to Chile from the Canary Islands and it is documented as far back as 1548 when it served as the wine for Catholic Mass, as well as an important part of homesteading going on on the Southern frontier. Since then, perhaps twenty generations have farmed País in this ‘New World’ wine region. Over the past twenty-five years many vineyards have fallen into neglect. By creating work the Old-vine Revival Project offers something for younger generations to stay on the farm for—instead of heading for the cities in search of a livelihood.
In his closing remarks, Derek asked: “What if ´farming´ - cultivating and sowing for the future - could be a metaphor for a business ethos that goes beyond the vineyard earthworks and helps establish a new measuring stick – a new ´bottom line´ that includes the local community and our planet? Business can be a force for good, and not just in the good times, but in the thorny tricky ones too.”
Find this wine below!
Darker and more serious than many PaÃs out there with proper complexity…
Duck, Fatty fish & Mushroom based dishes
Medium Bodied Reds