Country Dream

What’s in a Name… part 2

Our wine now begins what’s hopefully a miraculous transformation via the aging process.  As yet, the bottles are unlabeled — fitting, given the unfinished nature of the wine within.  But it’s time to find an identity.  And so we turn once again to thinking about wine and winery names…

A great name could reflect the place the grapes were grown – the climate, the history, the location, the quality of the soil, the sun, the rain, the proximity of water, etc.

The place… Prince Edward County is itself an island (technically an Isthmus) in Lake Ontario.  It’s a large tilted limestone shelf.  The soils are fertile but can be difficult to farm due to their stoniness.   The limestone itself came from an ancient sea that covered much of Ontario millenia ago… and so is full of fossils.  The proximity to the lake, the micro climate, the shallow fertile soils all lend themselves to premium wine production.

Our Pinot Noir vineyard in Prince Edward County is located on a small stony hill.  Sometimes I call it a magic hill, because it seems to attract the sun, and repel the rain, frost, and fog.  In the early morning some days you can see the vineyard sticking up on its hill out of the fog-shrouded surrounding fields.  The soil itself is unique – called Hillier Clay Loam, it is fertile clay with limestone gravel and is said to be similar to Burgundy’s soil, yet millions of years more ancient.  The stones are so numerous it  seems like nothing should be able to grown.  Some great names come from the Irish and include “Carrick Macree” (meaning My Beloved Rocky hill or Hill of my Heart —  reflecting a grudging respect and love earned for the land through hard work.  I thought this one was particularly appropriate except there is already a Carrick winery in Carrick Township (nowhere nearby) and we are definitely not Irish).  We spent quite a bit of time brainstorming for names around the theme of rocks and rocky soil and came up with “Stones Throe”.  This has a pleasing double meaning:  the familiarity of an accessible winery that’s just around the corner, and Throe meaning a struggle – so a struggle with the stones.  Unfortunately it’s also an even better name for a rock band, and one with quite a bit of YouTube notoriety.  Stones Throe is also pretty generic – it could be a winery growing grapes anywhere, started by anyone.  On to the next name…

Entrepreneur, Winegrower and Father. I write about going for your dreams, living authentically, raising a family and building a winery from scratch in Prince Edward County, Ontario, Canada

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