Mirabel makes its mark

A few months ago I was sitting in a corner by the cozy fireplace at Vancouver’s Bacchus Lounge. I was there to meet Doug and Dawn Reimer. They were in town to preview their (inaugural) Mirabel Vineyards Pinot Noir 2015.

In many ways the couple epitomize the new wave of Okanagan wine growers. Dawn and Doug are well traveled and passionate about food and wine. Furthermore, they’re also well capitalized and extremely committed. The Reimer family hails from Winnipeg, where they founded the successful Reimer Trucking company.

The grapes for this release come from their Reimer Family Vineyards in Southeast Kelowna. Mirabel’s name reflects the wondrous setting and the spectacular view across the valley.

After careful study, in 2006 they planted the steep sloped, south and northwest facing vineyard to Pinot Noir. Since that time they have farmed the vineyard sustainably, with organic practices.  All hand harvested, the resulting low yields are 2.5 tons per acre.

Dawn and Doug Reimer in Mirabel Vineyard

Dawn and Doug Reimer and canine pals in their Mirabel Vineyard (supplied)

BC Pinot Noir lovers who recognise the Reimer name will know this vineyard.  In the past, the couple have supplied grapes to premium producers Foxtrot and Meyer.

Doug and Dawn first saw the farm status orchard property after a visit to the Okanagan in 2004. They fell in love with it and felt it would be the perfect place to pursue their dream of growing grapes.

Some of the former orchard remains, with apple and pear trees in a lower frost pocket. Doug says when it came to deciding which style of Pinot to make, between Old and New World, they wanted to be “in the middle but more inclined to Burgundy.”

The much traveled Matt Dumayne made the wine at Okanagan Crush Pad.

Here’s my review which appears in an upcoming edition of Quench magazine.


Mirabel Vineyards Pinot Noir 2015

Inaugural, premium release from the owners of East Kelowna’s Reimer Vineyard. (Formerly bottled as vineyard designate wines by Foxtrot and Meyer.) Farmed with organic practices. Lifted cherry and savoury hints on the nose followed by a delicately balanced palate. A definite nod to Burgundy that juxtaposes focused fruit with elegant structure. Strawberry notes with a hint of spice. A distinctive mineral streak and well managed new oak (11 1/2 months) as the wine evolves in the glass. $70 93 pts

Cost is $70 (750ml) and $160 (1500ml Magnum). Available either from www.mirabelvineyards.com or on line at New District