Guest blog by Hannah Stein
In 2004, partners Jens Korberg & Bruno Francois decided to start looking for a property to plant a vineyard. Excited by the possibilities in Prince Edward County, they started to make a number of trips there and quickly fell in love with its history and beautiful countryside. They finally found a small property that was 90% plantable; the soil, drainage, heat and steep southern exposure gave it great potential to make fantastic Pinot Noir. The Old Third is farmed using a reasoned approach to organic viticulture, the goal being to reduce as much as possible the chemicals applied to the land, as to maximize its health. They believe that the finest wines are made with this philosophy. Taking its name from the original term for the area, The Old Third Vineyard is situated on Closson Road which bisects the Third Concession, a Crown grant near the end of the 18th Century.
We spoke to Jens Korberg, winemaker & co-owner of The Old Third Vineyard, about what this unique winery has to offer…
What sets your winery apart from others?
With 3,600 vines per acre, we are one of the very few vineyards who planted high density. Almost all others are low density, at 1000 vines per acre, with only a few at medium density. When densities are over 3500, such as ours, the vine is smaller, more efficient and their roots, which are in competition with each other, go deeper. This means that the fruit ripens earlier, the yield is lower and the canes harder sooner, so they have better winter tolerance. For this and many other reasons, vineyards all over burgundy and, of course, most of the finest around the world, are planted high density. Also, we do not buy our grapes; all of our wines are made from single vineyard, estate grown grapes.
Which of your wines is your personal favourite and why?
Like all of our vines, the wines are our children; we love each and every one of them.
What should people most look forward to when visiting your winery during this year’s Terroir Run?
At our winery, guests can enjoy a ham and cheese crepe with a glass of sparkling cider made in exactly the same manner as our traditional method sparkling wines. We also have our pinot noir and cabernet franc but the cabernet franc does sell out fast!