"Fox Harb’r is teaming up with Devonian Coast Wineries, which owns Jost Vineyards, to create a 10-hectare vineyard on the resort’s property on the shores of the Northumberland Strait. Four hectares have already been planted, with the rest set for next year."
From: Vineyard venture in Wallace takes root
BILL SPURR FEATURES WRITER
Published July 20, 2015 - 5:41pm
Press Release from Devonian Coast Wineries:
Fox Harb’r Golf Resort & Spa and Devonian Coast Wineries collaborate to develop revolutionary vineyard venture
Cumberland County, NS (July 20, 2015) – Two prominent Nova Scotian businesses are taking a leading role to further develop the Northumberland Shore into a world-class destination. Fox Harb’r Golf Resort & Spa, in partnership with Devonian Coast Wineries, will create a unique wine destination and tourism hot spot in the province.
Fox Harb’r’s Resort Owner, Ron Joyce, CEO, Steven Joyce, newly appointed President, Kevin Toth and Devonian Coast’s CEO and Owner, Carl Sparkes, are committed to building local infrastructure to bolster tourism, job creation, agriculture and quality of life in the Cumberland County area.
“We’re passionate about creating inspired facilities for local residents and tourists,” says Sparkes. “We put our skills and resources together this spring to develop Fox Harb’r Estate Vineyard – a revolutionary vineyard environment.”
Fox Harb’r has devoted a portion of their award-winning resort ground to the development of a vineyard. Over 25 acres close to the resort entrance has been cleared for planting. The first 10 acres have been planted this year. The balance will be planted next year with a further 25 acres under consideration for subsequent years.
“To have a world class resort like Fox Harb’r participate in the Nova Scotia wine industry is a huge testament to how far we have come in recent years,” says Sparkes. “The national and international exposure this brings to Atlantic Canada as a wine destination will benefit all wineries in the region.”
Under the skilful direction of Jonathan Rodwell, Director of Viticulture and Winemaking at Devonian Coast, the vineyard was planted in an ideal environment. The well-drained slope with southern exposure not only contributes to the ambiance of the grounds, but with Rodwell’s expertise, the vineyard is expected to develop estate-quality grapes for winemaking.
Rodwell strategically chose grape varietals best suited to the immediate terroir and provided guidance on planting to ensure the grapes will develop their finest characteristics. The first plantings are a combination of white grapes, suitable for crisp aromatic still and sparkling wines.
The new vineyard was officially celebrated at a ribbon cutting ceremony with the Deputy Premier, Honourable Diana C. Whalen, government officials and special guests on July 20th.
Wines will be made under the Fox Harb’r Vineyards label and sold at the resort. Fox Harb’r residents will also each have their own row of grapes. First production will be in three years.
“We are delighted to be able to provide our residents with our very own wine and vineyard experience,” says Toth. “This enhances the beautiful and luxurious lifestyle offering of Fox Harb’r Resort to all of its residents.”
The Northumberland Shore area is an often-underappreciated gem in both tourism and agricultural portfolios. The joint venture is a tangible expression of the innovation that is possible in rural Nova Scotia when leadership, collaboration and investment are made by individuals or organizations with vision.
To that end, Sparkes has made many infrastructural and agricultural upgrades to his winery and surrounding area in Malagash in just three short years:
- Fully renovated winery boutique, tasting bar, fireplace lounge, grand tasting room and outdoor heated patio
- Seagrape Café with locally inspired artisan foods
- Bike trails and touring bicycles with picnic lunches
- Additional plantings to the now more than 100 acre property
- New winemaking processes, viticulture practices and staff
- Grape growing programs and incentives for new and existing grape owners
As part of his presidency, Toth will seek to enhance the extraordinary infrastructure at Fox Harb’r:
- Award-winning links and parkland golf course
- Executive and Studio Suite accommodations
- Spa and Wellness Centre with junior Olympic-sized swimming pool, mineral pool, hot tub and fitness studio
- Dining Rooms for fine and casual dining
- Hiking and biking trails, tennis courts, volleyball and sport shooting
- Full service marina and luxury yacht
- Jet port and private airstrip
ABOUT FOX HARB’R GOLF RESORT & SPA:
Fox Harb’r offers guests and residents exclusive semi-private access to world-class resort amenities. In addition to gracious accommodations, challenging golf, a serene spa and enticing dining, you’ll discover even more incredible facilities and services. Our Sporting Lodge features skeet shooting and sporting clay. Our tennis courts offer beautiful ocean views. And our luxury yacht is available for ocean adventures. Our private airstrip welcomes your arrival by jet, while our secluded deep-water marina welcomes you by sea. Our unique and peaceful retreat is beyond expectation and beyond compare. It’s quite possible you won’t want to leave.
ABOUT KEVIN TOTH:
Kevin Toth was most recently President and COO of Skyline Hotels & Resorts and has held various leadership positions in some of Canada’s most celebrated hotels and resorts. Kevin is looking forward to working with the great team of hospitality professionals at Fox Harb’r to continue and improve upon the legacy of service excellence that Fox Harb’r is known for.
ABOUT DEVONIAN COAST WINERIES:
Devonian Coast Wineries Limited is 100% Nova Scotia owned and operated by Proprietors Carl and Donna Sparkes. Their wineries cover three of the key grape growing regions in Nova Scotia. They include Jost, Gaspereau and Mercator Vineyards. Jost Vineyards, located on the Northumberland Coast, is Nova Scotia’s oldest and largest winery operation. A pioneer of the Nova Scotia industry, Jost produces several distinct wines and styles, which have won hundreds of national and international awards.
Gaspereau Vineyards is a premium boutique winery situated on a picturesque, 50 acre vineyard in the Gaspereau Valley. Best known for outstanding aromatic whites and classic varietal character reds, Gaspereau has received international acclaim for its Riesling. Mercator Vineyards located in the Annapolis Valley between Wolfville and Grand Pré is devoted to growing exceptional grapes and making extraordinary limited edition wines. Mercator Vineyards’ first white wine, LAT 45° NORTH took the coveted Chairman’s Trophy Award in the 2014 New York Ultimate Wine Challenge’s White Blends – North America category.
ABOUT CARL SPARKES:
Carl Sparkes has already taken three regional food brands to lead their category’s national market share. For more than 20 years he has provided operational and strategic leadership in more than a dozen mergers, acquisitions and integration projects ranging from $5 million to more than $200 million. Born in Newfoundland, he spent most of his career in central Canada and returned to Atlantic Canada in 2011 to acquire Jost Vineyards.
For further information contact:
Deanna A. Sperry
Director of Sales and Marketing
Devonian Coast Wineries LTD.
48 Vintage Lane
Malagash, Nova Scotia