Winemaking is not new in Saanich, British Columbia, and the Parsell family has been part of that tradition since the early twentieth century. The Parsell and Miles families arrived on Vancouver Island as early pioneers and farmers in the late nineteenth-century, and by the 1920s were growing loganberries for the peninsula's first wineries. One of those early winemakers in 1922 was Neil Lamont, a founding partner in Grower's Wine Company, and, when the chance to purchase a part of the historic Lamont property came up in 2015, already planted to vineyard, we decided that it was time that the Parsell family got back into the island winemaking business.
Today we farm nearly a dozen acres on the Saanich peninsula, Victoria's wine country, making Vancouver Island's only RAW
registered natural wines. And, yes, we're still using some of that original Parsell family winemaking equipment.
We farm regeneratively using no pesticides, herbicides, fungicides, or chemical fertilizers, and we carry that philosophy over to the winery, where our natural wines are made, without filtration, fining, additives, and, in most cases, without the use of any sulfites. The only exception is in our sparkling wine, where, for safety reasons, we bottle the wines with raw levels of sulfites (under 35 p.p.m.).
We source our fruit from estate vineyards on both Lamont Road, where you can visit our tasting room and winery, and at Bannockburn Farm, est. 1855, a listed heritage site on Mount Newton Cross Road open to the public occasionally. Follow our Information blog for open-day announcements at Bannockburn.
At Parsell Vineyard we produce hand-crafted still and sparkling wines with a purist's zeal for zero manipulation, believing that wines should be and should taste clean and transparent.
We specialise in small lots, but our current releases include our Ortega (white), skin-contact Pinot Gris (orange/amber), Foch/Gamay (red blend), Ancestral Method Blanc de Blanc (sparkling, un-disgorged), spiced holiday wine (red), & the local cult favourite, Saanich Sangria (red).
We are committed to making local, natural wines that are affordable. Our wines are priced from $20-40 per litre, and we release our still wines only in reusable growlers, as part of our commitment to environmental and economic sustainability. There is a $7 refundable deposit on growlers, which may be swapped or returned at our tasting room at 2838 Lamont Road or at Moss Street Market weekly.
For locals who are looking for large-format wine, we offer our take on the French en vrac system. Each fall and winter, we release a portion of our Ortega ($300) and Foch ($325) to the local market in 18-litre glass vessels ($30 refundable deposit). That is the equivalent of 24 bottles, at approximately $12.50 / $13.50 per bottle.
If you want to try your hand at making custom vermouth, ancestral method sparkling wine, or simply re-bottling for your cellar but aren't sure how, we offer regular "Winemaker Practicums" (4-hours for $75 p.p.). See Information for dates.
BED & BREAKFAST
In the main residence of the winery, we offer two luxury bed-and-breakfast suites for visitors looking for Victoria's premium wine-country experience.
Located on a gated acreage estate, with panoramic views of the Olympic Mountains and over the vineyards, the bed and breakfast features a (seasonal) pool, a palm-tree and lavender-lined sundeck, & (year-round) a wood-fired Finnish sauna. A complimentary winemaker tasting and tour is included.
To book and learn more, please see our Bed & Breakfast booking site. We offer 10% off the advertised price on any of the booking websites if you prefer to make your reservation with us directly.
We host a limited number of daytime and early evening weddings on weekends in May, June, July and August each summer. Our upgraded hop-yard and lavender fields will be completed by the fall of 2019, in time for summer of 2020 weddings in the new sun-shaded event area.
We are able to accommodate events of up to 100 guests, and our wedding packages start at $7900 CAD . Packages include two days of access to the wedding venue, to give you leisurely set up time; day-of-event access to the venue from 8 AM - 9 PM; rental of tables, chairs, and necessary facilities; customized wine labels, partial set up and take down; complimentary overnight parking at the winery; and transportation for you and your guests at the end of your wedding event to the pre-booked after-party venue of your choice on the peninsula or in Victoria. Due to the rural and tranquil nature of the Martindale Valley, we regret that we are unable to accommodate amplified music or late-night events.
Please inquire for details or the list of our approved catering partners.
LAVENDER & PERFUME
Our lavender fields are being replanted in the fall of 2019 and will be open again to the public for U-Pick beginning May 1, 2020 during our regular summer tasting-room hours. U-pick lavender bundles are $5 during the flowering season. We offer u-pick tulips in the spring.
We distill lavender and fir onsite throughout the summer and are also pleased to offer unique fragrances, essential oils, hydrosols, lavender-inspired home goods, including our "Eau Canada" perfume line made from 100% Canadian naturals.
See our Information page for details of distillation times or contact us to order. We book private fragrance-blending workshops for unique bridal shower or special-event parties. Please inquire.
VISIT & CONTACT
Our tasting room, picnic grounds, and lavender fields are open to the public without appointment for groups of 6 or fewer Friday - Sunday (11 AM - 5 PM) from May 1 to September 15 each year and by appointment. Large groups are asked to book in advance. The tasting room is open during the winter by appointment any day of the week, except during our annual closure (December 22 -January 31) and are happy to welcome you on short notice. Please call or text the winery at 778.922.4525 or email us. We are additionally at the Moss Street Market in Victoria each Saturday during the year, also with the exception only of our annual closure.
Our vineyards and facilities are located at 2838 Lamont Road, in Saanichton, located just off Highway 17 at Island View. Exit Island View east (Michell's Farm side of the road), turn left on Puckle Road and right on Lamont Road. There is parking at the tasting room and additional overflow parking on Lamont Road.
Our mailing address is 2838 Lamont Road, Saanichton BC V8M 1W5 CANADA, and we invite you to follow us on social media: