Niagara winemaker killed at Ontario cottage is remembered as industry pioneer, mentor

As Canada’s wine international involves grips with the lack of Niagara winemaker Paul Pender, he’s being remembered as someone who labored to elevate the domestic industry, without being pretentious and with a willingness to assist up-and-comers. 

“He was a mentor to a lot of the younger winemakers in Niagara as of late, especially folks that wanted to learn about organic farming,” says wine writer Rick Vansickle, publisher of

“He used to be the kind of man that spent so much of time at his own vineyard, however almost an equivalent quantity of time serving to other folks around the area… The higher Niagara neighborhood is in profound mourning.”

Pender, FIFTY FOUR, is remembered via his paintings at Tawse and Redstone wineries. He died Feb. 3 after an encounter at his cottage in Selkirk, Ont., near Lake Erie.

Police have released few details of what took place, but have charged Hamilton resident Bradley Space, 31, with 2d-stage homicide.

Popular Niagara winemaker lifeless, Hamilton guy charged after cottage incident

Det.-Insp. Shawn Glassford of Ontario Provincial Police said Monday there have been  crime scenes, and Pender and the accused didn’t understand one another. On Tuesday, Glassford showed to CBC that police aren’t in search of any longer suspects. 

House made a court docket appearance by means of telephone on Tuesday, talking little past acknowledging his presence. His lawyer, Beth Bromberg, told the court docket she had no longer but won disclosure and asked the case to be eliminate for 2 weeks. 

‘He had such a lot extra to present’

Vansickle stated he met the winemaker approximately 17 years ago when Pender started at Tawse, in Vineland, Ont. He stated Pender’s interest in organic and biodynamic farming made him a pioneer within the region.

“Nobody was once doing that kind of farming again then, and he made it a thing,” stated Vansickle. “He turned into the beacon that everybody appeared to for natural farming in Niagara, no less than for grapes.”

The vineyard temporarily rose to prominence, successful more than one awards underneath Pender’s watch.  

“He loved Pinot, and he loved Chardonnay and he beloved Riesling,” stated Vansickle. “He was a pupil of Burgundy wines… and he tried to get that roughly soulfulness out of the wines they made at Tawse, and very achieved it. they are improbable wines and smartly cited via critics around the international. He was once known.”

Vansickle stated Pender’s talent, combined together with his unassuming way, made him a smartly-loved fixture within the area.

“He may occur at a grand tasting in a plaid shirt and his worn-out Blundstones footwear,” mentioned Vansickle. “He had such a lot more to provide.”

‘A legacy for the winery that won’t depart’

Whilst Sherry Karlo met Pender years ago, she had gone from Prince Edward County to Tawse to buy a work of kit for Karlo Estates, the vineyard she was once beginning with her husband Richard. 

Paul Pender, right, speaks to Richard Karlo within the vineyard of Tawse winery in Vineland, Ont. Karlo’s spouse Sherry says she first met Pender when she used to be starting her wine trade together with her husband, who has on the grounds that kicked the bucket. (Supplied by means of Sherry Karlo)

“Paul was already widely known in the industry as a very proficient winemaker. We had been kind of nobodies,” she stated, noting her marvel whilst he presented to stroll them during the vineyard, at the same time as sharing a number of information about cultivation ways.

“You Would assume that someone who might be a competitor within the business wouldn’t proportion his trade secrets, however he used to be just extremely beneficiant.”

Karlo considers Pender one in every of the highest 10 winemakers in Canada at the time of his dying, and stated she feels for his family and his colleagues. Her husband used to be the winemaker at Karlo Estates till he died in 2014; she stated it was hard to balance grieving and shifting on with the industry.

“Even within the iciness time, we’re making wine,” she mentioned Tuesday. “The wine waits for no guy, so you have to stay going. i feel that’s one in all the most difficult issues, looking to procedure the grief at the same time as retaining the vineyard going.”

Thankfully, she stated, Pender had winemaking assistants at Tawse who would have learned his craft. along with his innovations in cultivation, he set in position strategies with a view to continue to exist after him.

“they have superb terroir and they have a beautiful winery, and all of the strategies Paul installed place are there,” Karlo said. “That creates a legacy for the vineyard that won’t go away.”

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