Summerland winery to join sibling winery in downtown Penticton
September 16, 2019 [Penticton, BC] To ‘evolve’ means to change or develop slowly, step by step, one day at a time, ideally into a better, more complex, more advanced, and more progressive state of being. This is the core value and inspiration for the Evolve Cellars brand.
Now, Evolve Cellars, the winery that celebrates transformation and growing with its fan base, is going to literally live out its brand stance and relocate.
Evolve Cellars’ new home will be at 361 Martin St., in downtown Penticton BC, sharing a roof with sibling TIME Winery.
Evolve Cellars was established in 2015 by the McWatters family as a label created by their company, ENCORE Vineyards, to offer fresh, fruit-forward, crisp, approachable, well-balanced and affordable wines that can be enjoyed by anyone, and at every occasion. This, the winery team believes, is the natural essence of Okanagan wine today.
And now it is time for Evolve Cellars to change. Encore Vineyards’ past president and CEO Harry McWatters passed away peacefully but suddenly this past summer. Christa-Lee McWatters is the new president and CEO, as per the family’s succession plan. Harry had been in the wine business for 51 years and mentored Christa-Lee in the business from the time she was a child. Evolve Cellars is a project led by Christa-Lee, noting that the brand values of celebrating the Okanagan and living as the best version of herself is something she aspires to.
The original home of Evolve Cellars was on leased property, and the lease is up, so the decision was made to consolidate the company’s labels into one enhanced guest experience. With the McWatters family changes, evolutions in company roles, and harvest all happening at the same time, the team agreed this is the perfect time to pivot, focus, and, well, evolve the brand.
“It’s been an exciting challenge as I take over managing the company,” notes Christa-Lee. “I miss my dad and his mentorship, and moving ahead without him is a struggle some days, but I know he would want us to carve out our own way to carry on the family legacy.”
Christa-Lee’s first significant change as leader is to unite the brands. As of September 16 Evolve Cellars has a new residence in the refurbished Pen-Mar theatre that is home to TIME Winery & Kitchen, and the new location will especially showcase Evolve Cellars’ popular sparkling wine collection.
And for those who can’t get to Penticton, Evolve Cellars wines are always available online.
Under construction over the fall and winter of 2019 for opening next spring is the new Evolution Lounge, where visitors will be able to enjoy Evolve Cellars’ fresh whites, luscious reds and popular sparkling wines, and then move next door for a taste of TIME Winery wines, plus enjoy some of the many delicious and creative options from the celebrated menu created seasonally by Chef AK Campbell and his culinary team.
This decision is in accordance with the brand’s core values. “After all, Evolve was founded under the principles of embracing change and moving ahead,” says Christa-Lee. “Every time a person reads one of the Evolve wine labels, they are reminded how important it is to take a step forward, to try to accomplish more and strive to achieve their best. Well, now we need to ‘walk the talk’ and keep changing and growing ourselves.”
Evolve Cellars will continue to offer quality BC VQA wines made by Graham Pierce, and the team looks forward to having the continued support of fans and the Okanagan community as they #RaiseAGlassTo change, and establish a new tasting location at 361 Martin Street in downtown Penticton. An opening date for the Evolution Lounge will be announced in 2020.
About TIME Winery, Evolve Cellars, and McWatters Collection
TIME Winery & Kitchen is a fully operational winery, tasting bar, restaurant and guest experience centre located in the heart of wine country in downtown Penticton.
The McWatters Collection is a small, exclusive offering of wines; a legacy label that celebrates the McWatters family and its role informing the BC wine industry, and Evolve Cellars offers approachable, bright, delicious and affordable wines from its welcoming location at TIME Winery in downtown Penticton.
About Christa-Lee McWatters
Christa-Lee McWatters is the president and CEO of ENCORE Vineyards, a progressive Okanagan-based wine company that owns and manages TIME Winery, Evolve Cellars, and the McWatters Collection. In the wine industry with her family from childhood, Christa-Lee is involved in numerous industry initiatives, including as chair of the British Columbia Wine Institute and as an executive committee and board member of the Canadian Vintners Association.