None of what is happening at Phantom Creek Estates would be possible without the incredible team behind it. With our Meet the Team Series, we will be introducing the individuals who are working hard to make all of this possible.
Where were you born and raised, John?
I was born in Portugal, where I stayed until I was 8, then I moved to France, where I lived until I was 19. Then back to Portugal where I got my teaching degree in French.
What brought you to the Okanagan?
I had come a few times on holiday (I had family here, three brothers) and I loved it. When my spouse, who lived in France for 14 years, got tired of living in a small town (in Portugal), we applied to immigrate to Canada.
What do you like most about living in the Okanagan?
How long have you been working on the Black Sage Bench?
This is my 20th vintage.
How did you first hear about Phantom Creek?
I was working on a project with Anne Vawter and when Harry McWatters sold, I was asked if I wanted to stay with them. I am the first Phantom Creek employee.
What is your position at Phantom Creek?
Vineyard Manager for the Black Sage Bench Vineyards.
I hear you have a legendary wine collection, what’s your most prized bottle?
The one I open to enjoy with family and friends.
How many languages do you speak?
I am fluent in English, Portuguese, Spanish, and French, and can have a conversation in Italian.
Who are you rooting for in the playoffs?
None, I’m a die-hard Canuck.
If you were trapped on a desert island and you could only bring 3 books, what would they be?
Any book that would help me to survive.
Any advice for a newcomer to the wine industry?
You must do the work as if it was your own place.
What would people surprised to know about you?
I was a French teacher for 8 years.
How do you define success?
You are successful if you are happy in what you do.
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