A little less than three years after chasing their dream, the rewards of their efforts are continuing to grow.
It all began in 2013 for Mike and Robin Nierychlo.
The couple — who were born and raised in Langley and actually first met when they were two years old — had moved to Victoria the year prior.
The original move was for a lifestyle change but in the back of their mind, the ultimate goal was to purchase and run their own vineyard and winery.
The pair both have business and project management backgrounds and Mike spent years working in the wine industry in a media capacity.
They created multiple business plans over the years, but never knew if their plan would come to fruition.
“We had a doubt in the back of our minds that we would never find something that would fit,” he admitted.
But that all changed when they found a property in north Cowichan, which they purchased in September 2013.
“It was a perfect opportunity for us to take a giant leap of faith and dive in face-first in to what became a crazy journey and adventure,” Mike said.
“We were very aware of the challenges we would face. It is an insane amount of work.”
The vineyard is named after their first name initials — Emandare Vineyard.
The 8.5 acre property had long been neglected and they spent months removing weeds which were anywhere between three and eight feet tall.
The vineyard had previously served as a grower for other wineries, but the Nierychlos wanted to make their own wine as well. They thought about selling that 2014 crop to build more capital.
They ultimately decided to hang on to the crop and make their own wine. They even finished construction on a 3,000 square foot winery on their property in time for the September harvest.
“One of the most mental things we have ever done but it was so worth it,” Mike said. “We made some incredible wine in 2014 and our reputation is starting to precede us.”
While this is their dream, the couple still has their day jobs.
Mike, 32, runs his own custom counter top business, and hung on to some of his bigger contracts, which brings him back to Langley and the Lower Mainland for work every month. Robin, 31, still works in health care in Victoria.
The couple will be in Vancouver next week (March 11) at Marquis Wine Cellars where they will share their story ‘We Bought A Vineyard.
It is also a free wine tasting.
From 3 to 4 p.m. there will be a media and VIP guest tasting for all Marquis customers and new guests. The wine tasting will be from 4 to 6 p.m. with wine talk and a meet and greet with the winemaker.
The event is being held at Marquis Wine Cellars (1034 Davie St.).