Black Cloud Pinot Noir, a small Okanagan Valley BC wine producer.

I work with Black Cloud Pinot Noir, selling their wines across BC.

Black Cloud Pinot Noir // image by Chantal Ireland

A Garagiste Producer in the Okanagan Valley with just 500 cases of Pinot Noir in annual production, Black Cloud Pinot Noir is a combination of talents from Proprietor Audralee Daum and her Winemaker husband, Bradley Cooper. They offer small lot, hand crafted Okanagan Valley wines. 

The name Black Cloud came from their first production of wine, 80 cases they'd made for someone else, that ended up in their garage instead of payment that should have ended up in their bank account. They called it the black cloud over their heads.

960 bottles of wine is a lot to drink by yourself.

So, being the good Entrepreneurs that they are, they talked to Township 7, where Brad was Winemaker at the time, and partnered up to sell it as a label of their own. They started making Black Cloud Pinot Noir at the winery, and got those 80 cases into the bank after all, and found their silver lining.

After nine vintages as Township 7’s Winemaker, to now in his second vintage at Serendipity Winery, Bradley partners with quality focused growers, producing Black Cloud Pinot Noir since 2008. Grapes are sourced from highly-regarded vineyards in Okanagan Falls and on the Naramata Bench.

Brad & Audralee in Châteauneuf-du-Pape, France.

Brad & Audralee in Châteauneuf-du-Pape, France.

Audralee runs the business side of things, without her it's likely Brad's wines wouldn't stray too far from the cellar.

Red Sky Rosé is brilliantly coloured, wonderfully dry and great with food. Fleuvage (a word made up by a Kelowna Weatherman) and Altostratus (an actual cloud) are a classroom on Pinot. Made from the same clone of Pinot Noir grape, enjoy them side by side – this is not a sales pitch, it's just so interesting – to learn about terroir and winemaking style.

Fleuvage fruit is grown on Naramata Bench, Altostratus in Okanagan Falls. Altostratus is from older vines, with lower yields, spends more time in barrel (a minimum of fourteen months) and bottle before release, and sees new French Oak, while Fleuvage is aged in neutral French Oak, rarely more than twelve months.

Three completely different expressions of this, the heartbreak grape.

Black Cloud Pinot Noir is a client, and I love their wines, this is part of the reason we work together, I can't sell or write about things I don't love. We met years ago on Twitter, started trading coffee for wine, and eventually Rich and I ended up on a wine tour with them in Provence. Current releases include 2013 Fleuvage, 2012 Altostratus, and 2014 Red Sky Rosé. Get in touch if you'd like to order these wines, or find out where to buy them in your 'hood.

Brad looking to make off with some wine in Châteauneuf-du-Pape, France.

Brad looking to make off with some wine in Châteauneuf-du-Pape, France.