From farm to fermentation, Magnetic Hill Winery perfecting their bottle since ‘05
Posted on July 09, 2021 | By Alexander Chafe | 0 Comments
Founders of Magnetic Hill Winery Janet and Jeff Everett have a love for agriculture. After building New Brunswick’s largest raspberry and strawberry u-pick, they started looking for a new business venture to support their family year-round. Inspiration struck when the government allowed farm-based wineries and a historic property went on the market. In 2005, the winery officially opened its doors.
Highlighting Local History
The Everetts purchased the 1867 estate close to Moncton’s famous Magnetic Hill Illusion in the early 2000s. With its scenic views, historical significance and tourist appeal, it was a prime location.
Though restoration was needed, Janet and Jeff couldn’t resist the opportunity to showcase the antiquity of past winemakers on a property as old as Canada.
Sales began in 2005 with three fruit wines, all made from the Everetts’ raspberry and strawberry crops. Response was encouraging and the business expanded from there.
In 2008, Magnetic Hill Winery saw a 200% sales growth, which earned them the Greater Moncton Excellence Award for Top Emerging Business.
By 2010, they started a bed and breakfast at the winery, and that same year planted their first crops of grapes and rhubarb.
Introducing grape wine was a challenge. The winery was known for its fruit varieties, which received major support from loyal customers. But local grape wine was not well known. This also meant being compared to other grape wines that have been developed for over 700 years.
After years of research and experimentation the Everett family is proud of what they’ve accomplished. Zach Everett noted that it’s important to embrace what sets them apart: “I’d be proud to put our wine on any table alongside any wine of the world and tell our story of where it comes from!”
Retail and Team Expansions
Magnetic Hill Winery’s next expansion was entering retail. In 2015, a pilot program from the provincial government allowed wine sales in local grocery stores. This was when son Zach and his partner Barbara officially joined the owner-operator team.
Retail was a catalyst for major growth. It allowed easy access to customers and helped sustain sales outside of the tourist season. Today, Magnetic Hill Winery’s products are sold in over 150 retail stores.
And Growth Continues
Magnetic Hill Winery has grown to be one of the largest wineries in Atlantic Canada, selling about 40 different wines from dessert to dry varieties. Production has expanded from 5,000 bottles a year to 100,000, all made with local produce grown by the Everetts and farmers surrounding Moncton.
2021 marks the opening of a new winery built on site featuring a tasting room, boutique, upgraded production facilities, warehouse and office space. And growth doesn’t end there. Not wanting to give away too many details, Zach says “we’ve got some exciting expansion plans in the works that will serve as a major milestone and anchoring N.B. as Canada’s 5th largest wine producing province.”
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