What do I love about Sage Hayward Vineyards? Top of the list has to be family. There are few greater pleasures in life than driving my brother Doug crazy. Watching him go into orbit as I operate the tractor through a row of vines without realizing the emergency brake is still on is pure heaven. Working with my wife, sister-in-law, sister, two sons and numerous nieces and nephews gives me a profound sense of comfort and fulfilment. Then there’s community. Our family has been on Saturna for over three decades. The people on this island never cease to amaze with their kindness, support and genuine friendship. This place is our home and we are incredibly proud of it. Excellence is a big part as well. We have put together a team of experts who are passionate about both winemaking and farming. Watching them perform their craft is nothing short of inspiring. And finally there’s Nature. We live in one of the most beautiful places in the world. This land has solved the riddle of creating a balance amongst living things and its mentorship is not lost on us when we farm. Minimal intervention is our mantra and it’s paying off as this unique terroir speaks through our wines.
But still…. driving Doug crazy is about as good as it gets.
What I appreciate most about Sage Hayward Vineyards is the connection to people and community, the journey of creating delicious and fresh wines, and the awe-inspiring beauty of nature. I enjoy being a part of a family and team that supports and cares for each other, they inspire me to be a better version of myself every day. Additionally, the vineyard itself offers its own seductive powers, teaching me the importance of connection and symbiosis within the powerful eco-system it has created. And, if I’m being honest, I may have been initially motivated by the prospect of enjoying Anne’s delectable pancake breakfasts every weekend. Overall, my love for Sage Hayward Vineyards is rooted in the sense of belonging, purpose, and inspiration that it provides.
I grew up in Nova Scotia, went to school in Ontario, spent my working life in Alberta and retired to BC. Of all the places I love in this beautiful country, Saturna Island tops the list. Doug and I bought a cabin here when our three now-grown kids were still young, and started living here full-time in 2020; my plans at that time centred around writing a novel. Life threw us the ultimate curve – I’m now learning the ropes at Sage Hayward Vineyards and thrilled to be part of the venture; novel’s on indefinite hold…! Restoring the grace and viability of our vines is a soul-satisfying experience, and doing it with family and friends just takes it all to the next level.
I was born in Northern Germany into a family of butchers, becoming aware of the importance of good food at a very early age. I began my chef training in my late teens, completing my training in restaurants and hotels in Berlin. Add a stint at the Grosvenor Hotel in London and I was well on my way to becoming an accomplished chef. Fast forward to Vancouver in the early 80’s where I was approached to be the Head Chef at Isadora’s Cooperative restaurant situated in the heart of Granville Island. As the largest cooperative restaurant in North America we garnered a lot of attention and gained many kudos serving newly defined ‘West Coast Cuisine’ featuring local products. During that time, some of my friends owned property on Saturna and I visited often. An introduction to John Guy at Haggis Farms changed my life when he invited my late wife to run the newly acquired Saturna General Store. Our family moved to Saturna in 1996. I have been serving creative food to the islanders of Saturna ever since, in most part at the Saturna Cafe. I love the opportunity to work at the Feral Goat Bistro alongside such a dedicated team bringing this vineyard back to life.