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New Ownership at 40 Knots Vineyard & Estate Winery

Date: 07/17/14

Brenda Hetman-Craig and Layne Craig set to steer the winery to success.


There is something special in the air and change in the wind at 40 Knots Vineyard and Estate Winery. With the Strait of Georgia and the ferry to Powell River just a stone's throw away, the Comox Valley winery site is alive with the sounds of barking sea lions and birds singing from the trees and bushes from surrounding vineyards. It is a pristine place that echoes with life. Combine these forces with an 18-acre vineyard and thriving boutique winery and you can understand the immediate attraction that Brenda Hetman-Craig and Layne Craig felt upon their first visit.

Hailing from Fort St John, the couple were seeking to start the next chapter of their lives in Comox. Layne, who grew up on a Saskatchewan farm wanted to put his love of the land into play, while Brenda wanted to put her business management skills toward building a successful family business, one that would ultimately involve their grown children. It was an added bonus for Layne, a pilot, that the Comox air force base is nearby. Planes can often be seen overhead adding to the force of energy that surrounds the site. The pair met founder Bill Montgomery who was pursuing retirement and quickly came to an agreement.

The vineyards at 40 Knots were established commencing 2007 with Bill ultimately planting 18 acres of Auxerrois, Siegerrebe, Chardonnay, Pinot Gris, Pinot Noir, and Gamay Noir. The wine shop opened in 2011 and quickly became a destination for locals and tourists alike. Brenda and Layne will maintain the name 40 Knots Vineyard and Estate Winery. A lineup of Okanagan-grown wines is added under the name Stall Speed. The pair will be working with Summerland-based Okanagan Crush Pad winemaker Matt Dumayne, who will assist with viticulture and work with Vineyard Manager, Lucas Renshaw, on the wine portfolio.

Under the 40 Knots label the winery is offering Chardonnay, Pinot Gris, a blended white called Whitecaps, a rosé, and a traditional method sparkling wine, Spindrift Brut 2010, which won a gold in 2013. The new Stall Speed label, depicting an illustration of the air speed indicator from Layne's plane, offer a Meritage and a Merlot Icewine.

"The wines that we can craft from Comox-grown grapes are delicate, aromatic and fresh. Our reason for adding a lineup of wines from the Okanagan is to allow for some bolder reds and Icewine that we cannot achieve locally so that we can present something for everyone's taste", noted Layne.

Brenda and Layne intend to become strongly involved with the community of Comox. "We feel really blessed to have been able to move here and have found people to be extremely welcoming. As we did in Fort St John, we plan to give back and help build Comox as a tourist destination and a great place to live", said Brenda.

40 Knots Vineyard and Estate Winery is located at 2400 Anderton Road near the Comox Powell River Ferry Terminal. The winery is open Thursday to Sunday, 11:30am to 5:30pm. Bring a picnic and enjoy a glass of wine on the cool setting of our vineyard terrace or book your special event or conference. For more information visit

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