Winemaker Profile: Charlie Baessler, Corcelettes Estate Winery

The final countdown is on for Devour! Okanagan The Food Film Fest and we want to give you a little peek into the lives and minds of some of the Similkameen Wineries Association members who will be pouring during the weekend of food, film, wine, and fun. This weekend-long event is a foodie’s dream, set among the backdrop of one of Canada’s top food and wine regions. Festival events include an East vs West Showdown featuring Chef Michael Howell and Chef Adair Scott; a 6 course, wine paired dinner, with dishes from some of BC’s top chefs, paired with Similkameen wines and short, food-themed films; a Mother’s Day Rosé Sunday Brunch; and a Slow Food Market of Taste.

Select tickets and rooms are still available for this special event, taking place from May 6-8 at Watermark Beach Resort!

Corcelettes Estate Winery

Charlie Baessler is the winemaker at his family's winery, Corcelettes Estate Winery, which is named after the Baessler family farm in Switzerland.

Charlie Baessler is the winemaker at his family’s winery, Corcelettes Estate Winery, which is named after the Baessler family farm in Switzerland.

Name:  Charlie Baessler

Winery: Corcelettes Estate Winery

What path led you to a career as a winemaker?

I studied science and agriculture at the University of Lethbridge which landed me a job at Burrowing Owl as their operations manager nearly a decade ago. During the fall and winter I began to assist in their cellar and became fascinated with the whole process of “from vine to wine”- I dreamed of having my own vineyard and cellar in the Similkameen Valley one day and that dream was fulfilled much earlier than I could ever have imagined. Serendipity!

gate shot

What is your favourite, unconventional wine pairing? Syrah and Swiss style sausage with Dijon mustard- a to-die-for combo and a perfect winemaker lunch.

If you were a wine, which wine would you be?  Cabernet Franc! Full of flavour and personality, also robust and ambitious. My wife has said this since we met!

What is your favourite food or wine related film and why? A Year in Burgundy- it’s a beautiful documentary on Burgundian wines filmed in France, it made my mouth water.


What is your greatest passion? First of course is my children; We recently had our twin baby girls and they’re my world. Second is my vineyard – I love putting my energy and resources into growing superior grapes that make what I  think are some of the best wines in BC. Viticulture is our first priority at Corcelettes and I’m proud to say our growing practices here are first class, no shortcuts taken.

 harvest action

What might people be surprised to learn about you? I love skiing. Growing up in Switzerland made me pretty swift on my planks and I’m the three time “Winemaker’s Cup” champion – it’s a fun race held here in BC where winemaker’s get together for fun – we mostly just saber bubbly the night before the race and then attempt to ski off the hangover the next day. I’m looking forward to my twins being old enough for me to get them going on the ski hill with me!

To learn more about Devour! Okanagan The Food Film Fest, or to book your package, visit our Devour! info page or call us at 1-888755-3480.