Patricia Dinsmore - Wine Writer, Event Planner and Wine Consultant

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Richard Karlo - a friend, a pioneer, an amazing winemaker

Posted on November 27, 2014 at 2:15 PM

Our little corner of the international wine industry was shaken up last night when word started to spread through Facebook and Twitter that Richard Karlo had passed away. Richard, along with his wife Sherry Martin, was the owner of Karlo Estates in Prince Edward County, one of the newest wine regions in Ontario. Richard was a pioneer and an ambassador for this burgeoning wine region. He was also a great friend and one that many people referred to as a “gentle giant”. Richard always had a huge smile on his face, an infectious laugh and open arms to anyone that walked through the doors of his winery. Richard was always there to lend a helping hand and there are countless stories from other winemakers in The County who went to him for advice when they encountered stumbling blocks or were simply wanting to put roots down in this small corner of Eastern Ontario.

Richard loved to experiment and you could see that in his vineyard. Whether it was the grapes he planted that very few others were using or his decision to move along with making both a red and white Port styled wines, the red having been named a Top Ten Cutting Edge Wine of the World in 2010. I remember hearing Richard say once that you should always “Bite off more than you can chew…and then just keep chewing”. They are great words to live by and they definitely epitomize who Richard was. He loved a challenge, was always ready to meet it head on and although it may feel like he was not able to beat this challenge, it is because his spirit lives on in each and every one of our memories his dream to see Prince Edward County become the powerhouse that this region deserves on the world wine stage will become a reality. RIP Richard – there are no words to truly describe how much you will be missed but your laughter, your smile and the way you lived each day to the absolute fullest will live on in each of us who had the immense pleasure to know you.

 

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