About SGW and our Winemaker

Ron Taylor winemaker Sleeping Giant Fruit Winery

Our winemaker Ron Taylor

Ron Taylor has a degree in microbiology from the University of British Columbia. His journey has taken him from quality control at Andres Wines in Port Moody, where he quickly advanced to the position of Assistant Wine Maker before becoming the Chief Winemaker. Ron spent 22 years at Andres Wines as an integral part of a team that produced over 5 million litres of wine annually.

After leaving Andres in 1992, Ron has focused on working with small wineries in British Columbia and Washington State with several trips to Mainland China to consult on cider and other winemaking projects. Ron has been involved with the start up of wineries that are reviving the art of making fruit wines produced from superior quality fruit and berries grown in the winery vineyards.

Ron has infused his high standards into Sleeping Giant Fruit Winery and has brought a commitment to perfecting his trade. His efforts have won awards and acknowledgement from his peers, as well as praise from visitors to Sleeping Giant with crafted wines that draw attention to detail, resulting in a wide range of varietals that are distinctive and exemplary.

History of Sleeping Giant Winery and Summerland Sweets
The roots of Sleeping Giant Fruit Winery start with Ted Atkinson. Ted grew up on an orchard on Middle Bench Rd. in Penticton in the early 1900’s. His passion for processing fruit was passed down from his mother who was well known for her dried, candied Okanagan fruits. After graduating with a degree in food science, Ted began working at the Federal Agricultural Research Station in Summerland where he became head of the food processing lab.
Creating products to use fruit that could not be sold on the fresh market was a vision of Ted’s and his first product to be sold commercially through Summerland Sweets, Sleeping Giant’s parent company, was fruit jelly candies. From there he went on to produce numerous syrups and jams, all created using Ted’s philosophy of using tree or vine-ripened fruit picked at the peak of maturity and abundant in natural flavour.  This philosophy was passed on to grandson-in-law and general manager, Len Filek, who was mentored by Ted when he joined the company in the early 1980's.
Still owned and operated by the family, the company decided to expand in 2008 and opened Sleeping Giant Fruit Winery. They continue to use BC grown tree fruit and berries for their wines of which they now offer nineteen table wines, twelve dessert wines and four sparkling wines.