Our Team | Hillside Winery and Bistro

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Our Team

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At Hillside each individual performs a unique function. but most importantly, we are a tight-knit team that shares a dedication to producing exceptional wines, scrumptious meals and memorable experiences for our guests. We are genuinely delighted to meet our visitors and to share in the pleasure they experience when touring our vineyard, tasting our wines or simply relaxing on our patio where the stress of day-to-day living melts away.
 

Duncan McCowan
President

A professional geologist and an entrepreneur by nature, Duncan has a long history of being associated with the start-up and growth of several successful oil and gas companies, in both technical and managerial capacities.

Duncan became involved with Hillside as an investor in 1998. I have always had a passion for the wine business and of course for wine itself.  As the long-time Chairman of the Board of Hillside, Duncan also served as President from 2002-2005 and has now re-assumed that role.

My driving philosophy, which is also embraced by the outstanding team at Hillside, is to produce the finest wines possible while creating an exceptional and unique experience for visitors to Hillside.

Kathy Malone
Winemaker

Raised in the mountains of Vermont, Kathy has called the Okanagan “home” for more than three decades.  In 2008, after many years winemaking with Mission Hill Family Estate, Kathy made the move to Hillside to share in the Naramata lifestyle.

Kathy has been deeply involved in the development of the BC wine industry over the 30 years of her career.  As chair of the BC Wine Grape Council’s R&D Committee she appreciates the dynamic nature of our young wine region, “Growing wine grapes in desert conditions, on the edge of climactic viability, has necessitated an acceleration in research and development that has resulted in international recognition of the work of our local research scientists.  We are very proud of their achievements.”

Since her arrival at Hillside, Kathy’s understanding of the unique conditions of the Naramata Bench caused her to direct her focus to the local terroirs, “our region and vines being so young, we are recognizing terroir differences and flavor complexity in the wines more and more as the vines come "of age".  By respecting and showcasing the fruit of these vines, I want to give our wine drinkers the chance to share in the discovery and development of this special region.”

Kathy brings out the best in Hillside wines with a gentle touch and minimal intervention.

Dave Holmes
Cellar Master

Our Cellarmaster, Dave Holmes, joined us in the summer of 2008 in our wine shop and proved to be so passionate about Hillside wines that we asked him to work with us on the crush crew that year.  Dave’s background at the Penticton Foundry and the Alberta oil patch proved to be a great basis for learning the many jobs required of a cellarman, and he quickly advanced to directing the crush, cellar, and bottling crews year-round.  Born and raised in the South Okanagan, Dave has a keen understanding and love of the terroir, and of course, the wines.

Brent Pillon
Executive Chef

Inspired by his grandfather at an early age following and helping him in the kitchen, Chef Pillon had developed a full-fledge passion for good food and knew he wanted to study culinary arts. His culinary career began more than 10 years ago when he enrolled at the culinary arts program at Thompson Rivers University. From the beginning he prided himself on providing guests with an extraordinary experience they would always remember.  After studying at Burrowing Owl Estate Winery and Manteo Resorthe brought his vibrant skills to the pass in our Bistro at Hillside Winery.
Chef Pillon’s first introduction to Hillside Winery Bistro was during the 2011 season where he quickly worked his way up to Chef de cuisine.
In 2016 Chef Pillon took over the helm as Executive Chef of Hillside Winery Bistro. With his strong commitment to
providing guests with a local and sustainable dining experience, Chef Pillon looks forward to building strong relationships with regional farmers, artisans and 
purveyors, and making lasting contributions to the Okanagan Valley.

 
Charlotte Sherriff
Wine Shop Manager

The Wine Shop sure is busy, so stay tuned for Charlotte's bio!

Lisa Henderson
Bistro Manager

Born and raised in Penticton and Naramata, Lisa Henderson knows what the Okanagan Valley has to offer to our guests.  With a background in Guest Services and Hospitality, Lisa has previously worked for companies such as Coast Hotel in Victoria, Penticton Ramada and the Naramata Heritage Inn with experience in Accounting, Guest services and Catering; joining our Hillside Team in Spring 2013.

With a passion for food and wine, Lisa works hands on with her team to provide the best “Hillside” experience for all our guests.

Karin Parkin
Grounds & Warehouse Manager

Karin Parkin calls herself the “Girl Friday” of Hillside. For the past ten years, she has had a hand in almost every aspect of running the winery including working in the warehouse, assisting on the bottling line and lending a hand wherever it is needed. However, her great love and welcome responsibility are the beautiful grounds surrounding the winery. From the beginning of March to the end of October, Karin tends her dinner plate dahlias, giant zinnias, ornamental grasses and the barrels and giant pots overflowing with flowers. The rolling lawns and sumptuous flowerbeds present some of Hillside’s favourite “photo opportunities.”

“I love my gardens,” Karin says. “I can’t imagine doing anything else.”

Dirk Ordze
Accountant