Larry Gerelus and Linda Pruegger
Together Larry Gerelus and Linda Pruegger started with a 10 acre vineyard in 1992 and established Stag’s Hollow Winery in 1995. They continue as hands on owners in every aspect, from the vineyard, to the winery, to the customer.
Stag’s Hollow Winery is the culmination of a longtime dream. Larry’s interest in the Okanagan started in 1981 with the first sampling of Okanagan wines made by the neophyte wine industry. Combined with his desire to eventually live in the Okanagan and the belief that the Valley had the potential for good wine, the initial seeds were sown and filed in the back of his head for future recall.
In 1991 Larry left the Oil Industry and spent the summer researching prime grape growing areas in the Okanagan. This research led him to the Okanagan Falls area, which was described by one well-known viticulturist at the time, as the “grape growing centre of the universe” for the valley. In 1992 the existing 10-acre vineyard was purchased. Later, in 1995 after its first crush, construction of Stag’s Hollow Winery began.
Over the past 25 years, Larry has worn the hats of Winemaker, viticulturalist, marketer, builder and fixer of almost anything that needed to be fixed! Today Larry concentrates his efforts in the vineyard and marketing. His philosophy has always been if you grow quality in the vineyard, making great wine will follow. He strives for balance, sustainability and a holistic approach to growing grapes.
Linda moved from a role of selling and transporting crude oil to producing and selling wine. Her dream of living in the foothills west of Calgary took her a little further west to the foothills of the Okanagan Valley. Since 1995, like Larry, Linda has been involved in every aspect of the winery and vineyard, from pruning and suckering, to crawling inside tanks. Today you are more likely to find her in the wine shop or the office.