Pivo Vino Bru-In is the culmination of many years of passion in fermenting.
Willis Gilles moved to the Kootenays in 2013 when he grew tired of city life, and how disconnected it was from humanity. When he came to the Kootenays he moved to Winlaw to do an apprenticeship in organic farming at Against the Wind Farm. When the growing season was complete he moved to Nelson to experience what the small city had to offer, and after about a year there he met his now partner and moved to Thrums where he still lives. He worked with his partner who owns Thrums Local Market and Gallery for about three years, and then spent the next two years working with the crew at Tailout Brewing in Castlegar. When the Winlaw Brew-Op posted that they were closing, Willis approached the owners about taking over their business. They realized he had the passion and the skills to run it successfully so they approved of the transfer of business. Since he could not remain at the former location, he moved the operation to the Junction in South Slocan, where the Water Source has great minerality for fermentations. He changed the name and did the necessary improvements to the light warehousing space to run as a U-Brew and U-Vin.
Willis has 8 years experience fermenting Beer, Wine, Cider and more. He is also passionate about food fermentation and grows vegetables for his ferments, Hot Sauce being the ferment of choice. When he moved in with his partner he was amazed at the diverse orchard on the property and immediately started experimenting with fermenting Fruit wine and Ciders. After the first two seasons of fermenting with fruit he dove headlong into beer brewing and found a deep passion for the complex malty bitter beverage. He was kindly invited to Port Moody to do an internship at Moody Ales on Brewer's Row by his friend who was one of the owners at the time. This just furthered his love of Beer and he kept brewing away and experimenting with the endless creations possible in the world of Beer. He is very excited to further his knowledge in not just beer, but is looking forward to learning more about the sweet science of wine.