The Vancouver International Wine Festival is devastated by the sudden passing of Terry Threlfall, longtime festival family member and our 2012 Sommelier of the Year. Our hearts go out to his family, friends, and colleagues, as we share their sorrow at this unimaginable loss.
Terry started at the festival as a young wine enthusiast, helping out with special event wine logistics at the turn of the last century. His wine career then took him abroad, to Hong Kong and London, where he was head sommelier at Richard Corrigan’s Lindsay House before joining Chez Bruce in 2004 as head sommelier and wine buyer. In 2010, Terry returned to Vancouver to assume the role of wine director at the Hotel Georgia’s Hawksworth Restaurant, where he created a perennially award-winning wine list. He was the owner of Clos Fine Wines and consulted on fine wine to restaurants in Canada and the UK.
He was a mainstay at VanWineFest, helping with wine logistics and curation, acting as a moderator and panelist on seminars, and introducing the dinner wines at the Bacchanalia Gala Dinner + Auction. In 2012, the festival was thrilled when “our Terry” was named Sommelier of the Year, an honour he repeated at the 2012 Vancouver Magazine Restaurant Awards.
Although, he returned to London to become the Sommelier & Wine Buying Director at Selfridges, we always looked forward to having him return as our Festival Sommelier during festival week. A consummate professional, Terry was a calming presence in the behind-the-scenes madness, though he did occasionally need someone to follow in his wake to retrieve his abandoned possessions.
VIWF Executive Director Harry Hertscheg speaks on behalf of all festival staff and volunteers: “It’s unthinkable that we’ll never again share a glass of wine with him, but his enthusiasm for and knowledge of wine, his dedication to impeccable service, and his generosity of spirit have left a lasting legacy with everyone whose lives he touched. He will always be with us in our hearts and our memories.”