Local spots up for 'Foodies'

Foodies take note: Penticton has arrived on the scene.

Three businesses in town — Winecrush, People's Crafthouse and Roche Wines — are finalists in Western Living Magazine's 2018 Foodies of the Year awards. It recognizes top chefs, restauranteurs, farmers, producers, sommeliers, winemakers and brewmasters in western Canada.

Also, five food-related companies have been nominated for the Grant Thornton Thompson Okanagan Business Excellence award — Brodo Kitchen, Poplar Grove Winery, the Nest and Nectar, Winecrush and Pulse Kitchen.

"The culinary scene in Penticton has just been blowing up in the last couple of years," said Tyson Still, co-founder of Winecrush. "There's such great energy here, with a lot of new restaurants opening up in Penticton and the Okanagan, which are attracting that fine-dining experience."

Winecrush infuses leftover skins and seeds from Okanagan winery tanks and infuses them into meats, cheese and crackers. It has only been in business for two years, but their products are sold all across B.C.

People's Crafthouse, recently renamed The People's Soda Co., is also in the running for a Foodie award. Their "Fizzery" is the only craft soda tasting room in western Canada. 

"When we started our little company making soda pop with natural ingredients and traditional old-fashioned methods, we didn't think we would be picked up on a radar of this scale," said Jason Cox, owner. 

Anthony Haddad, Penticton's economic development manager, is not surprised to see Penticton recognized for its culinary culture.

"It's a great example of all the innovation underway in Penticton's food and drink scene, which is still just getting started. We'll toast to that!"

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