BC Wine Month

As BC's premier grape growing region, the Okanagan Valley produces many world-class wines and a wonderful opportunity to explore its sun-drenched terrain while enjoying its vibrant local wine culture.

Castanet.net is celebrating BC Wine Month 2018 by bringing focus to some of the Okanagan Wine Region's most renowned wineries. We encourage you to learn more about their unique features here and support them by visiting their tasting rooms soon!

Click over to our contests page, where you can enter to win a more than $1,000 gift certificate package from participating wineries. You must be 19 to enter.

Eau Vivre, a new passion

It’s a common story in wine country – a family comes to visit, falls in love with the wines, and decides it's time to pursue a new passion, owning a winery.

The Bajwa family came to the Similkaeen Valley from Vernon, where they still make their home, with a background in retail sales at their own liquor store, and discovered the beauty and terroir of the area. From that, husband Sukh asked his wife Neetu about buying a winery. Repeatedly.

“I kept saying no,” she laughs, “but it was his dream, and now here we are!”

They spent time looking at properties, deciding on the boutique and award-winning winery, Eau Vivre. Neetu says they fell in love with the “delicious” wines, and the spectacular valley, not to mention the unique terroir of the Similkameen.

With much to learn, they spent a few months with the previous owner. Brand new to the winery business, Neetu says her husband – now winemaker – is so excited that he can’t sleep at night. Their two children, both in college in Vernon, are also taking part by pruning and bottling this year, with their daughter spending her summer at the winery.

Find their wines at numerous events this season, and welcome this new winemaking family!

Relax at Crescent Hill

Just above Penticton is an award-winning, unpretentious winery waiting for you to drop by, slip off your shoes, and relax.

Owner Teresa Murray-Wiseman weaves a story that begins with her father, Glenallyn and his vision to create the first vineyard in Penticton. Using 100 per cent pure clones from the old country, his vision became a reality, and now the winery has three generations of history.

A recent repeat winner at the Cascadia International Wine Competition, and best-in-class for its Glennallyn (named for dad, of course), Private Reserve Gewürztraminer at the Pacific Rim Wine Competition, “wine finisher” Russell Wiseman – Teresa’s husband – is a hands-on winemaker. Together, they do everything themselves, but with help from their daughter and son-in-law who are now learning the ropes.

Teresa is firm in her belief that Okanagan wines are poised to be better than California. “We’re doing what we want,” she says, “our dad’s legacy is out there and we have good wines for a good price. It’s all about the balance and appreciating the beauty that is here.”

Crescent Hill has fun with its labels; be sure to ask about the stories behind Cristal and Hissy Fit when you drop by for a tasting, or spot them at events with fellow Okanagan Falls wineries.

Township 7, all about wine

With vineyards in the Okanagan and Fraser valleys, Township 7 produces top flight red and white wines, including Seven Stars, a sparkling wine recently was named best bubbly at the Cascadia International Wine Competition.

This Mothers’ Day, the Naramata Bench winery celebrates the release of its 2017 Rosé with a special food and wine pairing seminar May 13, from 11a.m. to 5 p.m. The winery’s sommelier will be putting together a charcuterie board with the focus on wine. Like the Rosé, many of the aromatic white wines sold out last year; however, visitors to the winery this spring will find the latest 2017 releases of Gewürztraminer, Pinot Gris, Muscat and popular 7 Blanc filling the shelves. Before your favourites sell out, consider joining Township 7’s wine club, clubSeven. 

May brings the Spring Wine Festival. Coinciding with the festival, Township 7 will be offering a Wine and Food Pairing May 5 and 12. From 2 to 3:30 p.m., the resident sommelier will simplify the relationship between wine and food, exploring the way wine highlights the array of food influences. And of course, celebrate Dad on June 17 at the Fathers’ Day al fresco luncheon.

Come June, the renovated tasting room will have an additional outdoor space. Whether you’re coming for a special event or just dropping by, Township 7’s wines will impress.

A towering icon

Mission Hill Family Estate is an icon of the Okanagan.

Explore Mission Hill Family Estate throughout the year with our immersive Winery Experiences and Tours.

The exceptional wines are the main attraction, but you’ll also want to explore the exquisite grounds and delve into the factors that make Okanagan wine country so unique and special.

Exclusive Sommelier-Guided Experiences begin with a glass in-hand overlooking rows of Pinot Noir and Chardonnay, set against Okanagan Lake and offer an intimate first-hand understanding of Mission Hill’s winemaking philosophy, property and history.

Reservations are recommended at 250-768-6483 or [email protected].

Deep and quirky roots

The Naramata Bench is, itself, just slightly off the beaten path.

A scenic, slow and twisty road leads wine lovers to many discoveries overlooking the city of Penticton and the vast blue of Okanagan Lake, and even further off the path, a short drive or cycle off of Naramata Road lies Deep Roots.

Quirky? Perhaps a bit, as the winery wakes up its vines each spring with a bagpiper playing through the vineyard, celebrating a layer of the family’s history on the property. For nearly 100 years, the Hardman family has been farming on these clay cliffs above the village of Naramata.

Indeed, the roots do run deep, and members of the family are usually who you will find behind the tasting bar guiding you through their wines, each a unique reflection of this distinct Naramata terroir.

The property, originally a fruit orchard, has been completely re-planted to premium vinifera grape varieties, and as the vines run deep, so does the winemaker, Will Hardman. The fourth generation to cultivate this land and protect it for the future, Will has been raised on this soil and knows it well.

Discover Deep Roots, it’s worth taking a detour down from the road above, for fine wines and a warm welcome.

Reserve your tickets now for their annual Awakening of the Grapes Event in May, learn more here.

Rooted in the Similkameen

April is B.C. wine month.

Here's the latest in an ongoing series of features.

A slow meander through the picturesque Similkameen Valley, Canada’s organic capital, takes you to a 30-acre organic farm in Cawston which supplies the fresh produce for the on-site retail store, bistro, wholesale division and organic winery and cidery.

With a clear mantra that promotes food sustainability while supporting family farms and the many growers they work with. One stop here, and you’ll be able to enjoy the bistro, or licensed picnic area before picking up the ingredients you need for your own fresh creations.

Of course, being in wine country, that includes a bottle or two of organic wine or cider from the aptly named Rustic Roots Winery.

Newly bottled, two sparkling wines will soon be on the shelf: Fameuse, made with Fameuse apples, from a 102-year-old tree with a touch of Santa Rosa plums (think sparkling rosé), and Pippin, made with Pippin apples and nectarines. Cider is also a must. The apple-rhubarb cider has a hint of vanilla, perfect for a hot summer day.

As for that apple tree? Its 102nd birthday is this year, and in September a five-course organic meal will be served underneath its branches in celebration, featuring ingredients that have been harvested just a short walk away.

Win with Wine Month!

With Premier John Horgan in the Okanagan to promote April as Wine Month in B.C., what better time to savour what the Okanagan has to offer?

Castanet is celebrating Wine Month by partnering with Okanagan wineries – and giving you a chance to win!

Click over to our contests page, where you can enter to win a more than $1,000 gift certificate package from participating wineries. You must be 19 to enter.

The Okanagan has become B.C.'s wine-producing region, with 84 per cent of the province’s vineyard acreage. 

It's grown from obscurity in the early 1980s to enjoy world-class recognition.

Indeed, the valley's wine history goes back much further. The first winery in the Okanagan was Calona Vineyards, which opened in 1932 and is still in business today.

With 182 wineries now calling the Okanagan home, a total of 8,619 acres of grapes feed the production that brings the bottle to your table.

"Castanet is proud to help promote BC Wine Month and our wonderful wineries right here in the Okanagan," says general manager Chris Kearney.

Entering the contest is as simple as punching in your name and contact info.

Entries close April 30, and the draw for the prize will be made on May 1.

Best of luck!

Indigenous marks a first

April is B.C. wine month.

Here's the latest in an ongoing series of features.

Indigenous World Winery first opened its doors in May 2016, becoming the first Indigenous, privately owned winery in North America.

Proprietors Robert and Bernice Louie, proudly invite lovers of culture, wine and food to take in all that the wine shop and restaurant, Red Fox Club, have to offer.

In visiting Indigenous World Winery, you will be introduced to members of the Louie family through the labels of our award winning wines and their meanings. Guests are offered a flight of five wines to taste and a beautiful array of items in the gift shop worth browsing through. 

Bring a picnic lunch, purchase a snack and a bottle of wine or head to the restaurant to take in the gorgeous backdrop that is the ancestral lands of the Syilx people.

The guest experience at Indigenous World Winery doesn’t just include aboriginal culture and modern native cuisine, but also the most incredible views of Okanagan Lake.

CedarCreek a BC pioneer

April is Wine Month in B.C.

Here's the latest in our month-long series of features.

CedarCreek Estate Winery is one of Kelowna's oldest wineries. Purchased in 1986, CedarCreek released its first wines in 1987 and was one of the first eight pioneering wineries of the province. 

With four generations of agricultural heritage and more than three decades of experience, we have pursued perfection and produced some of the Okanagan Valley's best wines, resulting in CedarCreek being twice recognized as Canada's Winery of the Year.

Our knowledge of our terroir and dedication to our craft have brought many awards and international acclaim to our winery and region. We are committed to building on our success by continuing to refine our approach to wine growing.

Passion, tenacity, care and hard work are vital, but, above all, we seek truth in wine. And the results show in every bottle. On that, you have our word.

CedarCreek Estate Winery is located 20 minutes from downtown Kelowna – making it an ideal destination for locals and those touring wine country. Situated on a hillside, you are treated to a panoramic view of lush vineyards, Okanagan Lake, immaculate grounds and beautiful gardens. We are committed to providing guests an intimate and educational experience in an exceptional setting.
Our entire team is excited to bring the wine country experience to a whole new level at CedarCreek this year with the opening of our brand new tasting room, and year-round restaurant, Home Block at CedarCreek, opening late summer 2018.

Catch up with The Chase

The Chase Wines is Lake Country’s newest winery and culinary destination to experience.

The winery is located on a picturesque property with panoramic views of surrounding orchards, vineyards, rolling mountains and Okanagan Lake.

Talented winemaker Adrian Baker strives to produce complex, bright and exciting wines.

The estate-grown portfolio showcases Pinot Gris, Gewurztraminer, Riesling, Rose, Chardonnay and Pinot Noir.

The Garden Bistro features a seasonally inspired menu of fresh ingredients from our vineyard-side garden and other locally sourced products.

The casual dining atmosphere allows guests to enjoy patio lunches, sunset dinners and weekend brunch.

The combination of high-quality wines paired with delicious cuisine makes The Chase Wines a leading destination.

Upcoming Winery Events