Explore Penticton-area wine as weather gets sunnier

Nice weather, nice wine

“Stay Local, Support Local" is a collaboration between Castanet and Travel Penticton showcasing what Penticton has to offer all year round. Watch for it every Monday morning.

A great way to be a tourist in your own town is to visit some of the local Penticton wineries that have begun their tastings for the season.

With the beautiful weather, safe, outdoor and socially-distanced tastings are a great way to get out with your bubble to try some unique and delicious local Okanagan wine.

Located on the Skaha Bench, Painted Rock Estate Winery creates ultra-premium, terroir driven wines. Painted Rock focuses mainly on single varietals but also bottles a signature Bordeaux blend that showcases the best grapes the Okanagan Valley has to offer.

With a beautiful patio area with tables on the grass, Painted Rock is a great place to discover some tasty and quality wines.

They will be offering picnics again this summer in collaboration with The Bench Market which include a sandwich, cheese, crackers, fruit and water from June onward. In addition they will be offering cheese and charcuterie from another local favourite, La Cucina.

Painted Rock offers a beautiful outdoor space to do tastings with a knowledgeable wine pro and you can always purchase a full bottle of your favourites to enjoy outside with your picnic or charcuterie. All tasting fees are refundable with a purchase of wine.

“For a great spring or summer wine, try the Red Icon which is our award-winning blend, or our very popular flagship Syrah. They are both a fan favourite for an evening BBQ and overall a great summer red,” says Lauren Skinner with Painted Rock Estate Winery.

Painted Rock is open for tastings from 11 a.m. - 5:30 p.m. for tastings 7 days a week, and they fill up fast so they encourage you to plan ahead and make online reservations in advance.

Little Engine Wines is located on the Naramata Bench with a focus on elegance, quality and complexity in their wines.

During your visit make sure to take a peek at their innovative construction project, building a new cellar and a unique gravity designed crush pad.

Barrel aged for 16 months, the 2018 Gold Chardonnay is a great wine to enjoy with this beautiful spring weather. It is a great creamy Chardonnay but maintains a nice crispness to it.

You will get notes of pear, lemon curd, subtle hints of butterscotch and Crème brûlée. It is nicely balanced and a great bottle of wine to keep on hand for any occasion, or no occasion at all.

Little Engine is open for daily from 11 a.m. - 4 p.m. for tastings on their outside covered patio and recommend booking online for tastings to ensure your spot.

Hillside Winery is offering outdoor, seated tastings in the courtyard under the shade of a beautiful cherry tree and has dedicated outdoor deck areas to host you and your bubble safely.

“Our 2020 Rosé was just released this weekend!” says Jody Schwindt with Hillside Winery. “It is Merlot dominant and it is a fantastic juicy Rosé. With weather like this it is going to go like hotcakes."

Hillside Winery and Bistro is offering grab and go options which are small picnic items to fuel yourself during your wine tasting adventures.

For something more substantial to go, Hillside Bistro is offering take-out on any menu item at the restaurant after 3 p.m. If you don’t want to head out, however, they are newly offering DoorDash so you can order from their menu in the comfort of your pyjamas.

“If you are wanting a unique experience, we are now offering meal kits where we provide everything you’ll need to make your own steak, seafood or vegetarian dinner meals for two,” says Schwindt.

“You can order everything online or just give us a call!”

Tastings at Hillside are available Wednesday through Sunday by appointment from 10 a.m. - 5 p.m. and the heated Bistro patio is open 5 - 8:30 p.m.

“We have lots of open spaces and offer a cozy experience. We hope everyone takes advantage of this weather, stays local and enjoys exploring your own backyard," Schwindt says.

Lake Breeze Winery on the scenic Naramata Bench strives to showcase the best aspects of Okanagan life. With some of the oldest vines on the Bench, Lake Breeze has a rich history and has built one of the most beautiful wineries in BC.

Perfect for these upcoming beautiful spring days, the Lake Breeze dry Riesling has hints of green apple, apricot and lime and is a bright and refreshing wine, great to enjoy in the sunshine with some charcuterie!

Guided tastings with six of Lake Breeze's most iconic wines are offered in the courtyard Tuesday through Sunday from 11 a.m. - 5pm. The Patio Restaurant will reopen for the 2021 season in May by reservation from 11:30-3:30 p.m.

With stunning views of Okanagan Lake, Red Rooster Winery is a must stop to try some fun and award-winning wines like their 2018 Rare Bird Pinot Gris. It has a lovely floral and pear aroma with nice bright peachy and melon flavours. Best enjoyed fresh, it is a great bottle to take along on any Okanagan adventure.

Red Rooster currently offers seated tastings daily from 12-5pm and are offering curbside pickup for wine orders!

Enjoy your own neighbourhood and the beautiful upcoming weather by supporting and experiencing some of the wineries that make the South Okanagan such a special place to live.

Learn more at www.visitpenticton.com and on social @visitpenticton

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