Wine touring has become a popular past time here in the Okanagan Valley, and with that has come the rise of a number of wine touring companies offering a ride to wine lovers around the valley.
We've compiled a list of some of the tour groups that we've seen come through the winery over the summer. Now if only we could get out of the tasting room and out into the vineyards to visit some of our neighbours.
- Top Cat Tours
- Okanagan Wine Shuttle
- Uncorked Okanagan
- Okanagan Wine Country Tours
- Grape Escapes
- Wine Your Way
- Desert Country Wine Tours
- Grape Friends Lounge & Tours
- Wine Tours Gone South
- Sunshine and Wine Tours
- Experience Wine Tours
And of course if you want to do it in style you can always travel by helicopter.
However you do decide to see the wineries of the Okanagan, please be sure to arrange for safe transport, and be sure to drink some water along the way. We look forward to seeing you in OK Falls!
On Sunday, July 7th, 2013 approximately 2700 cycling enthusiasts and racers will take to the roads in the South Okanagan to complete a race that is fast becoming a must do on any cyclist's bucket list. Weaving through beautiful lakeside vistas and lush orchards and vineyards the Valley First Granfondo is now in its third year and is drawing participants from all over North America.
If you are not participating cheer on the riders from any of the magnificant vantage points along the route. Here is a video clip of the section of road near Blue Mountain that the Granfondo riders will cruise along before stopping for lunch at Le Vieux Pin.
Cyclists leaving the starting point near Okanagan Lake heading towards Skaha Lake.
Here is the full route including some information on road closures for those of you still wanting to get out and tour some local wineries.
Back for it's second year the Okanagan Falls Winery Association's Party in the Park kicks off summer on Friday July 12th, 2013. The event runs from 5pm till 9pm at Kenyon Park and tickets are going to go fast.
Get your beach party groove on with the great sounds of The Gal Avanters.
Meet the elusive winemakers and owners of the 12 OK Falls Winery Association wineries and enjoy the excellent southern BBQ prepared by The Chef Instead. Dinner and dancing with a live band at Kenyon Park seems like an awesome way to kick start an Okanagan summer! Tickets are $50 and are available at
So tell your friends, to come celebrate summer and the wine of Okanagan Falls on the beach, along with the personalities that make up the OK Falls Winery Association. Summer never felt so good.
In the spirit of the 2013 Wine Blogger's Conference being held in
Penticton this weekend, we thought it appropriate to create a series
of blog posts highlighting some of our favourite things to do here in
Whether you're joining us locally from the Okanagan, or from abroad in
Canada and the US we welcome all of our cyber wine friends to this
amazing part of the world.
We hope you'll enjoy a sunny weekend here along with some fantastic
wine and great people. Should you require any information while you're
here, or would just like to stop by for a glass of bubbly please
contact us in the tasting room and we'll be happy to assist you.
If you're just tuning in and wondering what's happening for the
conference, or would like to attend, you can find full details at the
Wine Blogger's Conference website.
From vineyard rookies to those connoisseurs who need a new angle on the Okanagan wine scene, try a Heli-Wine Tour. This is a one of a kind experience tailor-made by you which combines scenic helicopter flights around the Okanagan with stops at your choice of several participating wineries to enjoy the beverage that has made the valley so well-known. Valhalla Helicopters has agreements to land at approximately 30 vineyards around the Okangan, Shuswap and Similkameen.
A full day Heli-Wine tour is a 6 hour experience - starting at 10am and ending at 4pm - where you select about 4 wineries to visit. There are over 30 participating wineries from the Shuswap in the North to the US border in the South.
You may choose to go north with winery options in Kelowna, Lake Country and Salmon Arm, or select a southern route with vineyard choices in Lake Country, Kelowna, Summerland, Naramata, Penticton, Okanagan Falls, Oliver, Osoyoos, Cawston and Keremeos.The helicopter can seat up to 4 people (weight restrictions apply), but some wineries are only accessible with one couple onboard.
Most wineries have picnic spots and several have restaurants or will do a special catered lunch if you'd like to add that on.
It's that time again, when tasting rooms open their doors to welcome visitors to the valley and an abundance of festivals occupy every weekend.
Coming up in early May is the 19th annual Spring Okanagan Wine Festival. There are a myriad of events to attend and no shortage of options on dates, times and locations.
Deciding which to attend can be the toughest challenge but decide you should because many of these events sell out quickly and you don't want to miss out.
One new event this year is the Valley First Blind Wine and Cheese Soiree on May 11th at the Ramada Inn and Conference Centre Penticton. This involves items being served blind. Not guests being blindfolded. Wines are served with covered labels and cheeses are displayed without descriptions. Try your hand at guessing the type of wine or cheese. Tickets are available at selectyourtickets.com
Blue Mountain Vineyards is pleased to once again be a participating winery at Bacchanalia at the Penticton Lakeside Resort on May 4th starting at 7pm. Tickets will sell out quickly and are available from the Penticton Lakeside. www.pentictonlakesiderresort.com 250-493-8221
Wishing Waterfront Restaurant and Wine Bar, Mark Filatow the best of luck this weekend at the Canadian Culinary Championships. Mark is representing BC this year. Check out this great interview with Chef Filatow.
Good luck to all the other visiting Chefs from across Canada! The Canadian Culinary Championships will be held in Kelowna until 2015 so if you missed out on tickets this year make sure you book early for next year.
Photo: Waterfront Wines
Waterfront Restaurant and Wine Bar owner, chef and sommelier Mark Filatow is ready for the Canadian Culinary Championships.
The Okanagan Fall Wine Festival is fast approaching and events are selling out on a daily basis. If you haven’t already booked where you are staying and what you are attending now is a great time to make those decisions.
In Okanagan Falls we are gearing up for a number of events at local wineries and in the community. We have some great guest houses to stay at in OK Falls as well the Oliver and Penticton areas are only about a 15 minute drive away.
Here is an overview of some of the many events taking place in Okanagan Falls over the next couple weeks.
September 29, 2012
Harvest Dinner at Stag’s Hollow - 6pm - SOLD OUT
September 29, 2012
Wild Goose Autumn Barbeque - 12:00 noon
Join the Kruger family and celebrate the wine festival with their annual BBQ. This event is in celebration of harvest and their newly opened tasting room and covered patio. There will be live music, great wines and a selection of foods from their BBQ. Tickets can be purchased at the door or by calling the winery. 250-497-8919 www.wildgoosewinery.com
September 29, 2012 - Centennial Park in Okanagan Falls - 8am - 8pm
Wild West Fest
Bring the family to the wild, wild west in Okanagan Falls. Start with a pancake breakfast and enjoy the Pony Express Parade. Take in the Trading Post Exhibitor Fair or try your luck at the Wild West Bingo Hall. There is something for everyone including a watermelon crawl and an ice cream slam. www.wildwestfest.ca
October 4, 2012
Harvest WORK DAY & Lunch at Noble Ridge - SOLD OUT
October 4, 2012
Blue Mountain Vineyards Wine Dinner - Harvest Golf Club in Kelowna - 6:30 pm
This is a great opportunity to savour the flavours of the elite wines of Blue Mountain Vineyard. Treat your senses to an evening of the phenomenal wines of Blue Mountain Vineyards which will be perfectly paired with a locally inspired five course culinary creation from Executive Chef Dan Werry and his culinary team. Live musical entertainment. Reservations required . Please contact Ryan Brown or Amber Kisling at 250-862-3177
October 6, 2012
The Cat’s Pajamas - Kraze Legs Vineyard and Winery
1920’s Slang Trivia & Wines paired with cheese, chocolate and fare. Event details at http://www.krazelegz.com/news-and-events.html firstname.lastname@example.org 250-497-6957
Enjoy your Okanagan Fall Wine Festival!
For 10 days in late September and early October each year the Okanagan Valley comes alive with a celebration of the grape harvest. This is the only wine festival in North America held during harvest with over a hundred events taking place around the valley from vineyard tours to winemaker’s dinners, iron chef cook offs and educational seminars.
The Okanagan Fall Wine Festival is ranked among the top 100 events in North America and it is right in our backyard. So book early, plan ahead and take in some of the great food, extraordinary locations, amazing wine, music and people the Okanagan celebrates each fall. This year's festival kicks off September 28th and runs until October 7th. Pick your weekend or weekday, visit and celebrate with the people who make the delicious BC wines you enjoy all year long.
A full listing of events is available on the Festival website. Some highlights include:
September 30, 2012 Gourmet and Grapes, Iron Chef Throwdown VIII at Cabana Restaurant, 6pm
Gourmet & Grapes is a mixing, mingling and grazing event that boasts some of the Okanagan’s top Chefs. There will be a selection of some of the areas most renowned wineries pouring alongside these Chefs. Included in the evening’s festivities is Round 8 of Iron Chef Okanagan! Filmed, narrated and broadcasted throughout the event. This event has become one of the most exciting wine festival events of the season. Sells out every year! www.cabanagrille.com
A new event this year is Alexis de Portneuf, The Young Chefs on October 4, 2012 at Infusions Restaurant, Okanagan College.
Alexis de Portneuf is challenging nine BC Interior young Chefs to get creative. The challenge is to create an appetizer, main or dessert course using cheese. Guests will sample these creations and will vote for their favourites. Come celebrate the young culinary talent in the Okanagan. www.selectyourtickets.com or 250.717.5304
The final weekend wraps up with the Valley First Grand Finale Consumer Tastings October 5 & 6, 6:00 pm at the Penticton Trade and Convention Centre.
Over 60 wineries will be pouring with over 240 wines to sample. There will be live entertainment at this safe ride home event. This is a great way to sample wines of the Okanagan without having to drive around. Weekend Passes are available to make sure you get to sample everything; allowing participants to sip white one night and swirl red the next. Tickets at www.valleyfirsttix.com email@example.com
Blue Mountain Vineyard and Cellars is pleased to participate in a wine dinner, October 4, 2012 at the Harvest Golf Club 6:30 pm.
This is a great opportunity to savour the flavours of the elite wines from Blue Mountain. Treat your senses with a locally inspired five course culinary creation from Executive Chef Dan Werry and his culinary team paired with Blue Mountain wines. Live musical entertainment. Reservations required.
Although the weather remains unstable and rather unseasonal, summer is in full swing! School’s out, the roads are jam packed with travel trailers and RV’s, the cherries have hit the fruit stands, and the farmers markets are filling up with all of the local produce. Summer in the Okanagan also brings weekends filled with various events and festivals, and in particular one of our favourites, The Summer Okanagan Wine Festival.
The summer wine festival calendar is filled with great events from outdoor wine tastings with more bold flavored wines than you could ever desire, to wine and cheese beach parties, road bike races, tailgate parties in vineyard settings, and the visceral sound of Spoken Word poetry paired with equally feisty wines. There truly is something for everyone.
With over 30 eclectic events spread over 10 days at the height of summer in the Okanagan, this year’s summer wine fest promises to deliver some fantastic experiences, culture, and of course — great wines.
Many events this year are inaugural events and you could be the first one to check them out! Here are a few events that we found particularly enticing. For a complete listing of events check out the Okanagan Wine Festivals website.
We look forward to seeing you in the tasting room during the festival!
Okanagan Falls Winery Association Party in the Park - July 6th, 2012
The Ok Falls Winery Association is hosting the first annual “Party in the Park” July 6th with the great sounds of Kyle Anderson and his Amazing Rubber Band. Meet the elusive winemakers and owners of the 12 OK Falls Winery Association wineries and enjoy the excellent southern BBQ prepared by The Chef Instead. Dinner and dancing with a live band at Kenyon Park seems like an awesome way to kick start the 2012 Okanagan Summer Wine Festival. Tickets are $50 + HST and are available at http://www.eventbee.com/v/okfallswineriesparty
Valley First Pops The Cork- July 7th, 2012
For those of you in the North Okanagan…What are the three simple steps to fun on a summer’s evening? Wine, cheese and music … then repeat wine, cheese, music. This event celebrates summer in Kelowna with over 30 Okanagan wineries breaking out the wines for a hot summer night of wine tasting, live music and light tapas. Hosted in the beautiful Arts Common beside the Rotary Centre for the Arts in Kelowna, and supported by Tourism Kelowna, this promises to be an eye stopping, cork popping party. This is a get home safe event, sponsored by BC Liquor Stores and Valley First Insurance. Tickets at: selectyourtickets.com or 250.717.5304
Valley First GranFondo Wine Tasting - July 8, 2012
Whether you have just ridden the GranFondo Axel Merckx Okanagan or you live for the beach, it is never a bad time to celebrate summer in the Okanagan. And when Okanagan wines are involved, you don’t want to miss the party. Over 300 wines will be available for your sampling along with light tapas, cheeses and breads to cleanse your palate. And of course, no party is complete without great dance music. Supported by Tourism Penticton and the GranFondo Axel Merckx Okanagan, this fun informal and casual wine tasting is not to be missed. Look for your favourite cycling celebrity or look for your favourite wine celebrity or just look for your favourite person! This is a get home safe event, sponsored by BC Liquor Stores and Valley First Insurance. $59, 6:30pm Gyro Park Penticton firstname.lastname@example.org
There are many more events to experience. Let us know what you attended and what you enjoyed. No matter what you choose to attend this summer, make the most of the Summer Okanagan Wine Festival taking place at locations throughout the valley. It’s going to be hot!