Tuesday, April 17, 2012

New book details 34 new wineries

Time for a little self-promotion. Some of my readers will have used earlier editions of John Schreiner’s Okanagan Wine Tour Guide, the handy pocket-sized volume that came out first in 2006 with 248 pages.

The fourth edition, now 368 pages but still $20, has just been published. It profiles 34 wineries that were not in the third edition just two years ago.  In total, there are 161 profiles in the latest book, up from 100 in the 2006 book. I have extended the coverage beyond the Okanagan and the Similkameen to include both the Kootenays and Kamloops.

Even frequent wine tourists will find many wineries that they have never heard about until now. Here is a quick peak to whet your curiosity either for the wineries or the book, or both. Most have websites where you can get more information than I have room to give here.

Adega on 45th Estate Winery is a winery opening this spring in Osoyoos, not far from Nk’Mip Cellars. The owners are Portuguese; “adega” means wine cellar in Portuguese.

Alto Wine Group is located in a rustic metal clad building just east of Okanagan Falls. It is a bit of a winemaker collective that produces a host of very good small labels including Synchromesh and DiBello.

Artisan Food & Beverage Group is one of the members of the Alto co-operative, run by a consultant who lives in Vancouver and makes wines under the Siren’s Call label. Liquidity Wines is opening this year near Okanagan Falls and Blue Mountain Cellars, on a vineyard once farmed by Blue Mountain’s founder. The winemaker here is a young Australian who once worked for Tantalus.

 Baccata Ridge Winery  is a new organic winery opening this summer in Grindrod, a small community near Enderby. It is just off Highway 97A.

Celista Estate Winery opened last year at Celista, a community beside Shuswap Lake. This is B.C.’s most northern winery, owned by a couple who used to live in Yellowknife. Sunnybrae Vineyards & Winery is a charming Shuswap winery that also opened last summer.

Double Cross Cidery at Function Junction is a new cidery and part of a popular fruit stand on Highway 33 at the north end of Kelowna.

50th Parallel Estate is an ambitious new winery not far north of Gray Monk and on the same side of Okanagan Lake. The winemaker is a Pinot Noir expert from a top New Zealand winery.

Harper’s Trail Estate Winery is a new winery just east of Kamloops near the Lafarge cement plant. There will not be a tasting room for a year or so. Monte Creek Ranch Estate Winery will open nearby in several years. Privato Vineyard & Winery is north of Kamloops and will not have a tasting room.

Heaven’s Gate Estate Winery opened a lovely tasting room last summer just outside Summerland on what used to be a peach orchard. SummerGate Winery and Tyler Harlton Wines are new wineries nearby and Saxon Winery is the former Hollywood & Wine Winery.

 Heron Ridge Estates Winery is a new fruit winery (blueberry wines) just outside Castlegar – this city’s first winery. Wynnwood Cellars, which makes grape wines, is the third winery in Creston.

Three new wineries have opened beside Highway 97 south of Oliver. Intersection Winery at Road 9 (no wineshop yet) is owned by Bruce Schmidt, once national sales manager for Calona Wines. Maverick Estate Winery, a bit further south, is run by the winemaker at Burrowing Owl and his father-in-law, a South African doctor.  Gold Hill Winery, which is just completing a grand tasting room, opened last summer beside Highway 97, midway between Oliver and Osoyoos.  

Niche Wine Company is a West Kelowna winery with no tasting room at this time. The young couple who own the winery are hand-selling the wines – Pinot Noir, Foch, Pinot Gris - in Vancouver.

Okanagan Crush Pad Winery is a very modern winery in Summerland that does custom winemaking. This is where Haywire, Bartier Brothers, Bartier & Scholefield wines are made, among others. The wineshop only opens for wine festivals.

Perseus Winery & Vineyards is almost in downtown Penticton. Nearby, Upper Bench Estate Winery is the former Stonehill winery under new management; and also selling cheese. Misconduct Winery, which was profiled in previous books, now has a tasting room, also on Upper Bench.

Planet Bee Honey Farm & Meadery is a honey-lover’s paradise, near downtown Vernon.

New to Black Sage Road is Platinum Bench Estate Winery, opening a wineshop this spring,  and Time Estate Winery, Harry McWatter’s new venture, which has not yet begun building its winery. River Stone Estate Winery, near the Jackson-Triggs winery, opened last year with impressive wines.

Two new wineries have opened on the Naramata Bench. Terravista Vineyards (no tasting room) is owned by former founders of Black Hills Winery. 3 Mile Estate Winery opened a wineshop last year on Naramata Road and 3 Mile Road.

The Vibrant Vine/Okanagan Villa Estate Winery opened two years ago in Kelowna but the owners did not contact me in time for the previous tour guide. This is a must-visit winery where guests are given 3-D glasses to view the 3-D wine labels.

 While I don’t expect as many new wineries to open in the next two years, there still are others to come. Don Triggs, one of the founders of Jackson-Triggs, has just begun to build a new winery, called Culmina, on the Golden Mile and will be releasing wines in 2013.


At April 24, 2012 at 11:04 PM , Blogger Unknown said...

Thanks for bringing your book to our attention -- I would have missed it otherwise. Just ordered a copy and will be taking it to Oliver in a few weeks!


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