While generally considered the “off season” by the uninformed, fall in Kelowna signals that it is once again time for Okanagan wine connoisseurs to congregate and celebrate!
The 33rd Fall Okanagan Wine Festival is almost upon us, bringing 10 days of delectable foods, stimulating company and some of the finest wines produced in North America from October 4th to 14th, 2013.
Whether you are a seasoned oenophile or casual wine drinker, the Fall Okanagan Wine Festival has something for you. The over 165 events located throughout the Central Okanagan include everything from vineyard tours to meals and wine pairings to fall wine harvest celebrations. Attendees can immerse themselves in wine education and arts as well as enjoying the plentiful gourmet wine and food available.
2013 Fall Okanagan Wine Festival Events
There is no shortage of events to enjoy during the festival. These vary from formal wine tastings to theatrical productions to four course meal with wine pairing. Of the over 165 events, the festival itself hosts a small number of official events. Official events include:
- British Columbia Wine Awards & Reception – Located at the Laurel Heritage Packinghouse, the British Columbia Wine Awards & Reception on October 3rd kicks off the fall wine festival. As well as announcing the winning wines from this year’s judging completion, over 100 BC wineries will be recognized.
- The Blind Wine & Cheese Soiree By Valley First – Located at the Laurel Heritage Packinghouse on October 9th, guests will enjoy sampling various wines and cheeses served with covered labels.
- Alexis de Portneuf Presents “the Young Chefs” – Located at The Atrium in the Centre for Learning at Okanagan College, this competition challenges young chefs to create an appetizer, main course or dessert that highlights cheese, on October 10th. Guests can then sample and vote on their favorites dishes.
- Harvest Reds and BC Cheese – Autumn Perfection – Located at Manteo Resort on October 10th, guests can attend this educational, interactive seminar that will explain how to select and pair BC’s best red wines and cheeses.
- Valley First Grand Finale Consumer Tasting – Located at the Penticton Trade and Convention Centre, on October 11th and 12th, this event showcases over 200 wines from 80 different wineries. Attendees can enjoy sampling their favorite wines, gourmet cheeses and artisan breads while listening to live music.
Kelowna Vineyards & Wineries
The Central Okanagan region is home to vineyards and wineries that are as unique are they are abundant. During the festival, you can also visit these individual wineries. Amenities and services at each winery will vary, but many offer wine tastings, tours and more.
Visit the Okanagan’s first winery, Calona Vineyards, located right within Kelowna. Enjoy the views from the eastern slopes overlooking the shores of Lake Okanagan in south Kelowna at Tantalus Vineyards, a boutique winery and one of the oldest continuously producing vineyards in the valley.
If you prefer your wine to be organic, there are a number of vineyards and wineries that will fit the bill. The Rollingdale Winery, Kalala Organic Estate Winery and boutique Beaumont Family Estate Winery all produce organic wines. Summerhill Pyramid Winery is also known for its organic wine as well as the rather pyramid that is located on the property.
Perhaps one of the best well known and most popular winery to visit is the Mission Hill Family Estate Winery. This winery is home to a 12-story bell tower, an outdoor amphitheatre and entrance with curved arches that are held together by a single engraved Keystone.