Thursday, 23 August 2012

Okanagan Valley - I.e. WINE!!

Had a big drive ahead us to get from Whistler to Okanagan Valley but was glad for the early morning wake up call because a black bear decided to walk right past our van just as we were about to drive off. With adrenalin pumping we headed up to Lilloet which was quite the drive. Joffree Lakes have been our favourite lakes so far (and that is even after visiting Lake Louise) - unfortunately no pics but google it for yourself - amazing! Then it was along Lake Duffey Lake Road which took us past many vistas... Here are just a couple

Then we took poor Shelila and the very quiet Grant along the Lytton - Lilloet Highway which had very scary drop offs and those bloody big logging trucks!

After a few more passes we ended up in the Okanagan Valley - very different to where we have come from - hot, arid and centralised by a massive lake. This is the perfect recipe for growing Grapes and whilst relatively unknown as a wine region outside of Canada the Candians claim this is Canadas answer to Provence - and you know what - they could be onto something!

We arrived again to no campsites being available so we pulled up here, had a swin, a few beers and a lemon, garlic grilled chicken with lentil salad - we have gotten over the spag bols you see...

Very refreshing with the outside temp at 35c
So big it had its own waves - and yes - welcome to Grants belly!
We awoke with the need for a vino tasting so we took ourselves to Mission Hill. The most well know winery around this region. Seriously impressed. Amazing cellar door and really smart wines. Beginners frenzy took a hold and we walked away with four bottles.

View over to the restaurant
Wanted these plates but with the golf clubs, bikes, surfing and snow boards - we are all out of room!
The purchases!
Amazing displays - took far too many pics have limited it just to this one
Happy camper
Continuing along our jolly day of tasting we moved onto Quails Gate which is another popular one arou d here. Great views and a few more purchases - naturally.

Vines go right down to the lake
Did you say Pinot - ah yes - a case of that?
Then it was over the other side of the lake to Summerhill Winery which is owned by a NYC banker who moved his family out here in the 80's and now creates the most awarded sparkling in Canada. It was delicious but we had a few bottles in the cellar at this stage so enjoyed some of their water instead.

The last stop was Cedar Creek which I have to say was my favourite. It was much smaller, but the staff were lovely and the wine was really good. We walked away with a cheeky Syrah which has already been consumed unfortunately.

As you can see from Grants face above he was done with wine (is that possible?) and wanted a pallete cleanser so off we headed back to Kelowna (Okanagans main town) to Tree Brewing where we had a lovely country Victorian guy serving us (who later played a round of golf with the very eager Grant - Note - Oakanagan is Golfers Paradise also). Unity the Aussie banter and the healthy tasting glasses we picked up some really good blond, ales and cider.

So with our livers hurting a little I can say confidently - that the Okanagan is a must see if you are ever in BC. Shame there wine is so unknow internationally because it was really smart. Off we head to Banff via Glacier National Park.


  1. Am so impressed with the photos. You're doing plenty of once in a life time adventures.
    Feel like I'm there too.
    Staying at mals with her gorgeous Toby.
    Came across her great thundering albums of their U S trip with many of the places you are
    seeing.Still no luck with house hunting.
    Went with Brook to Koby's intro to Lapstone school.Hard to believe he starts next year.
    Lotsa luv. Mum xx

  2. The Wearin's do wineries!! LOVE it!! I bet that Pinot is going down a treat!!!! OMG that statue behind Grant!! Loved seeing Sheila perched up there - she's a beauty of a home away from home. Good to see you working on your tan Grant!! hehehe. Lots of Love, Jx