For the past few days, we have been happily traveling as a quartet. Halfway between Vancouver and the national parks of Jasper and Banff, we make a short stop in the Okanagan Valley. The climate in the valley is extremely dry and temperatures can easily exceed 40 degrees Celsius in the summer. The Okanagan Valley is very well known for its excellent wines: over 180 wineries, some of them award-winning, are located in this 250-kilometre long valley.
There are many wine producers on both west and east coasts of Okanagan Lake. Most of them also offer wine tasting. We wisely decide to leave the car at home and visit three wineries that we can reach by foot from our apartment.
We like Summerhill Pyramid Vinery the most. With a breathtaking view on the Okanagan Lake and in complete tranquility, we can taste five wines of our choice on the winery’s terrace. Good bottles, all organically grown, are part of this top-notch tasting. We get excellent advice from our hostess, but also from Monique and Michel who share with us some interesting tasting techniques they recently learned in a wine course. The pinot noir in particular catches our attention and we make sure to take a bottle with us for the next dinner.
Although it is mostly a traditional wine region, the craft beer scene has also taken hold in the Okanagan Valley. As elsewhere in North America, there are many microbreweries there. At the Barn Owl Brewery, located a few minutes’ walk from our apartment, we particularly appreciate the selection of beers in a beautifully renovated barn.