If you have spent some time in British Columbia’s wine country you are no doubt familiar with the most of the wine regions, but have you explored BC’s newest wine experience, the Kamloops Wine Trail? Consisting of four unique wineries, there is a wine and a winery on this trail for all wine lovers. Where the pioneers once settled in the Wild West, these new wine pioneers are now fully settled along the same trail nestled along the banks of the South and North Thompson.
There are more than 2,000 hours of sunshine a year in the Kamloops’s Thompson Valley and a variety of diverse microclimates exist, allowing winemakers to craft various wine styles from a variety of grapes. The scenery is mind blowing and as you journey among the wineries you are likely to run into all sorts of wildlife; creatures such as mountain sheep and birds of prey call this place home. Choose to drive the route alone or hire a guide–both TasteFull Excursions and DiVine Tours operate in the region.
In the region’s Westsyde district along the North Thompson River you’ll find Privato Vineyard & Winery. Privato grows Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, Riesling, Ortega and Marechal Foch. The picnic area is gorgeous and they sell meat and cheese plates. Grab a bottle and stay a while.
On the south side of the South Thompson River, Monte Creek Winery has just opened its doors to a spectacular mission-style building where it offers wines from grapes as diverse as Marquette and Frontenac. The signature bottles are named after the infamous train robber, Billy Miner.
Cross the highway to Harper’s Trail and you’ll find another excellent patio for longing as well as some great Riesling, Cabernet Franc, Pinot Gris and even a late harvest wine. The rosé is a great sipper and these folks are super welcoming. Just along from Harper’s Trail is an intimate little tasting room at Sagewood Winery where you will meet Doug and Shelley Wood and hear the story of their 100% estate wines and their relationship with the land and vines.
The entire trail is doable in a day and with the newly found Kamloops Flavour Trail, you can also now throw some breweries, farms and markets into the mix.
~ Cassandra Anderton
(featured photo courtesy of Privato Winery)
Inset photo: Monte Creek Ranch Winery in Kamloops