Posts Written ByBlake Allen

Envision beautiful gardens guarded by forested hills. The din of Oliver’s Highway 97 replaced by the medley of songbirds. The gentle buzz of hummingbirds. From the wineshop, look down on the Okanagan, the hustle and bustle of the valley below. All the stress that comes with travelling the valley quickly disappears here at this hidden gem in the north of Oliver. You can relax in the shadows of a tiny chapel tucked beneath the trees after tasting some award-winning wines. This is Hidden Chapel Winery, nestled in the hills, one quick turn off the highway as you enter Oliver from…

You could say that Oliver is big on wine, but it’s the smaller wineries here that have most shaped this small town’s distinctive character and culture, and truly earned it the moniker of Canada’s Wine Capital. In the north of Oliver, right off the highway as one drives south from Penticton, sits the perfect stepping stone for any wine venture into this internationally celebrated region. River Stone Winery is perched atop a small hill and watched over by what might very well be some of the friendliest winery dogs in the whole of the Okanagan. The winery is lined by…

While tame and docile today, the rolling hills of West Kelowna hide a more explosive past. The volcanic legacy of this region is still found today in the region’s mineral rich soil, which leaves a uniquely identifiable mark on the grapes that grow in the shadow of Mount Boucherie, the now extinct volcano. One of the younger, but already well-established wineries here, Volcanic Hills Estate Winery, has tapped into this distinct terroir and built a prominent name for itself through award-winning wines that reflect this rich volcanic soil. Recently, there also seems to be a lot of gold that is…

Vacations are rarely as relaxing as they’re meant to be. All the stress of rushing up and down the valley, down dead-end roads and along busy highways looking for the winery that your friends told you about. What was its name? Why not just escape all that hustle and bustle and enjoy the summer visiting an authentic slice of Italy right here in the Okanagan. High along the West Kelowna Farm Loop, nestled at the end of a scenic country road, sits Ciao Bella Winery — and it is truly a little piece of Napoli. The winery is the long-held…

There is no better place to idle away these hot and sunny summer days than in downtown Kelowna. This pocket-sized city with a laid-back attitude is emblematic of the Okanagan Valley itself. People flock to this diamond by the lake to unwind on its warm, sandy beaches, shop its unique artisanal shops and discover its internationally renowned wines. But for those who spend a little too much time at the beach and simply don’t have the time to get lost looking for wineries outside of the city limits, fear not! Because Sandhill Winery, one of Canada’s most celebrated wineries, is…

As the last of the season’s snow has disappeared beneath the radiant glow of the Okanagan sun, a little patch of garden sanctuary has once again emerged. Hidden Chapel Winery sits nestled in the hills just off Highway 97 as it curves its way into Oliver, south of Okanagan Falls. Here, the roar of the highway is scarcely heard, and is instead replaced with the tranquil melodies of songbirds. Hidden Chapel Winery is the very definition of a hidden gem. The winery boasts an impressive and diverse array of both sophisticated whites and well-aged reds. But they’re best known for…

Many years ago the violent eruptions of volcanoes gave shape to our valley and left in their wake a unique volcanic legacy in the rich soils they left behind. Nestled beneath the shadows of the now dormant Mount Boucherie, Volcanic Hills Estate Winery is blessed with this distinguished terroir that’s showcased in the distinctive notes of its award winning wines. As geology has eliminated the need to keep watch on the mountain, patrons should instead be turning their attention to the winery’s social media accounts for details on events, new releases and Wine of the Month! This May, the spotlight…

Perched atop the West Kelowna Farm Loop, away from the echoes of the city below, the rustic traditions of rural Neapolitan Italy have taken root at Ciao Bella Winery. This little patch of West Kelowna has been transformed into an authentic piece of Napoli in our own backyard. In their quaint family home, surrounded by vineyards and blessed with a cosy garden-lined picnicking space, the Fiume family — Roberto and Sharon, as well as their children Antonio and Olivia — invite guests into their famiglia with award winning wines, cappuccinos and Spuntini (charcuterie — the Italian way). As the summer…

There’s nothing better than spring in downtown Kelowna, with its endless selection of world-class restaurants, shopping in a diverse array of boutique shops along tree-lined streets in the cultural district, and long strolls along the sun-warmed sands of Okanagan beaches. Kelowna is a true gem, sandwiched between mountains and an expansive lake. Tucked away on Richter Street, right in the heart of downtown Kelowna, is a more unorthodox and uniquely Okanagan amenity – Sandhill Winery, BC’s first urban winery! Sandhill is kicking off the spring season with some new releases, including its long-anticipated 2017 Terroir Driven Rosé, which usually sells…

It’s perhaps an over-quoted phrase, but one that’s frankly often under-appreciated. Quite simply put, “the best adventures to be had are off the beaten path.” Now, here in the Okanagan it’s easy to think there’s little that could possibly be off the beaten path – but you might be surprised if you swing your car north from Kelowna and follow the mountains up past Vernon. Up here the road flattens out and the valley floor sinks into a vast expanse of picturesque rolling farmland. This is where you’ll find the dual communities of Armstrong and Spallumcheen. This is the perfect…