Browsing CategoryOkanagan North

Recline Ridge owners Graydon and Maureen Ratzlaff are focused on their customers in their wine shop. “We focus on delivering the best experience that we can,” says Graydon. Everyone from the educated taster to the wine newbie can all get something from the experience. The common thread that Graydon has noticed is that most people are adventurous tasters and like to try new things and discover new flavours. Thankfully Recline Ridge has a good cross-section of wine styles available from which to choose. The whites tend to be fragrantly fruity and off-dry in style while the reds vary in intensity.…

When planning your wine tasting tours this spring, you must travel north to the Shuswap to discover BC’s newest wine frontier. One of the region’s pioneer vineyards knew the conditions here were ideal for growing cold climate wines a long time ago, and they continue to garner awards for the wines they are creating on top of the world. Larch Hills Winery is your destination. Winding your way up the beautiful forested larch hills, you will be captivated by the views and feel a sense excitement –you are heading to the highest altitude winery in North America! Surrounded by rich…

If you like your getaways romantic and authentic, then Echo Valley Ranch and Spa will tick those boxes in more ways than you could imagine.  Located northwest of Kamloops, and just five hours northeast of Vancouver, Echo Valley offers a traditional Western experience, with some authentic Asian culture to boot, all wrapped up in a rustic-but-luxurious experience second to none. Echo Valley is owned by British ex-pat Norm Dove and his Thai wife Nan, and offers traditional log-built architecture, activities like gold-panning, fly-fishing; trail rides and evening barbeques followed by campfire sing-a-longs. The authentic Eastern flavor comes through in the…

Larch Hills Winery. This little winery has a big personality and holds some amazing titles in wine country like being the oldest winery in the north  (they opened back in 1997) and being the highest altitude winery in North America! Nestled into the cozy wooded hills of Salmon Arm, the vineyards of Larch Hills truly have a spectacular view. Owners Jack and Hazel Manser have planted the perfect varietals that thrive in this cooler climate resulting in their wines winning awards galore. Just recently they won big at the Northwest Wine Summit Awards: 1 Gold medal– Tamarack Rosé; 4 Silver…

In the Shuswap near Tappen, you’ll find Recline Ridge Winery, a beguiling spot surrounded by mountains, hillsides and acres of vineyards. Sun-dappled days and cool evenings maximize the varietal character and set the stage for award-winning cool climate wines. Proprietors Graydon and Maureen Ratzlaff say that they’re expecting harvest to be a bit early in 2016. As the crush pad is next to the wine shop, visitors can see everything that is taking place when they do a crush. A great viewing spot is their pristine picnic area, where guests are welcome to bring their own food and purchase wines…

Part Two of my Shuswap adventure led me on a grand expedition across the region from the South to the North. I was overwhelmed with the choices of activities to choose from–from fishing and canoeing to hiking, biking, wine tasting, zip-lining to farmers market picnics and wine to snorkeling with salmon – who knew there was all of this on top of the legendary house boating? This adventure definitely needs a return visit that includes delving into the famous Adams River Salmon Run when the red fish are in the water, and exploring further the wonderful culture of the Little…

While the Okanagan South is rich in vineyards, the Okanagan North offers a plethora of farms. Armstrong, in particular, is a farmland haven, sitting just past Vernon and before Salmon Arm, its lush green landscape is dotted with beautiful farms raising animals and growing fruits, vegetables and grains. This agricultural region also has a niche for cheese makers, who thrive in the area. The cheese culture (get it?) here is strong and was started many years ago by the pioneer of this delicious craft, Armstrong Cheese. The 4th Annual ‘Cheese…It’s A Natural’ Festival takes place this year on November 5th. “Many…

Discover for yourself why it’s a not-to-be-missed destination. The youthful energy the region exudes and the entrepreneurial spirit enhancing it has blossomed. The stunning setting amid orchards, vineyards, rolling grasslands and picturesque parks surrounded by lakes remains (the three main ones are Okanagan Lake stretching south to Penticton, Kalamalka Lake and Swan Lake). Added to that a renewed vibrancy and the growth in year-round activities available for anyone with the desire to pursue them. The array of activities available whether you are an adventure seeker, explorer, foodie, or culture hound is astounding. Chart your approach at tourismvernon.com For the foodie,…

The glorious Shuswap region of our province has become a seriously amazing new frontier for food and wine lovers. We all know about their amazing houseboat scene, with boaters returning year after year to float about the shimmering Shuswap Lake surrounded by lush cedar forests and majestic mountains, but there are so many other layers of this unique locale to discover, and I am going to let you in on these secrets. Now boasting seven wineries, the Shuswap wine scene is a wonderful new offering for oenophiles and wine geeks to lay their palates upon. Uniquely ‘North’, the wineries here…

Larch Hills Winery, renowned for premium cool climate wines, is a must-see for visitors to the Shuswap this summer. Surrounded by spectacular viewscapes near Salmon Arm, you’ll enjoy fine summer sippers, bubbly or superb dinner wines. Larch Hills was established in 1997 and its position in the northern area of the region provided ideal conditions for cool climate wines.  Now, Larch Hill has developed a well-earned loyal following. Proprietors Hazel and Jack Manser oversee every aspect of the operation.  From tending the vineyards to creating the wines and operating the wine shop, the Mansers have been hands-on at Larch Hills…