wine

wine pairing lineup
Oct16

Everyone knows that British Columbia is Canada’s wine region. Vineyards may not be open this late into the year but you can expect any local venues to be stocked up with wine from around Kelowna. Here are just a few ideas of what types of wine and food pairings to try.

Savory Squash + Pinot Gris

Squash is in season so you will probably be able to find it on many-a-menu these days. Any savory squash meal should pair well with Pinot Gris. Pinot Gris is rich and spicy and quite popular in B.C. so you’ll find it everywhere. It pairs well with the rich creaminess of squash-based meals (think: pasta, warm salad, or soups).

Meat and Potatoes + Rioja

Steak and potatoes. Sausage and potatoes. Red meat stew. These are perfect cold weather meals because they fill you up and make you feel warm and cozy as the nights get chilly. Try pairing these meals with a Rioja, which is a deep, leathery red with hints of cherry. Want it sweeter? Open a newer bottle. For more savory, pick a Rioja that has been aged.

Apple Cinnamon + Riesling

Cinnamon will be making a grand appearance in a big way in many desserts and even breakfast/bunches. You might find it with apple or pumpkin, which are in season. But what wine goes best with apple cinnamon tarts after a long day? Try Riesling, which is equal parts sweet and acidic—a perfect counterpart.

Turkey Leftovers + Grenache Rosé

If you’ve already celebrated (Canadian) Thanksgiving, you most likely have a fridge packed full of delicious turkey leftovers. You might be finding yourself adding it to everything: soups, salads, sandwiches. How about accenting the inevitable turkey overdose with some nice Grenache Rosé? The ruby rose colour and heightened acidity make it a great fall pairing.

Vegetable Stew + Pinot Noir

Vegetable stew is great to make in bulk and freeze or refrigerate for easy fall meals. Pack it full of lentils, mushrooms, carrots, potato, corn, and anything else you desire. Vegetarian stew lasts longer in the fridge than meat-based counterparts so you don’t have to worry about rushing through it. Pinot Noir is so food friendly it goes with nearly anything but it will keep this particular meal company with it’s rich fruity character.

Lamb + Zinfandel

Thinking about ordering rack of lamb for a luscious, fall meal? Try pairing lamb-based recipes with Zinfandel, which is a perfect fall wine that also goes great with sweet potatoes. Zinfandel has hints of dark fruit and a smoky zest but you can also find earthier varieties.

Looking for a fantastic Fall getaway? Contact us and ask about our vacation properties here in beautiful British Columbia.

okanagan wine museum
May13

Okanagan Wine and Orchard Museum

Looking to increase your knowledge of Okanagan wine and fruit? The Okanagan Wine and Orchard Museum is a great place to start!

Okanagan Wine

You can discover how the booming Okanagan wine industry has diversified Okanagan landscape with stories of wine makers, entrepreneurs and local wineries. They have vibrantly painted fruit crates, live bee hives and cherry pitting equipment as well as unique artefacts. Moreover, they have a VQA (Vintners Quality Alliance) wine shop which reopened in February of 2016. The dedication and success of both of these world-class industries is amazing!

Okanagan Orchards

In downtown Kelowna, the Laurel Packinghouse was built over 1917-18. Conveyors groaned with colourful fruit, and workers sorted and loaded apples, cherries, apricots, pears, peaches, and plums. Women working the packingline were called “Apple Wrapper Flappers,” and skillfully packed 160 boxes a day. The busiest bees in the orchard industry are still at work. You can see “Bee” mesmerized by the activity in the live demonstration hive. You are able to learn about growing and handling the tree fruits for which the Okanagan is famous at the Okanagan Wine and Orchard Museum in the historic Laurel Packinghouse.

  • Hours: Tuesday to Saturday 10:00am-5:00pm

             Sunday to Monday Closed (except when public event running)

  • Admission is by donation. Suggested donation $5 per person/$15 per family

Through The Grapevine Walking Tour

From the Laurel Packinghouse, you’re able to join a walking tour. Put on your walking shoes and get ready for some historical gossip! Enjoy Kelowna’s Cultural District, and historical places on Bernard Avenue. This tour includes a visit to the Laurel Packinghouse and Okanagan Heritage Museum. You will encounter fascinating objects, surprising stories, and new experiences. It will take approximately 90 minutes, walking distance is 1km one way. Admission fee is $5 per person; Minimum charge of 10 people.

wine barrels

Interested in the Okanagan Wine and Orchard Museum? Fancy a trip to Kelowna? Please check out our Guest House and cottages for your best stay in the Okanagan. 

 

Written by Natsumi Matsumoto

Okanagan wine vineyard
May06

Wine in the Okanagan

 

Did you know that the Okanagan valley wine region is the second-largest wine producing area in Canada? If you are planning a visit to the Okanagan, you can’t miss the beautiful vineyards. Boasting 84% of the province’s vineyard acreage, the Okanagan Valley is BC’s premier grapegrowing region. With an ever-changing panorama, the valley stretches over 250 kilometres, across sub-regions, each with distinct soil and climate conditions suited to growing a range of varietals from sun-ripened reds to lively, fresh (and often crisp) whites.

 

The Okanagan Valley wineries are rich in tradition and character, consistently ranking among the world’s best. From this “Wine in the Okanagan Series”, we will introduce you to the region’s wine’s history, types, wine tours, and other activities you can enjoy.

History of wine in Okanagan

 

We can’t discuss wine without talking about its history in the Okanagan. The first Okanagan vineyard was at the Oblate Mission in Kelowna in 1859, planted by French Catholic priest Charles Pandosy. It was solely intended for the production of sacramental wine for the celebration of the Eucharist. It did not produce high-quality wines at first, but following Father Pandosy, a number of small wineries emerged.

In the early 1930s, 70 years after the first vineyard, Kelowna’s Calona Vineyards opened. Calona Vineyards is British Columbia’s oldest continuously operating winery and is worth a visit!  As the twentieth century progressed, Okanagan wineries started experimenting with hybrid grape varieties and eventually vinifera vines, allowing them to produce much better wines.

Wine Signatures

 

Wines produced here are often referred to as Cool Climate Wines. They include Ortega, Gewürztraminer, Pinot Gris, Gamay Noir, Kerner, Syrah, Maréchal Foch and Viognier. The most agreed upon statement is that BC is defined by its naturally high acidity wines. The idea is that regardless of the grape variety or style of wine or where the grapes were grown, the unifying factor would always be that natural acidity backbone. The Okanagan wine region has a lot to offer the global wine industry, particularly its many grape varieties and wide range of wine styles. 

Interested in Okanagan wines? Please stay tuned for more about Okanagan wines.

 

okanagan vineyard

Planning an Okanagan vacation? Check out our cottages in Kelowna!

Call  our reservations line on 1-888-226-5566 or email rentals@lacasacottageresort.com to find your perfect cottage.

 

Written by Natsumi Matsumoto

Pastry Coffee Tasting
Dec31

Eat & Drink your way around Vernon’s Tasting Trail

Calling all foodies! Here are some of our favourite spots on Vernon’s Tasting Trail.  Make a day of and visit as many as you can.

  • Honeymoon Meadery

    Honeymoon Meadery hand-crafts all their wines locally in their honey farm, Planet Bee. And you may be wondering, what is mead?  Mead is honey wine!  This alcoholic drink is made by fermenting honey with water, and then depending on the variety, it can be blended with other fruits, spices or hops.  Try Honeymoon’s Traditional Meads (only honey, water and yeast), Cysers (Apples and honey) and even their Dessert Meads (which have a higher level of sugar).  Taste them all at the Meadery and purchase some of your favourites to enjoy at home!

  • Ratio Coffee and Pastry

    Looking for the perfect coffee and pastry spot? Well, we’ve found it! Ratio Coffee & Pastry is a gem of a café located in downtown Vernon serving a variety of baked goods. And with each day of the week comes a different special pastry!  Try house made eclairs on Tuesdays, seasonal fruit strudels on Thursday and even freshly made pizzas on Friday and Saturday nights! There’s so many delicious treats to try here so you better start now.

  • Okanagan Spirits Craft Distillery  

    It’s worth visiting Okanagan Spirits Craft Distillery because it is ‘North America’s only designated World Distillery’ and is Western Canada’s oldest craft distillery. You can try three spirits for $5 in their tasting room and learn all about the process of distilling.  Try everything from absinthe to gin to fruit liqueurs and brandy! What’s your favourite?

  • Triple Island Cheese

    Anyone for some cheese? Head down to Triple Island Farm and taste some cheese, meet some cows and enjoy the picturesque atmosphere of the farm! Cheese here is made from raw milk, meaning it is healthier for you but also super yummy.  Gouda is the signature cheese offered on the farm and its variations include aged gouda, chilli pepper gouda, peppercorn gouda, cumin and cloves gouda and everything in between.   Perfect cheese to go with a box of crackers.

There you have it – 4 not-to-be-missed stops on the Vernon Tasting Trail! Of course, there are many more brilliant breweries, wineries and eateries throughout the region so take your time discovering all its flavours. 

Gouda Cheese Tasting

For information on Cottage Rentals at La Casa, please please contact our reservations line on 1-888-226-5566 or email rentals@lacasacottageresort.com where we will be more than happy to assist you!  Get ready for summer NOW.

 

Written by Hannah Poaros

Grapes Wineries
Jun04

4 West Kelowna Wineries you won’t want to miss

 

If you’re staying at La Casa Cottages and want to embark on some wine tasting, then you should definitely check out the West Side Wine Trail. These wineries are closest to La Casa – so are perfect for lunch, tastings and vineyard walks! Whether you decide to take a Wine Tour (recommended for groups that plan on multiple wine tastings) or self-drive the route (cost-effective if you have a designated driver), here are 4 wineries you don’t want to miss on your next visit to Kelowna.

4 West Kelowna WIneries

 

Mission Hill Family Estate Winery

Mission Hill Family Estate has some of the finest architecture in the Okanagan region. With a curved arch entrance way, 12-storey bell tower and a latin-inspired Loggia (outside corridor/room) the estate is a romantic setting that is like no other winery. Enjoy walking around the grounds before you head into the tasting room. In the Summer months, dine at the Terrace Restaurant whilst looking out over Lake Okanagan.

• Quails’ Gate Winery

Though Quails’ Gate was founded in 1989, the Stewart family have been tied to vines and grape growing since 1908. This beautiful winery has a long history and so you may want to think about booking their Quails’ Gate Family Tour. This tour will give you an understanding of wine production and information specific to Quails’ Gate, as well as the opportunity to taste three of their award-winning wines. Afterwards, head over to the Old Vines Restaurant – a farm-to-table venue that is rated one of Canada’s top 100 restaurants. You won’t be disappointed!

• Rollingdale Winery

Rollingdale is a small certified Organic winery. Everything – the vines, grapes and wine-making process is Organic, making this a must-see winery on the West Side trail. With friendly staff and a small tasting room open all year round, Rollingdale is an authentic, unpretentious experience. In addition to the red and white wines, you can also taste three ice wines – very delicious!

• Indigenous World Winery

Aiming to showcase the history of the land through amazing wines and indigenous local food, Indigenous World Winery is one to watch. The winery is one of the only 100% natively-owned wineries in the world and takes pride in this fact. Pay attention to the exquisite designs on the wine bottle labels – these all have stories behind them and the staff will be more than happy to explain to you. Because it is so close to the highway, you don’t expect this winery to have knock out views across Lake Okanagan…but it does! What more could you want?

 

With so many wineries to choose from, the Okanagan is ideal for that special weekend away. Do you have a favorite location? If you were recommending one winery to a friend, which would it be? We would love to hear your thoughts – and if you are planning to visit Kelowna, then why not stay with us here at La Casa! More details about all our cottages can be found here.

 

Written by Hannah Poaros