A Guide to Lake Country Wine Tours: Top Vineyards to Visit

Embarking on a Wine Tour in Lake Country: Your Ultimate Guide

Nestled between the vibrant city of Kelowna and the tranquil town of Vernon, BC, Lake Country emerges as a hidden gem within the Okanagan Valley, offering a serene escape into the world of wines. With its lush landscapes and a wine route just a stone's throw away from the urban hustle, this region is a must-visit for oenophiles and casual wine enthusiasts alike. Below, we present a curated wine tour itinerary that promises an immersive journey through Lake Country's finest vineyards.

Arrowleaf Cellars

Your Lake Country Wine Tour Itinerary

Start your adventure at 50th Parallel Estate for an early taste of world-class Pinot Noirs. Mid-morning, make your way to Arrowleaf Cellars to enjoy their award-winning white wines with a view of the lake. As the day warms up, Blind Tiger Vineyards offers a unique tasting experience in the heart of their organic vineyard (remember, they're open in summer only). For lunch, the exquisite Grey Monk Estate Winery pairs breathtaking views with culinary delights. Post-lunch, explore the artistic ambiance of Ex Nihilo Vineyards, followed by a late afternoon tasting at Intrigue Wines, where the focus is on fun, approachable wines. Conclude your day at Peak Cellars, with a dinner overlooking their lush gardens.

Featured Vineyards

50th Parallel Estate This strikingly modern winery is renowned for its Pinot Noirs and Chardonnays. With a tasting room offering panoramic views, visitors can indulge in a variety of tasting options, from casual flights to more in-depth experiences. The on-site restaurant, Block One, serves up local cuisine that perfectly complements their wines.

50th Parallel

Arrowleaf Cellars Family-owned Arrowleaf Cellars prides itself on producing high-quality wines that reflect the terroir of Lake Country. Their tasting room overlooks Okanagan Lake, providing a picturesque setting for sampling their award-winning whites and reds. While they do not have a restaurant, they offer picnic tables for guests wishing to bring their own food.

Blind Tiger Vineyards (Open in Summer Only) Focusing on organic viticulture, Blind Tiger offers an authentic farm-to-glass experience. Open seasonally, their outdoor tastings are a summer delight, allowing guests to enjoy wines amidst the vines. They occasionally host food trucks, providing a casual dining option during your visit.

Grey Monk Estate Winery One of the pioneers in the region, Grey Monk, offers a rich history alongside its wide range of wines. The winery features a tasting room and a full-service restaurant, The Lookout Restaurant, where guests can savor locally sourced dishes paired with estate wines, all while enjoying stunning lake views.

Grey Monk View

Ex Nihilo Vineyards Inspired by the Latin phrase for "out of nothing," Ex Nihilo crafts wines with passion and creativity. The winery offers a variety of tasting experiences, including food pairings. Their on-site restaurant, Chaos Bistro, serves innovative dishes that highlight local ingredients, perfectly matched with their wines.

Ex Nihilo Winery

Intrigue Wines With a focus on producing approachable, enjoyable wines, Intrigue Wines invites guests to explore their diverse portfolio through tastings in a friendly, welcoming environment. While they don't have a restaurant, they offer a picnic area for those looking to enjoy a bite with their wines.

Intrigue Winery

Peak Cellars Known for its commitment to sustainable winemaking, Peak Cellars provides a holistic vineyard-to-bottle experience. Their tasting room offers insight into their winemaking process, complemented by wine flights. The Garden Bistro at Peak Cellars serves farm-to-table dishes that enhance the wine-tasting experience with stunning garden views.

Peak Cellars

Ancient Hill Estate Winery Nestled on a picturesque slope overlooking the Okanagan Valley, Ancient Hill Estate Winery is a boutique gem that captivates with its European-inspired wines and charming, rustic ambiance. This family-run estate specializes in small-batch wines, meticulously crafted to reflect the unique microclimate of Lake Country. Visitors can indulge in an intimate tasting experience, exploring a range of varietals that capture the essence of the region. Though not equipped with a full-service restaurant, Ancient Hill encourages guests to bring picnics and enjoy them on the winery’s scenic grounds, offering a tranquil retreat amidst the vines. A visit to Ancient Hill is a journey back in time, where the passion for winemaking and the beauty of the landscape converge to create unforgettable moments.

Ancient Hill Winery

Tips for a Memorable Wine Tour

  • Book in Advance: Many wineries require reservations for tastings and dining, especially during peak season.
  • Transportation: Consider hiring a wine tour company or designating a driver to ensure a safe and enjoyable journey.
  • Seasonal Visits: Check winery hours and seasonal offerings, such as Blind Tiger Vineyards, which is open in summer only.

Lake Country's wine route is a journey of discovery, offering an intimate glimpse into the heart of Okanagan Valley's wine culture. Each vineyard presents a unique story, a distinct flavor, and an invitation to explore the lush landscapes of British Columbia. Whether you're a seasoned wine connoisseur or new to the wine world, Lake Country welcomes you with open arms and a glass ready to be filled.

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