From the temptations in the tasting rooms to the vastness of vineyards, anybody who experiences a Winelicious Tour is sure to find deeper meaning in the grapes they’ve always loved.
They cover everything through their scenic tours and tastings around the Okanagan.
No need to draw straws for a designated driver, they’ll arrange for a pickup and drop off at the most convenient location – and there’s room for six or 11 passengers in the Winelicious vehicles. Among the dozens of wineries between West Kelowna and Okanagan Falls, Winelicious has established five savvy routes. One of the wine and dine tours was crafted just for Peachland, and outside of town, guests can explore Bottleneck Drive, Naramata Bench and Westside Trail. But the itinerary of wineries can always be custom tailored for a private tour.
The vineyards that braid the valley appear abstract when you’re sitting on the beaches of Lake Okanagan, but witnessing the winding winery roads from inside of the Winelicious buses feels surreal. It doesn’t take long to feel like you’ve been taken off the beaten path and lost in an abyss of Okanagan agriculture. Even daily commuters of Highway 97 will feel like they’re having an exotic experience.
There’s more education to be gained by experiencing numerous tastings in one day. It’s not often that so many delicacies will be offered to you in such a short period of time. And each tasting is orchestrated by connoisseurs who can captivatingly articulate the flavours you’re tasting. It’s incredible how many different adjectives they use to describe the tasting experience. Chemistry lessons are quite engaging when they’re being be applied to the properties of delicious wine.
Between the amount of different ways to farm grapes, fermenting practices and perfecting the recipe – there’s a vast spectrum of flavours that winemakers are tapping into. And with wineries at nearly every corner of the valley, there’s a lot of uncharted waters to explore.
But beyond the splendour of a tasty beverage, wineries also establish distinctive brands through the personality of their environment. Each premises is cleverly garnished with a fun theme. Some tasting rooms will make you feel the solitude of an olden-days, rustic rural farm, while others are run like a chic urban lounge.
A tour of the local vineyards makes it easy to feel confident that the integrity of winemaking is being maintained. At least in the Okanagan. In a time when factory farming is responsible so much of our agriculture, it’s refreshing to see how grassroots all the local wineries still are. The owners are often on site mulling around, and they’re always friendly. At Saxon Winery in Summerland, for example, the owners Paul and Jayne Graydon expound the virtues of organic farming and even have a Bat House to help keep the insect population down. They make use of every bit of property so the fermentation vessels, oak barrels and the acres of vineyards are never far removed from the tasting room. Whatever time of the season, there’s always a fascinating step of the production cycle up for observation.
Make it happen by calling owner Lyse Collins at 250-870-0506. To find out details about each route and pricing visit winelicioustours.com.