Harvest time is magical, but I am still taken aback at the large bin of freshly picked wine grapes lowered down beside me. It was a thrilling moment, my first up-close encounter with the Okanagan bounty more than a decade ago. Having only my old-technology phone, I did my best to snap some iconic images, the grape box framing my shot of the vineyards flowing across the landscape.

Okanagan Falls Wineries

Okanagan Falls has the most photographed vineyard views in BC. The vista of Vaseux Lake and its sentinel, McIntyre Bluff, is breathtaking. But the lakes, bluffs and steep slopes of bouldery gravel offer a lot more —especially if you’re a winemaker. Some 12,000 years ago as rivers of melting ice and glacial till filled the valleys, rich deposits of sands and gravels were left.

Okanagan Falls has the most photographed vineyard views in BC. The vista of Vaseux Lake and its sentinel, McIntyre Bluff, is breathtaking. But the lakes, bluffs and steep slopes of bouldery gravel offer a lot more —especially if you’re a winemaker.

Thanks in part to the mapping research of Dr. Pat Bowen, from Summerland Research and Development Centre, this unique landscape has now been designated as a sub-appellation, the second in the province following the Golden Mile Bench appellation in Oliver.

Family-owned wineries have been producing award-winning wines from the region for many years. The area has more than 150 hectares planted, and the Burgandy varietals of Chardonnay and Pinot Noir abound. Warm days result in ripe fruit while cool nights retain the acidity in the grapes, helping to bring out the fruit flavours and aromatics.

Add to that winemakers who take great attention to detail and an Okanagan Falls vintage will not only offer a unique expression of terroir, but also the quality that comes with hand-crafted wines.

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