Tuesday, June 14, 2016
The beautiful Shuswap is situated in south-central British Columbia, northeast of Vancouver. The Shuswap Lake system offers more than 1,000 kilometres of shoreline to explore, amidst spectacular scenery and a pristine environment. The Shuswap offers a four-season playground that boasts the largest houseboat fleet in Canada, and one of the largest in the world, offering a fabulous way to vacation with family and friends, lazily drifting along the lake gazing at blue skies and gorgeous mountains.
Here you will find a number of wineries, many of them starting up in the last few years. This is a region for Cold Climate wines. Cool climateregions definitely get just as hot as warm climates in the peak of the season. However, it is the fact that the temperatures drop off so quickly towards harvest that make the wines taste different. Lower temperatures preserve the acidity but they also make it difficult for grapes to ripen. You can generally assume that cool climate wine regions tend to produce tart fruit flavors and have more acidity.
These wineries need to be very selective in the grapes they grow and vineyard planting. One of the early and must successful wineries in Salmon Arm is Larch Hills Estate. They made some very good Ortegas over the years.
In 1992 John and Catherine Koopman started Ovino winery also in Salmon Arm. Their signature blend is Foch-Pinot Meunier. The newest winery in Salmon Arm and one to keep an eye on is Marionette winery owned by Amanda Eastwood and Jamie Smith both highly taned winemakers.
Down the road in Tappin you will find Recline Ridge a family operation that has won its shre of awards in the last few years. Continuing south from Salmon Arm you come across Sunnybrae Vineyards overlooking the lake. Mark Walenburge is the consulting winemaker here. He has helped establish a fine reputation for the winery
Up a little north of Salmond Arm sitting on the northern side of Shuswap lake is Celista Winery. Winners of 32 medals in the last 5 years. The winery is owned by Jack Ootes and his wife Marg. Jack is a former MLA and cabinet Minister for NW Territories.
The Shuswap wineries have proven you can make good wines in the northern end of the Okanagan with had work and dedication.