Lifestyle

Tour wine country with a local

Grape Escapes Wine Tours is a great way to see the Okanagan wine industry and terroir. - Submitted
Grape Escapes Wine Tours is a great way to see the Okanagan wine industry and terroir.
— image credit: Submitted

“Driving you to drink ... legally ... and loving it!” As the slogan for Grape Escapes Wine Tours — you know you are in for a fun experience.

Proprietor Dean Douglas, affectionately known as ‘Dino Vino,’ is a born and raised Pentictonite with a deep love and respect for wine country.

He knows the people, the history, the wines and the local dirt, and loves sharing great stories and insights into the Okanagan terroir while he escorts you to some of our finest vineyards and wineries.

“I have made it my mission to share what we have to offer with as many people as possible and wine tourism is such a social and enjoyable avenue to share the Okanagan with others,” he said. “To see people react with amazement in regards to the quality of our wines and the beauty of our valley is priceless.”

As a result of this passion for the industry, Grape Escapes became the most nominated business in the Penticton & Wine Country Chamber of Commerce 2011 Business Excellence Awards (Service Excellence, Hospitality/Tourism, New Business and Business of the Year).

Depending on the tour you choose, there is an option is to include one of their famous gourmet picnic lunches that you will enjoy right in a vineyard. Or, select a winery bistro to stop at for a beautiful lunch. You can choose from one of six unique viticultural zones, combinations of them, or create a custom designed excursion of your favourite wineries. Every tour includes the “ABC’s of Wine Tasting” at the VQA Wine Information Centre Penticton. This addition to the tour is invaluable to our wine country visitors. Learning to how to properly taste the wine and pick out its unique characteristics makes for a much more in-depth tour experience.

Happy wine touring!

Jennifer Schell is the editor of B.C. Food and Wine Trails magazine.

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