Wine professionals from around the world are coming to the Okanagan to learn more about the diversity of B.C. wines. File photo

Wine professionals from around the world coming to B.C. bootcamp

The top wine professionals from around the world are visiting the Okanagan

The top wine professionals from around the world and across the country visiting the Okanagan to share, taste, talk, learn and celebrate the wines of British Columbia.

“The 2017 Wine BC BootCamp represents an unparalleled opportunity for the British Columbia wine industry to host 30 key national and international sommeliers, wine trade and media to experience first-hand the diversity of premium BC VQA Wine – meaning wine 100 per cent grown and made in B.C.,” said Miles Prodan, president and CEO of the B.C. Wine Institute in a press release.

Related: Examining the Okanagan’s wine history

Over four days (Nov. 5 to 8), invited attendees will sample more than 200 B.C. wines as they network with top B.C. wine professionals including masters of wine, master sommeliers, winemakers, viticulturists, wine educators, and esteemed B.C. chefs. Led by Master of Wine Rhys Pender and Master Sommelier John Szabo, the week will include a series of educational masterclasses, regional tastings and dinners, panel discussions, interactive wine and food pairings and keynote presentations focusing on the history, progress and future of B.C’s wine industry.

“The goal of this event is to showcase the very best of what B.C.’s wine regions have to offer at a premium level,” said Prodan. “Inviting Master of Wine Rhys Pender, Master Sommelier John Szabo, celebrated wine writer Michaela Morris and acclaimed Chef Mark Filatow of Waterfront Wines to participate on a WineBC Bootcamp Wine Selection Committee was one way of ensuring the program included the best examples of B.C. wine that represent the diversity of our province’s terroir, styles and varieties of wines.” notes Prodan.

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“We have put together a program based on our most positive experiences from events we’ve attended around the world,” said Szabo. “The lineup of masterclasses will go deep into the heart of B.C. wine, covering everything from micro local geology to B.C.’s place in the greater world of wine, delivered by top-level experts and underscored by a range of handpicked wines that tell the full story. Attendees will leave the Okanagan with a detailed picture of B.C. wine, and they’ll have some fun along the way, too.”

The event hopes to increase global awareness of the province as a premium wine region and to open new markets around the world. Some of the wine professionals attending are coming from as far away as Hong Kong and London.

“B.C. is starting to get noticed for the quality of its wines in B.C., Canada and internationally. B.C. wines have a freshness and brightness that comes from the unique climate, and this is a style that the world is gravitating too. It is a great time to expose key wine influencers to our world-class wine industry,” said Pender.

Acclaimed B.C. chefs Matthew Stowe, winner of Top Chef Canada Season 3; Lee Humphries, Liquidity Bistro; Ken Nakano, Shangri-La Hotel and Jeremy Tucker, CedarCreek Estate Winery’s Terrace Restaurant will team up with attendees to compete in a pairing challenge, selecting two B.C. VQA Wines to feature with the finest locally grown and sourced ingredients, to earn the award for B.C.’s Best Pairings dish. Chefs will prepare their dishes and teams will present their pairings at a four-course private dinner at Liquidity Bistro the following evening. Teams will be awarded points for use of a local ingredient in some component in their dish, creativity and the success of the wine pairing.

“You can always take a region’s wines to key markets, but it is much more exciting to bring influencers to a region. That way they can experience the beauty of B.C. wine country and gain a deeper understanding of the people, terroir and unique wine and food culture that make up all of the exciting things happening in B.C. wine,” said Pender.

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