Our first day of wine touring was in Kelowna. The next day, we really got down to business on the Naramata Bench!

This lovely area is just up the road, and the hill, from Penticton. It’s a beautiful stretch that makes for great climate and dirt for growing grapes. There are more wineries and tasting opportunities than you can shake a stick at, so it can be hard sifting through them all to spend your time wisely.

So, here are some great wineries we visited this time around… minus the winery Quidni (coming up in another blog in the days to come).

We started at a new to us winery, Upper Bench Winery and Creamery. Mostly, we hit this one because I heard the cheese here was divine. It was a fun experience to wine and cheese taste at the same time, and we came home with a white and two kinds of cheeses – a Grey Baby brie and a fantastic King Cole blue cheese (that we have almost completely devoured).

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Our next stop was a favourite of ours – La Frenz. This winery was featured at the special Joy Road catering dinner where David and I got engaged two years ago, and we saved a Malbec to drink on our one year anniversary just before this trip. It’s a beautiful place with beautiful wines – we picked up a Chardonnay that we have found ages incredibly well, and a couple of reds. This is a popular place, and was the busiest winery we have been to.

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Next up was a great little find at our local Saskatchewan liquor store last year. Joie Farm winery features a pinot gamay blend called PGT. We remembered the label and were excited to turn into the narrow road to check out the winery. We missed a turn and went all the way down the Bench to the shore – apparently we were “this close” to a nudist beach. We eventually found our way to Joie, and were happy to purchase more PGT.

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Our next stop is another favourite – Serendipity winery. It is one of the loveliest properties you can imagine, and the label makes me smile every time. We happily tasted as much as we could, and took home several bottles of different reds. There is something really special about a small winery that puts love into everything they do. You really feel that about Serendipity.

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Our last stop on the Naramata was Therapy, which is really starting to make a name for itself. We find Freud’s Ego at our local liquor store now all the time, but not this special bottle they make just for the Challenge Penticton triathlon! We couldn’t resist a couple of these special bottles.

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What a wonderful, and exhasuting day of wine tasting! One more day to go in the Olivery and Osoyoos area to the south.

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