Sign up for the Daily Sip

Your daily dose of wine knowledge.
Fun, short emails featuring wines, winemakers, regions, gadgets and more.

Email Address
Sign up to receive The Daily Sip for free
 Filed as : Regional Spotlight~ Rest of World

Olympic Scouting

Item Picture
  • Publish Date: Nov 17, 2009

As far as we’re concerned, it’s never too early to start getting excited for the Olympics which will be hosted by our neighbors to the North in a few months. We’re all familiar with the Canadian flag being raised for gold medal hockey games or seeing it touted on backpacks as you travel around the world, but what about wine bottles?

It may surprise you that grapes can even survive the rugged terrain of the Canadian Pacific Northwest, but they do. Grapes love to struggle, and in the valleys of British Columbia, they are presented a challenge unique to any grapes in the world. In doing so, Canadian vines produce wines that are distinctly, well, Canadian. Due to the colder Canadian temperatures, you can expect wines that are lower in alcohol, brighter in acidity, with lovely aromatics.

Within British Columbia there are five appellations: Vancouver Island, the Gulf Islands, the Vancouver & Fraser Valley, the Okanakan Valley and the Similkameen Valley (map). Each of these regions provides uncommon growing conditions that result in different styles of wine. A tasting tour of BC obviously would not be complete without sipping a bottle of Icewine—a treat that brings new meaning to the phrase “taking home the gold.” We recommend you watch the Olympics with a glass of Icewine in hand.

Be prepared for your Olympics party and do a little British Columbia wine reconnaissance that will ensure everyone is toasty inside and out by the fire.

Visit to see how dramatic wine country can be.

Let the games begin!

Previous Sip

Cameron Craze
Wine 2.0 Comes to NYC

While the sense of smell is arguably the most important for experiencing a wine, how quickly does the nose fatigue?