Cowichan Valley Wine Tour Cont...
Cowichan Bay is a funky seaside village that calls us not only for the views but for the breads and cheeses. The problem here is making a decision as both Hilary's Cheese and the True Grain Bread stores have choices that I have never heard of let alone tasted before. It turns out that all choices are good ones. With our purchases on the back seat we headed south along Cowichan Bay Road with the smell of fresh baked bread wafting about us. Oh glorious day!
Just before reaching the Highway you will find the Divino Estate Winery. You know you're in the right place when the owner and wine maker Joe Busnardo says: There are only 2 wines. The ones you like and the ones you don't. Based on experience in the Okanagan Valley, this 40 acre property produces award winning Chardonnay, Trebbiano, Castel, Pinot Noir and Pinot Grigio. The tasting room is open from 1:00 PM to 5:00 PM.
About 3K north on the Highway you will find the Venturi Schulze Vineyards. No pesticides, no herbicides, no compromise but an unyielding commitment to producing uniquely expressive wines. The winery is open from April to September, Wednesday to Sunday from 10:00 AM to 5:00 PM.
Located on a sunny slope in the heart of the Cowichan Valley is the Blue Grouse Vineyards & Winery. A little off the beaten track this winery is a must visit. Family owned and operated they welcome visitors from Wednesday to Sunday, noon to 5PM. Come for a tasting in the elegant wood-paneled wine shop and tasting room.
Just outside of Duncan along Lakes Road, is the 6 acre boutique winery Twenty Two Oaks. Bring a picnic and relax on the licensed patio overlooking the vineyard and Quamichan lake. They`re open 12am-5pm.... Sat & Sun from the May long weekend until the Sept long weekend. As well, they will be open Thur - Sun for July and August.
We carry on and make a left on Hard Rd proceeding across the Highway to Somenos Rd and the Deol Estate Winery. All of the wines are created from 100% estate grown grapes to produce the highest of quality wines. The wine shop is located in a rustic old farm house where you can make a purchase while enjoying the local art on display. The winery is open from May to October, Wednesday to Monday between 11:00 AM and 5:00 PM. Bring a lunch and enjoy the beautiful scenery with a glass of the best.
Our final destination is one of our favourites the Averill Creek Vineyard . Not only do they produce one of the best Pinot noir wines you can find in the Valley but it's also one of the most beautiful. Sitting on the southeastern slope of Mt. Prevost the winery is designed to take advantage of gravity allowing the wine to flow from stage to stage all the way to the barrel room without the need for pumps. Bring a picnic to their licensed patio and taste what delicate handling does for a wine. If you are planning an event, consider renting the Averill's kitchen, dining room, and patio to make the event a memorable one.
There are many more first rate wineries on Vancouver Island than those listed here. If you have had an experience, good or bad, we would love to hear from you.
Check out this beautiful video Once Upon a Day in Cowichan Valley