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And they're throwing their first ever wine festival this weekend to celebrate.
For the most part I’m sort of meh about wine festivals. On the upside you get some cool dinners and often some special bottles hauled out for the tastings. But on the downside…people, lots and lots of people. But I’m sort of psyched that the Cowichan Valley wineries are getting together to host their first annual wine fest this Friday, Saturday and Sunday.Partly it’s because the vintners in the region are killing it these days. Long gone are the days of underripe grapes that plagued the area when the industry was first starting out. if anything, their focus on low-alcohol, high-acid wines are now far more on point than some of the big hulking reds the South Okanagan is producing. And for the most part these are still owner-operated wineries, meaning that the person pouring you the wine, made the wine, sells the wine, sweeps up the winery, etc.And there are some dynamite wineries there. On the big side (that’s big by Cowichan standards, we’re not talking Mission Hill here) is Blue Grouse, which has been really investing in their production and it shows—their Pinot is long sold out and they have a very cool new sparkling program. Or Emandare, who makes one of the coolest Sauvignon Blancs in the Province with some amazing old vines. Or Unsworth or Averill Creek or one of the small wineries that I don’t even know about yet, but am planning on falling in love with when I visit.All the details are here —see you there.