Kelowna, British Columbia / September 3, 2010 / lunch

Winederlust Rating (details below): 7.9 out of 10 / Winederlust Worthy: Yes

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After a rough morning wine tasting around the Boucherie Mountain Bench area of the Okanagan Valley, west of the city of Kelowna, we had to stop for a bite to eat to rejuvenate – and preferably somewhere with a view. The restaurant at scenic Quails’ Gate Winery fit the bill perfectly. This pretty family-owned winery specializes in Pinot Noir and Chardonnay, but also produces Merlot, Marechal Foch, Cab Sauv, Chenin Blanc, Riesling, Gewurtztraminer, and an unusual Chasselas-Pinot Blanc-Pinot Gris combo. But the main reason we stopped here was for that spectacular view, which we enjoyed while dining outside.

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The restaurant at Quails’ Gate features many seasonal, locally grown ingredients, as happily seems to be the norm around Okanagan Valley eateries, with lots of seafood choices.

We started with half a dozen Little Wing oysters (from Okeover Inlet, 150 km north of Vancouver), creamy and deliciously juicy.

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Little wing oysters.

Next Jay enjoyed the sockeye salmon on an open-faced sandwich – a nicely cooked piece of tender salmon served with boar bacon and hollandaise sauce.

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Sockeye salmon on an open-faced sandwich with boar bacon.

I had the farm to table salad, one of the best salads I’d had in a while. It was chockfull of vegetables – beets, wax beans, zucchini, and summer squash – plus goat cheese, almonds, and mesclun topped with a light balsamic dressing.

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Farm to table salad.

Though we couldn’t drink much more wine after tasting all morning, with our light lunch we tried a taste of rosé – very smooth, one of the better ones we tried in the Okanagan – and a taste of crisp, refreshing Riesling. (Unfortunately, by this point the service had gone way downhill, and when we tried to order more tastes of wine, they never appeared — nor did our server for quite a while.) Despite that minor annoyance, it wasn’t a bad way at all to spend our last day in the gorgeous Okanagan Valley.

– by Liz Humphreys, Winederlust Eater in Chief

 

Winederlust Rating Details (out of 10):

Food: 8.0 (preparation, presentation & taste)
Wine: 8.0 (selection, recommendations, pairings & taste)
Service: 6.5 (helpfulness, attentiveness, knowledge & pacing)
Place: 9.0 (location, view, decor & vibe)
Price Range$$ (Moderate)

 

Essential Information: 

Old Vines Restaurant / 3303 Boucherie Road Kelowna, British Columbia [map]

Direct Line: 250-769-2500 or 1-800-420-WINE (9463)

Website: http://www.quailsgate.com/visiting-the-winery/old-vines-restaurant.php

Call or check website for current hours. Reservations suggested.

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