KELOWNA–The 35th Fall Okanagan Wine Festival is underway.
It kicked off Thursday night with the British Columbia Wine Awards reception.
The festival has become a big tourist draw for the region.
“We’re going to have ten nights and we’re going to have over one hundred and ten events and attract over twenty thousand people to the valley,” says Bruce Hibbard, chair of the board for the Okanagan Wine Festival Society.
This year, almost 600 wines were submitted for the awards.
Ten wine experts came to the Okanagan to judge them in September, and now the winners have been revealed to the world.
“This is so fantastic,” says Sheri-Lee Turner-Krouzel with 50th Parallel Estate Winery. “We are so honoured to win these awards and be amongst all of our peers and amazing people in this industry.”
Award winners are promoted by the Okanagan Wine Festival Society, and that makes winning good for business.
“Absolutely, the wineries really experience a bump in sales when they receive one of our top awards,” says Hibbard.
The top prize of the night is the Premier’s Award.
This year it went to Jackson-Triggs Okanagan Estate Grand Reserve Entourage Sparkling Brut 2010.