The Similkameen Valley, just west of the south Okanagan, is best known for its orchards (the town of Keremeos is known as “the fruit stand capital of Canada”) but is also now producing some interesting and complex wines.
Two to check out: Seven Stones Winery has earned raves for its peppery Syrah and rich Meritage, and Orofino, Canada’s only winery with eco-friendly straw-bale construction, makes a stunning Old Vines Pinot Noir.
Where to stay? Expect cosy little B&Bs and guesthouses like the luxurious Argos Guesthouse in Kaleden. Check out the simple, German-style “Landgasthof” (country inn) at Crowsnest Vineyards, where the restaurant and bakery also feature such German specialties as schnitzel meat platters with sauerkraut and fresh baked bread.
In Keremeos, spend a day uncovering the history of the Similkameen Valley through a flour mill. The town’s historic Grist Mill dates to 1877 and still produces flour; stop in for a tour and a Miller’s Lunch of cheese, salad, ham and bread.