Top 7 Kelowna Organic Wineries to Visit in 2022
Organic and Biodynamic Winemakers in the Okanagan Valley, BC
The Okanagan Valley’s hot, sunny, and dry climate is perfect for growing rich, full bodied wine grapes. With a long growing season and thousands of microclimates, Okanagan viticulturists can successfully grow a wide variety of excellent wine grapes. Some of the most popular Okanagan wine varietals are chardonnay, rieseling, merlots, syrahs and viogniers.
While organic winemaking used to be a tiny niche in the Okanagan dominated by Summerhill Pyramid Winery, there’s a growing movement towards organic vineyards, organic winemaking, and biodynamic farming in Kelowna, British Columbia. Even well-established wineries and vineyards like CedarCreek and Mission Hill are converting their vineyards and going full organic.
If you haven’t tried organic wine yet, 2022 is your year. Here are our favorite organic wineries in Kelowna right now.
1. Kalala Organic Estate Winery
Kalala is a certified organic vineyard located in the upper bench of West Kelowna, BC. Kalala translates to “Miracle Place,” which demonstrates this winery’s commitment to sustainable viticulture, excellent organic wines, and always working in harmony with nature.
Their reds, whites, and ice wine - all made with the highest quality certified organic grapes. Visit their indoor tasting room or the outside tasting area for gorgeous views of the valley mountains. If you’re the designated driver or you’re bringing along the kids, Kalala also makes delicious organic apple juice.
3361 Glencoe Rd, West Kelowna, BC V4T 1M1
2. Rollingdale Winery Inc
Rollingdale is an organic winery located in the rural neighborhood of Lakeview Heights in West Kelowna, BC.
Rollingdale’s quaint and rustic vibe is a welcome departure from the usual pretentiousness of the Kelowna wine scene. Their simple, yet charming wine cellar also doubles as a tasting room, and is one of the only wineries that will let you drink wine straight from the barrel. We love their chardonnay, pinot gris, port, and ice wines.
On a clear day, you’ll get fantastic views over Okanagan Lake and the surrounding mountains. Staff here are friendly, knowledgeable, and very laid back. We’re excited to see what they’re rolling up in 2022.
2306 Hayman Rd, West Kelowna, BC V1Z 1Z5
3. Off the Grid Organic Winery
Off the Grid is a family-owned organic winery that uses regenerative farming, solar energy, and organic processing to create some of West Kelowna’s best organic wine.
You’ll feel welcomed by helpful and knowledgeable staff when like Sheri, the lead winemaker who is best known for her fruit-forward whites (gewurtz, pinot gris, chardonnay) and excellent pizza served fresh from their on-site food truck. Vegan options are also available for more picky eaters. Off the Grid is also home to some friendly farm animals including goats, sheep, chicken, bunnies, and a turkey.
For a different wine tasting experience, check out their live music and yoga events during the summer months.
3623 Glencoe Rd, West Kelowna, BC V4T 1L8
4. CedarCreek Estate Winery
CedarkCreek is a highly regarded winery located on Lakeshore Rd in Kelowna’s Upper Mission neighborhood. Over the last few years, CedarkCreek has made some major changes. They fully converted their vineyards to certified organic as of Autumn 2021.
CedarCreek’s organic viticulture practices include the use of cover crops like alfalfa and crimson to maintain healthy soil, while bees, chickens, and worms fight off pests. Grazing cows roam the vineyard, providing the land with nutrient-rich compost and attracting good insects. Kestrels and an enormous farm dog watch over the land to keep the fruit safe.
They also renovated their tasting room and restaurant, which serves a great lunch or dinner with a complete wine pairing menu. Try their Estate Pinot Noir, Estate Chardonnay, Block 3 Riesling, and the Platinum Haynes Creek Viognier.
5445 Lakeshore Rd, Kelowna, BC V1W 4S5
5. Beaumont Family Estate Winery
Beaumont Family Estate Winery is an organic vineyard with a long history of growing organic grapes in the Okanagan Valley.
During their first 15 to 20 years in business, Beaumont sold their organic grapes to Summerhill winery, and eventually decided to make their own. Nowadays their 20+ year old vines grow some of the best certified organic grapes in Kelowna.
This family-run winery offers a wide selection of full-flavored organic wines made with 100% organic grapes.
If you’re lucky, the owner of Beaumont is known to serenade guests with live acoustic guitar and singing, creating a truly unique tasting experience. Their venue is also available for weddings and events.
2775 Boucherie Rd, Kelowna, BC V1Z 2G4
6. Summerhill Pyramid Winery
Summerhill Pyramid Winery was the first organic winery in Kelowna, BC and the only Okanagan winery to carry the prestigious Demeter Biodynamic certification.
Summerhill is also the largest organic wine producer in all of BC and is well known for their syrahs, sangiovese, muscats, and chardonnays. With old vines up to 50 or 60 years of age, Summerhill’s organic wines are rich, full bodied, and well worth a tasting.
Summerhill’s signature pyramid chamber has become a familiar landmark in its hillside location in Southeast Kelowna. Summerhill hosts sacred gatherings inside the pyramid on the solstices, equinoxes, full moons, and new moons. A lot of tour buses make their stop here during the Summer, so visit during a shoulder season to avoid the crowds.
Their on site bistro serves a happy hour brunch with wagyu burgers, and a full vegan menu. Summerhill does not use any animal products in winemaking, though they use some animal products to fertilize their soil.
4870 Chute Lake Rd, Kelowna, BC V1W 4M3
7. Mission Hill Family Estate Winery
Mission Hill Winery sits at the forefront of the wine industry in Kelowna, BC.
With stunning views, dramatic architecture, an on-site sommelier, and fantastic fine dining, Mission Hill Family Estate is a must see Kelowna winery.
There’s a local rumor going around that Mission Hill is slowly converting all of their vineyards to organic. If the rumor turns out to be true, it will take around 4 years to completely transition their land to organic and will set a serious precedent for the future of all Okanagan winemakers.
1730 Mission Hill Rd, West Kelowna, BC V4T 2E4
The Benefits of Organic Viticulture
There are a lot of reasons to enjoy a glass of Okanagan wine. Wine helps regulate your blood sugar, lowers bad cholesterol levels, and is full of antioxidants, vitamins, & minerals.
But there are even more reasons to drink organic wine. Some people swear that organic wines just taste better. And compared to traditional wine production, organic viticulture is better for the local environment, fosters healthier soil (terroir), uses fewer chemicals, and results in wines that contain fewer sulphites compared to non-organic.
Organic vineyards do not use synthetic pesticides and chemicals. Instead, they rely on organic manure, flowering plants, and insects like ladybugs and praying mantises to ward off pests. The result is a well-balanced terroir rich in healthy microbes.
Improved Soil Health
By planting natural flora, organic vineyards feature robust, healthy roots that result in stronger soil structure that retains water and feeds the terroir with valuable nutrients.
To be considered organic in Canada, wines must be made with at least 95% certified organic grapes and have no added sulphites.
While all wines contain some amount of natural sulphites, organic wines contain far fewer sulphites than non-organic wines, which means you’re slightly less likely to get a dreaded wine hangover the next morning.
Some wine connoisseurs swear that organic wine just tastes better. By enhancing the soil quality, organic grapes are grown in nutrient-rich soil, which enhances the flavor of the grapes. Since organic wines use natural ingredients instead of synthetic ingredients, they are said to better reflect the flavor of the local terroir.
About Biodynamic Viticulture
Biodynamic winemaking is the latest industry trend in organic winemaking.
According to Meriam Webster, Biodynamic farming is “a system of farming that follows a sustainable, holistic approach which uses only organic, usually locally-sourced materials for fertilizing and soil conditioning, views the farm as a closed, diversified ecosystem, and often bases farming activities on lunar cycles.”