British Columbia Wine


British Columbia in the western part of Canada has come a long way from its humble beginnings as a wine region. European settlers in the 1800s attempted to work with vinifera plantings, but the grapes could not withstand the extremes in temperature, succombing to diseases and fungus in the summer and freezing to death in the winter. Labrusca varietals such as Vidal Blanc, Baco Noir, and Concord were able to withstand the environment, but the wines were pretty “funky,” to say the least, and never had much success outside of Canada.
In the 1960s and 70s, with a consumer shift toward higher quality wines and the invention of modern viticultural technologies and techniques, wine-makers in British Columbia were able to step up their game and work with more popular vinifera grapes. The British Columbia Wine Institute (BC VQA) was founded in 1990 to control viticultural qualilty and promote local wines. The label VQA ensures 100% of growth and production takes place in British Read more »

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Popular wines made in British Columbia under $20

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Varietals Produced in British Columbia View all

  • Chardonnay

    British wine writer and critic, Jancis Robinson, once noted that throughout the 80’s and 90’s in the United States, C...

  • Merlot

    The Occitanian word “merlot” translates to “young blackbird.” An accurate description for this popular, early-budding...

  • Cabernet Sauvignon

    “King of the Red Wine Grapes.” The colonizer of the vineyards, pushing native wine grapes into its shadows. The Caber...

  • Pinot Noir

    “With so voluptuous a perfume, so sweet an edge, they make the blood run hot,” Joel Fleischman, wine columnist at Van...

Subregions of British Columbia

  • Okanagan Valley

      The Okanagan Valley is the most productive viticultural area of British Columbia in Canada...

  • Vancouver Island

    British Columbia’s most recent DVA is Vancouver Island, a 250-mile-long isle which hosts a fast g...

  • Similkameen Valley

    Known more for its western frontier history of ranching and gold mining, the Similkameen Valley h...

  • Similkameen Valley Vqa

Popular Wineries in British Columbia View all

  • Nk'Mip Cellars

    The winery site is one of the most attractive in the South Okanagan with outstanding views in a s...

  • Mission Hill Winery

    Mission Hill Family Estate, a modern take on old-world architecture, is one of the most impressiv...

  • Chalet Estate Winery

    Muse Winery (formerly Chalet Estate Winery) is located on the picturesque Saanich Peninsula near ...

  • Venturi-Schulze Vineyards

    The vineyard was established in 1988 with five acres on a gentle south slope planted to meticulou...

  • Red Rooster Winery

    Perched high above Okanagan Lake, our winery is located among the rolling hills of Naramata Bench...

  • Hawthorne Mountain

    The Winery: See Ya later Ranch at Hawthorne Mountain Vineyards Year: Established September 1st, 1...

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British Columbia on Snooth

  • Rathjen Cellars Wine Bunker White 2018


    The 2018 Wine Bunker White by Rathjen Cellars of Saanich British Columbia Canada is a quaffable, crisp, suitably acidic white with slightly components this time round. Bouquet is muted, with musky peach and stewed white fruit. Entry is clean, somewhat neutral (some white mulberry/gooseberry tartness) but satisfying for the purpose. Nicely do... Read More

    Wine review by 259386zufrieden 259386 zufrieden

  • Black Sage Vineyard Merlot 2017


    Nice bold labeling to make a for the juice, well it pours a darker, more muddled version of what I'm used to seeing, with deeper purple hues around the rim and numerous oily legs form around the inside of the glass after a good swirl. Aromas that lean into currant, black fruits such as plum, blackberry and blueberry, vanilla oak... Read More

    Wine review by chriscage

  • Dirty Laundry Vineyard Reserve Gewurztraminer 2017


    A fairly light complexion that is of light yellow/grassy coloration and is super clear! The aromas are of dry grass, mineral, perfumed flower petals, and some tropical notes such as mango, papaya and muted pineapple. The flavors are a well rounded blend of tart citrus rind, floral spiciness and juicy tropical fruits, and mineral forward acidit... Read More

    Wine review by chriscage

  • Blue Mountain Vineyard and Cellars Pinot Blanc 2018


    The 2018 Pinot Blanc (a somewhat underappreciated white clone of Pinot - except in Alsace and western Germany) is made in a fashion applied to Chardonnay with gentle oak treatment. The nose is vanilla-infused sweet apple, and the entry, although softer and less dense than a Chard, has sweet water purity. About as good as it gets for this grape... Read More

    Wine review by 259386zufrieden 259386 zufrieden

  • Unsworth Vineyards Allegro 2018


    This white blend of Petit Milo and Sauvignette from Mill Bay BC (just north of Victoria) is a snappy, medium yellow wine with a distinctive cooking apple nose which at first seems reduced, but then develops into stewed wild gooseberry-apple (but not the sweet, crisp eating kind). On the palate, a metallic, citric acidity with a dollop of sugar.... Read More

    Wine review by 259386zufrieden 259386 zufrieden

  • Emandare Vineyard Sauvignon Blanc 2019


    From the oldest (and one of the only) Sauvignon Blanc plantings on Vancouver Island (Duncan, BC, 18 years old), this 2019 shows good, easily identifiable varietal properties on the nose with anise, grass, lemon, gooseberry and kiwi; entry is clean, pure and typically acidic (for the Island). There is a lot of gooseberry and lemon grass on the p... Read More

    Wine review by 259386zufrieden 259386 zufrieden

  • Blue Mountain Vineyard and Cellars Reserve Cuvee Pinot Noir 2017


    Blue Mountain has been making fine Pinot Noir for some time now, and the 2017 Reserve Cuvee - made from an very ordinary Vendange - is nonetheless quite Burgundian translucent in the glass with a complex nose of sweet vanilla, spice, gentle fir and wild strawberry; entry carries obvious oak spice, strawberry preserve and soft tannin. Age-worthy... Read More

    Wine review by 259386zufrieden 259386 zufrieden

  • Blue Mountain Vineyards and Cellars Chardonnay 2017


    The 2017 Chardonnay (non reserve) is no ordinary Chard. This wine has structure to last, showing light yellow in the glass, with a nose of apple, vanilla (French oak), pure spring water laced with herbs. Not quite as nuanced as the reserve, but clean as a whistle on entry with white fruit and apple on the finish, and of course a hint of oak an... Read More

    Wine review by 259386zufrieden 259386 zufrieden

  • Oak Bay Vineyard Pinot Noir 2016


    Pours a muddled purple/cranberry color....quite unlike anything I've seen with this varietal before! The aromas are quite intense and of deep and dark structure......heavy black currant, sultana raisin, black cherry, linseed/flax oil and oak all help one another in balancing I warm it with my hands, I get huge whiffs of dark choco... Read More

    Wine review by chriscage

  • Rathjen Cellars Wine Bunker White 2017


    Mike Rathjen's Wine Bunker White is a melange of white varieties from Saanich and Cowichan Valley Vancouver Island BC. The 2017 is rich and well-balanced with a nose of stewed white berries and musk plus a hint of petrol. Entry is clean, slightly acidic but balanced with a dollop of sweetness. Fairly neutral, with gooseberry, sour apple and mus... Read More

    Wine review by 259386zufrieden 259386 zufrieden

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