Burrowing Owl Estate Winery Welcomes New Culinary Team

The Okanagan’s Burrowing Owl Estate Winery is pleased to announce two changes to its culinary team: Lee Humphries has been appointed Director of Culinary Operations for Vintage Hospitality, while Damian Mischkinis is the new Chef de Cuisine at the winery’s award-winning Sonora Room Restaurant.  The Sonora Room will open for the 2015 season on Friday, February 27th, but guests can get an advance taste of what’s in store when the restaurant serves a special Valentine’s dinner menu on February 13th and 14th.

The Sonora Room is known for serving world-class cuisine that showcases locally-sourced ingredients such as Okanagan-grown produce, artisanal breads and cheeses, and sustainable seafood.  It’s a natural fit for Humphries and Mischkinis, both of whom are strong proponents of the local food movement.

Humphries started his career in Cornwall, England, but since he moved to BC more than a decade ago he has worked at some of the top names on the local culinary scene, including West (under David Hawksworth), FigMint, Elixir at the Opus Hotel, the Heather Hospitality Group, and C Restaurant.  Most recently the Executive Chef at Local Lounge Grill in Summerland, Humphries is already familiar with the incredible bounty of ingredients grown and produced in the Okanagan Valley.  In his new role with Vintage Hospitality, Humphries is responsible for overseeing the successful operation and profitability of back of house operations in all businesses operated by Vintage, including Liquidity Bistro and The Gunbarrel.

His primary focus for 2015, however, will be to launch the summer season and support the Sonora Room’s new Chef de Cuisine Damian Mischkinis.  Humphries and Mischkinis already have a strong working relationship, as Mischkinis was Humphries’ Sous Chef in Summerland.  Prior to that Mischkinis worked in both Vancouver and Banff, notably at C Restaurant and the Heather Hospitality Group.  Together the two men will bring a fresh approach to culinary operations at the Sonora Room, with the joint goal of of delivering unparalleled wine country dining.

The Sonora Room’s special Valentine’s dinner menu on February 13th and 14th will be accompanied by live music. More Details.

About Burrowing Owl Estate Winery: Burrowing Owl Estate Winery is devoted to producing world-class wines using creative viticultural and winemaking processes that are in harmony with the unique ecosystem where the grapes are grown, which includes the northernmost tip of the Sonora Desert.  The winery is known for supporting the conservation work that is helping the burrowing owl make a comeback in British Columbia.  www.bovwine.ca

About Sonora Room Restaurant:  Opened in 2004, the winery restaurant overlooks 140 acres of picturesque vineyard from both the patio or inside the warm and inviting dining room. The philosophy of the culinary team is to showcase many of the South Okanagan’s local producers of local organic produce, fresh, seasonal fruits and artisan breads and cheeses. An exclusive wine list is changed regularly to include a selection of Burrowing Owl library wines that are no longer publicly available for sale. And, the wine selection is enhanced with alternate premium Okanagan wines chosen to complement the menu.

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