The 3rd Annual Osoyoos Celebrity Wine Festival: Weekend Recap

…so, my trusty travel companion, fashion reporter Christie Lohr, and I set off in our MINI Cooper S Countryman, wondering if the imminent festival could possibly top last year’s — a weekend affair overflowing with local wine, to die for food, and celebrity interviews.

Of course, we took full advantage of our MINI Yaletown wheels during the getaway. Road 13 Vineyards provided a beautiful backdrop for a wine and banana bread picnic — and surprisingly, the MINI’s spacious trunk fit our table, chairs, and lunch.

Christie Lohr and myself
Outfit from

Onto the festival and its glorious events…

Walnut Beach Resort hosted the annual Celebrity Wine Auction & Beach Party, which included the beautiful bites below (read about them in my Metro News article here), performances by singers George Canyon and Rosette Luve, and of course, televisions for the Canucks game.

To the dismay of some, no limbo contest was held. Though I trained for the competition, I’m happy to hold on to the title until next June. Hopefully, by that time, top contender Erin Cebula’s knee will have healed so that she may enter, too.

Vanilla Cured Sablefish on shortbread with blood orange marmalade
Elk and Huckleberry Tartar
The 'Erins': myself, Erin Cebula, & Arran Henn | Dress from

Next up was the preeminent event: the Nota Bene Release Party, set amid the rolling hills of Black Hills Estate Winery. At first glance, one might guess this destination to be Italy.

Nota Bene is one of Canada’s most popular wines, hence its swift sell out upon release — a recurrent milestone marked by this bustling mid-day party.

Upon entry, guests are handed dual-purpose plates, which also function as wine glass holders. With all the photo ops, wine drinking, appetizer tasting, and hand-shaking at the event, this tool is essential.

Incredibly juicy Oyama meat skewers paired nicely with the Nota Bene, a Bordeaux-style red.

Grilled Pintxo of red wine braised short rib with heirloom mini potatoes and Grims bacon with salsa verde

Lightly breaded, velvety-soft goat cheese was washed down with Black Hills’ Chardonnay.

Warm seared Carmelis goat cheese on brioche with shaved asparagus salad

The talented, uncensored singer, Rosette Luve (‘Fire’, ‘Crushed’, etc.), and I talked food in the vineyard. She’s crazy for butter chicken! Her interview and ‘to die for face’ will be featured in an upcoming edition of Vancouver View Magazine.  

The final event of the weekend: The Vinos Wine Film Festival at Watermark Beach Resort.

The highlight of my night was interviewing Jesse Kovacs, a Californian winemaker whose appearances on The Bachelor and Bachelor Pad have thrust him into the celebrity spotlight. He’s hilarious, witty, and remains down-to-earth. Click here to find out what caused his below facial expression.

Dress from | Necklace by

We danced the night away to another impromptu performance by the gorgeous Rosette Luve, who’ll open for Flo Rida at the Plaza of Nations on July 3rd, 2011. She’s great live and requires no dubbed tracks.

We’d wondered if the third annual Osoyoos Celebrity Wine Festival could top last year’s. As it turns out, like a fine wine (perhaps the Nota Bene), the illustrious weekend only seems to get better. The countdown for next year is already on.

View Christie’s OCWF video post here.

View OCWF outfits from LYNNsteven and Oliver & Lilly’s here.

Wishing you to die for food on a daily basis,

Erin Ireland

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