The Okanagan Valley is known for the wide array of wineries and vineyards stretching over the 200 km valley. Nestled at the southern most tip of the valley is a viticulture oasis full of sunshine and bright flavours. The Oliver-Osoyoos wine region, officially sponsored by the Oliver Osoyoos Wine Association, spans over the hot and dry areas including the Town of Osoyoos, The Golden Mile Bench, Black Sage Road, and the Town of Oliver.
Why Bring Your Vineyards to Osoyoos?
Not only is the area of Osoyoos gorgeous for a relaxing vacation, but because of the climate wine growers have flocked to Osoyoos to start their vineyards and wineries.
The region is a viticulture paradise for wine growers with the hot and dry temperatures with average temperatures sitting at 20 degrees Celsius during growing months and an average annual rainfall of less than 200 mm.
Osoyoos has an average of 1566 growing days in the season. This ideal growing environment has attracted the attention of many international wine growers, some as far as South Africa.
The Hub of Osoyoos Industry
The Oliver Osoyoos Wine Region as well as the nearby Similkameen Wine Region employs thousands of workers including grape growers, fruit pickers, production and retail staff. Viticulture is the largest industry in the South Okanagan with the Oliver Osoyoos region yielding nearly 50 wineries to date. The industry, while young, is flourishing and growing at a rapid rate.
Due to the high temperatures and dry climate, many growers have found that there is a lower need for pest controlling sprays. This discovery has led to many growers choosing to reduce their reliance on synthetic chemicals. This means that Osoyoos is an excellent location for organic growing. While only 3% of BC grapes are grown organically, many growers practice organic viticulture but do not seek certification.
Good at what we’re known for!
BC Wine has been known to grow up to 60 different varieties with Merlot and Pinot Gris being the widest varietal. Of those 60 varieties, the Oliver Osoyoos region is known to succeed in 6 of those varietals; Merlot, Pinot Gris, Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Syrah/Shiraz, and Chardonnay.
The Golden Mile Bench, a popular sub-region on western side of HWY 97 just a few moments north of Osoyoos, is unique in the way that they get more of the morning sunshine than afternoon. Resulting in hot days and cooler evenings ideal for white wines such as Pinot Gris and Chardonnay and bright vibrant reds like the Cabernet Franc. This perfect balance makes for exceptional flavours with vibrant acidity. With over 5,000 acres of grapes planted in the Oliver Osoyoos region, many of the high quality vineyards can yield up to 4 tons of grapes per acre!
The South Okanagan Wine Valley has been on the steady incline, growing year after year. The beautiful landscape with wineries small and large tucked within the slopping hills of the valley make for some of the best touring. For more information on the viticulture of the region check out the Oliver Osoyoos Wine Association or right here at Economic Development Osoyoos! Osoyoos is the perfect location to grow and support fellow wineries and vineyards.