Wine Tastings and Special Events

2015 Similkameen BBQ King to be held on July 11th!

Ladies and gentlemen, start your grills! The Similkameen is about to name a new Similkameen BBQ King! The annual Similkameen BBQ King event will be held on Saturday, July 11th from 5-9pm at the historic Grist Mill & Gardens in Keremeos. This truly unique Similkameen wine and food experience is a competition where featured chefs from the Okanagan and Similkameen compete for the coveted title of Similkameen BBQ King or Queen.


Caroline Cottrill, President of the Similkameen Wineries Association explained, “We invite you to enjoy an extraordinary evening with award-winning Similkameen wines and ciders and the distinguished chefs who are vying for the title of Similkameen BBQ King 2015. This truly unique Similkameen wine and food experience is a competition where our featured chefs will create unique dishes for you using organic ingredients from local farmers in the heart of Canada’s organic capital. Each chef receives an identical basket of ingredients, yet each chef prepares those ingredients into remarkably different dishes.”

The first hour of the event, from 5-6pm, will feature tastings from our Similkameen wineries and cidery. And then the competition will begin at 6pm! Cottrill continued, “This year, we wanted to really showcase our local restaurants as well, so we added a second competition – a small bites competition. Each local chef competing in our small bites competition will also have a winery or cidery paired with them.”

Similkameen BBQ King competing chefs are:

  • Chris Boehm, Burger 55
  • Aden Clarke, Private Chef
  • Kevin Cooper, The Patio at NK’Mip Cellars
  • Jacob Gunn, Wrong Turn Tavern
  • Shayna Merritt, Shayna & Shulman Culinary Adventures
  • Natasha Schooten, The Grist Mill
  • Adair Scott, Watermark Beach Resort
  • Jeff Van Geest, Miradoro Restaurant at Tinhorn Creek

Small bites competing chefs are:

  • Rick from Benja Thai
  • Karl from the Branding Iron
  • Andrew from Tree to Me

After you enjoy each dish, you will get the opportunity to cast your vote for the best wine and food pairing of the night for both the Similkameen BBQ King competing chefs and the small bites competing chefs!

The event will feature two live entertainment areas. The main entertainment will be John Rousseau and Paul Henbury from The River Line. Hailing from Summerland, John and Paul play all original music. There will also be a second entertainment stage this year featuring local entertainers They Them Theirs and Wild Organic Humans.

“We have made some other great changes this year too. Something Blue Photography will be at the event with a fun photo booth featuring chef hats, BBQ gear and historic clothing from the Grist Mill so that our guests can create a special memory of the evening. We are also excited to feature the addition of local art at our Similkameen BBQ King. Our local Similkameen-based artists and members of the South Similkameen Arts Society add so much flavour and culture to our region and we are excited that a number of artists will have their art on display in a Similkameen art walk at the Grist Mill. Prepare to be amazed at their fabulous original creations,” remarked Cottrill.

Tickets are $90 and can be purchased at any of our member wineries, at the Keremeos Visitor Centre, the Grist Mill, Tree to Me or online at Complimentary shuttles are available from throughout the Okanagan/Similkameen. Keremeos Taxi has also been hired to do continuous taxi runs to get local guests home safely.

Check out our post from the 2014 BBQ King Competition last year.

Wine Tastings and Special Events

Similkameen Wineries Take Over Vancouver

The Similkameen Wine region, which was once named “one of the world’s five best wine regions you’ve never heard of”, is quickly becoming recognized as one of BC’s best wine regions. There are many things that make the grape and fruit wines and cider from the Similkameen so special. Vancouver, this is the opportunity for you to Discover Similkameen Wine Country in your own backyard.

Caroline Cottrill, President of the Similkameen Wineries Association explained, “On Wednesday June 17th, the winemakers and owners from the Similkameen Wineries Association are hitting the road and bringing their wines to Vancouver for two very special and intimate winemaker dinners. We are working with Fable and Forage to host two multi-course, wine-paired dinners.”

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Both dinners start at 7pm and are priced at $125 per person. Both dinners will feature a collection of Similkameen beverages. Cottrill continued, “The winemakers/owners from each winery will be in attendance to speak with you about their wines. This is a great way to learn more about the wines and Similkameen Wine Country.”

The dinner at Forage, located at 1300 Robson Street in Vancouver, features wines from Cerelia Vineyards & Estate Winery, Orofino Winery, Robin Ridge Winery and cider from Twisted Hills Craft Cider. For tickets, visit:

The dinner at Fable, located in Kitsilano at 1944 West 4th Avenue will feature wines from Seven Stones Winery, Hugging Tree Winery, Corcelettes Estate Winery, Clos du Soleil Winery and Rustic Roots Winery. Tickets can be purchased in advance at Fable or by phoning 604.732.1322.

Tickets for both dinners are very limited. Purchase your tickets today. Dig Deep and Discover Similkameen Wine Country.