About Oliver Osoyoos Winery Association &
Oliver Osoyoos Wine Country
about our association
Who We Are
The Oliver Osoyoos Winery Association is a member-based, non-profit society with the express purpose of drawing awareness and visitation to our region through collaborative marketing and events, educating the public on the agriculture, viticulture, and vinifera of the South Okanagan, and collaborating on methods of providing funding to meet these objectives,
Originally founded in 2006 as the South Okanagan Winery Association, in 2011 the 13 member wineries of Oliver Osoyoos Winery Association (OOWA) defined our constituted purpose and made application to register with the province of British Columbia as a non-profit society. Since, 2011 the organization has grown to move than 40 member wineries.
- Increase awareness of Oliver Osoyoos Wine Country as Canada’s premier wine region
- Increase opportunities for wine sales by members at the cellar door
- generate marketing funds for the organization
The members of the Oliver Osoyoos Winery Association will work collaboratively to create a brand identity that is synonymous with Canada’s premier wine region
Where We Grow
Our region extends from ‘Border to Bluff’, spanning a mere 33 km from the southernmost point of Osoyoos to the tip of McIntyre Bluff, north of Oliver. Narrowly bordered by mountain ranges, rivers, and lakes, the area is majestic by nature – and naturally unique.
Our unique growing conditions offering diverse terroir and multiple microclimates allow for a great many varietals to be successfully grown here; the region grows more than 60% of all wine grapes within the province.
What we do
The Oliver Osoyoos Winery Association promotes our member wineries and regional awareness through: signature events; partner events; media and press trips; passport program; wine education; and social engagement. Together these marketing initiatives bring the wines of Oliver Osoyoos Wine Country to wine enthusiasts globally and contribute to increasing visitation to the South Okanagan. Our motto Uncork the Sun stems from the high level of sunshine hours that contribute to our world-class wines.
about our projects
Our Signature Events bring visitors to Oliver and Osoyoos and raise marketing funds for the organization to continue to contribute to the economic stability of the region. Annually we host, Pig Out the first weekend of the Okanagan Spring Wine Festival and Half Corked Marathon the last weekend in May.
To increase awareness of the caliber of wines being produced in Oliver and Osoyoos, we partner with restaurants in key areas to bring awareness of the region to people directly. Partner events take place throughout British Columbia and into Alberta. Our regional events take place under the Savour the Sun banner where we bring Uncork the Sun to you.
Media and Press Trips
The association welcomes with regional, provincial, national and international media to produce pieces that encourage readers and viewers to want to try the wines of Oliver Osoyoos Wine Country and ultimately visit the region. These press experiences allow us to educate the public on what makes Oliver Osoyoos Wine Country unique as a wine destination.
Most synonymous with wine touring locally are our passports that encourage visitors to experience multiple wineries and plan their route. To support the passport program we are continuing to enhance our website to provide tools helping people customize their visit by selecting wineries with family-friendly facilities, dining options, or specific wines.
As we continue to move forward we are creating tools to help individuals self-educate on wines of Oliver Osoyoos Wine Country with a podcast and educational series as well as learning more about our micro-regions.
Through our many events, newsletters, social media, website we are able to interact with thousands of people annually in sharing the stories of Oliver Osoyoos Wine Country – our wines, our people, our experiences, and our region.
Our projects allow us to meet our constituted objectives of: increasing awareness and draw to the South Okanagan; providing education to the public on agriculture and viticulture of the region; educating the public on grape growing in the South Okanagan; and raising funds for the society.
about our land
To the north, basalt-faced McIntyre Bluff acts as a buffer and aids in creating a microclimate unique to the South Okanagan. It denotes the end of one geographic zone and beginning of another – McIntyre Bluff is the northernmost point of the Great Basin Desert.
As you pass the area, a subtle shift in landscape is noticeable: darker antelope brush found in the south is slowly replaced by more grey/green sagebrush, and barren grasslands experience an increase of vegetation and shrubs.
To the south, Osoyoos Lake moderates temperatures and provides a water source for wildlife. Fed by the Okanagan River, Osoyoos Lake extends into Washington State and connects, eventually, to the Columbia River.
Ponderosa pine and Douglas fir are original to the area and cling to the sides of Anarchist Mountain, bordering the east. In the west, a slow climb up the Okanagan Range keeps the area in a rain shadow and helps maintain the region’s desert-like climate.
about our grapes
As a region, and in comparison to neighbours in the United States and over in Europe, the Okanagan is young. Growers are experimenting, and varietal plantings can boom or bust. Fortunately, we’re seeing more of the former with a number of strong contenders; we’re establishing what can grow – and what grows well and can best reflect the region.
Principal varietals, planted according to acreage, are:
Osoyoos – Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah
Oliver – Merlot, Pinot Gris, Chardonnay, Cabernet Sauvignon
With the diversity of growers in the region, there is as much diversity in plantings. From Pinot Noir to Tempranillo, Riesling to Viognier, the expression of terroir is in a period of exploration and discovery.
Looking for a specific wine, check out our wine matrix with varietals by member winery. 2021 Oliver Osoyoos Wine Matrix