British Columbia

Vancouver wine fest celebrating Canada's 150th

To get you in the spirit, On The Coast Master of Wine Barbara Philip has some all-Canadian wine picks this week.

Wines from B.C., Ontario and Nova Scotia will be highlighted Feb. 11-19 in Vancouver

Wine lovers at a tasting room during the 2016 Vancouver International Wine Festival. The 2017 edition will highlight Canadian wines. (

The Vancouver International Wine Festival will begin in a few days and organizers are using the occasion to wish Canada a happy 150th birthday.

The theme this year is Canada, and organizers will highlight wineries from Ontario, Nova Scotia and, of course, B.C.

"The Vancouver International Wine Festival is a great opportunity to try wines from top producers in B.C., other parts of Canada, and beyond," On The Coast's Master of Wine Barbara Philip told host Stephen Quinn.

Philip says there will be many excellent B.C. wineries in attendance along with rarely seen wines from elsewhere in Canada.

The Vancouver International Wine Festival runs Feb. 11-19 and to get you in the spirit, Philip's picks this week are excellent wines from across the country.

Benjamin Bridge Méthode Classique Brut 2009. Nova Scotia. $45.99

"This crisp sparkling wine is delicious and utterly unique. It is 25 per cent Chardonnay blended with 18 per cent Seyval — a hybrid variety suited to cool climates — and 57 per cent l'Acadie — Nova Scotia's signature hybrid grape. Try it as an aperitif with charcuterie or Marcona almonds."

Château des Charmes Gamay Droit. 2015. St. David's Bench. Ontario. $16.99

"Gamay is the grape of Beaujolais, so imagine cherry, floral and crisp cranberry flavours. The Château des Charmes is a lovely expression of cool climate vineyards and I recommend to drink it slightly chilled with some soft, ripe cheese."

Averill Creek Pinot Noir. 2014. Cowichan Valley. British Columbia. $22.00

"It's crazy how difficult it is to find the top quality, small production wines of Vancouver Island on the mainland. Averill Creek will be at the festival so make sure to visit them if you go. Pinot Noir is its flagship with pure red fruit and silky tannins."

Burrowing Owl Cabernet Franc. 2014. Okanagan Valley. British Columbia. $33.00

"The BOV Cabernet Franc is a nice mixture of intense dark fruits with floral and sweet herb notes. Try it with a grilled bison ribeye."

With files from CBC Radio One's On The Coast