Island Wineries of British Columbia is a beautiful book that wine lovers will find inspiring, informative, and easy-to-use. This book, a compilation written by the contributors of Eat Magazine, edited by former chef, sommelier, and Eat Magazine editor Gary Hynes, and beautifully photographed by Rebecca Wellman, captures the lushness of the wine, food, and land of this special part of the world.
The first half of Island Wineries of British Columbia profiles 16 wineries on Vancouver Island and the Gulf Islands. These vignettes aren’t just about the wines produced by these wineries. They are stories about the winemakers – their goals, their dreams, their aspirations. It’s like taking a peek behind the wizard’s curtain to see how the magic is made.
The book’s next section covers the grapes and terroir of the islands, and the area’s specialty wines like dessert, fruit wines, and sparkling wines. It also discusses mead, cider, artisan distillers, and craft beer producers on the island. This part of the book is particularly educational, walking the reader through terminology that may be unfamiliar and giving us an island style wine and spirits 101 education.
Realfoodtraveler.com readers will be especially thrilled that Island Wineries of British Columbia isn’t just about wine. It’s also about the food that goes with these wines and brews. Food and wine expert Julie Pegg tours readers through a seasonal menu, including recipes and recommended wines, from area restaurants. Each recipe is illustrated with Rebecca Wellman’s delicious photographs.
Once Island Wineries of British Columbia has us salivating for the area’s wines, brews, and foods, the final section of the book takes us touring through the Cowichan Valley, the Saanich Peninsula and Victoria, the Gulf Islands, Central Island and side trips to Comox Valley and Sooke. Writer Kathy McAree leads you through the regions like an old friend, offering her observations and recommendations for both wine and food along the way. She ends the section with a helpful list divided by area of not-to-miss farms, bakeries, cheese shops, B&Bs, hotels, and restaurants.
Real bottom line: If you’re a wine and food lover and are heading to British Columbia’s beautiful islands, take along Island Wineries of British Columbia. Eat Magazine’s wine and food experts love what they do and are excellent guides to the islands’ wine and food. – Reviewed by Bobbie Hasselbring, RFT Editor
Island Wineries of British Columbia is available in bookstores, online, or from the publisher TouchWood Editions, wwwtouchwoodeditions.com