Wine Tours

Vintage Kelowna: Exploring the Region's Oldest and Most Historic Wineries

a vineyard with vines growing on it and a dirt road in the foreground with mountains in the distance
Tantalus Vineyards

Kelowna's winemaking history is as rich and varied as the wines it produces. From their humble beginnings, these vineyards have grown into pillars of the winemaking community, each with a story to tell. Journey through some of Kelowna's oldest and most historic wineries, where the past is bottled and every sip tells a story.

1. Calona Vineyards

Founded in 1932, Calona Vineyards holds the esteemed title of British Columbia's oldest continuously operating winery. It was the vision of Guiseppe Ghezzi, a visionary who, alongside key figures like Peter Casorso and Pasquale Capozzi, raised funds from the Italian community in Trail to establish the winery. Initially focused on apple wines, Calona switched to grape wines in 1935, setting the stage for future success. The winery's early years were marked by experimentation and growth, evolving from its initial struggles to become a leader in the industry, particularly under the management of the Capozzi family in the 1960s. They introduced innovative marketing and product strategies, propelling Calona to new heights.

2. Tantalus Vineyards

The story of Tantalus Vineyards begins in 1927 with JW Hughes, who planted table grapes at what was then called Pioneer Vineyard. The vineyard saw a significant turn in the late 1970s when it began to cultivate Riesling under the guidance of Martin Dulik and his son Daniel. Tantalus, under its current name, came into being when Eric Savics acquired Pinot Reach Cellars in 2004, a winery originally established in 1997 by Susan Dulik, Daniel's daughter. Tantalus is renowned for its focus on small-lot, terroir-driven wines, particularly Riesling, Pinot Noir, and Chardonnay, and for its commitment to sustainable farming practices.

3. CedarCreek Estate Winery

CedarCreek Estate Winery, one of the "original eight" estate wineries in British Columbia, was founded in 1987 by Senator Ross Fitzpatrick. The Fitzpatrick family, with a great connection to the Okanagan Valley, nurtured the winery for decades, focusing on quality VQA wines and developing impressive single-block premium wines. The winery's vineyards, located in East Kelowna and Osoyoos, are known for producing exceptional Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, and aromatic white wines like Riesling and Gewürztraminer. CedarCreek has been twice recognized as “Canada's Winery of the Year”, earned through its relentless pursuit of perfection.


Kelowna’s wineries are about the wine; they are storied places where history, passion, and craftsmanship converge. A visit to these historic wineries offers not only a taste of top-quality wines but also a glimpse into the pioneering spirit that has shaped the region's wine industry. If you're a connoisseur or a casual enthusiast, exploring these vintage vineyards is a worthwhile journey.