I visited my parents in Kelowna for an extended weekend.
I went sketching and my father accompanied me. We drove to the end of Lakeshore Road in Okanagan Mountain Park, past Bertram Creek Provincial Park, one of our favourite spots, to the end of the road. I sketched an old wooden fence and the lake view there. Weather was coming from the left. So many complexities in the trees and shrubs; buildings are more straightforward. It’s not obvious from the drawing, but I tried to channel one of my BC artist heroes, Gordon Smith. He paints shrubs, grasses and undergrowth beautifully.
This area south of Kelowna saw huge forest fires in 2003; more than 200 homes were destroyed. There are still the remains of many burnt trees which makes it an interesting landscape.
On the way out there we stopped at Cedar Creek Estate Winery, where I wanted to stock up on some wines I’d tried there last summer. I knew what I wanted already, but of course we still did a wine tasting first. It’s part of the fun of going to buy wine at a winery. I was able to say hi to “Richard Riesling”, a nice man with a silly name tag who poured a wine tasting for my German cousin and me last summer. I just remembered she and I had an inordinately good time at that tasting and that somehow Richard Riesling was the one to thank for it.
I don’t usually buy wines over $25, but thought I’d compare a $25 Pinot Noir to a $40 Pinot Noir, curious whether I could even tell the pricier wine but already suspecting that I couldn’t. (For my European and American blog visitors; yes, a decent bottle of wine in Canada starts at around $15. It is just sad how much we pay.)
Sure enough, the $40 bottle did not taste any better to me, in fact I preferred the $25 bottle. The woman conducting this tasting told me that the more expensive bottle should really be “cellared” for 5 to 6 years to develop its full flavor. I considered this for a second but seriously did not get why I should wait 5 years for a more expensive bottle to mature when I can enjoy a cheaper bottle right now.
So I told her my big realization of the day: “I guess I’m not a cellarer.”