Drink up, Osoyoos — the wine corked here is as good as it gets, according to results released this morning from a national competition in June.

According to WineAlign’s 2019 National Wine Awards, three of the five top wineries in Canada are based within a goblet’s smash of downtown Osoyoos — two located on the community’s East Bench and a third north of town on Black Sage Road.

After being named WineAlign’s best small winery in Canada Thursday, Osoyoos-based Moon Curser Vineyards found itself soaring even higher this morning.

The East Bench winery was ranked second among the 250-plus wineries from across Canada that entered the competition, this year held in Ontario’s Prince Edward County from June 8 – 14.

Moon Curser finished behind West Kelowna-based Mission Hill Family Estate, which was named Winery of the Year after gathering two Platinum, six Gold, seven Silver and three Bronze medals at this year’s competition.

Moon Curser, owned and operated by Chris and Beata Tolley, managed 11 medals in this year’s competition, its wines winning one Platinum, six Gold, two Silver and two Bronze medals.

“We’re delighted, of course,” said Beata. And in great company — so many fantastic wineries in both the Top 10 small wineries list and the Top 25 list.

“It was especially lovely to see so many B.C. wineries placed so highly.”

Other South Okanagan wineries also do well

Two spots back of Moon Curset at Number Four was the Desert Hills Estate Winery, followed by Nk’Mip Cellars.

Desert Hills Estate Winery earned six medals — including one Platinum, two Gold, two Silver and a Bronze. It boasts five vineyards — including one in Osoyoos — and 85 acres under vine.

Nk’Mip Cellars, located within the Spirit Ridge complex on the Osoyoos Indian Reserve, scored 11 medals, including one Platinum, two Gold, three Silver and five Bronze.

It also finished fifth in 2018.

Other Oliver-Osoyoos Winer Association members gaining prominence are Road 13, which finished 12th and Hester Creek Estate Winery (22nd).

Road 13 was named Canada’s Winery of the Year in 2018.

Okanagan Falls-based Blasted Church finished ninth.

In total, 19 of the WineAlign’s 2019 Top 25 wineries and vineyards are located in British Columbia.

About WineAlign and its National Wine Awards

The WineAlign National Wine Awards of Canada is the nation’s largest competition of Canadian wines. This year, more than 1,800 wines from 259 wineries were entered in the competition.

The entries came from eight provinces. British Columbia had the highest representation with 145 wineries entered, Ontario came second with 90, followed by wineries from Quebec, Nova Scotia, Alberta, New Brunswick, Manitoba, and Prince Edward Island.


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