Cowichan’s wine tour something to savour

Vintners, distillers, chefs and food producers are ready to celebrate their harvest as Savour Cowichan – the new name for the Cowichan Valley Wine and Culinary Festival – is back for another exciting year.

For 2014, 40 artisan food and beverage producers will host more than 50 epicurean events throughout the Cowichan Valley from Sept. 26 to Oct. 5. Tickets for the marquee events are being snapped up fast.

These include Barge On In on Friday, Sept. 26, the tasting event that kicks off the 10-day celebration with local wine, cider, beer and food hosted under a tent on the water off the dock at the Mill Bay Marina.

Back on the barge on Sept. 27, chef Bill Jones of Deerholme Farm is serving up delicious barbecued bites, joining famous band Wide Mouth Mason headlining the Sip, Savour Support fundraiser for the Canuck Autism Network to help families living with autism in the Cowichan Valley.

Other signature events include Cowichan Valley C.A.N. Ride (Sept. 28), Chemainus Tastings at the Chemainus Theatre (Oct. 2), the Cowichan Bay day (Oct. 3), and Savour Downtown Duncan (Oct. 4).

Every day of the festival, it’s possible to visit orchards, farms and vineyards to sample ciders, wines, spirits and beer from the Cowichan region with barrel tastings, tours and new releases.

Participate behind the scenes, meet master winemakers, cidermakers, brewmasters and the sommeliers who love them.

Indulge your taste buds with seasonal fare at restaurants offering drink and food pairings, winemaker’s dinners, chef demonstrations, and more.

Here’s some of what’s on during Savour Cowichan:

BARGE On In: a special public tasting event at Mill Bay Marina Friday, Sept. 26 from 6-9 p.m. BUBBLES and Brunch at Hudson’s on First in Duncan Saturday, Sept. 27 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

PROVIDENCE Farm Open House Sept.

27 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. SIP Savour Support Concert at Mill Bay Marina Sept. 27 SPANISH Paella and Sangria at Cherry Point Vineyards featuring Amusé Sept. 27 at 11 a.m. and Sept. 28 at 5 p.m.

DISTILLERY tours at Merridale Cider Sept. 27 noon to 4 p.m. SIP Savour and Support at Mill Bay Marina Sept. 27 from noon to 5 p.m.

UNOFFICIAL After Party and Prosecco release at Unsworth Vineyards Sept. 27 starting at 6 p.m.

BUBBLES and Brunch at Hudson’s on First in Duncan Sunday, Sept. 28 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

AMPERSAND Distillery Open House Sept. 28 11:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.

LATE Summer Picnic at Silverside Farm Winery Sept. 28 Noon to 4 p.m.

SMOOTHIE Sampling at the Duncan Garage Cafe Sept. 28 from noon to 2 p.m.

ARTISTS in the Orchard at Merridale Cider Sept. 28 from 1 to 5 p.m.

GENEVIEVE Charbonneau performs at Blue Grouse Estate Winery Sept. 28 from 1 to 4 p.m.

PURPLE Sangria Paella Party at Damali Lavender Winery Sept. 28 from 1 to 4 p.m.

AVERILL Creek Vineyard Winemakers Dinner at the Quamichan Inn Sept. 28 6 p.m. to 9:15 p.m. THE Cowichan Valley Big Ride at Merridale Cider Sept. 28 10:01 p.m. to 11:01 p.m.

CHEMAINUS Tastings and Theatre Oct. 2 5:30 to 9:30 p.m.

GENEVIEVE Charbonneau live at Blue Grouse Estate Winery Oct. 3 1 to 4 p.m.

WINEMAKER’S Dinner: the Pinot Grape and Variations at the Satellite Grill at Arbutus Ridge Oct. 3 from 6 to 9 p.m.

CITTA Slow Meet Your Maker Cowichan Bay at Hilary’s Cheese Oct. 3 from 7 to 9 p.m. BUBBLES and Brunch at Hudson’s on First Oct. 4 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

COWICHAN Community Kitchen Culinary Festival at Centennial Park in Duncan Oct. 4 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.

MUSHROOM Foraging Workshop with Bill Jones at Deerholme Farm Oct. 4 from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.

DISTILLERY Tours at Merridale Cider Oct. 4 noon to 4 p.m.

SAVOUR Downtown Duncan Oct. 4 noon to 4 p.m.

CELEBRATE at Blue Grouse Estate Winery Oct. 4 from 1 to 4 p.m.

TROPICAL Party Pizza Day with live music by Tropic Mayhem at Enrico Winery Oct. 4 1 to 4 p.m.

COWICHAN’S Perfect Pairings Gala Dinner at Hudson’s on First oct. 5 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

FAMILY Fun Day at Enrico Winery Oct. 5 1 to 4 p.m.

GENEVIEVE Charbonneau performs live at Blue Grouse Estate Winery Oct. 5 1 to 4 p.m.

THERE ARE also several tours available by shuttle bus. Check the Savour Cowichan website for more details on all of the events and offers available.