An Organized, Planned And Collaborative Wine Tasting Tour ~ Welcome to a recent wine tasting tour I took with a group of girlfriends. I named this post An Organized, Planned and Collaborative Wine Tasting Tour. Come follow along!
I don’t know if you have ever heard of a ‘Dress Club’ but I have belonged to one for several years. We are a group of ladies who are friends and acquaintances coming from very different occupations with a wide range of interests. We get together about once a month at each other’s homes for an evening of appetizers, wine and a lot of great conversations. At each get together we draw names to see who will be hosting the next get together and we each give the upcoming hostess $25.00 for spending money on anything that she wants as long as it is on something for herself. With this system we each get a turn to host and we each get a spending bonus one time throughout the year.
The first problem is that we have changed the rules of our ‘Dress Club’. We still take turns to be the hostess and meet at each other’s homes but we no longer put $25.00 into the spending pot. Instead, we have decided to save our money and go on a little get-away once a year. We just recently went on a three-day weekend wine tour in the British Columbia Okanagan Wine Country.
Even though this was a little get-away, it still took a lot of organizing and planning. We had to choose a date that worked for everyone who wanted to go, decide how we would get there and how we would get around, where to stay, what and where to eat and decide what wineries we wanted to visit. The other factor to consider is that wine tasting involves alcohol and that we needed a designated driver while we toured around the area.
Despite having a lot of details to organize in preparation and during this trip, everything went so smoothly because everyone took on a responsibility on behalf of the group. It was amazing how everyone contributed to the planning and organizing and what was even more amazing was how collaborative everyone was yet there was no specific designation of tasks. Everyone just jumped in with an offer to help even though nothing was formally arranged making the whole planning process seamless. Sandy came up with the idea and brought it up with the group. After a consensus of a date (five of the nine members chose to go this year) she went ahead and booked the accommodations and a one-day winery tour with a tour guide. Linda kept an eye out for good flight prices and emailed us as soon as she found a seat sale with WestJet Airlines so we could all book the same flight for a reasonable price. Marcia travels a lot on business so she arranged for the valet parking at one of the parking companies near the airport. She also took on the task of treasurer and kept all of the receipts. After the trip she totalled all of the meals and other expenses while we were touring and calculated our shared cost by equally dividing the total amount. Deb offered to drive us to the airport in her car and came around to pick us up on departure day and drive us back home on our return. I arranged for the car rental and because I was very familiar with the area and had previously visited a lot of the wineries so I offered to be the designated driver and personal tour guide on the other two days that we were there. I was also the group photographer.
During our trip it was equally amazing how everyone pitched in with the meals, cleaning and how every decision was made as a collective group with a smooth ‘go with the flow’ attitude and spirit. Wouldn’t it be nice if all organizations large and small could work so collaboratively and productively all of the time?
We were able to visit thirteen wineries and the Carmelis Alpine Goat Cheese Artisan goat cheese factory over the three days. Here are some of the photographs I took of this simply stunning area in Western Canada known as the BC Okanagan Wine Country. Hope you enjoy them!
The first winery we visited was Quail’s Gate Estate Winery in West Kelowna. It has a panoramic view of Okanagan Lake.
The next winery we visited was Mission Hill Family Estate Winery also in West Kelowna. We took a guided tour of this expansive winery and were taken into the red wine cellar. This is indeed a lot of barrels filled with different kinds of red wine!
Another winery we visited in West Kelowna was called Little Straw Vineyards. I really liked this idea of re-purposing corks as mulch around a tree.
Many of the wineries have beautiful and unique doors to greet you as you enter their establishments. This is the front door to Summerhill Pyramid Winery where we had lunch as well as tasted some of their wines.
Here is another door to one of my favourite wineries located near Penticton, BC known as Blasted Church Winery.
We stopped at Cedar Creek Estates Winery where it is also a picturesque venue for weddings. I took this picture of this stunning bride through the window of the winery while she was having a reflective moment and waiting for her photographer to line up a shot.
Here is a photograph showing the panoramic view at Ruby Blues Winery located just outside Penticton, BC.
This is a photograph I took while we were visiting the delightful Dirty Laundry Vineyards located in Summerland, BC.
What trips or get-aways have you organized with your family or friends? I am looking forward to suggestions to pass on to Sandy our ‘Dress Club’ team leader.
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