The Terrace Restaurant, Kelowna, British Columbia
Perched on a majestic hill overlooking the valley, Mission Hill Family Estate Winery is one of the most beautiful wineries in Canada. From its iconic bell tower, the bells, one for each member of the von Mandl family, peal at noon echoing over Lake Okanagan. No visit to the Okanagan is complete without enjoying at least one glass of wine at Mission Hill Family Estate, taking a tour of the underground cellars and having lunch or dinner at The Terrace Restaurant; officially named as one of the top five winery restaurants in the world by Travel + Leisure magazine.
The winery reached an international milestone in 1994 when Mission Hill Grand Reserve Chardonnay 1992 won the Avery Trophy for Best Chardonnay Worldwide at the International Wine and Spirit Competition in London. This first major award ushered in the new era of B .C. wine-making. This was recently followed another major milestone when the 2011 Martin’s Lane Pinot Noir was names Best Pinot Noir in the world by the Decanter World Wine Awards in 2013.
With Chef Patrick Gayler holding the culinary reins, the world renowned wines are matched exquisitely with menus that could hold their own with any. With summer breezes cooling the open Terrace, diners overlook now-mature rows of Pinot Noir and Chardonnay vines and have a panoramic view of the valley.
Chef Gayler is constantly challenging himself to stretch the boundaries of creativity, fermenting ingredients like soy sauce and miso and making buttermilk and an array of charcuterie on site. He’s had sea buckthorn planted to press for ponzu sauce, the classic Japanese flavouring. This year his goal is to entirely delete citrus from the kitchens so off to the vineyards they went to harvest green grapes for about 200 litres of verjus. There’s artisan honey and annually thousands of jars of local stone fruit are canned and stored. The entire culinary programme uses OceanWise fish and shellfish.
There is a psychology that permeates all the menus. There is a reason for every dish and every wine! Chef Gayler explained; “We look at seasonality/proximity of product and then look to the best suited varietal.” The vineyard garden vegetables are served with the estate-made miso then paired with a Viogner because the floral aroma is heightened by the lightly fermented flavor and aroma of the miso. Our rosé is mostly shiraz and has a great red fruit quality of strawberry and rhubarb. In the foie gras tart the Crimson rhubarb’s acidity is beautiful with the rosé’s crisp style.” The dry-aged Yarrow Meadows duck is served with Terrace-fermented kimchi some sprouted and then fried rye and hearts from the same ducks. Chef Gayler admits that it’s “not the easiest pairing” but he’s made it work. “The sweet earthiness of the sprouted rye matches with a pinot noir well and even though the hearts have lots of flavor, they are lean and not too rich for the pinot.”
As the summer heat abates and the harvest begins in earnest, the demonstration kitchen becomes home to dozens of cooking evenings, among which one of the themes is matching the fine wines produced by all the winery’s vineyards with local foods. From charcoal cookery to the foods of an Italian Christmas over 60 evenings are dedicated to sharing the Chef Gayler’s cache of culinary knowledge.
Contact The Terrace at the number below to reserve a Food Day Canada table.
Contactez The Terrace Restaurant directement, au numéro ci-dessous, afin de faire votre réservation pour Journée des terroirs.
The Terrace Restaurant at Mission Hill Winery
1730 Mission Hill Road,
Central Okanagan, B.C. V4T 2T1
T: 250 768 6448