Food Critic Segment/Restaurant Reviews

BC, Canada (South Okanagan) “Terrafina at Hester Creek Winery”

IMG_1307Let me introduce you to Jenny our adorable server.  She had the sweetest and kindest personality.  We appreciated her knowledge and direction when it came to the menu and I am happy to say we LOVED every single thing we ordered!

OVERALL RATING: Food 10  Ambience 10  Service 10  Value for Your Money 10 

IMG_1315On 8/28/18 we visited “Terrafina” with James and Nikki and had an amazing lunch. They really know how to pick them.  Every place they suggested on our visit was out of this world. What an amazing place this was.  I wish I could go back there this very minute.  Wine country in BC, Canada is SO breathtakingly beautiful and the Grapes are exceptional.  Look at the color and how tight the Grapes are to each other…(I love taking pictures of Grapes). (as I smile)…  

“Terrafina” is a Restaurant and Winery. The scenic drive. Vineyards with lush Grapes surrounding you all the way to the top is just stunning. The Tasting Room is gorgeous and the Wine Pourers were overly knowledgeable and friendly.  

One nice thing is that the Wineries in BC only charge $0-$5 per person for a Tasting (usually 4 or 5 total wine pours) and they waive it if you buy a bottle. (Unlike Napa and Sonoma, CA where Tastings are $25-$50 now and most by appointment only). We all loved the Wine here and would definitely recommend it to you. We did a Wine Tasting before lunch and then the hostess sat us at a darling table for four outside on the Patio which had stunning views of the Vineyard and property.  

Just an FYI, you can also stay here (like a Bed & Breakfast). I’m pretty certain James and Nikki have done this before and said it was fantastic in every way. Can you even imagine?  Next time we come I will make a point of looking at the rooms and get pictures to show you. So, here are a few pictures of the Tasting Room and property you may enjoy. You can see the view is breath taking from the Vineyard looking out.


IMG_1300We ordered the Artisan Herb Loaf with Butter to go alongside our Entrees.  Don’t you just want to sink your teeth into that Bread? Yum! Fresh, Crusty on the outside and soft on the inside…real, creamy, melty Butter.IMG_1302Isn’t this beautiful?  This is one of those restaurants where the Chef and his team have Passion.  You can feel the food.  It speaks to you…it’s lovely.  This is the Super *Fino *Carnaroli Risotto with Cured Apricot, Smoked Gorgonzola, Toasted Walnuts and Jumbo Grilled Shrimp.  The Risotto was dreamy, smooth, heavy with Gorgonzola, (like Bleu Cheese) and stick to your fork and lips wonderful.

*Fino (FEE-noh) is a dry Spanish Wine considered to be the world’s finest Sherry. In this dish they are most likely using one of their own wines but I am not certain.

*Carnaroli Rice is a premier Risotto Rice. It is a superfine, short grain rice that will not stick together. It is a little more expensive that Arborio Rice which is what you most frequently see used to make Risotto. IMG_1299This is the same dish without the Shrimp. Look at the beautiful presentation…look at the Apricots, they go perfectly with the creamy and savory yet slightly pungent flavor of the Gorgonzola. Oh my, is all I have to say about this dish.  One of a kind and I’ve never had anything like it before. Bold and Creative. Oh and I wanted to mention that I did notice a difference in the Rice. I make Risotto often (and in fact have 2 highlighted in my upcoming cookbook) but I use Arborio Rice.  Honestly, I hadn’t even heard of “Carnaroli” Rice until I had this dish.  I will definitely be purchasing some on-line to use the next time I make a Creamy Risotto.IMG_1295Can you just picture yourself sitting here in this quaint, quiet and peaceful setting? The vineyards surrounding you, the beautiful lush green and flowers?  Looking at this picture takes me right back there. We sat at a table like you’re looking at, just to the left of the Vines you see, right on the edge of the Patio looking out.IMG_1298Cheers to us!IMG_1303Calzone, Tuscan Sausage & Artichoke with Olives, Goat, Feta & Mozzarella Cheeses. Presentation is beautiful. Look at that light Crust…chewy on the bite yet soft with slightly crispy outer Crust. Look at the right side of the picture and it depicts perfectly what that Calzone Crust was all about.  The blend of flavors worked perfectly together. This Calzone was much lighter than the Calzones I am accustomed to seeing which are Thick Crust (all crust) sometimes…this Crust was perfectly proportioned in thickness and texture for the ingredients it carried.IMG_1301Smoked Chicken Panini perfectly Pressed to Golden Brown and filled with Okanagen Chèvre (Goat Cheese), Fig Mustard and garnished with Summer Greens and Cherry Tomatoes, lightly Dressed. You can just picture the perfect marriage of Smoked and tender Chicken with Chèvre melted in and that stunning seeded Artisan Bread, nice crunch and spread with house made Fig Mustard.  Perfect in every way.IMG_1305Nikki ordered this gorgeous Dessert of the Day on the recommendation of Jenny our server.  Isn’t is stunning?  Reminds me of the 4th of July and we especially loved the little Mason Jar it was served in. Nikki, if you’re reading this can you comment on what was in this?  I don’t recall tasting it but I know you fell in love!IMG_1306This was such a nice touch.  When they bring the bill they also bring you a house made Lollipop wrapped in wax paper.  How cute is that.

Next time we are in BC, Canada (South Okanagan), I will make a point of coming back to “Terrafina”. It was simply magical.  Kudos to Chef and Owner Rod Butters and Jenna Pillon;  Chef De Cuisine and Matthew Nunes; Sous Chef.  They are doing amazing work at this place.

You may be interested in their Cookbook called “The Okanagan Table; The Art of Everyday Home Cooking” which was awarded “Best Local Cookbook in Canada” by Gourmand World Cookbook Awards.

Happy Eating!

Please also check out my reviews on Trip Advisor and Twitter.

Terrafina at Hester Creek Winery by Raudz 887 Rd 8, Oliver, BC V0H 1T0, Canada



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