Golfing in the Heart of Wine Country

Friday, August 11, 2017

292 miles

It was a very quiet and comfy night at Vintage Merlot B&B. When I venture out of my room at 8:00 Debbie is preparing my breakfast.

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That’s a homemade cheese scone on the left – yummy!

Walter sits with me and we discuss wine again.  I tell him I am on the lookout for a dry Reisling and he directs me to Culmina winery and their Unicus – a Grüner Vetliner variety.  (don’t fret – I have never heard of Grüner Vetliner. He is sure I will like it.

We also talk about golf.  Turns out his father was Benny Colk – a famous pro player in Canada! Walter does not play…

I say goodbye to Debbie and Walter and take off for Fairview Mountain Golf Course.  This course was recommended to me by a Canadian friend in Arizona.  It is his favorite course in this area. Let’s see if it lives up to the hype he gave it.

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Right off the bat I realize I am in for a wild ride.  The area is absolutely beautiful and the elevation changes on the course appear to be brutal.  I am paired up with two gentlemen who are members – Bryan and Bill.  The pro shop told me they are brothers. They look like they are both in their 70’s and are super friendly and welcoming.  It took me at least 3 holes before I had the courage to ask them if they were twins.  Of course!

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The course is everything it promised to be – challenging, beautiful and actually a lot of fun.  No flat lies here.

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IF the smoke would clear this would be unbelievable
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“Clearly” not my photo (pun intended).  This is what Fairview Mountain Golf should look like!

My goal was to at least break 90 on this tough course.  Didn’t quite make it – I shot a 92.  Not too bad for a first-timer. Now I must be on my way west to Hope. Culmina Winery just happens to be on my way out of town. I figure I have to stop since this will be my only opportunity to try the wine that Walter had mentioned.

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I zip inside to their tasting room and explain that I am driving, but I really want to taste both their Riesling and the special Unicus – the Grüner Vetliner.  No problem.  She sets me up quickly.

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Beautiful tasting area overlooking the (smoky) countryside

The Riesling was great, but the Unicus was outstanding.  It was all I could do to just take a small taste and not drink the pour that she gave me.  She told me that the only place you can buy the Unicus is at the winery.  And they don’t ship to the US.  Hmmm

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This photo tells the rest of the story!

I need to get on my way.  I have another 3 1/2 hours of driving ahead of me.  It is a beautiful drive.  I took the scenic route up towards Penticon which hugged the huge Okanagan Lake.  Lots of areas here to explore on another visit. Since my route wasquite lengthy I didn’t reach Hope until around 7:30 and I am tired and hungry!

Oliver, BC to Hope, BC - Google Maps-1

The Colonial 900 Motel shows up on the way into town.  I chose it for the great reviews on TripAdvisor.  It is the quintessential mom and pop motel. The owner has called me a couple of times to let me know any details.  Unusual, but I think he is just being a nice guy. It appears exactly like the photos online.

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My room is large, quiet and comfy.  I can live with this.  I start to look up restaurants on Yelp, but I keep thinking about the restaurant that is right next door –  The Olympic Flame.  Looks a bit sketchy and like a wannabe in this small town.  However, it is walking distance away and is open.  Seems good enough to get a bite.

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Does this look inviting to you?

When I enter the restaurant, there are about 3 other tables that have diners.  Ihope I can find something decent on the menu.  My server is nice enough and I ask her what the kitchen does best.  She says the Greek Ribs.  Done.

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OMG.  The ribs are fantastic!  Seriously.  They are rubbed with some oregano, garlic, salt, pepper and  SIN.  They are fall off the bone tender.) I eat the entire rack (and probably could have eaten more… So glad I walked over here.

Tomorrow is another golf and drive day.  I will be golfing in Harrison Hot Springs – a 45 minutes drive away.  Then I will be hot-footin’ it all the way to the coast just outside of Vancouver.

 

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