The excitement builds as Tasting Games heads to the second round…

The excitement builds as Tasting Games heads to the second round. The Tasting Games is a hilarious blind tasting competition, with a wine-loving audience tasting the same wines as the experts on stage.

The first B.C. Tasting Games tournament took place on April 23rd at Terrafina Restaurant in Oliver, BC. On stage, Severine Pinte, winemaker at Le Vieux Pin and La Stella took on David Paterson, general manager and winemaker at Tantalus, and Wes Hunter, the beverage manager from Raudz Creative Concepts.

The competition had the celebrity wine pros evaluating five blind wines for country, grape variety, age and other details. At the same, the audience tasted the same wines blind and submitted their answers based on the same criteria.

The results were tallied by Terroir Consulting, and MC Rhys Pender from WinePlus+ announced the winners! Severine Pinte graciously accepted her trophy alongside audience winner Tanja Martell. Tanja is the co-founder of Red Lips Wine Sips, a custom wine experience provider based out of Kelowna.

Both Severine and Tanja will be competing on stage at the Tasting Games finale, May 21 in Kelowna.

Join us for the North Okanagan Tasting Games divisional event May 7 in Kelowna, or the Central Okanagan Tasting Games event May 14 in Penticton.

Hosted by Master of Wine Rhys Pender, each of the fun, irreverent events in Oliver, Penticton and Kelowna will feature three wine industry celebrities on stage, blind tasting five wines. The evening will begin with a quick “how to blind taste wine” tutorial from Rhys, and then the game is on!

The title of “Best Wine Taster in BC” is up for grabs – and anyone can win! It could be you!

WINE CELEBRITIES for the next challenge on May 7 in Kelowna

The Tasting Games will feature 9 amazing wine experts from across the province. Who would you like to learn from (or beat?)

Meet your North Okanagan Division May 7th Tasting Games celebrity competitors…

  • Matthew Landry: 2019 BC Sommelier of the Year. General Manager/Beverage Director at the Stable House Bistro in Vancouver. Matt holds a WSET Advanced and is a Certified Sommelier.
  • DJ Kearney: Director of Wine at New District. DJ holds a WSET Diploma, is the VP of the Canadian Association of Professional Sommeliers, BC Chapter, and a member of Les Dames d’Escoffier.
  • Howard Soon: Master Winemaker at Vanessa Vineyard and former winemaker at Canadian Winery of the Year Sandhill. Howard was recognized as a Spirited Industry Professional by the Vancouver International’s Wine Festival.

On stage, the wine experts will debate what they taste in the glass. Expect some heated discussion and a few bluffs, as the celebrities discuss, haggle and use their wine savvy to guess at the mystery wines’ origin, varietal, producer, age and price. Meanwhile, the audience be tasting the exact same wines, listening in to the experts on stage and colluding with their friends to guess at which international wine is in the five glasses. It’s an amazing opportunity to learn from (and compete against) some of the best wine tasters in the business, in relaxed, social atmosphere.

After much discussion and cajoling, the experts and the audience members will hand in their best guesses. While the results are tabulated, the celebrities will mingle with the audience, enjoying chef-prepared small bites and glasses of local wine. Enjoy the camaraderie, as proceeds from the evening benefit viticulture scholarships and culinary education.

At the end of the evening, Rhys will reveal what actually was in the glass. The top-scoring wine celebrity from on stage and the top scoring audience member will be invited to compete on stage at the Tasting Games Finale in Kelowna.


Each divisional blind tasting event has three levels of tickets. Every ticket includes blind tasting of 5 wines, chef-prepared small bites, laughter, wine camaraderie, and a chance to earn a seat in the BC Tasting Games finale:

  • Front Rows: The best seats the house. Get up close and personal with our expert competitors in the front row.
  • Preferred: Right behind the front seats, you will be close to the action.
  • General: Even in the back half of the room, you’ll have a great view of the experts tasting.

Don’t forget your tickets for the other divisions and the Finale!

Participants of this event must be 19 years or older to attend. Proof of age may be required.


Would you like to get to know our expert wine tasting competitors? The VIP experience enables you to enjoy the company of three of BC’s top wine experts in a relaxed, intimate dinner setting.

  • A multi-course gourmet dinner prepared for four of you (joined by the three wine experts) at Waterfront Wines Restaurant and Bar at 5pm on May 7, the same day as the Tasting Games.
  • Exquisite dinner conversation with the celebrity wine experts sharing your table: Matthew Landry, Howard Soon and DJ Kearney.
  • 4 Front Row Tickets for the Central Okanagan Division event at 7pm on May 7, 2019

Event sponsored in part by a new B.C. wine app called TasteAdvisor, that will be launching this June. Darcen Esau, who co-organized both the Tasting Games and Sensory Symposium is working with a great team intent on helping wine drinkers find B.C. wines that they actually want to drink! The app is designed to make personalized recommendations that match you to wine, tasting routes, events and special deals all based on your preferences. Best of all, it is B.C. focused. With over 80 varietals grown in B.C. across so many regions, there is a wine for everyone, it is just a matter of getting connected with something that fits your personal sensory profile! Watch for updates at or follow them on Facebook and Instagram to enjoy #BCWine.

Terroir Consulting

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