It was some of the most fun we’ve had down in Osoyoos, chock full of food, wine, good times, and a flight of 18 finalist commercial videos about Okanagan wine. All of it set against some of the most beautiful scenery Canada has to offer, on the lake with the rust-colored hills of the Okanagan across the water.
As film festivals go, this is also up there as one of the best little venues we’ve ever been to, and on top of that, there were the little details that made it all the more fun: a table full of pop corn and candies just like at the cineplex, the white lawn chairs in the canopied theater on the beach, and a whole lot of people who packed the “theater” to capacity and beyond.
There were amazing commercials, from the intense to the insane, with various flavors of comedy that kept the audience laughing. Although our Space “Alien Wine Thief” didn’t place in the top 3, it was an absolute pleasure to be invited and to take part and have some wine peeps laugh with us. The winner was Grape Down by THomas Pound and Simon Cavan Taylor, which we’ve linked up for you below.
With the contest over and the prizes handed out, the deejay kicked things into a new gear, and there was more wine to be sampled. We took a run at a few more whites, with Black Hills’ Alibi – inspired by the great Sauvignon/Semillion blends of the Loire Valley in France – a strong standout, and as the half-step to red grapes brought us lip-to-glass with a summer sipper of a Malbec rose from River Stone, the force-like presence of Nota Bene under the same tent canopy was calling.
With some late evening beach-side burgers at the end of chaotic, meandering lineup, and some Okanagan reds flirting with our palates, the sensational Oscar Lopez and George Canyon entertained the crowd into the night. After an aborted effort to get our glasses around some Nota Bene, which ran out just as we hit the table, we skirted our way past the deejay to see what else there for the sipping. We had our first taste of Seven Deuce Red from Aces, some fond reminiscing of our previous trip to Osoyoos as we sipped the always fabulous Border Vines from Moon Curser Vineyards, a pair of wows as we were pleasantly surprised by the rich smoothness of Amicitia from Dunham & Froese, and a spicy, brown sugar fix courtesy of Desert Hills Winery’s Syrah. And thanks to a fellow commercial-maker, I finally got a sip of the Nota Bene I had been waiting for – it was well worth the wait, and we were comfortable calling it a night.
We can’t wait for next year, because we sure are coming back. And heck, maybe even with a new commercial in the running. ’til then, check out Citizen 11’s new Elvis-infused black comedy Death Wish on iTunes.