By Roslyne Buchanan.

Fresh from the success of their first year curating the Osoyoos Oyster Festival, the seafood-loving team of Codfathers Seafood, Oliver Eats Ltd. and Nikki Bayley is bringing a similar festival of sustainable seafood to Kelowna. The inaugural KELOWNA SEAFOOD CELEBRATION is set for October 17 to 19, 2019.

Since Claire Sear first conceived the Osoyoos Oyster Festival and launched it in April 2012, it was a triumph and has grown in popularity each year. Kelowna’s Codfathers Seafood was on side at the outset and owners Jon and Anne-Marie Crofts worked diligently to ensure the freshest and most sustainable of oysters were available to celebrate. When Destination Osoyoos offered the festival to Codfathers, Jon immediately recruited the talents of Derek Uhlemann and the team at Oliver Eats and Nikki to join the organizational team.

Chef Ross Derrick, Jon Crofts and Shucker Paddy. Photo credit: Roslyne Buchanan.

“We were delighted to collaborate with some of the South Okanagan’s most talented food, drink and hospitality professionals to bring an exciting celebration of oysters, seafood and beverages to Osoyoos and Oliver in the Spring,” says Jon. “It just makes sense to expand upon this great idea to offer a similar experience in Kelowna in Autumn. Pairing treasures of the sea with the amazing wines, ciders, beers and spirits of the Okanagan is a match we can’t resist. We look forward to welcoming guests from the region and beyond — as well as some of the best ethical- and sustainable-seafood harvesters to our wonderful valley.”

Shuck and Saber, October 17

The KELOWNA SEAFOOD CELEBRATION includes oysters, of course, and goes beyond to revel in Canada’s diverse sustainable seafood. It kicks off Thursday, October 17 with Shuck and Saber featuring fresh shucked oysters and sabered sparkling BC wine. Join Guinness Book of Records champion Shucker Paddy for a BC wine-paired, three-course sustainable seafood feast from Chef Ross Derrick at The Table at Codfathers Market.

Guinness Book of Records champion Shucker Paddy. Photo credit: Roslyne Buchanan.

As part of the festivities, learn the dramatic art of sabering sparkling wine with The View’s Pearls NV Traditional Brut. Plus, take Shucker Paddy’s Oysters 101 and hone your oyster shucking skills with the world’s fastest.

Crab + Chardonnay Feast at Waterfront Wines, October 18

Discover why Crab + Chardonnay = bliss. Join multi award-winning Chef Mark Filatow at Waterfront Wines for a night exploring the heavenly delights of three family-style courses of crab-focussed dishes paired with a multitude of B.C. Chardonnays.

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Featured wineries include Checkmate, Meyer, Tantalus, Kitsch, Blue Mountain, Bella, Culmina and the winner of the 2019 Osoyoos Oyster Wine Pairing competition, Bench 1775’s sparkling Blanc de Blanc.

The evening begins with a blanc de blanc sparkling Chardonnay reception and fresh-shucked oysters as you cheer for Chef Filatow and Jon in a shuck-off contest.

Whisky & Oysters Galore, October 19, 2 to 4 pm

This event will again feature Guinness Book of Records champion Shucker Paddy. Participants taste through six top class international whiskies paired with oysters from around the world in a fun expertly guided exploration of oyster ‘merroir’ and whisky. Before this 90-minute deep dive into the world of whisky and oysters, meet fellow seafood/whisky fans at the Eldorado’s Whisky Bar over a glass of award-winning Summerhill sparkling Blanc de Blanc and a half dozen fresh-shucked oysters.

Oysters from Osoyoos Oyster Festival. Photo credit: Roslyne Buchanan.

Whiskies include The Glenlivet 15-Year Old in French Barrels, Jameson Black Barrel, Green Spot Irish Whisky, Little Trinity Gooderham and Worts, and are paired with a dozen oysters from around the world including Ireland, France, England and the Carolinas.

Saturday Seafood Soirée, October 19, 6:30 to 9:30 pm

Ending the inaugural celebration, the Seafood Soirée promises to be “a shucking great time over sustainable seafood bites paired with BC VQA wines overlooking Lake Okanagan”. Participating restaurants include Home Block at Cedar Creek, Codfathers Oyster Shucking Station, The Table Café, Smack Dab, Oliver Eats Ltd. and more.

Oysters from Osoyoos Oyster Festival. Photo credit: Roslyne Buchanan.

Wineries will include the top ten best Oyster Paired Wines as judged earlier in the month by an elite panel for the inaugural Kelowna Seafood Celebration Oyster Wine Contest. Winner to be announced on the night.

Dance the night away with tunes from DJ Jarrod Diffley; re-fuel with the Hotel Eldorado’s after-hours DIY poutine station.

For links on how to buy tickets, prices, accommodation discounts and all the latest news on this dynamic new festival, see

Featured photo: Oysters from Osoyoos Oyster Festival. Photo credit: Roslyne Buchanan.

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Roslyne Buchanan (aka Roz) Roslyne Buchanan is a regular freelance contributor to food, travel, wine, home and lifestyle magazines. Her work has appeared in Food & Wine Trails, WestJet Magazine, OpenRoad Driver, Savour, Niche, Destinations Travel Magazine, Culinaire, Impact, My Van City, and Based in Penticton, she enjoys spectacular views of forests, vineyards, lakes, and hills beyond and regular visits from wildlife. Enchanted by the food and beverage industry and all things culinary as well as recreational pursuits such as travel, golfing, skiing, hiking, tennis and snorkeling. For her it’s the perfect balance to pursue her passion for writing with integrity and joy to share firsthand experiences. Most of her adventures are shared with her husband, Mark and when they’re not out exploring, they are managed by a diva feline Baja. Find her personal blog at, follow her on twitter @RozDB Facebook @roslynebuchanan and Instagram @markdrinksathome


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