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Ex Nihilo
September 19, 2023 | Ex Nihilo

A Summer to Savour

As the sun begins to set a little earlier and the air carries a hint of autumn, we find ourselves reflecting on the incredible summer we've had here at Ex Nihilo Vineyards. It's been a season of warmth, laughter, and community, and we couldn't have done it without each and every one of you. With gratitude in our hearts, we want to take a moment to thank you for making Summer 2023 so unforgettable.

The moment summer began, our vineyard came alive with the vibrant colors of lush vines, the scent of blooming flowers, and the sounds of clinking glasses and joyful chatter. From the first day, we knew it was going to be something special. Our members and guests arrived with enthusiasm, eager to savor the finest wines and create lasting memories.

Chantal Kreviazuk LlVE at Ex Nihilo

A true highlight of Summer 2023 was hosting members and guests for our concert with Canadian singer-songwriter Chantal Kreviazuk. The two-night private concert event, which took place on July 28 and 29, 2023, saw remarkable displays of generosity during live auctions resulting in an impressive $23,600 raised in support of the acclaimed humanitarian organization WarChild Canada. We are so grateful for your enthusiasm for this concert and fundraiser and we can't wait to announce what next summer has in store for music in the vineyard.

BC Wildfires: A Challenging Time

However, Summer 2023 was not without its challenges. In August, our beautiful region was faced with a wildfire crisis that tested our strength and resilience. We want to extend our heartfelt thanks to all of you who supported us during this difficult time. Your well-wishes, acts of kindness, and unwavering loyalty meant the world to us. It was a stark reminder of the power of community, and we are grateful to be a part of such a supportive and caring one.

As the days grow shorter and the vines begin to change their colours, we look forward to the beauty that autumn will bring. And beyond that, we eagerly anticipate what the future holds for Ex Nihilo Vineyards. We have exciting plans and new experiences in store for you, and we can't wait to share them.

In closing, we want to express our deepest gratitude to our members and guests for making Summer 2023 one for the books. Your unwavering support and dedication make Ex Nihilo Vineyards what it is—a place of warmth, community, and exceptional wines. As we move forward, know that you are an integral part of our family, and we look forward to creating many more memories together in the seasons to come.

Time Posted: Sep 19, 2023 at 12:00 PM Permalink to A Summer to Savour Permalink
Ex Nihilo
August 3, 2023 | Ex Nihilo


Photo credit: Samantha Day, Samantha Day Photography

August 3, 2023  LAKE COUNTRY, BC - Ex Nihilo Vineyards, in collaboration with renowned Canadian singer-songwriter Chantal Kreviazuk, proudly announces the success of live fundraising initiatives held during enchanting evenings of music, philanthropy, and camaraderie. The two-night private concert event, which took place as part of the Summer Concert Series on July 28 and 29, 2023 at Ex Nihilo Vineyards in Lake Country, British Columbia, saw remarkable displays of generosity during live auctions resulting in an impressive $23,600 raised in support of the acclaimed humanitarian organization War Child Canada.

During Chantal Kreviazuk's emotionally charged performances, in Ex Nihilo tradition, proprietors Mike and Janet Azhadi led the way with their commitment to philanthropy, donating limited quantity, library vintages of Ex Nihilo Pinot Noir and Ex Nihilo Night to auction. These sought-after wine verticals are an embodiment of Ex Nihilo Vineyards' commitment to producing exceptional wines in the Okanagan Valley.

Mid-auction, Mike and Janet made a surprise, live announcement and pledged to match all funds donated during the evening. The Azhadi family’s dedication to giving back to the community served as a catalyst for the night's overwhelming success.

A true collaboration resulted in a unique and exceptional prize for auction winners - a signed box of these exclusive wine verticals, coupled with an extraordinary opportunity to meet the multi-talented, platinum-selling, Grammy and three-time Juno Award-winning artist Chantal Kreviazuk in person.

Chantal Kreviazuk, changemaker and an ardent supporter of War Child Canada, expressed her heartfelt gratitude to everyone who attended the event, emphasizing the significance of coming together to make a positive impact on the lives of those in need. “My heart is so full and so grateful for the funds raised for War Child’s programs,” she said. “My gratitude extends to the donors, owners, and team for including the forgotten in their abundance and successes.”

The attendees, deeply moved by War Child Canada's mission to support children and communities affected by conflict around the world, demonstrated unwavering support through their spirited bidding. Thanks to the compassion and generosity of Kevin and Jen Serfas, Shannon Mitchell, Andrew and Brandy Ladd, and Dean and Darcy Espenhain with Northern Electric, the impressive sum of $11,800 was raised and matched 100% by Ex Nihilo owners Mike and Janet Azhadi. These funds enable War Child Canada to continue its essential work in supporting the most vulnerable children living in the most complex humanitarian environments around the world, including Afghanistan, Sudan, South Sudan, Yemen, Uganda, and the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

Barbara Harmer, Vice President of Strategic Partnerships at War Child Canada expressed heartfelt appreciation to Ex Nihilo Vineyards, Chantal Kreviazuk, and all attendees for their remarkable commitment to the organization's mission. “War Child is thrilled to be the recipient of such a generous weekend of music, wine, and philanthropy at Ex Nihilo Vineyards. Our work is only possible when we can count on support from caring people like War Child Ambassador Chantal Kreviazuk, vineyard owners Mike and Janet Azhadi, and their wonderful team and members. From all of us at War Child and the children and families we serve around the world, we thank you.”

The success of the auction highlights the extraordinary impact that can be achieved when the worlds of music, philanthropy, and the community unite with a shared vision of making the world a better place.


About Ex Nihilo Vineyards:

Ex Nihilo is Latin for ‘Out of Nothing”. Our wines reflect a journey of place and of purpose in each bottle from every vintage. Season after season, we recommit ourselves as stewards of our remarkable terroir to nurture possibility. We believe that extraordinary wines are a product of the passion of those who make them and the unique traits of the land from which they grow. We create, out of nothing, wines that celebrate the Okanagan Valley, the unique place we call home. 

About Chantal Kreviazuk:

Chantal Kreviazuk is an esteemed singer-songwriter, pianist, and philanthropist whose mesmerizing voice and poignant lyrics have touched the hearts of audiences around the world. A platinum-selling, Grammy and three-time Juno Award-winning artist from Winnipeg, Manitoba, Chantal's philanthropic spirit is as harmonious as her music. Chantal has been an ambassador to War Child for over twenty-five years and is one of the organization’s founding artists.

About War Child Canada:

War Child Canada has been empowering children and their families to overcome the brutal impact of war and violence for more than 20 years. War Child delivers programs that give children access to education, protect their legal and human rights, and give their families the tools they need to escape poverty by using a model that is locally driven and led by 99% local staff. 

Ex Nihilo
June 8, 2023 | Ex Nihilo

Experience an Unforgettable Evening at Ex Nihilo Vineyards: Chantal Kreviazuk Live

We are thrilled to announce the artist for our next Ex Nihilo Summer Concert Series on July 29, 2023. Join us for an intimate concert with the immensely talented Chantal Kreviazuk, accompanied by a sensational multi-course dining experience prepared by Executive Chef Danny Tipper.

An Intimate Concert Experience:

Prepare to be transported by Chantal Kreviazuk's mesmerizing voice and emotionally charged performances as you become part of an exclusive audience.

Indulge in a Gastronomic Delight:

The evening doesn't end with the music. Our Executive Chef, Danny Tipper, has crafted a culinary masterpiece, featuring a thoughtfully designed multi-course dining experience. Each dish is a testament to the artistry and passion of our talented culinary team.

Exclusive Wine Offerings and Library Collection:

At Ex Nihilo Vineyards, we take pride in our exceptional wines. As part of this exclusive event, your ticket price includes a welcome glass of our finest wine to set the tone for the evening. In addition, we have curated an exclusive library collection of vintages available for purchase, offering you a chance to explore and acquire some of our rarest and most prized bottles.

Tickets for this extraordinary event are priced at $315 plus GST per guest.

**To ensure this experience remains up close and personal, we are offering a maximum of 4 tickets per membership at this time. We thank you for understanding.**

Price per guest includes a welcome glass of wine, a multi-course dining experience prepared by Executive Chef Danny Tipper, and your chance to witness Chantal Kreviazuk's extraordinary talent in this small group setting. 

In addition, an exclusive library collection of vintages will be available for purchase to enjoy.

Reserve Your Spot:

The pre-sale for our Wine Club Members begins on June 15, 2023. 

Not a Wine Club Member? Ensure you're signed up for our newsletter to receive the link to purchase when tickets go on sale to the general public on June 22, 2023.

Secure your spot early as tickets are limited and demand is expected to be high.

Ex Nihilo
May 20, 2023 | Ex Nihilo

Escape with Ex Nihilo this long weekend.


Pause the go, go, go of everyday life and take a break to indulge in life's finer pleasures this May long weekend. Ex Nihilo Vineyards and CHAOS Bistro, nestled in the heart of Lake Country, offer the perfect escape. Visit us for a long weekend experience of relaxation, wine tastings, and exquisite dining.

Our wine and culinary offerings are a testament to passion and craftsmanship.

Indulge in wine tastings:

Prepare your taste buds for an extraordinary adventure as you immerse yourself in the world of Ex Nihilo wines. From crisp whites to full-bodied reds, our portfolio showcases the richness and diversity of the Okanagan terroir. Knowledgeable and friendly, familiar faces on the Ex Nihilo team guide you through each tasting, sharing insights into the winemaking process and the stories behind every bottle. Whether you're a seasoned wine enthusiast or just beginning your journey, Ex Nihilo Vineyards promises an experience that will leave a lasting impression.

Membership has it’s privileges:

Wine Club members can book complimentary Signature Seated Tastings for two using their Wine Club email address via our Tock reservation system. Click here to book a seated tasting experience for you and a guest.

Indulge your cravings:

CHAOS Bistro at Ex Nihilo Vineyards awaits with its warm ambiance, culinary delights, and a commitment to sourcing the finest local ingredients. The bistro's skilled chefs create dishes that perfectly complement the vineyard's wines, providing an unforgettable dining experience. Indulge in carefully crafted menus featuring farm-to-table offerings, where each bite transports you to a world of culinary bliss. From the first sip to the last bite, CHAOS Bistro offers a symphony of flavour. Don’t take our word for it, click here to book your reservation and taste for yourself.

Time Posted: May 20, 2023 at 9:30 AM Permalink to Escape with Ex Nihilo this long weekend. Permalink Comments for Escape with Ex Nihilo this long weekend. Comments (1)
Ex Nihilo
May 11, 2023 | Ex Nihilo

Mother's Day with Ex Nihilo

With its picturesque setting and award-winning wines, Ex Nihilo Vineyards is the ideal spot to spend quality time with Mom this Mother’s Day. Whether you’re planning a day together, or planning a special gift for Mom, we have everything you need for a celebration worthy of her.

Mother’s Day Tasting Room Experience

Enjoy stunning views from our perch above Okanagan Lake in Lake Country when you treat Mom to our Signature Tasting experience. This is a 20-30 minute tasting that gives you an introduction into our five of our elegant wines, grown right in our backyard!

Upgrade Mom to a Memor Vivo Tasting to elevate her experience with our six (1 oz. pours) of our top-tiered wines in varietal specific stemware, including our Privata and our limited Reserved series*. The duration of the tasting will be approximately 45 minutes and hosted by a guest experience associate. To complement the wine, we curated an antipasti platter that we know she will love! This add-on option is available during the reservation process.

As a special feature, during Tasting Room hours only, we are offering an exclusive Mother’s Day dessert of Buttermilk Panna Cotta with strawberry rhubarb compote, accompanied by rosé jellies, lemon crumble and a sweet and savoury basil syrup. Reserve your Mother's Day Tasting Experience now.

Mother’s Day Dinner at CHAOS Bistro

If Mom’s love language is quality time, consider joining us for dinner. Ex Nihilo's restaurant, CHAOS Bistro presents stunning views of the vineyards and Lake Okanagan and a menu featuring locally-sourced ingredients and seasonal flavors, all expertly prepared by our talented Executive Chef, Danny Tipper and his team. And of course, the wine list is extensive, showcasing expert pairings of our award-winning portfolio we know Mom will savour.

Gifts for Mother’s Day

If you're looking for a special gift for mom, stop by Ex Nihilo's wine store or shop online to choose from a selection of our wines, including our special Mother’s Day Bestsellers Bundle, with shipping available directly to her. If you’re a local Okanagan resident, we offer free local pick up of wines plus our curated selection of beautiful gifts from local vendors including Lululemon Ex Nihilo gear, our latest jewellery from Kelowna’s Karen Wentzel (in store only), and our Ex Nihilo exclusive candles. Whether your mom is a wine lover or just appreciates beautiful things, you're sure to find something that she'll love.

Let us make your Mother's Day at Ex Nihilo Vineyards a truly special experience.

Reservations are strongly recommended for Mother’s Day Tastings at Ex Nihilo and dinner at CHAOS Bistro. Reserve Now to avoid disappointment.

Time Posted: May 11, 2023 at 12:00 PM Permalink to Mother's Day with Ex Nihilo Permalink
Ex Nihilo
October 21, 2022 | Ex Nihilo

Top Reasons to Do a Wine Tasting or Tour in the Fall and Winter


Fall Okanagan Wine Tasting at Ex Nihilo

A Vineyard in the fall months is a sight to behold, especially in the Okanagan. As the foliage starts to show its autumn colours, and the grapes burst off the vine, beckoning harvest time, enjoying a wine tasting is a wonderful idea. Fewer crowds and milder temperatures are just a few reasons why you might want to embark on a wine tasting or tour at this time. Here are some more considerations, for those still on the fence.

A Winery in the Fall

For many wineries, visiting after the summer rush may allow you to observe some of the inner workings of the facility, from the harvest, to the winemaking process, to the bottling stage. In addition, you may be one of the first to taste a newly produced wine by sampling new releases that become available at this time! 

Okanagan Valley Grape Harvest

Veraison, or the change of colour of the grapes on the vine, is a beautiful sight as grapes take on their signature rich and appealing appearance, but once the grapes are ripe enough for harvesting the winemaking magic truly begins. Deciding when to harvest is an important decision, as the ripening process for a grape ends once it is picked. Harvesting a grape later will yield a sweeter taste than a grape of the same crop harvested earlier, as more sugar remains with the later-picked grape. Thus the date a grape is picked can contribute to the sweetness, flavour and alcohol content of the resulting wine.

At Ex Nihilo, wine tastings are available in the fall months and Chaos Bistro is open until October 29th, with special dinners and events throughout the winter season for our guests. Check our website for details, and subscribe to our entertaining and informative e-newsletter to keep on the pulse with what is happening at the winery during this time.

Enjoy a Winter Wine Tour

Wait, Wine Touring in the Winter?

No, you are not crazy if you are curious about wine touring in the winter. It is indeed a thing, especially in the Okanagan. Some wine tasters even swear by touring in the winter. Doing a tasting or tour in the winter is smart, as the main harvest is over and winemaking is in full force. 

Of course you don’t experience the stunning budding stage of spring, the vibrant colours of fall, or the summer heat, but winter has something special to offer visitors. Staff may be more available to answer your questions in depth and give you their full attention. There are often VIP or special events and experiences to take advantage of as well.

And it is icewine’s time to shine as the temperature falls and grapes are picked frozen off the vine. Canada is one of the countries at the forefront of icewine production, and Ex Nihilo offers a few icewines that you might want to explore. 

Winter Winery Events at Ex Nihilo

It is abundantly clear that there is much going on beneath the surface at many wineries in the winter. It is the perfect time to cosy up and enjoy a winter wonderland, with a glass of premium wine as you peer out at the vineyard quietly hibernating, and perhaps lightly covered in snow.

Note - Be sure to check a winery’s website before embarking as not all may operate to the public at this time, or may have reduced hours. At Ex Nihilo tastings appointments are recommended in the winter, but not absolutely necessary. 

Wine for Every Season

While the spring and summer put lighter white and rosé wines at the forefront, the fall and winter may bring focus to more full-bodied red wines that can be consumed warmer. Snuggling up with a glass of red wine in the colder months is common, but you can obviously enjoy any wine during any time of the year! 

Of course the type of wine we choose does not solely depend on the temperature outside, but many other factors, such as the seasonal foods and meals you are enjoying. Having a hearty beef stew to celebrate a bountiful harvest?  Perhaps pair it with a medium to full bodied red like our 2018 Privata Malbec, offering up notes of cherry, blueberry, star anise, and eucalyptus on the nose. Enjoying a rustic roasted chicken and veggies around the dinner table? A rosé may be an appropriate addition, and chardonnay can go well with many savoury seasonal foods of fall and winter. Overall wine sales are quite high in the winter, making it clear that people like their wine year round!

Okanagan Vineyard Ex Nihilo in the Fall

The Okanagan is known as a “four season playground” and the wineries in the region bring no exception. There is a common misconception that a winery’s doors close as the summer ends, but this is just not often the case. In fact some of the excitement is just beginning! For ideas of what to wear and etiquette for a wine tasting, check out our article “Wine Tasting and Touring Etiquette”. Doing a wine tour or tasting in the cooler months can be a very rewarding and fun experience. See you soon!

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Time Posted: Oct 21, 2022 at 11:30 AM Permalink to Top Reasons to Do a Wine Tasting or Tour in the Fall and Winter Permalink
Ex Nihilo
September 9, 2022 | Ex Nihilo

Top Tips For Storing & Cellaring Wine

Cellaring Wine

Bringing home a new or favourite wine is exciting. Perhaps you are ready to enjoy a glass right away or within a few days, but what about when you want to keep it a little longer, build a collection, or have a stock on hand for that special guest or dinner party? Here we provide some tips for you, to ensure the best tasting wine when you finally do decide to pop the cork.

Wine Storage

Short-term vs. Long-term Wine Storage

When it comes down to it, most wine is not meant to age very long. According to Wine Folly, the majority of wines you purchase are released within 2 years from being grapes, followed by an often relatively short time in the bottle before being consumed.

That said, not properly storing your wine can mute, or negatively affect wine development and/or cause it to decline or spoil prematurely. Access this handy chart to reference how long different types of wines should be stored away or cellared before consuming.

Storing Wine

After you have determined what wine you want to cellar and how long it should be stored for, here are some good tips to consider:

Find a dark, dry spot, and keep wine out of direct sunlight.

UV rays can damage the wine, causing it to break down, affecting such properties as taste, colour and aroma. Note: The reason why many bottles have a tint to them.

Make sure the temperature and humidity of the area you are storing the wine in is ideal & consistent.

Too cold of a temperature will stifle the ageing process, while heat increases this rate, requiring the wine to be consumed sooner. Too dry of an environment can cause the cork to dry out.

Don’t move the wine around too much.

Excess movement or storage in a high traffic zone with vibration can cause the sediment to move around, which is not ideal.

Store corked wine on its side.

This is commonly known, but many people don’t understand why.  Storing the bottle on its side, leaves the cork in contact with the wine, keeping it moist. A cork that dries out may shrink, and allow oxygen in which can cause spoilage. 

Don’t store your wine near strong smells or odours.

Doing this can affect the taste of the wine, especially with corked wines, as the corks are porous and may allow unpleasant smells to seep in.

Avoid storing the wine in the fridge for too long.

A fridge is meant to keep food dry and cold, and is ok for short-term, but the settings are not ideal for wine storage.  Consider purchasing a wine fridge for this purpose. 

Ageing Wine

Ageing Like a Fine Wine…

We’ve all heard the saying. Like with us humans, it can take time for a wine's complexities, true essence and beauty to fully come forth. Wine is first aged or matured somewhat before bottling in a batch process within vessels often made of oak, stainless steel, or ceramic material. According to The Wine Atlas of Canada, reds are usually aged like this for 1-2 years and whites generally less. Once transferred to the bottle, wine continues to age.  

Ageing in the bottle differentiates wine from “spirits”. For example, spirits such as gin and Scotch do not change over time in the glass bottle, but wine continues to develop, mellow, and take on a more intense “bouquet” before eventually declining.

As referenced above, certain wines are better than others for long-term ageing in the bottle.  Often red wines cellar better as they tend to be higher in tannin content. Tannins act somewhat as a preservative, helping stabilise the wine. Other factors play a part as well such as alcohol content, acidity and sugar.

Really Old Wine Bottles in a Cellar

Wine That’s How Old?

Of course the internet is littered with articles and videos of wine enthusiasts unearthing some insanely expensive and old wines, and some really stand the test of time, despite being a century old or more! A wine will reflect certain aspects of the year it was grown and produced in, which adds to the novelty. Curious about what a wine from the time of Abraham Lincoln tastes like? Check out this video of an expert sommelier tasting a 159 year old wine!

The Baltic Sea’s Perfectly Cellared Champagne

Everyone once and a while, nature provides the perfect environment for cellaring. One such example is one of the most expensive champagnes you can find, the 1907 Heidsieck Monopole Gout American. Referred to as, “shipwreck champagne”, it was found at the bottom of the Baltic Sea in the wreck of the Jönköping in 1997. The wine had sat there for almost 80 years in ideal conditions under the water. When it was finally rescued and opened, it was found to taste amazing!

Aging Wine in a Cellar

You might not be planning on keeping your wines for over 100 years but it is still good to know how to properly store and cellar them. Just taking a bit of time and effort to create the right environment for your collection will go a long way in making sure that when that wine hits the glass it is tasting the absolute best it can.

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Time Posted: Sep 9, 2022 at 11:05 AM Permalink to Top Tips For Storing & Cellaring Wine Permalink
Ex Nihilo
July 17, 2022 | Ex Nihilo

An Okanagan Valley Chef’s Journey - An Interview with Ex Nihilo’s Executive Chef, Danny Tipper

Chef Danny Tipper in Ex Nihilo's Vineyard

At Ex Nihilo’s Chaos Bistro, we are fortunate to have a small team of amazing individuals working hard behind the scenes to ensure a fantastic guest experience. One such person integral to creating culinary magic in the kitchen is our Executive Chef Danny Tipper. A few minutes spent chatting with this meticulous and driven chef reveals a strong culinary passion for creating enticing flavour profiles and combinations within every dish he prepares. We had an opportunity to sit down with Danny to learn more about him and his journey as a chef.

The Story Begins in Grandma’s Garden

Growing up Danny looked forward to visiting his grandmother’s house where the aroma of baked bread often welcomed him, along with fresh salami & delicious home-cooked meals. He would spend hours helping his grandma in the kitchen and wandering through her large garden, picking strawberries and beans straight from the vine.

His first especially vivid memory of learning to cook was at Thanksgiving when his grandma shared with him the art of making a roux. He was privileged with the task of adding the wine into the gravy the family would enjoy later that night. Knowing how to make a good roux came in handy during subsequent visits, as she would teach him how to make delicious soups from scratch.

Okanagan Valley Chef at Ex Nihilo

Then there were stories of the great-great-grandfather he never had the chance to meet from the Netherlands, a chef at the famous ‘Hotel Amsterdam’. Perhaps, young Danny pondered, he would follow in his relative’s footsteps. A seed was planted that would eventually grow into a full-fledged dream.

Coming Full Circle - The Life Cycle of a Winery

Danny had grown up surrounded by Okanagan Valley wine culture, and after attending culinary school in Vancouver it seemed a natural direction for him to explore. His quest to cook first took him to Quails’ Gate Estate Winery in Kelowna, which would be his first time working in a winery kitchen. He subsequently became “hooked” on the winery scene, largely due to the sizable garden he had access to for sourcing his ingredients. Life seemed to have come full circle in a way, to the days of his youth spent in his grandmother’s garden. 

Chef Danny Tipper in the kitchen at Chaos Bistro

Waterfront Wines Restaurant in Kelowna would be his next stop, and it was here that he learned much about wine and food pairing, further refining his palette and art as a chef. He grew to be more of a connoisseur of great wine and food combinations, learning about flavour profiles while gaining valuable knowledge that would help him ‘level up’ in his craft.  He was now ready to embark on the next leg of his adventure, bringing him briefly to Graymonk and then on to Ex Nihilo when the opportunity presented itself.

When asked about what he likes about working as a chef at a winery, Danny tells us a big draw for him is the life cycle at a winery, which mirrors the seasons and cycles of nature. Spring brings new buds in the vineyard, along with the anticipation of the busy season. Summer entails growth on the vines and a constant hum of excitement at the winery. Fall yields the harvest as winery activity calms, and in the winter the vines go dormant, which is coupled with time for winery staff to catch up and plan for the upcoming year. The pace is not constant & unrelenting as it is with many restaurants. There is a time for everything, including reflection, and that is key.

Supporting Local in the Okanagan

The Farm to Table Philosophy

The simple farm to table cooking standard first appreciated in his childhood now permeates Danny's every day. At home, his family enjoys a huge garden and a constant inflow of fresh ingredients like he did growing up, and his own children enjoy helping out in the garden and kitchen just as he did as a little boy.

At Ex Nihilo’s Chaos Bistro he is able to extend this same ideology. Every day he ventures to a neighbouring farm to access such fresh staples as tomatoes, basil, and herbs, all of which make it into the in-house prepared tomato sauce for gourmet pizza and other mouth-watering menu items. Cheese is sourced locally from Tanto Latte Cheese; Abundant mushrooms come from Lake Country Gourmet Mushroom Farm, and a longstanding relationship exists with Dueck Falkland Farms. The list goes on, and he is constantly fostering new relationships with local suppliers to acquire premium fresh ingredients for his culinary creations, supporting the local economy while bringing scrumptious combinations to the plate. (Note: Read more about Ex Nihilo’s local suppliers in our blog article: Supporting Local With Ex Nihilo).

Chef Danny Tipper at Chaos Bistro

Chef’s Choice

There are always a variety of wonderful selections on the menu at Chaos Bistro, but we just had to know Chef Danny’s current favourite. He was happy to oblige our curiosity:

“Right now my favourite dish is our BC Scallop Crudo. I have a fairly high acid palette so I enjoy the green apple and citrus. It also pairs fantastic with our EXN 2021 Riesling which mirrors a lot of those same citrus, granny smith apple, and herbaceous notes that the dish provides. A summertime must.”

Chaos Bistro at Ex Nihilo

What Does the Future Hold?

Danny is excited about the future and the "bursting potential" at Ex Nihilo. After spending some quality time in the cellar last fall with winemaker Jim Faulkner, he was able to coordinate and come up with some great combinations for the ongoing Dinner Culinary Experiences and Concert Events at the winery. Spending time with Jim has fostered more of an understanding regarding the winemaking process as a whole, deepening his already extensive knowledge of the wine varietals he is working with every day. Overall we have not yet seen all this talented chef has to offer!

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Time Posted: Jul 17, 2022 at 5:00 PM Permalink to An Okanagan Valley Chef’s Journey - An Interview with Ex Nihilo’s Executive Chef, Danny Tipper Permalink
Ex Nihilo
July 4, 2022 | Ex Nihilo

A Guide To Wine Pairing This Summer BBQ Season

Wine and BBQ

Often beer gets all the glory when it comes to BBQ season, but wine really has the potential to bring out the strong bold flavours enjoyed in BBQ grilled cuisine.  Many people have questions about which wines pair best with their favourite BBQ’d fares, but in fact, the diversity of possibilities is surprising.  With a bit of creativity and a few guidelines, you will be well on your way to creating satisfying combinations. Here we offer a by no means exhaustive analysis, to lend some insight into that all-important question, “What wine do I bring to the BBQ”?


Probably one of the most well known combinations involves pairing bolder red meat such as beef with fuller bodied red wines. For example, you may want to enjoy a cabernet sauvignon, zinfandel, malbec, merlot or shiraz with a steak or beef burger. These higher tannin wines cut through the fat, and wines with a peppery and tobacco flavour work well with the boldness prominent in beef prepared on the BBQ.  

Ex Nihilo Varietal to Consider:

Pairing Wine with BBQ Pork


There is a bit of a range here. In general, pork pairs well with higher fruit red wines with a little sweetness, as well as rosé and rich white wines, depending on what it is you are enjoying. In particular, pinot noir, or zinfandel can be a good choice for that cut of pork or ribs on the barbie, or you could go a different route and even try an icewine with a grilled pork roast. For a hotdog, a champagne or riesling might work well, cutting through the fat, and if adding mustard, a sauvignon blanc can highlight the ‘tang’ while combating the saltiness of the dog. 

Ex Nihilo Varietal to Consider:

Wine Pairing with Chicken and Fish

Chicken & Fish

Full flavoured white, rosé, and some reds can work in this area of the BBQ department, depending on the boldness of the item. Specifically, enjoy a rosé, chardonnay, or a lighter bodied red wine such as pinot noir for salmon.  As for chicken, rosé can pair well with the chicken itself as well as the bbq sauce, if being used. Chardonnay and sauvignon blanc are often a good choice as well for chicken, and interestingly, a malbec can work in cases where the chicken becomes bolder on the BBQ.

Ex Nihilo Varietals to Consider:

Pairing Wine with Grilled Veggies

Grilled Vegetables

For that veggie kabob, crisp white wines like a pinot gris or sauvignon blanc are a good go-to. More earthy veggies such as eggplant & mushroom can also pair well with syrah, zinfandel, or even cabernet sauvignon, but this is really just a start as there is such variety in the veggie department.  

We encourage further investigation depending on your particular vegetable choice.

Ex Nihilo Varietal to Consider:

Pairing Wine with Spice and Sauce

A Note on Pairing with Sauce & Spice

Not only do we take the food we are cooking on the BBQ into account when pairing wine, but the spice and sauce is quite important as well.   In terms of sauces, sweet bbq sauces are accentuated with a sweet wine.  If a sauce or glaze is more tart or acidic, off-dry whites might be a good choice.  BBQ sauces that are more “mustardy” go well with white or light reds.

In terms of spice rubs, we could devote a whole blog article to this but there are a few basic guidelines that may help. White wines tend to go better with “soft herbs”, which include tarragon, basil and dill.  “Hard herbs” such as rosemary and thyme often pair well with red wines.  Rosé and white wines work really well with fresh herbs in general,  and when combining spices, go with the overall style of the dish - i.e. middle eastern, etc.  If that dish is particularly spicy, a riesling or gewurztraminer might be in order.

Ex Nihilo Summer BBQ Pack

Ex Nihilo’s Summer BBQ Wine Bundle

Back by popular demand, Ex Nihilo has a special BBQ bundle available for sale this summer. A fabulous sauce we sell in our winery has been paired with a variety of specially chosen wines. As an added perk, our chef has included some great Icewine recipes. For more information visit our online store or tasting room.  Now you can’t go wrong when showing up for that next BBQ!

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Time Posted: Jul 4, 2022 at 2:20 PM Permalink to A Guide To Wine Pairing This Summer BBQ Season Permalink
Ex Nihilo
June 13, 2022 | Ex Nihilo

Top 5 Reasons to Join a Wine Club

Wine Club Complimentary Tasting

What exactly is a wine club and why might you want to join one? Besides the obvious of having fabulous bottles of wine regularly delivered straight to your door, there are a variety of benefits to membership, depending on which wine club you choose. So without further ado, here are a few of the top reasons you should consider joining a wine club:

1. Savings & Convenience

We have already mentioned the benefit of having wine regularly delivered to you, but did you know that many wine clubs offer wine discounts and deals on shipping, sometimes even shipping for free! Now that is something to get excited about and will ensure you will always have a little something special on-hand for that impromptu dinner party.

2. Perks, Member Opportunities & VIP Treatment

From discounts, to freebies, to member-only events at the winery, and more, the pros of being a part of a wine club often extend way beyond just the wine itself. Get the VIP treatment you crave and benefit from a sense of community and new experiences.

Perks to Joining a Wine Club

3. Learning From the Winemakers

Being a part of a club can give you better access to the people making your favourite wines. You may learn more about how the wines you love are made via member-exclusive events, newsletters, and more. Being part of a club can give you a bit of an education and a special glimpse behind the scenes.

4. Access to Limited Wine Varieties or New Releases

Often wineries will release specific limited or new wines to members only, giving ‘first dibs’ to those loyal customers that are a part of the club.  You can be the first to taste a new variety.  For example, Ex Nihilo released its first ever Gewurztraminer to members first!

Wine Club Events at Ex Nihilo

5. A Great Gift Idea

A wine club membership can be a wonderful idea for a gift for that wine lover in your life.  If you know your friend or family member’s taste in wine, you can give them a gift that truly keeps giving throughout the year, as they get to indulge in their favourites, discover new varieties, and enjoy the experiences that go along with membership.

The Value of Membership

When choosing to be a part of a wine club, think of the total value you will receive from the experience, not just the cost of the wine.  As we can see, there is often much more to joining a club than just receiving wine.  In addition, be sure to understand the fine print, the cancellation process, and what you are agreeing to, to avoid any disappointment.  Overall you want to get the most out of your experience and capitalise on the fun factor.

Ex Nihilo’s Wine Club Experience

We should probably mention at this point that Ex Nihilo may just have the wine club you are looking for. Both Gold and Silver access members enjoy a host of attractive benefits. Below are the top perks as outlined by our dedicated wine club coordinator, Breanna Stienstra:

Customizable wine shipments

  • 17% – 20% discounts on wine (some of the highest discounts in the Okanagan Valley)
  • Exclusivity to cellared (Library) wines
  • Priority access to events/concerts
  • Two complimentary standard tastings on every visit

Okanagan Wine Club Benefits at Ex Nihilo

Being a wine club member at Ex Nihilo means so much more than just discounts and benefits. It's a community, a family, and a local social club. Members come to Ex Nihilo for their birthdays, weddings, and a variety of special events because they feel at home here and they know we will do everything we can to personalise each visit. We truly believe that we offer something extra special at Ex Nihilo. There is something magically intoxicating about this place and it draws people in.
Check out our wine club page for more information and start enjoying the joys of membership today!

Happy sipping!

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Time Posted: Jun 13, 2022 at 12:00 PM Permalink to Top 5 Reasons to Join a Wine Club Permalink
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