May, 10, 2006 (Victoria, BC) "“ Taking advantage of the rich bounty surrounding this celebrated resort in the Cowichan Valley, The Aerie is once again offering guests summer farm and winery tours, show cooking classes, and fall mushroom hunts.
This summer, guests have a choice of two guided food and wine experiences starting at CDN$139.00 (USD$126.00*) per couple: Crush Wine Tours (www.crushwinetours.com) and Travel with Taste Tours. Both offer hands on experiences with local vintners and food producers, are dedicated to the slow food movement, and provide you with a true taste of why Vancouver Island and the Cowichan Valley are becoming one of Canada's top culinary tourism destinations. Tours are offered on a daily basis, and may be reserved through The Aerie directly by calling 1-800-518-1933.
Once guests have experienced the local bounty they can learn how to prepare it with an intimate three hour cooking class and food tasting with Chef Christophe Letard in the resort's private show kitchen. The cost for this rare opportunity to spend an afternoon with an award winning chef begins at CND$450.00 (USD$409.00*) per couple and is available throughout the summer.
Beginning in September, depending on late summer rains, mushroom hunting starts at The Aerie. Held on Saturdays, The Aerie's group of "mycologist in training" is spirited out to the forest for some hands-on hunting with Brother Michael, a Benedictine Monk from the local Sole Dao Monastery and a mushroom expert who has supplied local hotels and restaurants with mushrooms for years. After spending a few hours gathering the delectable specimens, guests return to The Aerie where Chef Christophe Letard reviews the best cooking methods and serves a three-course lunch, featuring the results of the hunt! Cost for the five hour excursion, including transportation from The Aerie and lunch, is CDN$120.00 (USD$109.00*) per person.
Recently highlighted as the top resort in Canada and one of the best values in the world by readers of Travel & Leisure magazine, the 35-room, luxury Mediterranean-style resort is located thirty minutes from Victoria, BC. The Aerie is well recognized for its commitment to culinary experiences and local cuisine and was the recipient of an "Out of the Box" award from Tourism BC for the creation of its numerous local culinary tourism programs. The Aerie is also a member of the Relais & ChÃ¢teaux collection of inns & hotels.
Summer room rates at The Aerie begin at CND $295.00 (USD$268.00*) and Fall season rates begin at CND $245.00 (USD$222.00*), based on double occupancy.
For more information on The Aerie Resort and to reserve its many culinary programs, people may call 1-800-518-1933.
*US prices based on current rates of exchange and are subject to change