Pénélope Roche

Pénélope Roche

Roche Wines (Winemaker & Proprietor)

Proprietor/Winemaker for Roche Wines, Pénélope Roche grew up in France, steeped in the French tradition of winemaking, and describes herself as a “vine whisperer.” Her first loves are cooking and gardening. "Passion for the sensory brought me to winemaking. We never do any analyses. We taste the grapes to decide on picking."

She studied oenology in Bordeaux, graduating in 2004, and made wine in Spain and then New Zealand, where she met her future husband, who was from Vancouver. He had moved to Beaune to complete a diploma in viticulture and winemaking and then relocated to Bordeaux.

When her family sold the family chateau and vineyard property in 2010, Pénélope and her spouse decided to move to the “beautiful Okanagan region where the wine industry was growing,” a decision supported by her parents, and where friends interested in winemaking had relocated. They have no regrets about their decision, and have found that the quality of life is different from that in France: “There is a sense of freedom here. The Okanagan Valley is welcoming for women, and not judgmental.”

The white and red wines of Roche consistently receive recognition in the form of British Columbia Lieutenant Governor’s Awards (BCLGA) and the Great Northwest Invitational Wine Competition. The Roche 2018 Chateau, a red blend, which we had the pleasure of tasting, was named a Best of the [Naramata] Bench finalist.

Updated 06/23