Piccolo, our choice for dinner that evening
in Ganges. “What’s that?” I asked, my
head swiveling to admire an intricately
garnished bowl carried by a server to
a neighboring table. It was summer
squash soup, stunningly inlaid with
concentric swirls of crème fraîche and
The next morning, the local bus delivered us back to Freelance, and we navigated around the north of Salt Spring
and down the west side to Burgoyne Bay
Provincial Park. We tied up at the dock,
then hiked 20 minutes along a heavily
canopied lane to Fulford-Ganges Road.
Half a mile beyond was Garry Oaks
Winery, named for the Garry Oak trees
that once covered this valley. In 1999,
winemaker Elaine Kozak and vineyard
manager Marcel Mercier acquired the
terraced, south-facing slope that was once
a sheep farm. They planted vines, built
a 10-acre winery and tasting room, and
today produce award-winning wines. We
fell in love with their Zweigelt, full of
black cherry and raspberry flavors, and
purchased several bottles on the spot.
Galiano, Mayne, and Saturna
Located to the east, on the edge of the Strait of Georgia, Galiano Island is home to two notable restaurants
serving island wines and coastal cuisine.
A short walk from popular Montague
Harbour and its Marine Provincial Park,
Pilgrimme Restaurant hunkers under the
Douglas firs and western red cedars,
looking like the Northwest version of
a hobbit house. Opened in 2014, the
restaurant has been creating buzz among
boaters, thanks to the culinary creativity of
chef/owner Jesse McCleery, who worked
at Noma in Copenhagen, often cited as,
seriously, the best restaurant in the world.
To garnish dishes, McCleery and his
team forage ingredients from forest and
shore, bringing home sea lettuce, spruce
tips, wild mushrooms, and miner’s lettuce.
Set on the north side of Active Pass
at Sturdies Bay, by the ferry landing,
Galiano Inn welcomes boaters to tie up
at the floating dock. At the inn’s Atrevida
restaurant, we looked out through ceiling-to-floor windows to magnificent views of
the narrow passage where ferries shuttled
between Vancouver and the Gulf Islands.
The menu highlighted fresh fish, such
Salt Spring Winery features sparkling, white, red, and
sweet wines. Galiano Inn’s Atrevida restaurant serves up
arctic char with cilantro chimichurri and fresh asparagus.
Author Peter Schroeder aboard Freelance, his Canadian-built Monaro 21 cuddy cruiser. Sunset views across Poet’s
Cove Marina, on South Pender Island.
62 | BoatU.S. Magazine JUNE | JULY 2016
IN THE 1930S, 700 AFRICAN-AMERICAN FAMILIES FROM
CALIFORNIA MOVED HERE WHEN BRITISH COLUMBIA
OFFERED FULL CITIZENSHIP TO ANYONE WILLING TO
FARM THE LAND.