Yalumba Wine Tasting: A Sensory Tour of Old & New World

By Jane Staples G’day, mate ! was the friendly greeting from Yalumba’s winemaker and storyteller, Jane Ferrari.  As we chatted, I asked her how she feels about the concept of “terroir” and she answered emphatically that she believes in it.  When visitors come to the Yalumba vineyard, she takes small groups out to 5 different vineyards,  then pulls down the back of her truck and does a comparative tasting on the spot. Jane was recently named “Wine Communicator of the Year” in Australia.  A trained winemaker, she now travels the world for Yalumba Wines. Canada and the US are the […]

read more …

Read More

Wine Events and Tastings in Canada

Here are some upcoming wine tastings and events that are worth attending. Let me know if you think I should add others to this list – I’m not trying to create an exhaustive list with every wine event happening across Canada, but rather a carefully curated one of worthy events. Get yourself on the e-mail list for those that interest you now so that you’re reminded when to register. Many events offer free trade tastings during the day for those who work in the hospitality industry (restaurants, hotels etc who are involved with food and wine) as well as media […]

read more …

Read More

Dazzling Wine and Food Pairing Dinner Party at Chatelaine

The editors of Chatelaine, Canada’s largest magazine, hosted their first dinner party in the cozy setting of their food kitchen on Thursday evening. Wine and food media gathered to share a delicious multi-course meal. In the video above, Executive Food Director Claire Tansey welcome guests to the Chatelaine Magazine Kitchen, noting that the magazine is celebrating its 84th year of publication. (Click on the arrow to play the video.) Before dinner started, we enjoyed cocktails and hors d’oeuvres in the magazine’s offices on the eighth floor of the building that is home to Chatelaine, Today’s Parent, Maclean’s, Canadian Business, MoneySense, […]

read more …

Read More

Taste Ontario Features Great Wines: Thirty Bench, East Dell

By Kristy Gardner Out of all the fantastic wines at Taste Ontario this year, the biggest highlight for me is the vintages of Thirty Bench wines. The staff are friendly, ready to talk shop and most importantly, excited to have us taste their wines. While their 2011 Small lot Chardonnay is surprisingly fresh and fruit forward with notes of lemon and spice, and the 2011 Winemaker’s Red – a blend of cab sauv, cab merlot and cab franc – is well balanced, juicy, bold and smooth, it’s their 2006 Small Lot Wood Post Riesling that really impresses me. This isn’t […]

read more …

Read More

Wine and Truffles in Italy: Chef Massimo Capra

In the video above, Chef Massimo Capra talks about his most memorable wine during a truffle dinner on a hillside in Italy. He also talks about the Grand Cru Culinary Wine Festival and a special wine on auction, Tignanello. You can watch part one of our wine chat here. Antinori 2009 Tignanello Massimo has chosen to taste one of the wines that will be featured at the Grand Cru Festival Auction this year: Tignanello is produced exclusively from the vineyard of the same name, a parcel of some 140 acres (57 hectares) at 1150-1325 feet (350-400 meters) above sea level […]

read more …

Read More

Grand Cru Culinary Wine Festival: Vintage Pleasure

The Grand Cru Culinary Wine Festival is Canada’s largest wine and culinary fundraiser for medical research, raising more than $11.4 million since it started in 2005. In the video below, chef Massimo Capra, who writes a column for the Globe & Mail and has appeared on the Food Network, is one of the celebrity chefs who will be cooking a special dinner this year. He reveals the details of this special meal in the video. You can also watch our second wine video chat here. Chef Massimo Capra has been involved with Grand Cru since it began in 2005, and […]

read more …

Read More

A Tale of Two Ruffino Wine Tasting Dinners with Authentic Italian Food Pairings

Our second Ruffino wine tasting took place October 19 at La Cucina Ristorante with another team of our top-notch wine reviewers who share their observations of the wines, pairings and experience below. You’ll find the pictures, videos and notes from the Ocober 18 Ruffino wine tasting here, and reviews of all Ruffino wines here. “The more I drink Italian wines, the more convinced I am that they are made for the purpose of enjoying good food. And when you have the perfect pairing, it gives you the kind of evening we had at the great Italian restaurant La Cucina in […]

read more …

Read More

Ruffino Wines: Tasting Italy in a Glass

Our third winemaker dinner team tasting on October 18 featured the wines of the Italian winery Ruffino. Our team did an excellent job of summarizing the wines, food pairings and overall experience of the evening. A second Ruffino wine dinner was held the following night at a different restaurant. You can see all of the Ruffino wine reviews, showing stock at your local liquor store. “Graffiti’s Italian Restaurant in Kanata was the perfect location for a Ruffino tasting dinner with Brand Ambassador Robert Ghezzo. Though dimly lit and boisterous at times, we were nonetheless transported to the Tuscan countryside as […]

read more …

Read More

Stratus Wine and Food Pairing Dinner with Beckta Cuisine

Stratus Winery hosted a spectacular wine and food tasting dinner in Niagara on September 28 that featured the cuisine of Ottawa restaurateur Steve Beckta’s three establishments: Beckta Dining & Wine, Play and Gezellig.  I found that the Stratus wines paired beautifully with partner and executive chef Mike Moffatt and chef de cuisine Katie Brown Ardington’s dishes. Click on the arrow above to play the short Instagram video clip. The missing word at the end is windmill ;) Chef Moffatt is a two-time Gold Medal Plates winner and Katie is a rising star on the Ottawa restaurant scene. This dinner paired […]

read more …

Read More

Taste Ontario: Wines + Event Make Spectacular Blend

“The evening function for Taste Ontario in Ottawa was beautiful. The Westin outdid itself with food stations all around the ballroom interspersed with ice sculptured bar tables and tree stands. The majestic Chateau Laurier was lit up in the background outside the room-length floor-to-ceiling windows. Music and mingling. Eating and drinking. My favourite pairing of the night was the sauteed shrimp in a rich cream sauce with the Closson Chase Vineyard Chardonnay 2011. The event gave us a chance to talk one-on-one with the owners, representatives and winemakers at some of the best wineries in Ontario. At the Closson Chase […]

read more …

Read More