Wine for Ladies Who Shoot Their Lunch & the Charming Man Behind the Bottle

Winemaker Matt Fowles talks with guests By Jane Staples An early spring evening, a cozy fire burning in the hearth and award-winning wine from Australia’s Fowles Wines set the tone for a delightful evening at Australia’s High Commission on April 8th. The original Fowles family ancestors settled in Australia in the early 1800s, having arrived from England and Ireland.  The winery is now run by one of their descendants, Matt Fowles, who was formerly a successful lawyer. In 2007, Matt was selected to be part of the “Future Leaders” program that fosters a new generation of wine industry leaders for […]

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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 […]

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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, […]

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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 […]

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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 […]

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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 […]

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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 […]

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Kim Crawford Wines: Small Vineyard Sauvignon Blanc, Pinot Noir

“Several Ottawa sommeliers and wine professionals, along with noted author Natalie MacLean, enjoyed a wine tasting luncheon October 4, with an informative presentation from Kim Crawford’s Chief Winemaker, Anthony Walkenhorst and a scrumptuous meal from Maxwell’s Bistro. We were treated to several of Kim Crawford’s finest wines and each plate was introduced by the chef. The New Zealand winery Kim Crawford was launched in 1996 with a virtual vineyard … the actual land for the vines came later! With an unusual start, and in a relatively short time, the winery has made New Zealand as famous for its wines as […]

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Errazuriz Wines: Chile’s Cool Climate Grapes Shine

This is the first in a series of team tastings by top reviewers in our community, most of whom are graduates of either the Algonquin College Sommelier Program or La Cite Collegiale Sommelier Program. They share with us their overall impressions from the tasting, as well as reviews of each of the wines presented. You’ll also find their reviews shared on Twitter and Facebook as they are all very active on social media. “The Errazuriz wine tasting at Daly’s restaurant in Ottawa on September 26th was an absolute treat. Francisco Baettig, head winemaker at Errazuriz, is a supremely knowledgeable and […]

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