Gift Wines: 5 Tips on How to Pick a Great Bottle

Want to give someone a bottle of wine this year? Here are quick tips on how to choose a great gift wine this holiday that we discussed on CBC Ontario Morning in the audio clip below. Click on the arrow above to listen to the clip. You can get all my wine reviews of great gift wines (including those for yourself) showing the stock for each bottle at your closest liquor stores. Wine is a great gift because: –    one size fits all –    doubles are fine –    it’s easy to re-gift Also: – it’s easy to return for cash […]

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Pierre Sparr Wines: Alsace Value and Taste Pair Well

Maison Pierre Sparr By Melissa Pulvermacher We’re all on a constant search of high-value wines for a great price. I always say that your chance of getting a great quality wine for a large price tag is high, and although the odds are less consistent, it feels great to find a killer bottle of wine that doesn’t break the bank. Maison Pierre Sparr, founded in 1680 by Jean Sparr, is a winery and brand located in Alsace, France. Sparr owns 15 hectares of their own Domaine, while also sourcing grapes from 130 hectares of trusted farmer-owned vines, to produce their […]

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Pairing Wine with Chocolate: Follow Your Nose

By Jessica Nagy Pairing wine with chocolate is about more than just rich desserts and powerful Ports or Amarones;  it’s a subtle art that can have a big impact on the entire meal if done well. I recently spoke with Sommelier Rebecca Meïr-Liebman about how she takes on this challenge in a series of Sweet & Savoury chocolate-inspired dinners that she hosts with her husband, Chef Eyal Liebman, in Toronto. The next dinner will take place November 8 with all proceeds going to support Second Harvest. “I start by choosing the winery,” says Rebecca. In this case, it’s Niagara’s Henry […]

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Pairing Wine with Weird Holiday Turkey Recipes

Maple-Brined, Wood-Smoked Grilled Turkey To stuff some life into this year’s obligatory wine and turkey pairing column for Thanksgiving (or Christmas), I asked the creators of some strangely wonderful turkey recipes for their permission to post them here and pair them with wine. I’m still on the hunt for beer can turkey, turducken, tofurkey (tofu-shaped turkey), and believe or not, that new chocolate-glazed with sprinkles dessert favourite, turdunkin (!) Maple-Brined, Wood-Smoked Grilled Turkey Recipe Allow a total of 4 to 4-1/2 hours to start the fire, cook the turkey, and let it rest. Have a full bag of charcoal on […]

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Wine Review of the Week: Loimer Riesling from Austria for Earth Day

Our new feature, Wine Review of the Week, will put the spotlight on our vibrant community of wine reviewers with one special bottle personally selected by one contributor. To kick things off, sommelier Lesley Quinn has chosen the  Loimer Erste Lage Zöbing Heiligenstein Riesling 2011, Kamptal DAC Reserve from Austria for Earth Day. Her tasting note: Ever come across a small clear spring where the water is slowly trickling over rocks, giving off a fresh clean steely scent? That is what drinking this Riesling reminds me of. The satin smooth texture and fresh aromas of pears and apples give you […]

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10 Reasons to Drink Austrian Wine

By Leslie Quinn “Austria makes wine? Aren’t they known for beer?” This is the typical response I get when I suggest an Austrian wine to a guest or a friend. My answer is always “Yes they make a great brew, but their wine is among the best in the world.” And here are 10 reasons why you should give Austrian wine a chance. 1. Purity We love a delicious chunk of salmon dressed up in a delicate creamy caper beurre blanc, maybe even cooked on a cedar plank. However, a sliver of salmon sashimi is pure. It allows you to […]

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