Spicy Food & Wine Pairings: Cinco de Mayo, Tex-Mex, Indian Food Matches

On Global Television’s Morning Show today, we chatted about wine and spicy food pairings than to celebrate Cinco de Mayo. What better time to explore these than on May 5, the day in 1862 when a rag-tag Mexican army defeated the far larger French forces under Emperor Napoleon III. Sure, you could toast with a cerveza or tequila, but which wine? The growing Mexican wine industry is gaining respect, particularly the region of Baja California, and among the leading producers is L.A. Cetto, creating exceptionally well-priced red wines. But let’s broaden the field, and look at wines from around the […]

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Celebrating Mother’s Day with the Great Women of Champagne

On CTV’s The Social yesterday, we chatted about the top Champagnes made by women for Mother’s Day. (Click on the arrow above to play the video.) They were all young women whose families owned the great champagne houses at the turn of the 18th and 19th centuries. When they lost their husbands to war or illness, they didn’t sell the businesses or remarry. They took control of the chateaus to produce some of the most prestigious wines in the world. In an era when few women were in business at all, these women headed what were, at the time, some […]

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Mother’s Day Brunch Wine and Champagne Pairings

Jeff and I had such fun chatting about wines for Mother’s Day gifts on Canada AM, especially champagne for brunch. There’s even a “live action” shot with uncorking a sparkler. (Okay, not so much.) Here are my Top 20 Wines for Mother’s Day, either made by women or named for them. Often the latter were originally made by women. You’ll also find more suggestions in my Mother’s Day wines for Epicurious as well as for More Magazine. Jeff: It’s Mother’s Day, of course, on Sunday, and if you are planning on taking her out for brunch, you might want to […]

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Santa Margherita Wine Tasting: To Pinot Grigio and Beyond

Canada’s top wine writers and sommeliers gathered in our nation’s capital recently for a comprehensive tasting and overview of Santa Margherita wines. Their overall impressions and reviews are below. Click the arrow in any video to watch it. Monique Sosa Wine Columnist, Ottawa Life Magazine  Virtually everyone I know has had a taste of the eminent Santa Margherita Pinot Grigio. It is the number one selling white wine in Canada and a consistent top seller in North America altogether. Not so long after the rise of their Grigio’s popularity, we started to notice more and more Santa Margherita labels of various styles of […]

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Video: Why is Rosé One of the Fastest Growing Wine Categories?

One of the fastest growing categories in the liquor store is rosé wine. Here to tell us why and which ones we should buy is Natalie MacLean, the editor of Canada’s most popular wine review site at nataliemaclean.com – why has rosé had such a bad reputation in the past? – how are modern rosés different in terms of how they taste? – how are they different in terms of how they’re made? – you’ve brought some today: which regions should we be looking for in the liquor store? – how are Canadian rosés different from French ones? – is […]

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Getting Nutty at Alvear Montilla-Moriles Fortified Wine Tasting

Greg Hughes Wine Writer & Sommelier   For 18 generations, (300 years) the Alvear family have been making wine.  All of these wines are Sherry-esque in style, but they are all constructed with Pedro Ximenez from Montilla Moriles instead of the traditional Palomino. We had the chance to taste the wines and discuss them with Maria Auxiliadora; the winemaker responsible for their continued quality. Pedro Ximenez (Pronounced Peh-droh ee-MAY-neth) is a small grape with a thin skin of dark colouration.  It is renown among wine enthusiasts for being super sweet, concentrated, and fermenting to naturally high alcohol. Of the four […]

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Capra and Chianti: A Perfect Pairing with Gabbiano Wines

Last night, we were joined by a special guest, Chef Massimo Capra, to chat about Italian wine and food pairings ​Join us on the Sunday Sipper Club, April 16​ at 6 pm eastern (Toronto time)​ ​when we talk about Malbec. Tune in here for our Facebook Live Video Wine Tasting:  www.nataliemaclean.com/live P.S. Click on the “Follow” and “Like” buttons on this page to get notified when we go live. You’ll find upcoming and past Live Tasting Videos here.   If you’d like to read 74 comments for this tasting, or make a comment yourself, visit: https://www.facebook.com/natdecants/videos/10154975674214845/ Here’s a sampling of […]

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Easter Wines for Fish, Lamb + Ham: Video

Wines for Good Friday fish, Easter brunch, lamb and ham are the focus of our chat on CTV News. In particular, red wines often clash with fish not because of the wine tannin and fish iodine, as previously thought, but rather because of high iron content in the wine. The iron comes mostly from the soil where the vines are grown, but can also be due to winemaking methods. Generalizing about which wines will be high in iron content is difficult. The iron in wine is thought to break down the unsaturated (good) fats in fish and creates that fishy […]

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Versatile Vinho Verde: Spring Splendor in the Glass

Last night, we were joined by special guest, Pedro Costa, Head Winemaker of Aveleda Winery chatting about his Vinho Verde wines and why they’re such a great wine style for spring. This was actually a 2-part video series as I managed to melt down my computer’s CPU with multiple simultaneous broadcasting streams to Facebook Live, Twitter Live vis Periscope and YouTube Live Stream ;) You can watch part one above by clicking the arrow, then part two below. Cheers, Natalie Join us on the Sunday Sipper Club, April 9​ at 6 pm eastern (Toronto time)​ ​with special guest Food Network […]

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Plonk Wine Videos Stumble Blindly into Brilliant Insight

In his book How to Love Wine, New York Times wine columnist Eric Asimov observes: “I’m sometimes dismayed that sommeliers confuse their professional training with what consumers need to know to enjoy wine. We don’t need to know whether you can identify wines blind. “Those are just parlor games for professionals. I think that professionals, like sommeliers, need to be able to communicate with the public in a language that they understand and that they find useful.” When I tasted wines blind with Eric at the paper’s headquarters several years ago, he lived those words. The blind tasting was to […]

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