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10 Best Moscato d’Asti Wines to Buy Now + 5 Surprising Facts about Moscato d’Asti

10 Best Moscato d’Asti Wines to Buy Now + 5 Surprising Facts about Moscato d’Asti

Moscato d’Asti is a fragrant and slightly fizzy DOCG dessert wine produced in the Northern Italian region of Piedmont. You’ll find my most recent Moscato d’Asti reviews and ratings here. Surprising Facts about Moscato d’Asti: Moscato d’Asti is produced from the Moscato Bianco (white Muscat) grape in and around the town of Asti. The hub of Asti production being the tiny village of Canelli. Moscato Bianco is the fourth most planted grape in Italy and perhaps the first cultivated vine in Piedmont. Moscato d’Asti is often mentioned in the company of its relative wine Asti. The two have many differences.... learn more  

Which food and wine pairings taste terrific together?

Recipe: Blue Cheese Hamburger with Red Wine Pairing

Recipe: Blue Cheese Hamburger with Red Wine Pairing

In celebration of National Hamburger Day, pair this savoury recipe for Blue Cheese Hamburger with the full-bodied red wine, such as Shiraz, Cabernet or Malbec. Please feel free to share this on social media with the hashtag #nationalburgerday Prep time: 30 minutes Total time, including cooking: 2 hours and 30 minutes Serves: 6 Ingredients: 1.5 pounds of lean ground beef 2 ounces of crumbled blue cheese ¼ cup of minced fresh chives 1/8 teaspoon of hot pepper sauce ½ teaspoon of Worcestershire sauce ½ teaspoon of coarsely-ground black pepper ¾ teaspoon of salt ½ teaspoon of dry mustard 6 hamburger buns   Directions:... learn more  

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Wine's Finest Moments in the Movies ...

Wine's Finest Moments in the Movies

We chat about how Hollywood's most memorable characters, from James Bond to Hannibal Lector, have always had a little help from the wine bottle. How wine is portrayed in the movies is often revealing about our wine culture. Sit back, open a good bottle and ... learn more  

Which bottles should I stock in my wine cellar?

Penfolds Bin 128 Shiraz 2012

Penfolds Bin 128 Shiraz 2012

This is what elegance and restraint tastes like from Australia: French grammar school, Australian graduate studies by the consummate gentleman winemaker Peter Gago. This wine was matured for a year in French oak, 26% of which was new. Lovely aromas of mint ... learn more  

How can I learn more about wine?

What to Ask the Sommelier with Lesley Brown, Canadian Association of Professional Sommeliers

What to Ask the Sommelier with Lesley Brown, Canadian Association of Professional Sommeliers

Introduction Lesley Brown has been a part of the Canadian Wine Industry for the past 17 years and works with several high profile wine agencies. She holds an International Sommelier Diploma and has taught wine courses to hundreds of students. Lesley is currently the BC Regional Sales Manager for The Bacchus Group and she also sits on the board of directors for the Import Spirit and Vintners Association and has recently taken over as the President of the Canadian Association of Professional Sommeliers (CAPS) BC and the Vice President of the CAPS National Board.   Highlights How did Lesley’s travels... learn more  

Join me for a great glass of wine!

Think of me as your red-nosed fairy godmother. I kiss a lot of...

Join me for a great glass of wine!

...vinous frogs to find the princely bottles for you, tasting more than 10,000 wines a year to write the wine reviews on this site. Create your own shopping list from my wine ratings and you're all set for deliriously happy wine shopping... and drinking!

LCBO Wine Review of the Day

CVNE stands for: Compañía Vinícola del Norte de España. This is an historic wine company with some very bold and delicious wines from Rioja. This one no different. Medium-plus-bodied with ripe dark cherry, mulberry, sweet tobacco, earthy mushroom, anise and cedar brush spicy flavours on a velvety palate. Decant two hours prior to pouring with BBQ pork ribs....

Top LCBO Wine Ratings

The Chocolate Block from Swartland wine region is consistently great. Savoury, delicious with its blackberry, cedar brush and smoky cedar brush flavours, this full-bodied red is a robust South African red wine blend of 79% Syrah, 11% Grenache Noir, 6% Cabernet Sauvignon, 3% Cinsault and 1% Viognier sourced from that wine region. Cedar smoke from oak aging and blackened fruit. It's savoury, complex and delicious: wow! Cassis, blackberry and cedar forest. Meaty and enticing, full-bodied wonderful with a concentrated weave of anise, cigar box, pepper and meaty notes. Extremely juicy and mouth-watering in a food-happy kind of way. Balanced and delicious: this is a terrific red to red if you're not familiar with South African wines, or even if you are. Nice long finish and a little bit of heat at almost 15% abv. Pair with a South African Bobotje. MINE: Boekenhoutskloof The Chocolate Block 2016 is just that -- a full-bodied Shiraz with some Grenache, Cabernet Sauvignon, Cinsault and a splash of Viognier for lift. Savoury and delicious with ripe blackberry, cedar spice, black olive, smoky flavours on the palate and a long dark chocolate finish. This is the second vintage of The Chocolate Block produced from grapes from the Swartland wine region. This is the second vintage of The Chocolate Block. OTHER: Rob rated this wine as 89/100 with the following review: See recommended food pairing.????? My humble opinion is this wine is pretty ‘big’ for chicken, and more suits red meat or a hearty stew. OTHER: Andrea Shapiro - Sommelier rated this wine as 88/100 with the following review: Rich stewed berries, spices, cherry and dark plum. Oh! And wait for it.... boom! Chocolate! Full, dry and savoury with juicy sweetness at the back, lingering tannins and pronounced fruit essences. Well rounded. An appropriate food match for lamb or beef dishes. Think - shepherds pie. 88 points - tasted November 2018. OTHER: Jane Staples - Certified Sommelier rated this wine as 85/100 with the following review: A blend of Syrah 79% with small amounts of Grenache, Cab Sauv, Cinsault and 1% Viognier. Shows aromas of candied cherries and vanilla. The palate shows red fruit but tasted unbalanced with bitter tannins. Tasted May 2018. OTHER: Tim Atkin, MW, gave this wine 93 points: "One of South Africa's most successful brands, selling at a price that many producers can only dream of, this Syrah-based cuvée with Grenache, Cinsault, Cabernet Sauvignon and Viognier is smooth, youthful and floral, with Asian spices, bramble and blueberry fruit, some tannic backbone and the potential to age further in bottle. Drink Date: 2020-26." (South Africa Special Report 2018). OTHER: Remarkable quality & consistency from sizeable production, 2,057 barrels in 17. Score - 95 (Platter's South African Wine Guide, 2019)....

Top 20 LCBO Wines Under $20

In my ongoing quest to find the world's best bargain bottles, I select new wines weekly that represent the best value under $20. These are wines that taste twice as expensive as they cost ...

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Wine of the Week

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CTV Wine of the Week!

Calamus Estate Winery White Wine
2017,
Niagara Peninsula, Ontario V.Q.A. ...

Natalie MacLean

Canada's Most Quoted Wine Writer

Natalie MacLean is editor of Canada's largest wine review web site, publishing hundreds of wine reviews every week for more than 269,769 members.

She was named the World's Best Drinks Writer at the World Food Media Awards in Australia.

Natalie has published two books with Random House, the second was named one of Amazon's Best Books of the Year. Get access to all of her reviews today by becoming a member of her site.

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Red, White & Drunk All Over

  Best Books of the Year

Red, White & Drunk all over by Natalie MacLean

Natalie MacLean writes about wine with a sensuous obsession... and often laugh-out-loud funny... Terrific.

Rex Pickett, Sideways

Ms. MacLean is the disarming Everywoman. She loves wine, loves drinking ... ultimately, it's a winning formula.

Eric Asimov, The New York Times

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Unquenchable: A Tipsy Search

  Best Books of the Year

Unquenchable by Natalie MacLean

Natalie MacLean is a new force in the wine writing world ‐ a fiesty North American answer to Hugh Johnson and Jancis Robinson. She can write beautifully about wine.

The Financial Times of London

There are very few people in the wine world who "get it" and Natalie is one of those who brings more fun to a buttoned-up and stodgy game.

Gary Vaynerchuck, Wine Library TV

Starting a Wine Cellar?

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Insider tips on starting a wine cellar
From wine racks to underground caves, insider tips on size and space, number of bottles, ideal conditions and reputable resources.   learn more  
Winner World's Best Drink Writer
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Best Wine Literature Book Gourmand World Cookbook Awards
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