How to Pair Wine with People on Your Gift List (Video)

‘Tis the season for holiday entertaining and gift giving. What if you’d like to give someone a bottle of wine? How do you know which one to choose? How much do you spend? Here to help us with that is wine expert Natalie MacLean.   Welcome Natalie. So if choosing the right wine is so tricky, why should we give wine as a gift at all? When you give the gift of wine, doubles are fine unlike toaster ovens, there are no wrong sizes unlike that ugly sweater and re-gifting is so much easier compared to fruit cake or a […]

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How to Pair and Serve Wines at Dinner Parties (Video)

The hosts of CTV’s The Social and I had lots of fun chatting about which wines to serve at dinner parties, pairing tips and other entertaining suggestions. If you’re hosting a dinner party, how many wines should you serve? Count on one to two glasses of wine per guest per hour, as people tend to drink more in the evening and at a sit-down dinner, than they do at a standing reception earlier in the day. There are 4-5 glasses of wine in a standard 750 ml bottle, so if you’re entertaining ten people for, say, three hours, counting pre-dinner […]

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Thanksgiving Wines, Mouse Wine Defect, Trends to Ignore

Introduction For those of us in Canada, Thanksgiving is this weekend. In my opinion, there is no other holiday that celebrates the gift of wine like Thanksgiving. Wine is a taste of the harvest, along with all the delicious dishes on the table. But actually choosing a bottle can feel like a thankless task, especially with so many flavours to match. Do you celebrate Thanksgiving, perhaps in November if you’re American? On today’s episode of Unreserved Wine Talk,  I’ll be chatting with you about how to pair wine with Thanksgiving turkey and all the side dishes, as well as the […]

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Romantic Pairing: Wine and Chocolate

In this month’s Costco Connection Lifestyle Magazine I chat with the editor about my favourite wine and chocolate pairings for Valentine’s Day. Here are my favourite wines for chocolate in liquor stores now. While many of us like to think we’re going to be creative with our Valentine’s Day gifts this year, let’s be honest. On February 13, we’re going to rush out and purchase our favourite standbys: wine and chocolate. And why shouldn’t we? Everybody likes this duo; they’re wildly delicious and indulgent, and they usually lead to a good time (insert suggestive eyebrow raise here). But what you […]

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5 Romantic Wine & Chocolate Matches for Valentine’s Day

Bev and I chat about 5 to-die-for wine and chocolate pairings on Canada AM. Bev: Valentine’s Day is famous for flowers and romance and decadence. Mix in a little vino and a sweet treat and you’ve got quite a celebration. Natalie MacLean is the author of Unquenchable. She’s an expert when it comes to wine pairings, and this morning she’s in our studio to help us choose fine wine and chocolate combinations. Which is so perfect. Does it get any better than that? Natalie: No, especially if you like to layer your vices. So, don’t just have wine or chocolate. […]

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Icewine and Chocolate Pairing Video

In this second video chat, Karen King talks about pairing icewine with chocolate as well as being on the CBC TV show The Big Decision. You can also see the icewine cocktails we discussed in part one of our conversation … Blue Cheese and White Wine Pairing: Video Part 3 Building a Persuasive Wine Brand: Arlene Dickinson Restaurant Wine Service: The good, the bad and the ugly with Scott Carney, MS See all wine video chats here.   Icewine and Chocolate Pairing Video Natalie: We’re back with Karen King of The Ice House. We’re talking about her ice wines and some […]

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Getting Clearer on Glera, the Grape of Prosecco Sparkling Wine

By Greg Hughes Prosecco has become, possibly, the most sought after sparkling wine after Champagne. It showcases wonderful aromatics and freshness, as well as value.  As one might imagine, there is still a fairly broad range of styles that this tiny northeastern appellation in Italy can offer. What makes Prosecco distinct from other sparkling wines are the well-preserved aromatics and the perceived “creaminess” the gentle carbonation creates on the palate. This distinctiveness is partially due to the obscure family of grape varietals used, but these flavours can only be harnessed so effectively because of the innovative production method behind Prosecco. […]

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Which Wine Pairings for turkey, fruitcake or cheese?

The holiday countdown is on and Canadians are scrambling for last-minute gifts for their hosts and loved ones. Wine and food seem like a natural option at this time of year, but with thousands of bottles lining the shelves at liquor outlets, where does one begin? “I’d start with pairing the wine that you’re going to bring to go with the dinner. Wild guess, might be turkey,” says sommelier Natalie MacLean, editor of the wine review site nataliemaclean.com. She suggests a sparkling wine like Cava from Spain, a Pinot Noir from New Zealand, a dry rose from France or a […]

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Prosecco with Lemon Sponge Cake, Lemon Curd and Raspberry Ice Cream

Bottles & Bites by Shari Goodman Natalie’s Challenge: Find a bottle. Pair with bites. My Goals: Bottle must be under $25. Bites must be delicious. Lemon Sponge Cake, Lemon Curd and Raspberry Ice Cream Sun meets bubbles in this pairing of bottle and bites. With a light but refreshing drink and dessert combination, this is sure to cool you off in the middle of a heat wave. I love bubbles in the summer. And Prosecco was made for summertime sipping. This Italian sparkling wine (Santa Margherita Brut Valdobbiadene Prosecco Superiore, $18.95) is a light, refreshing and affordable alternative to French […]

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Instant Spiced Apples Recipe Paired with Icewine

The Apple of my Wine Get ready to bust out the BBQ, because its finally grill season. Mmm, I can practically taste the sizzle of tender steaks and juicy ribs, waiting to be devoured. Nothing says spring is here like a backyard BBQ. Best enjoyed with your friends and family over burgers, sausages and Canadian Cheese. Just don’t forget to leave room for dessert, or a scrumptious snack, like Spiced Apple with Canadian Brie. This light snack is sure to be a hit with its simple ingredients locally sourced from the farm. Slice up some apples with a dash of […]

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