8 Sexy Wine + Food Pairings: Aphrodisiac Wines

Pairing wine with aphrodisiac foods sparks a passionate debate on CTV. (It’s never to early too think about it … wine, that is.) We match libido-lifting dishes with different wine types to stimulate all of your senses. Many ingredients have historically been considered aphrodisiacs, sometimes because the food physically resembled male private parts (avocados, which according to the Aztecs, grew on the testicle tree) to their female counterparts (oysters and figs). Other foods, such as chili peppers, provoked the fiery passion of love, with its increased heart beat and sweating. Yet other foods may have contained minerals that increase energy, […]

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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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Pairing Wine and Holiday Dishes and Treats

On Global Television’s Morning Show today, Carolyn, Jeff and I chat about pairing wine with holiday treats such as shortbread, chocolate Santas and fruitcake … … yes, we’re going there ;)         Plus, here are bonus tips on pairing wines with other holiday favourite dishes … Can we be honest? Holiday turkey dinner is just an excuse for most of us to chow down on our favourite side dish, whether it’s cranberry sauce, chestnut stuffing or sweet potatoes. Often they have more interesting flavours than that dry old bird in the middle of the table. So please, let’s […]

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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 […]

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9 Best Wines to Pair with Holiday Turkey Dinner (Video)

The holidays are right around the corner. So here with her tips to make your holiday entertaining a breeze is Natalie MacLean who offers Canada’s most popular online wine classes at nataliemaclean.com.   What’s your first tip? Keep it simple. I’m not sure why many of us turn into frantic mini-Martha Stewarts at this time of this year, wanting everything to be perfectly matching, preparing everyone’s side dish, stocking our cellars with more wine than we could possibly drink in a month, but we do. So take a breath, relax and start with bubbly. Sparkling wine is a great aperitif […]

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What is Mead? How is it Different From Wine? Which are the Best Meads to Drink?

What’s old is often new again and that’s the case when it comes to alcohol. In fact, the oldest alcoholic beverage, mead, is having a resurgence! So, grab your goblets because here to highlight meaderies from across the country is Natalie MacLean who offers Canada’s most popular online wine classes at nataliemaclean.com. Welcome, Natalie! Natalie, I had never heard of mead before so let’s start with explaining what it is and how long it’s been around? Mead is fermented honey and water. It’s been around for at least 12,000 years, the world’s oldest alcoholic beverage. Honey wine is what those […]

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Pairing Canadian Wine with Salmon, Crab, Lobster (Video)

The long weekend is coming up, and you might be celebrating with a glass of Canadian wine or two, but what should you pair with your vino? Here with her tips is Natalie MacLean, who offers Canada’s most popular online wine classes at nataliemaclean.com   So we’re going to start on the west coast Natalie. What do you recommend? We’ll start with this lovely, zesty Sauvignon Blanc from Red Rooster Winery, nestled high above Okanagan Lake on the Naramata Bench in the Okanagan Valley. It has crisp, fresh aromas of lime zest and lemon sunshine.         Red […]

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7 Best Wines to Pair with Takeout Dishes and Fast Food (Video)

It’s easy to pair a gourmet meal with wine, but what about our favourite take-out dishes? Here to help us with her tips and sips is Natalie MacLean who offers Canada’s most popular online wine classes at nataliemaclean.com.   Welcome Natalie. Natalie: Great to be here with you!   We’re starting with fried chicken – got a wine for that? Yes, and it’s not what you’d expect! I’m going to get you to drink outside the box (or bucket) with this one. When you dig into deep-fried chicken or fish, you perceive the taste of fat as sweet, so you […]

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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 […]

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Hate Valentine’s Day? There’s a Wine for That Too

This is one of a series of chats we had yesterday on the CBC drive-home shows across the country. I liked this one in particular with host Sue Smith of Homerun in Quebec because she has a great sense of humour. Sue also wanted recommendations for those who hate Valentine’s Day … I was happy to oblige along with the food pairing suggestion of heart-shaped cookies that you break into small bits first with a hammer.     Now that we’ve launched the inventory of SAQ wines on the site, along with the LCBO, BC Liquor Stores and the first […]

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