Tasting and Pairing Grüner Veltliner with Austrian Winemaker Rudi Rabl

Introduction Why do sommeliers love Grüner Veltliner? How does this zesty white wine from Austria compare to Gewürztraminer and Riesling? Does it age well? What are the best food pairings? In this episode of the Unreserved Wine Talk podcast, I’m chatting with Rudi Rabl, founder and winemaker at Austria’s Rabl Winery. You can find the wines we discussed here.   Highlights What makes Grüner Veltliner such a flexible type of wine? Which characteristic flavours will you taste in Grüner Veltliner? Which dishes should you try pairing with Grüner Veltliner? Can you pick up aromatic similarities between Gewürztraminer and Grüner Veltliner? How […]

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New Zealand Wine’s Sacred Soils with Left Field’s Richard Painter

Introduction How does the unique geography and climate of Hawke’s Bay and Gimlet Gravels in New Zealand create wines unlike any others? How does New Zealand Syrah differ from those from other regions? Why do many winemakers seem to have a special love for Chardonnay? In this episode of the Unreserved Wine Talk podcast, I’m chatting with Richard Painter, Winemaker for Te Awa Single Estate and Left Field wines. You can find the wines we discussed here.   Highlights How does the geography of Gimblett Gravels impact the wines you get from Te Awa Wines? Which foods would make a […]

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Ontario Icewine: How to Drink It, Pair It and Love It with Karen King

Introduction How is Icewine different from other sweet wines? How does that change the way you drink it and pair with food? Which pairings work beyond dessert? How can you make delicious Icewine Slushies and pair them with chili chips and wasabi peas for an incredible flavour combination? In this episode of the Unreserved Wine Talk podcast, I’m chatting with Karen King, co-owner of the Ice House Winery in Niagara. You can find the wines we discussed here.   Highlights What differences can you see in how different generations think about Icewine? Why shouldn’t you save Icewine only for special […]

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Drunken Adjectives: A Fuzzy Vine-acular

Introduction Are there really that many different descriptors for inebriation? What’s the origin of drunken euphemisms like “three sheets to the wind”? Why does our language go from getting hammered at college dorm parties to more mature sentiments like “feeling no pain”? In this episode of the Unreserved Wine Talk podcast, I’m sharing the interesting and surprisingly vast vocabulary that describes the things we do, say and feel when we’ve had a little too much. You can find the wines we discussed here.   Highlights What descriptors for overindulgence might have you thinking of food instead? How does our drunken […]

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How to Pair Wine and Chocolate with Chocolate Sommelier Roxanne Browning

Introduction Where can you find the best chocolate? What’s the difference between candy and real chocolate? How can you pair wine and chocolate? What does Fair Trade mean and what should you look out for? Where can you find the best chocolate? In this episode of the Unreserved Wine Talk podcast, I’m chatting with New York Chocolate Sommelier Roxanne Browning. You can find the wines we discussed here.   Highlights Why should you consider a trip to the Ecuadorian rainforest? What parallels can you find between wine and chocolate? In which regions can you find the best quality cacao? What […]

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Holiday Movie Wines + Cool Chardonnay with Brian Schmidt

Introduction What exactly is a cool climate Chardonnay? Which dishes are delicious with this style of Chardonnay? What’s the most important element for you to discover when tasting wine? Why did Chardonnay become so popular, then fall out of favour? What is the Cool Climate Chardonnay Celebration? In this episode of the Unreserved Wine Talk podcast, I’m chatting with Brian Schmidt, Vice President and Winemaker at Vineland Estates Winery. You can find the wines we discussed here.   Highlights What are the hallmarks you would find in cool climate wine-producing regions? Why is “cool climate” being redefined? Which traditional cool […]

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Wine Tasting and Pairing Tips from Master Sommelier Bruce Wallner

Introduction Is being a sommelier as glamourous as it seems? Why is it sometimes difficult to differentiate between certain New and Old World wines? How does terroir play a key role in a blind tasting? What’s it like being in a sommelier competition? In this episode of the Unreserved Wine Talk podcast, I’m chatting with Bruce Wallner, Master Sommelier at Sommelier Factory. You can find the wines we discussed here.   Highlights What un-glamourous truth might you be surprised to learn about being a sommelier? What intangible joy can you get from being a sommelier? How should you view the […]

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Pairing California Wine and Gourmet Burgers with Winemaker Joel Gott

Introduction How do you pair wine with burgers? What is it about California that gives us such a wide variety of wine? How is the Napa Valley food scene? What restaurant industry lessons help Joel make better wine? In this episode of the Unreserved Wine Talk podcast, I’m chatting with Joel Gott, owner and winemaker at Joel Gott Wines. You can find the wines we discussed here.   Highlights When will you see the most “action” at a winery? What facts might you be surprised to learn about Napa Valley? Which highly-acclaimed restaurants should you visit on your next trip […]

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Wine and Cheese Pairings to Celebrate the Holidays with Janet Fletcher

Introduction Should you try a cheese-only cheese course? Why are cheese and bread not necessarily great matches for cheese? Which underappreciated wine and cheese pairing should you try today? How does sparkling wine stack up with your favourite cheeses? Have you been serving cheeses the wrong way? Should you eat the rinds on cheeses? In this episode of the Unreserved Wine Talk podcast, I’m chatting with award-winning journalist and author, Janet Fletcher. You can find the wines we discussed here.   Highlights What shift can you see in the restaurant industry’s approach to serving cheese? Which mindset shift did Janet […]

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Zinfandel Crusader Joel Peterson, Ravenswood Founding Winemaker

Introduction Do you know the rich and royal history behind Zinfandel? How does the air in a vineyard affect the flavours you taste in its wine? Why did Zinfandel become such a sensation in North America? What does mythology have to do with Ravenswood wine? In this episode of the Unreserved Wine Talk podcast, I’m chatting with the Godfather of Zin, Joel Peterson, founder and winemaker of Ravenswood Winery. You can find the wines we discussed here.   Highlights Why did Joel’s father involve him in wine tastings as a child? What sort of colourful tasting notes would you read […]

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