Master of Wine vs Master Sommelier? Jane Masters Reveals the Difference

Introduction What’s the difference between a Master of Wine (MW) and a Master Sommelier (MS)? How can you take advantage of your surroundings to become a better wine taster? Is there a benefit to focusing on tasting notes instead of scores? What is involved in each of the stages of the MW exam? In this episode of the Unreserved Wine Talk podcast, I’m chatting with Jane Masters MW, Chairman of the Institute of Masters of Wine and independent consultant for the Opimian Society, Canada’s largest wine buying club. You can find the wines we discussed here.   Highlights How did […]

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The Wine Bible’s Karen MacNeil on Women and Wine

Introduction How did The Wine Bible get its name? How was it unlike any wine book of its time? What was it like as a young woman trying to break into the male-dominated New York wine scene in the 1970s? Why are there significantly fewer women than men with the Master Sommelier designation? How does wine help you to immerse yourself in other cultures? In this episode of the Unreserved Wine Talk podcast, I’m chatting with Karen MacNeil, author of The Wine Bible, former wine correspondent for the Today Show, the first Food and Wine Editor of USA Today, and […]

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How to Choose Wine from a Restaurant List like a Pro

On CTV’s The Social yesterday, we chatted about how to choose wine from a restaurant list, including how to indicate how much you want to pay without saying it out loud and sending back a bad bottle. On Twitter, many folks asked which rosé I poured for Teddy. It’s the lovely Anew Rosé from Columbia Valley in Washington State. On Marci’s table is the Jackson-Triggs Cabernet. Hope these tips help you through you next restaurant wine experience. Ask for help Find someone who should the wine list well, usually the sommelier, the bartender or your server. Tell your sommelier a few details […]

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Box Wine: Good or Grim? How to Drink Inside the Box

On CTV’s Your Morning, host Lindsey Deluce and I chatted about boxed wines. These are otherwise known as bag-in-a-box or casks, and in the past have had a nasty reputation with consumers; the Rodney Dangerfield of wine. However, I think you’ll be pleasantly surprised by what’s in the box these days. That may be the reason that boxed wines are one of the fastest-growing categories in the wine industry, both in Canada and in the United States. In Ontario, sales represented $119 million last year in the LCBO. In 2016, the California Wine Market Council reported that three-litre boxes posted the strongest growth in […]

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Wine Girl Reveals the Wine World’s Dark Side and Hope for the Future with Sommelier Victoria James

Introduction What’s it like serving wine to celebrities like Mariah Carey, Jay-Z, Beyonce and Miley Cyrus? How is being a sommelier different when you work at a Michelin-starred restaurant, especially when you’re just 21 years old? Why is the wine world still largely an old boys club and how does that impact the wines you drink? Which shocking ingredients might you find in some non-organic wines? In this episode of the Unreserved Wine Talk podcast, we’re chatting with Victoria James, author, restauranteur and the youngest person in the world to pass the certified sommelier exam with the Court of Master […]

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Niagara Vine Laureate Klaus Reif: Ontario Wine’s Future

Introduction What profound impact does buying your local wine have on your economy? Why will supporting the “Free My Grapes” campaign improve your choice and access to wine? How have Ontario wines changed since the 80s? What are the biggest challenges facing the Canadian wine industry? In this episode of the Unreserved Wine Talk podcast, we’re chatting with Klaus Reif of Niagara-on-the-Lake’s Reif Winery. You can find the wines we discussed here.   Highlights How is the younger generation of Ontario winemakers impacting the industry? How has the perception of Ontario wines changed since the 80s? What are the four […]

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The Grapes of Laugh: How to Host a Wine Tasting or Start a Wine Club

  We had such fun on The Social yesterday chatting about how to organize an informal wine tasting party at home. Click the arrow above to play the video. There are many excellent reasons to host a wine tasting party—or even to form a wine club. For one thing, wine is a social beverage—one that’s meant to be shared with friends. And it’s more fun to drink than to buy Tupperware—unless, of course, you’re drinking from the Tupperware. The only goal is to enjoy yourself and perhaps find a new favorite bottle. Although wine does lend itself to serious technical […]

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Dr. Laura Catena on Malbec, Wine’s Health Benefits and Winemaking in Argentina

Introduction Have you tasted an Argentine Malbec? Which foods pair best with Malbec? Why is Malbec more like Pinot Noir than Cabernet? What are the health benefits of wine? In this episode of the Unreserved Wine Talk podcast, we’re chatting with Dr. Laura Catena, a fourth-generation Argentine vintner, physician and author. You can find the wines we discussed here.   Highlights How does Laura’s scientific approach to winemaking improve the taste of the Malbecs you drink? What is the significance of the pyramid-style of the Catena winery? Why is Malbec the flagship grape of Argentina? What differences can you see […]

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Women v Men Wine Tasting and Texture with Dr. Gary Pickering

Introduction What makes you a supertaster? Does supertaster status play a role outside of wine tasting? How does age affect our senses of smell and taste? Why is mouthfeel an important aspect of a wine’s appeal? Why should you describe wine by sensation, rather than compound? In this episode of the Unreserved Wine Talk podcast, we’re chatting with Dr. Gary Pickering, the inventor of the white wine mouthfeel wheel and the supertasting kit, and co-developer of the Wine Aroma Kits. You can find the wines we discussed here.   Highlights What makes you a supertaster? Does your supertaster status play […]

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Orange Wines are Trending with Winemaker Ann Sperling

Introduction What is orange wine? How does fermenting with the stems and leave give you a more complex flavour profile? Can you find orange wine on restaurant wine lists? Which types of food should you pair with orange wine? In this episode of the Unreserved Wine Talk podcast, we’re chatting with Ann Sperling, winegrower and Director of Winemaking and Viticulture at Southbrook Vineyards. You can find the wines we discussed here.   Highlights What is orange wine? How does orange wine give you a glimpse into ancient wines? Why would you see less waste from the winemaking process with orange […]

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