How Did the Mega-Hit Movie Sideways Change Pinot Noir (and Merlot)?

Introduction How did the novel and movie Sideways change the wine market in North America? In the book, the character Miles is portrayed as a wine snob, but what really defines a wine snob? What do you need to know if you want to become a successful writer? In this episode of the Unreserved Wine Talk podcast, I’m chatting with Rex Pickett, author of the mega-hit wine book and movie Sideways. You can find the wines we discussed here.   Highlights How has time been a great friend to Sideways? What is it about the characters in Sideways that makes them […]

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Pairing Spicy Dishes & Wines with Vikram Vij and Sean Nelson

Introduction How sparkling wine spice up your menu? What complementary taste rule can you use to pair your food with wine? Which wines should you never pair with Indian food? Which red wine should be at the top of your list for pairing with spicy food? Does ambiance affect your wine tasting experience? In this episode of the Unreserved Wine Talk podcast, Celebrity chef and author Vikram Vij and Head Sommelier Sean Nelson share their insider tips and tricks to help you pair wine with spicy, complex food like a pro. You can find the wines we discussed here.   […]

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Getting Hammered: Wine Auction Guide to Survival

Introduction Did you know that wine auctions are on the rise, both as fundraisers and as commercial ways to buy and sell your cellar stash? On this episode of the Unreserved Wine Talk podcast, I’m chatting with you about why auctions are increasing in popularity, their fascinating back story, and how you can participate in them without having a multimillion-dollar trust fund. If you’re listening to this podcast on the day it’s published, please also join me on CTV News as we’ll be chatting about two of the world’s most popular wines, Pinot Noir and Cabernet Sauvignon, including which ones […]

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Airline Wine: Flights of Wine You Can Drink Without Reservations

Introduction If you want great wine these days you don’t have to fly thousands of miles to get it, you can sip it en route. But getting wine to taste delicious at 30,000 feet isn’t easy. If you’re flying somewhere anytime soon, you’ll find our chat about airline wines today uplifting. In this episode of the Unreserved Wine Talk podcast, I’m going to cover which wines are best to drink when you’re in the air, how your sense of smell and taste change, and why airlines are paying more attention to their wine selections on board these days. Enjoy!   […]

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Discovering the Jewel Grape of Austrian Wine

By Alex and Priya, A Vine Romance Austria. The first thing that comes to mind when most people hear this country is The Sound of Music and Julie Andrews singing My Favorite Things! However, this little European country is known for something else that will likely become one of your favourite things, Gruner Veltliner. Read on as Alex sheds light on this versatile grape as well as other wines that are made in Austria. Priya: I don’t even think I knew Austria made wine! Why do you think it’s such a little-known region to non-sommeliers? Alex: For one thing, Austrian […]

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5 Great Reasons to Explore Armenian Wines

A View of Ararat from Armenia Wine Company By Rebecca Meïr-Liebman of Chef & Somm I’ve tasted thousands of wines – perhaps even hundreds of thousands – from all over the globe yet, until now, none had been Armenian. So when I was invited by the Vine and Wine Foundation of Armenia (VWFA) to explore Armenian wine culture, I was thrilled to say yes! There is a great energy here, with new wineries, wine bars, and wine shops popping up everywhere, many of them owned by Armenians who, returning from abroad, are investing heavily in this renaissance. Chances are many […]

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Tasting the Cool Climate Wines of Argentina’s Secreto Patagonico

By Melissa Pulvermacher Another tasting during my time at the 2016 i4C Cool Climate Chardonnay Celebration was with Secreto Patagonico’s Production and Sales Manager, Tomas Groppo Parisi. Secreto Patagonico is in the southern hemisphere in Patagonia, Argentina. A lot of us immediately think of Mendoza, heat and Malbec when we think of Argentina, which may leave us a bit confused with the relevance to cool climate wines in this situation. Patagonia is actually in the south of Argentina and remember that in the southern hemisphere, the south is a lot cooler than the northern regions. Mendoza, the Malbec-famous region, known […]

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Wine Prices: Is the Price Right?

I love CTV’s The Social, with its hybrid of old and new media: they do such a great job of integrating social, especially Twitter and Facebook, with their national television show. No wonder its ratings are flying up the charts – congrats to the hosts! Click on the arrow above to watch the video. In this segment, we chat about how wines are priced: does a $100 wine taste ten times better than a $10 one? How can you spot the bargains in the liquor store? What clues can you find on the bottle label about quality and price? You […]

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Pascual Toso Proves There’s More to Argentina Than Malbec

  By Priya & Alex, A Vine Romance The only thing better than enjoying a good bottle of wine is getting to meet the person who made it. We were fortunate to have that opportunity recently as we sat down with winemaker, Felipe Stahlschmidt from Pascual Toso. This Argentinian winery is celebrating it’s 125th anniversary. That’s a nice age for a “New World” region. They describe their production facility as “an old Chevy with a brand new Mercedes engine inside”. It’s a great analogy for an older building that has been completely updated with state-of-the-art production equipment. Alex: Pascual Toso is a fairly large […]

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Something to Wine About: The Mystique of French Wine Decoded 

It’s understandable to be intimidated by French wine — even if you know enough about wine to know which varietals you like. Intimidated by the French section in your local wine store? That’s understandable — even if you know enough about wine to know which varietals you like. In fact, your question might be, “Why don’t they just put the varietal on the bottle?” It was while reading the book, “Red, White and Drunk All Over: A Wine-Soaked Journey from Grape to Glass” by Natalie MacLean, that I got the answer to my question. Wine and Chocolate Make a Perfect […]

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