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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Are Celebrity Athlete Wines Great or Gimmicks? With Dr. Antonia Mantonakis

Introduction Are wines named after a sports celebrity any good or is this just a marketing gimmick? Are more gentle sports like golf better suited to marketing a wine than the more rough and tumble world of wrestling? What does research tell us about the effect of celebrity endorsements on your wine-buying behaviour? How does your wine knowledge impact your interpretation of external cues, like celebrity endorsement, when buying wine? In this episode of the Unreserved Wine Talk podcast, I’m chatting with Dr. Antonia Mantonakis, Fellow of the Cool Climate Oenology and Viticulture Institute and Professor of Marketing and Consumer Psychology at […]

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What’s Trending in the Wine World with Darren Oleksyn

Introduction What are the hottest wine trends right now? What’s the difference between natural wine and orange wine? Are new drinks like blue wine and Pinot Freezio here to stay? How does canned wine hold up to its bottled counterparts? Why has Rosé been able to move from fad to mainstream? In this episode of the Unreserved Wine Talk podcast, I’m chatting with Darren Oleksyn, journalist and author of Uncorked: The Definitive Guide to Alberta’s Best Wines Under $25. You can find the wines we discussed here.   Highlights How can you differentiate between natural wine and orange wine? Why […]

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Bordeaux and China: Wine Culture Clash or Perfect Pairing? Suzanne Mustacich Reveals Surprising Insights

Introduction Why is Bordeaux considered the ultimate luxury brand in the world of wine? Why did the Chinese market suddenly start buying Bordeaux wines in the 1980s and 90s? Why does Bordeaux in particular suit the ancient Chinese culture of prestigious gift-giving versus other expensive wines? How does the demand for Bordeaux in China affect both the prices you pay and the styles you drink? In this episode of the Unreserved Wine Talk podcast, I’m chatting with Suzanne Mustacich, author of Thirsty Dragon: China’s Lust for Bordeaux and the Threat to the World’s Best Wines. You can find the wines we discussed […]

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Tasting Wine Like a Detective with Ontario’s Best Sommelier Emily Pearce-Bibona

Introduction What does it take to win Ontario’s Best Sommelier competition? What’s it like performing in front of a set of very stern-eyed wine judges and a live audience? What is the smartest question you can ask your sommelier in a restaurant? What is the deductive tasting technique and how can it help you drink better wine? In this episode of the Unreserved Wine Talk podcast, I’m chatting with Emily Pearce-Bibona, Certified Sommelier and founder of Femmes du Vins. You can find the wines we discussed here.   Highlights How did Emily go from government employee to sommelier? What’s aspects of wine are […]

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What’s the Rosé Lifestyle? Wine Writer Jill Barth on Why You’d Enjoy It

Introduction How did Provence become known as the heartland of Rosé? What does it mean to be part of the Rosé lifestyle? Why should you take a trip to the Provence wine region? Does the colour of Rosé give you a clue into its taste? Which unexpected but mouthwatering food pairing should you try with your next glass of Rosé? In this episode of the Unreserved Wine Talk podcast, I’m chatting with wine writer Jill Barth, who is also a Provence Wine Master through the Wine Scholar Guild. You can find the wines we discussed here.   Highlights How can […]

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Why Sommeliers Love Austrian Gruner Veltliner with Heidi Fisher Pfaffl

Introduction Would you like to learn more about Austrian wines, especially its iconic grape, Gruner Veltliner? Do you know why this wine is one of the most versatile wines on the planet?  Why should an Austrian Heuriger be on your must-visit list? Which Austrian red wine should you try next? In this episode of the Unreserved Wine Talk podcast, I’m chatting with Heidi Fisher Pfaffl who is in charge of business administration and marketing at her family’s winery, Weingut Pfaffl. You can find the wines we discussed here.   Highlights How did the Pfaffl grow from a small farm to […]

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Why are Nova Scotia’s Tidal Bay and L’Acadie Blanc Signature Wines?

Introduction What do you need to know about Nova Scotia’s signature grape, L’Acadie blanc? What is Tidal Bay and why is it Canada’s first stylistic appellation? Why is one Nova Scotia winery burying barrels of wine underground? Which travel tips should you keep in mind when you visit Nova Scotia wineries? In this episode of the Unreserved Wine Talk podcast, I’m chatting with Amy Savoury, a certified sommelier and instructor of culinary and tourism studies at the Nova Scotia Community College. You can find the wines we discussed here.     Highlights Why can you taste many different fruit flavours […]

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The Use (and Abuse) of Wine Scores with Vino Mike and Pete on That Wine Pod

Introduction How does the 100 point scale make wine scores easier for you to interpret? How can you drink better wines by finding a wine critic whose style you like? How does grade inflation affect you as a wine lover? Why is taking an online wine course often better than an in-person course? In this episode of the Unreserved Wine Talk podcast, I’m sharing a conversation I originally had with Pete & Vino Mike on their podcast, That Wine Pod. You can find the wines we discussed here.   Highlights What’s my take on the best wine? Why should you […]

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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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