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 Break Wine & Food Pairing Rules? with Chris Scott

Introduction Why should you pair wine to the diner, not the dinner? Do you always have to follow the “rules” when pairing food and wine? Which fun food and wine pairing should you try with your pandemic snacking? How can you develop your aroma vocabulary? In this episode of the Unreserved Wine Talk podcast, I’m chatting with Chris Scott, a U.K.-based sommelier who published the world’s first-ever wine podcast, the UK Wine Show and who, with his wife, Jane also founded ThirtyFifty, a company which offers fun and no-nonsense wine tastings for private and corporate events. You can find the […]

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Why Should You Take Online Wine & Food Classes? with Chris Scott

Introduction Can being a supertaster affect your preferences in alcoholic beverages? Why don’t you find a lot of wineries in Ottawa? How do online classes give you an advantage over in-person classes? How is the pandemic impacting the way you buy wine? Why should you buy wine directly from wineries? How can my Wine App help you find the best wine to pair with your food? In this episode of the Unreserved Wine Talk podcast, I’m chatting with Chris Scott, a U.K.-based sommelier who published the world’s first-ever wine podcast, the UK Wine Show and who, with his wife, Jane also […]

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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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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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Celebrating Mother’s Day with the Great Women of Champagne

On CTV’s The Social yesterday, we chatted about the top Champagnes made by women for Mother’s Day. (Click on the arrow above to play the video.) They were all young women whose families owned the great champagne houses at the turn of the 18th and 19th centuries. When they lost their husbands to war or illness, they didn’t sell the businesses or remarry. They took control of the chateaus to produce some of the most prestigious wines in the world. In an era when few women were in business at all, these women headed what were, at the time, some […]

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Video: Wine Supertasters, Vinotype Quiz and Your Taste in Wine?

On CTV’s The Social yesterday, we chatted about how to find your Vinotype, or taste in wine. Click the arrow above to play the video. We also discussed what a Supertaster is: “Someone who lives in a neon taste world,” according to researcher Linda Bartoshuk, “whose taste sensations are roughly three times as intense to them as non-tasters.” I’ve also heard compared to having 500 fingers rather than 10. So yes, I was tested, did the blue dye tongue test and measurements with Tim Hanni in California (see our video chat below). You can take Tim’s quiz to find your vinotype […]

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