How to Stock Your Cellar: Which Wines, What Budget?

A candelabra flickers on the massive oak table in the cool, musty subterranean room. Old wine crates are stacked to the ceiling, each etched with the name of a venerable château. Dusty barrels in one corner were filled with cognac distilled a century ago. Through the stone archway, racks of cobwebbed bottles stretch into the distance. Many wine lovers share the fantasy, but how do you tackle the realities of building a wine cellar in your home? Mature wines offer exotic flavors and aromas that just aren’t found in young wines. As fine wine ages, the fresh grapey aromas diminish […]

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How to Stock Your Wine Cellar with $40-$80 Bottles

For those looking to stock their wine cellar in the $40-$80 per bottle range, will notice that many of the budget-friendly wines I recommended also produce premium wines in this category. At this level, wines have greater aging potential, usually at least three to five years, and sometimes longer depending on the producer. Broaden your search to include California, where wines have increased in price dramatically over the past ten years, even though that’s softening somewhat with the currency exchange. The Sunshine State offers great wines in this range, particularly chardonnays and cabernets from Arrowood, Sterling, Frog’s Leap, Kenwood and […]

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Wine Cellar: Dream Bottles of a Lifetime

When price isn’t a concern, go for the heavy-hitters that start at one to two hundred dollars per bottle and go up to thousands of dollars per bottle, especially for mature vintages bought at auction. The challenge in this range is finding the wines since many are on limited allocations, and have people on waiting lists to buy them. Almost all of these require aging to taste their best – at least five years, and some up to ten to fifteen years, or longer. Start with California cult cabernets, such as Screaming Eagle, Harlan Estate, Grace Family, Pahlmeyer, Cain Five, […]

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Wine and Cheese Pairing with a Blockbuster BC Wine

In our second video, we chat about visiting Quails’ Gate winery, winner of the Gold Medal in The Great Canadian Wine Match: – Tips on visiting the winery, including the special menus at the winery’s Old Vines restaurant – How long can Optima age for those wanting to cellar this dessert wine? – Why don’t more Canadian wineries make botrytis affected dessert wines? – What role do people’s choice awards play in our wine and food culture? Natalie: And we’re back with Matt Steeves the wine lover who championed Optima, Quails Gate Optima in the Great Canadian Wine Match and […]

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Wine Cellar Trends, Options and Designs

Forget meaningless one-night stands. An increasing number of Canadians are having a hot and heavy love affair with wine — a passion that rages on, long after the red roses have wilted and the Valentine chocolates are gone. According to Statistics Canada, “the intake of wine has continued to increase over the last 10 years reaching 13.9 litres (per person) in 2006.” Ottawa wine writer Natalie MacLean says in the last two years alone, wine consumption has increased seven to eight per cent, edging out beer as the alcoholic drink of choice. “Definitely, it’s trending up,” says MacLean, author of […]

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