Why You Need to Know Malbec Truly, Madly, Deeply

Introduction Have you tried Malbec? Did you like it? Which ones are your favourites? From Argentina to France,  Malbecs are not all created equal. For me, it was an Argentine Malbec that first piqued my curiosity, leading me to start buying more. I followed that curiosity down to Argentina itself in my second book, Unquenchable: A Tipsy Search for the World’s Best Bargain Bottles. On this episode, in honour of World Malbec Day, I’m taking you with me on a journey to the Bodega Catana Zapata winery in Argentina to chat about all things Malbec and explore why Malbec is […]

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Video: Which Wines for Turkey, Cranberry Sauce and Pumpkin Pie?

CTV’s Your Morning Host Ben Mulroney and chat about which wines to pair with your holiday turkey dinner, from appetizers and the big bird to side dishes and dessert. Click on the arrow above to play the video. Happy holidays! Natalie Start with an aperitif As the heady aroma of the turkey wafts through the house, and sounds of Miracle on 34th Street come from the livingroom, offer family and friends an aperitif. This pre-dinner drink will whet their appetites before they sit down to the table. An excellent choice is a chilled dry sherry. Its nutty flavours go well […]

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Romantic Pairing: Wine and Chocolate

In this month’s Costco Connection Lifestyle Magazine I chat with the editor about my favourite wine and chocolate pairings for Valentine’s Day. Here are my favourite wines for chocolate in liquor stores now. While many of us like to think we’re going to be creative with our Valentine’s Day gifts this year, let’s be honest. On February 13, we’re going to rush out and purchase our favourite standbys: wine and chocolate. And why shouldn’t we? Everybody likes this duo; they’re wildly delicious and indulgent, and they usually lead to a good time (insert suggestive eyebrow raise here). But what you […]

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Tasting Trapiche Wines from the Mountaintop to the Skytop

  Recently, Canada’s top wine writers and sommeliers gathered in the nation’s capital for a portfolio tasting with Sergio Case, head winemaker with Trapiche Winery in Argentina. Not only did he take us through a spectacular lineup of upcoming releases, but the event was also hosted at Ottawa’s newest event space, the glass-encased ballroom in the sky on the 22nd floor of the Westin Hotel. It’s a 3,200 square foot ballroom with a 270 degree view of downtown Ottawa, the Parliament buildings, the Ottawa River, and the Gatineau Hills, with the leaves starting to turn colour. You can watch the entire […]

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Wine Tasting Hackathon: New Way of Social Wine Discovery

Our second team wine tasting yesterday felt like a family reunion. Sommeliers and wine bloggers from Toronto and Montreal flew or drove in to join those from the east to west ends of Ottawa. There was an instant camaraderie among those gathered here who recognized each other as fellow contributors to our online community. What I admire most about these reviewers is that although they have sterling wine credentials and training, they keep it real and conversational — with an effort to connect, not to impress. The tasting also struck me as the wine version of a hackathon. In the […]

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Mad for Malbec: Celebrating the Winemakers Behind the Wine

“Wine, show me the art of seeing my own history; as if it were already a handful of ashes in memory.” – Jorge Luis Borges, 1964 By Greg Hughes April 17th is International Malbec Day and in Ottawa it was celebrated at the residence of the Argentine ambassador to Canada, Her Excellency Norma Nacimbene de Dumont. The mood was cheerful for the lucky twenty individuals invited to share this special day sipping wine and eating empanadas with Her Excellency in her home.  There was special cause for excitement.  This was the first Malbec Day to be celebrated for half a […]

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Malbec Day: A Tale of Tango and Taste

World Malbec Day on April 17 (#MalbecWorldDay) reminds me of both a recent Argentine tasting with the Opimian Wine Club as well as a trip I took to Buenos Aires several years ago. The tasting featured a terrific range of Latin American wines. It was an evening of Latin music, food, friends, and yes, tango! We gathered at a local restaurant, El Gusto Mazzola, where the husband-and-wife owners, Elena Mazzola and chef Victor Mazzola treated us to an authentic Argentine tapas dinner paired with the Malbec and other wines. Rounding out the feeling of an Argentine bistro, Réjean Simard and Diane Clément offered superb demonstrations of the three forms of […]

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Toronto Wine Tasting Shows Wide Diversity of Styles

By Mymi Myriam The wow factor as I walked into the sumptuous lobby of the Governor’s Room in the heart of the Exhibition Place is high. This is not just any room, it is a lavish, opulent and enormous ballroom. I proceeded through the enormous ornate wooden doors. Upon entering, I was warmly welcomed by a lovely lady who handed me an empty wine glass and my journey started. The Profile Wine Group is a coalition of three wine merchants: Barrique Wine Imports, VinVino Wine Merchants, and Du Chasse Wines and Spirits. They are one of Canada’s premier wine and […]

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Israeli Couscous and Emmental Salad Recipe Paired with Chardonnay

Israeli Couscous and Emmental Salad One of my favourite summer past-times is planning and pulling off the perfect picnic. Picnics make for a great way to spend quality time with your family, or a romantic date. All you’ll need to do is to find your perfect spot and pack your supplies. Just make sure not to forget the most important part, delicious Canadian Cheese. Just as red and white blankets are essential to picnics, so too are salads. This Israeli Couscous and Emmental Salad is absolute heaven and couldn’t be easier to make. The Canadian Emmental really brings the salad […]

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Tania’s Magical Matches: Wine Pairings for Luscious Lobster

By Tania Thomas Lobster has come a long way since the mid-19th century when it was considered as a mark of poverty and the food for lower members of society. These days, we think of a lobster as a special occasion treat and often serve it as a celebratory meal. And speaking of celebrations; what’s more celebratory than a bottle of bubbly to accompany festivities? Stylish and chic, fizz has been associated with fun since mid-17th century when London society discovered its “uplifting” effect. Crisp acidity and citrus notes of lemon drops and lemon zest, match lobster with buttery sauce […]

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