How to Sabre Champagne + Sparkling Wines

Leanne and I chat about sparkling wines and Champagnes for the holidays. Click on the arrow to play the video above. Napoléon visits the Moët & Chandon cellars in 1807 Napoleon is credited with inventing the sabering technique and is famous for his phrase: “In victory we deserve Champagne, in defeat, we need it.” The famous Champagne maker Veuve Clicquot, who lost her husband when she was just 27, was a wealthy young widow. She would entertain Napoleon’s officers (early day sampling program). They, in turn, tried to impress her by sabering the tops of the Champagne bottles that she […]

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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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How to Pair and Serve Wines at Dinner Parties (Video)

The hosts of CTV’s The Social and I had lots of fun chatting about which wines to serve at dinner parties, pairing tips and other entertaining suggestions. If you’re hosting a dinner party, how many wines should you serve? Count on one to two glasses of wine per guest per hour, as people tend to drink more in the evening and at a sit-down dinner, than they do at a standing reception earlier in the day. There are 4-5 glasses of wine in a standard 750 ml bottle, so if you’re entertaining ten people for, say, three hours, counting pre-dinner […]

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10 Best Pinot Noir Wines to Buy Now + 5 Surprising Facts about Pinot Noir

Leanne and I had fun chatting about Pinot Noir this past Wednesday on CTV News! I’ll be posting the wines we featured soon. Pinot Noir is a wine of great sensuality, a silky texture and seductive aromas. “God made Cabernet Sauvignon whereas the devil made Pinot Noir,” winemaker André Tchelistcheff once remarked. This thin-skinned berry is known as the “heartbreak grape” because it’s difficult to grow and is unstable even bottled. That’s why you often pay more for Pinot Noir than most other red wines. You’ll find my top 10 Pinot Noir reviews and ratings here,  including pinot noirs that […]

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Video: These Summer Wines Will Surprise Your Taste Buds

   Global News Host Carolyn and I chatted about great summer wines yesterday to please your palate and keep your cool. Here are the wines we featured: Kim Crawford Sauvignon Blanc Nobilo Regional Collection Sauvignon Blanc Cave Spring Cellars Csv Riesling       Cave Spring Cellars Estate Bottled Cave Spring Vineyard Pinot Noir Ruffino Ducale Riserva Chianti Classico Clos Du Bois Rouge Alamos Malbec McWilliams Wines JJ McWilliam Shiraz Cabernet Barefoot Zinfandel Cave Spring Cellars Indian Summer Late Harvest Riesling               Video: These Summer Wines Will Surprise Your Taste Buds Carolyn: Natalie Maclean […]

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Father’s Day Wines

Introduction This Sunday is Father’s Day, so I’m going to get downright practical on this episode with some terrific gift wines suggestions that you can buy dear old dad. Now I recognize not everyone celebrates Father’s Day for various reasons. Mine was that my father was an alcoholic, and my mother left him when I was two years old. However, I had a wonderful grandfather and several other men in my life who were inspirational role models. I think of them on Father’s Day. So, how do you choose the perfect gift bottle? And is there such a thing as […]

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Wines for Seduction: A Vine Romance for Valentine’s Day

Introduction Do you want to seduce someone this Valentine’s Day? Forget the lingerie, lipstick and silk-tie handcuffs – just share a glass or two of wine with your amour. Just in time for V Day, I’m going to share with you my favourite wines for seduction, including some melt-in-your-mouth pairings with chocolate.   Highlights Why do almost 60% of women prefer wine over candy for V Day? Why has Champagne, in particular, has long been the drink of romance Why is Pinot Noir called the “heartbreak grape”? How can you avoid ruining your wine with chocolate? Is chocolate an aphrodisiac […]

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Gift Wines: Tips on How Not to Send the Wrong Message in a Bottle

Leanne and I chat about how to find the right gift wine for everyone on your list on CTV News. Meanwhile, we’re chatting about the same topic with the Associated Press: Wine Gift-Giving Tips for Novice Vinophiles Trendy, tasty and one-size-fits-all, wine is a versatile holiday gift, whether you’re on your way to a house-warming or looking out for something for the in-laws. But navigating the world of wine can be a trial for the novice vinophile. Enter wine experts, who have a few tips on how not to send the wrong message in a bottle. Recon The Recipent A […]

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Easy Entertaining with Wine and Cheese (Video)

In the second segment, Leanne and I talk about chat about what makes wine and cheese pop on a plate visually, and how to mix textures, tastes and flavours. Click on the arrow above to watch the video. You can watch our first video segment on wine and cheese pairing here. We’ll add the wines featured in this video soon.               Pasqua Pinot Grigio Delle Venezie 2017 Veneto DOC, Italy                 Oyster Bay Sauvignon Blanc 2017 Marlborough, New Zealand                 […]

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New Zealand Wine: An Unexpectorated Journey

Awatere River vineyards Photo: David Skinner   By David Skinner When Peter Jackson decided upon his native New Zealand to serve as middle earth for his rendering of the Hobbit and the Lord of the Rings, nationalistic nepotism served him less than the splendor of the rich and varied landscapes found in his home islands. The films depicted rugged terrain and lands carved from the mountains by the relentless influence of wind and water and there is still a sense of that primal constitution to the landscapes that now support modern viticulture in the “Shaky Isles”. Marlborough The South Island […]

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