Gifts for Mother’s Day: Wine Trumps Flowers (and Tastes Better)

My wine column in the May issue of More Magazine, with more than 500,000 thirsty readers, features three wines to celebrate Mother’s Day as gifts: three spectacular bubblies. A toast to Mom! The cover features an actress whom I admire for her depth, strength and guts, Julianna Margulies (The Good Wife, Canterbury’s Law, ER). I also love that she’s often drinking a glass of wine as she reviews her legal briefs in the evening at home. (Guess that doesn’t play so well in the ER.) At the start of the season, it was white wine, but I notice that it’s […]

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How is the Coronavirus Impacting Wineries, Restaurants and Wine Drinkers? (Video)

After you click on the arrow above to play the video, move the player control along the bottom to the 1 minute and 30 second mark as the first part is checking to see if the tech gods are playing nice and the video is working ;)   How the Coronavirus is affecting the wine and restaurant industries? I want to know if you’re changing your wine buying or dining out habits? Are you still traveling to wine regions or attending wine events? Let’s talk. Pour yourself a glass of wine, relax and chat with me. You can also join […]

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Vine Oscars: Celebrity Wines to Sip During the Show

By Natalie MacLean On CTV’s The Social, we we chat about winemaking movie stars … can you guess who made which wine? When I think of the Oscars, I think wine. Why? For many film industry luminaries, conspicuous consumption such as owning a yacht or even a restaurant is so 2019. These days, if you really want to show some class, you own a winery. There’s no better photo opp than one with you and your trophy wife or boy toy pruning the vines or pressing the grapes.       That’s why movie actors, directors and producers are getting […]

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10 Best Merlot Wines to Buy Now + 5 Surprising Facts about Merlot

Merlot became a brand name wine in the 1980s because of its smooth, rich, easy-drinking flavors and texture. It has less acidity and astringency (that furry mouth feeling from tannins) than many other grapes and a medium-body that appeals to many palates.               Reif Estate Winery First Growth Merlot 2016 Niagara River, Ontario VQA, Canada         You’ll find my Top 10 Merlot reviews and ratings here. Merlot has since been somewhat vilified, like Chardonnay, for being boring: the soft jazz of the wine world. Remember Miles’ scorn for Merlot in the […]

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Bring Your Own (Wine) Bottle (BYOB) Etiquette

  Top Fan Paul E Hollander · Don’t often visit chain restaurants preferring more the locally owned ones. But Coopers Hawk Winery and Ruth’s Chris have excellent lists. Guyanne Desforges · 15:29 I find that good restaurant don’t allow or charge too much…the last time I brought wine at a restaurant was at Vieux Dulude in Quebec. (it’s been a while). however after tonight’s discussion, I will call around and choose a restaurant where we can bring it. Jenn Havers · 8:11 We “over bought” some wine in California on our honeymoon, so ended up enjoying a few in restaurants over the last few days of our trip! […]

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10 Best Zinfandel Wines to Buy Now + 5 Surprising Facts about Zinfandel

In our latest Facebook Live Video chat, we chat about the robust red wine Zinfandel. What makes it different from other red wines? How is it related to the Italian red wine Primitivo? What foods pair best with Zinfandel? What’s the group Zinfandel Advocates and Producers (ZAP) all about, and International Zinfandel Day on November 19? You can click on the arrow above to play the video.   Zinfandel is a vitis vinifera red wine grape that produces deep robust wines, most famously from California. You’ll find my most recent Zinfandel reviews and ratings here. Surprising Facts about Zinfandel: 1. Zinfandel’s […]

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Pairing Wine and Holiday Dishes and Treats

On Global Television’s Morning Show today, Carolyn, Jeff and I chat about pairing wine with holiday treats such as shortbread, chocolate Santas and fruitcake … … yes, we’re going there ;) Plus, here are bonus tips on pairing wines with other holiday favourite dishes … Can we be honest? Holiday turkey dinner is just an excuse for most of us to chow down on our favourite side dish, whether it’s cranberry sauce, chestnut stuffing or sweet potatoes. Often they have more interesting flavours than that dry old bird in the middle of the table. So please, let’s stop kidding ourselves with […]

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Wildfires in California Wine Country and Cannabis Wines Video

  Why are winemkers wary of cannabis producers? What exactly is minerality in wine? What’s the latest on the Sonoma wildfires? You can watch previous episodes here.     Peter Neilson · 31:32 Our son just messaged us from San Francisco. They just lifted the evacuation orders from Healdsburg to the coast, so most of the wine areas have been spared. Great news! Tom Dean · 43:49 I say I’m a “one glass at dinner” French-Canadian, but my wife seems to drink my last-half of the glass before I notice. That must be my “moderation” plan. Darryn Varey · 25:39 Both a taste and a mouthfeel to me. If […]

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Bring on the Beaujolais! A Young Red Wine is Centre of Attention each November

Carol Anne and I chat about this year’s beaujolais nouveau in the video above. Catch our second video chat about more easy-drinking red wines for the holidays that aren’t nouveau. The annual release of Beaujolais Nouveau and other nouveau wines happens on the third Thursday of November. According to several liquor store chains, they are one of the fastest-selling products with about 80% selling out during the first week. In the LCBO, there are usually two Ontario nouveau wines (Reif), five French and two Italian nouveau-style (novello) wines released, and a total of more than 10,000 cases sold. The Beaujolais […]

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China’s Thirsty Wine Dragon and Bordeaux Lust with Suzanne Mustacich (Video)

We had a few tech hiccups getting started with this chat, but then all was well. You may wish to move the little red dot to the two-minute mark and start there. Our guest this evening is Suzanne Mustacich, the author of the books Thirsty Dragon: China’s Lust for Bordeaux and the Threat to the World’s Best Wines And she joins me now, live from her home in Bordeaux: Welcome Suzanne Mustacich! Want to know who our next guests are? Watch previous episodes of the Wednesday Wining Show (WWS)  and find out who’s coming up next.         […]

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