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 Niagara River, Ontario V.Q.A., 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 movie Sideways?   […]

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Pairing Wine and Halloween Treats (Video)

Lots of laughs on CTV’s The Social this week! The hosts chose the theme of a Royal Halloween, so Lainey dressed as Prince George, Cyn was Daenerys from Game of Thrones, Mel was Megan Markle and Marci was Queen Ramonda from the Black Panther movie. I channeled my inner (royal) wine witch and brought my broom shtick to the show. What a hoot we had together! Here are the tips, tricks and wines we discussed … Something a bit scary happens on Halloween: we’re surrounded by lots of treats, but will they pair well with our wine? Here, with some […]

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How do You Choose a Wine Class or Course? (Video)

On CTV’s The Social, we chat about how to choose a wine tasting class or course. Click the arrow above to watch the segment. You can join me in my free online video class here that also tells you more about my full course, with food and wine pairing. Cheers, Natalie   JESS I’ve been known to host some pretty epic wine nights – just ask anyone here! Not to brag, but it’s probably because I have a certificate in Italian wine which I got when I worked in the restaurant industry. And I found that after I started learning […]

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The Gorgeous Greek Grape and Wine Moschofilero (Video)

On CTV news this past Friday, Leanne and I chatted about the lovely, floral white wine from Greece, Moschofilero Moschofilero is pronounced mos-coh-FEE-ler-oh. It’s underappreciated with its easygoing elegance, food versatility and great value.     It’s planted mostly in the high, misty mountains of Mantinia Greece near Tripoli. This ancient grape is native to Greece, and often vines are planted more than 2,000 feet above sea level, where the weather changes quickly and there are large dirunal temperature changes from day to night. This is a late-ripening, fickle grape but one worth looking for.           […]

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Music and Wine Pairing: Cabernet in C Major

On CTV’s The Social yesterday, we had so much fun pairing wine and music. This was also the topic on CTV News with Leanne further below. MARCI Welcome back. Would you add heavy metal music to your playlist if someone told you it’d make your wine taste better? Well, our next guest says it’s something you should consider because a growing body of research suggests music may influence the way our brain interprets the flavour of wine. LAINEY Natalie MacLean is the editor of Canada’s largest wine review site and she’s here to put that theory to the test. Welcome […]

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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 […]

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Stories Behind Family-Owned Canadian Wineries (Video)

  Welcome back. The long weekend is almost here and if you’re looking for vino to sip on, our next guest has you covered with her amazing recommendations! Here to highlight some family-owned vineyards from across the country is Natalie MacLean, who offers Canada’s most popular online wine classes. Hi Natalie! Natalie, we love getting your wonderful wine recommendations but before we get to talking about the specific vineyards you’re going to highlight today, can you tell us a bit about the wine production in Canada? • There are four major regions in Canada that produce wines made from grapes: […]

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Which Wines to Drink for Spring

We had such fun chatting about spring and summer wines on CTV’s The Social yesterday!   Are the wines we drink in the winter that different from the ones we drink in the spring and summer? · Yes, most people’s drinking habits change with the seasons. · We typically drink heavy, alcoholic, heavily oaked wines in the winter because they comfort us and keep us warm. · “Drink what you like” remains in effect no matter the weather, but for most people, lighter drinking in the summer generally means more consumption of white wines.     LIGHT & COLD This […]

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Video: Why is Rosé One of the Fastest Growing Wine Categories?

One of the fastest growing categories in the liquor store is rosé wine. Here to tell us why and which ones we should buy is Natalie MacLean, the editor of Canada’s most popular wine review site at nataliemaclean.com – why has rosé had such a bad reputation in the past? – how are modern rosés different in terms of how they taste? – how are they different in terms of how they’re made? – you’ve brought some today: which regions should we be looking for in the liquor store? – how are Canadian rosés different from French ones? – is […]

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How to Pair Wine with Any Hamburger (Video)

On Global Television’s Morning Show Thursday, we paired wine with many types of hamburgers. Nothing says summer like a juicy two-fisted burger and beer – it’s casual and a good pairing. But what if you want wine with your patti? Wine is also a great pairing, but we think it’s too fancy for the backyard and burgs. However it’s not, and it has a wide range of flavours and styles for the imaginative burgers we have here today.   The Daniel – Vegan Patty Grilled onions, lettuce, tomatoes, pickles, crushed hot peppers, spicy vegan sauce.   In the beginning, Shant […]

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