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November 2nd, 2019 – New Zealand Pure Discovery 2019

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New Zealand Pure Discovery 2019

THE SHOW

New Zealand is recognised as one of the world’s premium wine regions,
mainly due to the success of their Marlborough region Sauvignon Blanc

 

This explosive varietal introduced the world to New Zealand Wine.

In 2019 they would like to celebrate the success of their famous white
through sub-regional expressions as well as showcase the lesser known
varieties such as Pinot Gris, Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, Syrah and Rose.

Several weeks ago I was offered the opportunity to “speed date” a handful of
New Zealand Winemakers as they passed through Vancouver. I sat at a desk and
they showed up one at a time..each with a wine in hand.

Frankly, it was a blur.

In listening back to the discussions several things became clear.

Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc is World Class but now it’s time to check out
sub regions of the North and South islands.

Simon Toneycliffe GM Whitehaven. (Marlborough’s Golden Mile)

Simon Toneycliffe WhiteHaven

Whitehaven wines are grown, crafted and bottled in Marlborough. Each wine is
a powerful, elegant and consistent expression of Marlborough’s classical
wine styles. The white label is the flagship. Their growth has been nothing
short of fantastic.

Whitehaven has been successfully exporting to the United States since 2004
when its first shipment totaled just 5,000 cases. In 2015 Whitehaven
celebrated the export of its millionth case of wine to the US.

Canada is showing the same kind of growth.

The reason is simple. Affordable World class wines.

www.whitehaven.co.nz

Wayne Leadbetter – VP Sales Te Awanga Wines (Hawkes Bay)

Wayne Leadbetter Te Awanga

Planted 25 years ago by a group of friends in one of Hawke’s Bay’s oldest
wine growing areas, they dreamt of making the region’s greatest wines.
They say they’re still working on it but believe their vineyard, right by
the coast truly captures something unique.

Sitting on an elevated site in the Te Awanga foot hills, the cellar door has views down through our vines,
across the Te Awanga basin and out to the Pacific Ocean. Spectacular.

Syrah and Chardonnay are exceptional.

www.teawangaestate.co.nz

Jim Robertson Global Wine Ambassador NZ Brands – Stoneleigh/Pernod Ricard
(Marlborough)

Jim Robertson – Stoneleigh

Stoneleigh Vineyard is situated in the heart of the Rapaura area on the
northern side of the Wairau valley in Marlborough, New Zealand. The ‘Golden
Mile’ of vineyards.

Stoneleigh takes its name from the stones that cover the
vineyard – land that’s now home to some of the oldest grafted Sauvignon
Blanc blocks in Marlborough.

The stones store and reflect the sun’s heat up into the vines, enhancing the ripening process and contributing to the
unique taste of Stoneleigh wines.

Jim travels the World – a natural storyteller and what a story. NZ wines
are recognized the World over.

http://www.stoneleigh.com <http://www.stoneleigh.com/>

Joel Watson – Winemaker at Luna (Martinborough)

Joel Watson – Luna

Luna Estate has been lovingly renovated and transformed into one of
Martinborough’s premier wineries.

While their main love is Pinot Noir, they also produce elegant Pinot Meunier Rose, Sauvignon Blanc, Riesling, Pinot
Gris, Chardonnay, and Syrah. It’s almost impossible to capture how
passionate Joel Watson is about NZ winemaking and Luna. It shows in his
wines.

A fierce believer in Martinborough.

www.lunaestate.co.nz

Rory Crawford – Loveblock (Wellington)

Loveblock is the home of Erika and Kim Crawford. Yup, the same Kim Crawford
who sold his namesake winery and Loveblock is what they did with the money,
honey.

This 180 acre (72 hectare) vineyard is perched on top of the hills
overlooking the Awatere Valley above Wellington..

The site is perfect for growing premium aromatic white varietals. Due to the
strong winds, the vine growth is slow and they tend to get very small
berries giving high aromatic concentration in the wine.

The main vineyard area produces Sauvignon Blanc and Pinot Gris
predominantly, as well as Pinot Blanc, Tempranillo, Gewurztraminer, Chenin
Blanc and of course, Riesling.

www.loveblock.co.nz

Hamish McRae – Forrest and The Doctors (Marlborough)

Hamish McRae – Forrest & The Doctors

The vineyard of Doctors John and Brigid Forrest.

Forrest Wines – The first vintage for Forrest Wines came in 1990 when an
over-filled red wine fermenter “accident” resulted in a trophy-winning
Merlot Rosé.
Fast forward almost 30 years; many awards and accolades, 5 labels and
vineyards across the country. Forrest is set for generations.

Forrest is all Marlborough.

The Doctors – The Doctors’ range is about innovation and excellence.
New grape varieties, alternative winemaking techniques and select parcels of
fruit all qualify to create very special wines under this unique label.

https://www.forrest.co.nz <https://www.forrest.co.nz/>

https://www.forrest.co.nz/collections/doctors

www.nzwine.com

 

STORIES WE’RE WORKING ON

2019 Judgment of BC – The Final One

The spectacular Phantom Creek Winery

Checking out  Cedar Creek Winery

The Italians pour in Vancouver – Michaela Morris co-hosts

Oct 26th, 2019- Charles Smith: Jet City Rose Experience in Seattle!

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Charles Smith ‘s Third Jet City Rose Experience in Seattle.

( Ann Sperling stays home and makes New Direction wines)

THE SHOW

 

Charles Smith – Founder Wines of Substance

Charlie is the founder of Washington’s largest winemaker owned winery and the 4th largest wine producer in Washington State.

Charles Smith

He created and then sold Charles Smith Wines, and five other wines to Constellation.

His new  company, Wines of Substance made 53 different wines last year in their Seattle Jet City facility. 51 were single varietal.

Today he has a portfolio that includes

 K Vintners – The original. Royal City. The Creator. The Boy.

SIXTO – High Elevation Chards. Uncovered, Moxee Vineyard, Frenchman Hills

CasaSmith –  Italian inspired. CasaSmith Sangiovese, Barbera, Primitivo

Substance – Cabernet Sauvignon is the star.

B Leighton  –  By winemaker Brennon Leighton. From Olsen Hills in Yakima.

Wines of Substance showcases Charles Smith’s dedication to producing the very best  wines. From vineyard to glass.

Charles built and opened Jet City in Seattle.  It’s the largest urban winery on the West Coast.

When I saw the artists that would take the stage in the cellar..Rev Horton Heat and Har Mar Superstar – I realized none of my questions or their answers would be heard.

Guests from this wild ride include

Charles Smith  http://winesofsubstance.com/

Chef Stuart Lane http://www.spinasse.com/about/chef-bio/

Andrew Latta – Latta Wines  http://www.lattawines.com/

  

Ann Sperling –  Winemaker Sperling Vineyards

Sperling Vineyards (Tourism Kelowna)

Note – Sperling Vineyards 2015 Old Vines Riesling Estate Bottled.  95 Points Decanter Wine Awards.  The only Gold medal winning still wine from BC

 A true original.

Ann Sperling creates wines in Ontario, Nova Scotia and most importantly in her family’s home vineyard in Kelowna at a special piece of land called Pioneer Ranch.

It was established and planted in 1929.

Ann grew up in those vineyards but found herself pulled away as more and more vineyards sought her expertise.

She spent several years at Cedar Creek. Then headed back East to the organic and biodynamic vines of Southbrook Vineyards in  Niagara.

Ann Sperling

Finally in 2008 Ann and her immediate family members decided to launch  Sperling Vineyards at Pioneer Ranch.

So..here we are 11 years later and the wines are  pushing the outer edges of what we know BC wine to be.  Wines to keep an eye on.

Their portfolio has specific series called Heritage, Market and Late Harvest/Icewine.

The one series that is really game breaking is The Vision Series of wines.

That’s what Ann and I are going to be talking about .

Organic Natural Amber Pinot Gris 2017 – Like no other Pinot Gris you’ve tasted. Orange and made from 40% whole cluster, 40% whole berry and 20% pressed juice. Nothing added. Nothing taken away.

Vision Chardonnay  2016 (BC Left Gov Award)  . Large French Oak barrels. Minerality and structure.

Organic Pinot Noir 2014 – Hand harvested Dijon clones  144. 777. 828

And the star of the show  Speritz Pet Nat 2018.  (Love and Labour)

 

 

Perle of Csaba grapes planted in 1934 – Honouring the Past.

8.3% alcohol.  No fining, No filtration. Wild ferment. Bottled with lees.

 

Seek and enjoy!!

 

www.sperlingvineyards.co

 

Many thanks to our great pal Tim Meeks, who suggested this event and ferried  us around Seattle!

STORIES WE’RE WORKING ON

 

Tofino Food and Wine

A special feature on “field blends”

Fire Season in The Okanagan

The Wickaninnish Inn opens a spectacular cellar

Tofino mid-week experience. Chefs and more chefs

BC Shellfish Festival / Courtenay-Comox

Cowichan Valley Wine Festival

Chefs speak out on their/our  role in saving fishery

 

October 19th, 2019 – Fishing. Food. Friends. Fluids  The Four F’s Year Seven

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Fishing. Food. Friends. Fluids  The Four F’s Year Seven

 The SHOW

 For 7 years I have had the pleasure of gathering once a year with 3 food and wine friends to fish, eat a great meal and pour tastes of interesting wines.
What’s not to like about that.

Along for the fun again are:

John Weber – Our host this year as we all gathered at John’s Orofino Winery in the Similkameen Valley in the South Okanagan. John’s wife Virginia was kind enough to let us stay overnight in her outstanding  Orofino Winery Suites, right beside the crush pad.

beautiful suites at Orofino!

 

John is the real true fisherman here. He arranged a pontoon boat drift down a stretch of the Similkameen River, from just outside Hedley and almost to Keremeos.  6 hours in total.

John Weber

Our second day was spent just outside Cawston on a farming lake that can be seen from the highway. Its stocked,  locked and loaded.

Executive Chef Mark Filatow from  came along again with his spinning rod..the one with no tip.

Didn’t stop him in the least.  Caught more fish than me, that’s for sure.

TDM and fish!

Mark also prepared a sensational breakfast and a dinner that I’m still telling people about.

Oh, and then he created pizza’s from all the leftovers. Pies that could win awards.

Mark Filatow

It’s the kind of cooking you come to expect from his Waterfront Bistro and his Catering café in Kelowna.

One other thing, because he’s a certified Somm, his wine choices for all of us are  from all over the Planet!

And finally Rhys Pender – Master of Wine and co-partner in Cawston’s Little Farm Winery, just around the corner from Orofino.

Rhys Pender

In the two days that we’re together it’s Rhys that starts most group laughs. Plus he  comments about the wines we’ve brought to no one one in particular..I think he just shouts out tasting comments to the ceiling.

 

Occasionally I feel like I’m in one of his Wine Plus Classes.

Enjoy the food, the wines, the fishing and what friends do when they gather.

The Four F’s Gang

(all fish were catch and release.)

Just a heads up – to all those many people who drive through Keremeos ,  Cawston and The Similkameen Valley on their way to “wine country”,   STOP and check out The Similkameen, Its where many of the other wineries wish they had vineyards. This IS wine country!!

And the fishing is outstanding!!

 

Special thanks to:

Virginia Weber

Similkameen Ernie

Row 14 Restaurant

www.similkameenvalley.com

www.orofinovineyards.com

www.littlefarmwinery.ca

www.waterfrontrestaurant.ca

www.waterfrontcafe.ca

STORIES WE’RE WORKING ON:

Lft Governors Awards

Harvest 2019

October 12th, 2019- COWICHAN VALLEY WINEMAKERS –  Crush Pad Sessions in Cow Valley.  

hello

 

THE SHOW

 

The Cowichan Valley Wine Festival came and went.  I missed it due to a road trip.

However, it’s an ongoing story that I just couldn’t pass up. Many thanks for photos to: Corey & Heather Wood

 

By all accounts, it was a huge success,  with many comments about the “new faces” showing up.

A whole new wine fan has discovered this  region just North of Victoria on Vancouver Island!

 

Let’s face it, if you’re not The Okanagan Valley, you just have to try harder to get people’s  attention.

That’s exactly what Cowichan  Valley is doing.

I sent a message to Mike Nierychlo at Emandare to ask if he could wrangle a gaggle of winemakers all in one spot to get caught up on 2019.

Wrangle he did. On the crush pad at Emandare. (And he even brought the sandwiches)

I will admit that during the last interview with Joe Busnardo I had real trouble understanding what he was saying..his accent was thick and he really rambled. I just kept nodding and smiling. I hope you do better with Joe. He’s a real treat!

Today’s guests are:

Mike Nierychlo –  Winemaker/co-owner Emandare  https://www.emandarevineyard.com/

Brent Rowland – Winemaker at Averill Creek and joue https://www.averillcreek.ca/

Garrett Deol– The next winemaker at Deolhttp://www.deolestatewinery.com/

Zack Brown – co-owner/winemaker at Alderlea http://www.alderlea.ca/

Mark Holford – co-owner/winemaker at Rocky Creek http://www.rockycreekwinery.ca/

Marilyn Venturi – co-proprietor at Venturi Schulze https://www.venturischulze.com/

Lorin Englis – GM at Enrico https://www.enricowinery.com/

Dan Wright – Winemaker at Unsworth https://www.unsworthvineyards.com/

Michael Abbott – Vineyard Manager/Raisin Rancher  at Blue Grouse https://www.bluegrouse.ca/

Joe Busnardo –  Winemaker/owner/legend at Divino http://www.divinowine.ca/

https://www.tourismcowichan.com/eat-drink/

https://www.tourismcowichan.com/cowichan-valley-wine-festival/

STORIES WE’RE WORKING ON

FFFF  – the 7th annual Food. Fishing. Friends. Fluids field trip

This year in the and on the Similkameen Valley/River

Full Italian

Harvest Roundup

October 5th, 2019 – Two Wineries. Two Regions. Similkameen & Lillooet.

hello

Two Wineries. Two Regions…Similkameen and Lillooet

 

The SHOW

 Every day 100’s of wine fans get in their cars and drive into the Okanagan to discover wine country. Good on you.

Many of them drive right through the Similkameen Valley and past some of the best vineyards in the country. Orofino, for example.

 

Some of those same well meaning wine fans head East through the Frazer Canyon and may have no idea that if they hang a left at Lytton they can head North into BC’s most promising new  wine region and Fort Berens Estate Wines.

 John Weber – Orofino

 This week we drive around with , sit down with and talk to John Weber, the co-owner and driving force behind Orofino in the Similkameen Valley.

John at Harvest 2019

 

 

John will take us to his latest planted vineyard, The Passion Pit. It was a gravel pit that Cawston teens hung out in.

He tastes us through his blend  White Bridge, his Cab, Syrah, Gamay and his award winning Bordeaux blend Beleza!

 

Also a word about Row 14  the new restaurant in the neighbourhood.

ROW 14

It’s been launched to great success by Clippers Organics.

Here’s a tip:  Orofino have two of the sweetest suites anywhere. Best of all you are right in the vineyard and looking down on the crush pad.

Highly recommended.

https://www.orofinovineyards.com

Rolf de Bruin  – Fort Berens Vineyards 

Rolf de Bruin

Fort Berens Estate Winery is a culmination of the dreams, vision and pioneering spirit of several entrepreneurs. It was founded with a pioneering spirit and forged on the road less traveled. The winery is owned by a team of eight individuals who share a common belief in the incredible winemaking potential of British Columbia’s Fraser Canyon and a shared vision to make Fort Berens into one of Canada’s leading producers of fine wine.

The voices and faces wine fans see and hear most are Rolf de Bruin and

Partner Heleen Pannekoek.

Just in case you missed the news and as if you needed another reason to drive up to Fort Berens…have a look at this

As voted on by the public, the Best of BC Wine Country 2018 included the following regional awards for Fort Berens:

Fort Berens Estate Winery Riesling – Best BC White Wine
Fort Berens Estate Winery Rosé – Best BC Rosé Wine
Fort Berens Estate Winery – Best BC Winery Tasting Room
The Kitchen at Fort Berens – Best BC Winery Restaurant Showcasing Local Food

That’s what you call a sweep!

Rolf and I will talk about his Rose, Gamay, Pinot Noir, Pinot Gris, and a white blend Camels White.  The new estate  vineyards they’ve planted and  their partnership with vineyard Cliff and Gorge

Rolf shares plans for a 10th anniversary bubble. Created  by winemaker  Jim Cambridge who crafted it  with a combination of fruit from Fort Berens and their neighbours.

Watch for releases now labeled Lillooet VQA

Fort Berens wines are well worth the drive and everything in their portfolio is priced under $20.00 at the winery.

You just might want to join the wine club.

http://www.fortberens.ca

STORIES WE’RE WORKING ON:

 Next week – The Cowichan Wine Festival

And soon the 7th annual

Food. Fishing. Friends. Fluids field trip

 

September 28th, 2019 – The 5th Annual Garagiste North – Kelowna  

hello

Coverage of the 5th Annual Garagiste North – Kelowna

THE SHOW

 What is a garagiste? (gar-ah-jeest)?  

It started out in France (of course) where it was a derogatory phrase for those avante garde and crazy mavericks making wine in their garage and outside the highly regulated system. Gradually and grudgingly came the acknowledgement that something really interesting was happening with these small case lot artisan wines, and a movement was born.

Garagiste North  brings together the small guys. Wines produced from 100% Canadian grapes and under 2000 cases total production annually.  

We’ve been covering this gathering of small BC producers from the beginning. We like the people, the wines and the no BS approach to farming, creating and selling.

This year Sperling Vineyards was once again  the site for a gathering of the Garagiste.  Many of the favourites are returning, but with the growth of the wine industry we are excited to see new small wineries popping up.

Sperling Vineyards

The likes of Lightning Rock, Scorched Earth and Burnt Timer all seem to have a theme!  Added to this year’s event will be a wine pairing of Sperling Vineyards and cheese, music by Glendale Avenue,  food truck service from CrAsian, a cool booth by Taste Advisor and a pop up wine store by Fairview Cellars.

 

tdm and Ann Sperling

 

This event gives you an insight into the passion, commitment, craziness and excellence that is the hallmark of a small producer.  We love that for many this is their first time showing off their wines to the public. Others have been attending for awhile, carefully crafting their wines and growing their business and reputation. Others have grown up and graduated.

Former Garagiste are:

  • Daydreamer
  • Synchromesh
  • Sage Hills
  • Tight Rope
  • Bella Wines
  • River Stone
  • Roche Wines
  • Kitsch Wines
  • Forbidden Fruit
  • Marichel
  • Deep Roots
  • Van Westen
  • Kraze Legs
  • vinAmite

 

This year’s Garagiste guests are :

  •  Schell Wines – Jennifer Schell
  • Mayhem Wines – Terry Meyer Stone
  • Dames Wines – Mireille Sauve
  • Sperling Vineyards –  Ann Sperling
  • Rigor and Whimsy – Costa Gavaris
  • Nagging Doubt – Rob  Westbury
  • Birch Block Vineyard – Sarah and Murray Bancroft
  • Anthony Buchanan Wines – Anthony Buchanan
  • Red Bird Estate – Remi Cardinal
  • Giant head – John Glavina
  • BC Wine Studio – Mark Simpson
  • Scorched Earth – Anita and Peter Pasdernick

 Enjoy the stories and histories!

 STORIES WE’RE WORKING ON:

Fort Berens

Passion Pitt Vineyard – John Weber/Orofino

Year 7 –  Food, Friends, Fishing and Fluids.

Cowichan Valley Wine Festival

Fall Wines

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

September 21st, 2019 – The 5th Pinot Noir Celebration in Kelowna

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The 5th Pinot Noir Celebration in Kelowna

 

 THE SHOW

The 2019 BC Pinot Noir Celebration brings together BC’s top 35 Pinot Noir producers for an unforgettable festival-style tasting experience. The event kicked off with a reception and keynote address by Madeline Puckette, certified sommelier and author of New York Times Bestseller, Wine Folly: The Essential Guide to Wine.

Kurtis Kolt

To put this gathering in proper perspective, here’s an overview from writer/judge Kurtis Kolt:

My big take-away is how local Pinot Noir reflects its terroir of origin, rather than its producers trying to emulate other iconic Pinot regions around the world, from Burgundy in France to the Russian River Valley in California.

No matter which B.C. region it hailed from, each one had a freshness and purity of fruit, along with juicy acidity—a common trait in B.C. wine. I was quite impressed that compared to other reds—from Bordeaux-inspired blends to Syrah—the B.C. Pinot Noirs were all tasty and approachable, whether we were looking at current, more fruit-forward releases, or bottlings as far back as a 2006 from Averill Creek on Vancouver Island. It had started to exhibit those more savoury, tertiary notes like sarsaparilla and sun-dried tomato, but still had great structure and was buoyant on the palate.

 Kurtis, who guests on this special,  makes the comment that Pinot Noir is the one wine that can be grown from coast-to-coast in Canada.

All 35 wineries pouring at the event were accepted through a high profile sommelier tasting panel.  They were determined to be the best of the best.

Our owner/winemaker guests are:

 Jak Meyer – Meyer Family Vineyards/Organizer

Grant Biggs – Kitsch/ Organizer

David Paterson – Tantalus/ Organizer

Jason Parkes – The Hatch

Madeline Puckette – Keynote speech and Wine Folly Author

Grant Stanley – Spearhead

Ben Bryant – Mission Hill

Jenn and Kent Molgat – The View

Chris Carson – Meyer Family and Carson

Dan Wright – Unsworth

Paul Pender – Tawse and Hidden Bench

Rhys Pender – Master of Wine and Panelist

Kurtis Kolt – Wine Educator and Panelist

Paul M Bruner – owner of Blue Grouse

Andy Johnson – Owner of Averill Creek

Tyler Knight – Co-owner of Lightning Rock

http://www.bcpinotnoir.ca

https://winebc.com/

 

STORIES WE’RE WORKING ON:

 

Garagiste North – Next Week

Fort Berens

Passion Pit Vineyard at Orofino

Cowichan Valley Winemakers

Fishing, Food, Wine and Fishing  Year 7

 

 

 

 

September 14th, 2019 – Untapped and Uncorked Craft Beer and Wine Festival in Parksville

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Severine Pinte  Winemaker at La Stella/le Vieux Pin

Ross Wise – New Winemaker at Black Hills

Plus Pouring in Parksville

  

THE SHOW

It’s the annual Untapped and Uncorked Craft Beer and Wine Festival in Parksville, Vancouver Island.

The featured winemakers are the charming Severine Pintewho was pouring La Stella for a winemakers dinner at Beach Club Resort and for his first ever interview Ross Wise, the brand new winemaker at Black Hills.  Home of Note Bene.

Before we get to those prime feature interviews..let’s head to the “untapped” part of the weekend.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Dave Paul – Head Brewer/Owner Love Shack Libations

We start with the craft beer makers at Tigh-Na-Mara and a guy I’ve been waiting a whole year to reconnect with.  When I interviewed Dave Paul from his Love Shack Libations, just up island from Qualicum Beach, he was about to pour his first beer at his first event EVER.  Like an opening night.

Love Shack is a very popular small brewery that the locals all love and tourists are starting to discover. Dave makes a new beer every month..so depending on when you walk in,  your choices may be different from month to month.

Dave was pouring his latest brew, with the zeal of a mad scientist. It’s called Juicy Juice – Northeast style hazy IPA.   Love Beer. Love Shack.

www.loveshacklibations.com

Dave Woodward –  Head Brewer Mount Arrowsmith Brewing

 A local Dave headed to the UK to start his brewing education.  His career took him through the UK, 5 years at Whistler Brewing,  then Tofino Brewing and  Axe & Barrel Victoria.

Dave Woodward Mt Arrowsmith

Mount Arrowsmith brings him full circle.  Back to where it all began.

All that craftwork resulted in Mount Arrowsmith winning Best Amber Ale in the World, at the 2018 World Beer Awards.

 https://arrowsmithbrewing.com/

Kev Ward – Wolf Brewing Nanaimo

wolf brewing

Kev Ward, a  Liverpool lad,   has been brew master  for about 6  years. First thing he did was change all the recipes. Wolf Brewing still uses old-school techniques in its brewing. Check out the line up.

Golden Honey Ale, Porter, Scotch Ale, Black and Tan, IPA!

He says “hey” to all his buds back in Liverpool listening on The Net!

 http://www.wolfbrewingcompany.com/

 Clay Potter –   Brew Master Moon Under Water

Clay Potter


Clay’s brewing career started at  University of Victoria for Biology & Chemistry and Heriot Watt University in Scotland for the Brewing & Distilling Master’s Program. He was lucky enough to work with and be mentored byPaul Hoyne.

With his family, he took over the Moon Under Water Brewery in 2012.

In 2014, Moon Brewery introduced two new programs: a sour series featuring the beloved Copper Kettle Sour, and line of limited-release barrel-aged beers, such as The Crow’s Nest. These highly-sought after beers are small-batched and aged for 18 month

In December 2017, Clay opened a distillery within the brewery. The Moon Distillery has recently launched their first wave of products, featuring Citrus Gin, Orange Vodka and Espresso Vodka, all made with local malts, fruits and botanicals.

http://ww.moonunderwater.ca/about.php

 Ross Wise – Winemaker  Black Hills

Ross Wise Black Hills

Eric Edwards – Executive Chef    Cedars @ Tigh-Na-Mara

Black Hills is the home of one of Canada’s greatest wines Note Bene. A huge Bordeaux blend and a spectacular portfolio. It includes one of my three favourite BC wines, their Carmenere!   The sale of the winery to Peller sent the Canadian wine industry sideways. The new winemaker has to follow in the footsteps of the legendary Senka Tennant and Graham Pierce.  Ross has the chops to more than do the job.

New Zealand-born Ross Wise joined Phantom Creek Winery  in September, 2016, as the fulltime winemaker. A 2005 enology graduate of Australia’s Charles Sturt University, he started his career as a vineyard supervisor at Felton Road Winery in Central Otago, and moved on to the cellar at the Grove Mill Winery in Marlborough before coming to Canada in 2006.

 He became an assistant winemaker at Flat Rock Cellars in Ontario, becoming the winemaker there in 2009

 In 2012, he launched his own consulting firm, making wines with several Ontario wineries, including Rosewood Estates, Keinte-He Winery, The Organized Crime Winery, Icellars Estate Winery and The Good Earth Winery. The opportunity to make ultra-premium wines in the Okanagan drew him to Phantom Creek, and now, to Black Hills.

 In addition to all that, he is well into his studies to become a Master of Wine.

(from John Schreiner)

This is the first verbal interview Ross has done.  He was great!

On the other hand,  Chef Eric Edwards at Tigh-na-Mara loves a microphone.

He’s outgoing and loves to swap verbs.

Chef paired his food with Black Hills wines. You can hear the delight in his voice.

It helps that he’s a very good chef..with a command of his ever expanding kitchen.

http://www.blackhillswinery.com/Current-Vintages

http://www.blackhillswinery.com/

https://tigh-na-mara.com/dine/cedars-restaurant-lounge

 

Severine Pinte   Winemaker at La Stella & Le Vieux Pin

 Severine makes both La Stella and Le Vieux Pin but on the night she was pouring La Stella exclusively!

a native of Montpellier..

Severine Pinte came to Le Vieux Pin in 2010 with 14 harvests of international winemaking experience under her belt along with 8 years of vineyard management. Severine is a graduate of the illustrious ENSAM (Ecole National Superior Agronomic of Montpellier)

Severine Pinte La Stella

She apprenticed at the Cave de Tecou in the AOC Gaillac before coming for the first time to British Columbia to work for Domaine de Chaberton as an assistant winemaker.

In 1999 she returned to France and worked a year in Bordeaux under the direction of Andre Lurton in Pessac-Leognan then returned to the Languedoc. For nine years Severine was head winemaker and viticultural council for ‘Le Vignoble des 2 terres’ in the Terrasse du Larzac terroir.

In the winter of 2003, she took leave for harvest at Frankland Estate winery in Western Australia and enjoyed learning a different take on her beloved Syrah and Viognier. Curiosity and the pursuit of new challenges brought Severine to the Okanagan and she brought with her an astute understanding of wine and terroir. Her favorite quote is from Jean Hugel: “100% of the quality of a true wine is already in the grapes, not in the cellars where you can only lose quality.”

For her, The Okanagan, with its unique terroir and cool climate, has always been intriguing. As such she is the perfect candidate to craft world class Syrah and Viognier in the South Okanagan.

https://levieuxpin.ca/

  

STORIES WE’RE WORKING ON:

2019 Pinot Noir Celebration Kelowna

2019 Garagiste North Kelowna

Fort Berens

The Passion Pit at Orofino Wines

Cowichan Valley Wine Festival

 

 

 

 

 

September 7th, 2019 – BC Field Blend Special.

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This is our first ever BC Field Blend Special.

What is a field blend, who makes it and why don’t they put the words on the label?

Over thirty different opinions in this one hour.

 

THE SHOW

 

A couple of years ago a gaggle of winemakers from Portugal came through Vancouver.

Our interviews always ended up in the same place..their famous field blends.

In the Duoro Valley they plant, grow, harvest and bottle 20-30-40 different varietals. All Together! It’s a true field blend. What’s in the field IS the blend.

I was fascinated by the process and the final results.

These wines were complex, elegant and surprisingly balanced.

True Field Blends are still made in Germany and Australia.

Over the course of a year, the questions I asked over 30 winemakers were..

What is your concept of a field blend?

Do you make a field blend and what’s in it?

If you do make a field blend..do you put the words on your label?

If not, why not?

The answers were passionate, surprising and highly opinionated.

Most wines we drink today are made of grapes harvested from various vineyards throughout a province , state, or even country, fermented in separate lots, and then blended together into a finished wine. Field blends are single-vineyard wines whose grapes are grown, harvested, and vinified together—the blending is done in the vineyard, not in the winery.

Field-blended vineyards are interplanted with multiple grape varieties—sometimes all red or all white, and sometimes both red and white—without apparent rhyme or reason. A zinfandel vine might be growing with carignan on one side and petite sirah on the other. The whole field is then picked at once. Timing is crucial and calls into play the winemaker’s skill and artistry. All of the grapes are fermented together.

Some old World winemakers or growers may have no idea what the exact blend is.

I don’t expect everyone is going to have the same interest as I do but the winemakers here all have a very strong opinion (all except my pal Dell Halliday who’s answer was “Meh”).

The responses were really good and just kept getting better and better.

Especially about the question Why do you not put the words Field Blend on your bottles? Are we, the consumer not trusting of the term?

(Several winemakers here actually believe in field blends and some years have put the words on their labels

Michael Schindler from A Sunday in August

Grant Biggs from Kitsch (Block Party)

Brent Rowland from Joue at Averill Creek

Mike Nierychlo from Emandare)

Here’s the Guest List for the Field Blend Special

(Yes, some were asked twice over the course of a Year))

Rhys Pender – Master of Wine

Kurtis Kolt – Wine Writer and Judge. Co-Organizer of Top Drop in the West.

Val Tait (Bench 1775) and Senka Tennant (TerraVista)

Brent Rowland – (Joue and Averill Creek)

Mike Nierychlo – (Emandare)

Stephen Arnason – (Poplar Grove and Monster Wines)

Richard da Silva (Da Silva and Misconduct)

Rhys Pender – (Little Farm Wines)

Ann Sperling – (Sperling Vineyards)

Larry Gerelus (Stags Hollow)

Paul Gardner – (Pentage)

Andrea Sartori – (Sartori Family Vineyards. Verona Italy)

Jeff Hundertmark – (Rust and Mt Boucherie)

Michael Schindler – (A Sunday in August)

Ann Sperling (Sperling Vineyards .many months later)

David Gouge – (Sea Star)

Ike Seaman – (Wine Director at The Wickaninnish Inn)

Grant Biggs – (Kitsch Wines. Makes Block Party as a field blend)

Kelsey Rufiange – (Echo Bay)

Senka Tennant – (TerraVista)

Joe Luckhurst – (Road 13)

Galen Barnhardt – (Monte Creek)

Kathy Malone – (Hillside)

Lindsay O’Rourke – (Tightrope)

Gustav Allander – (Foxtrot)

Garron Elmes – (Lake Breeze)

Jeff Martin (La Frenz)

Nikki Calloway – (Laughing Stock)

Riley Hollenback – (Red Rooster)

Bob Ferguson – (Kettle Valley)

Dell Halliday – (Elephant Island)

Gavin Miller – (Upper Bench Winery)

Gordon Fitzpatrick – (Fitzpatrick Family Wines)

 

STORIES WE’RE WORKING ON:

 

2019 Pinot Noir Celebration Kelowna

2019 Garagiste North Kelowna

Fort Berens

The Passion Pit at Orofino Wines

The Cowichan Valley Wine Festival

EP 71 – Bobby Rush Podcast

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Meet the King of the Chitlin’ Circuit: Bobby Rush. The Grammy Award winning artist has recorded almost 400 songs in close to 70 years. He’ll be 87 years old this November, and even though he doesn’t do over 200 shows a year any more, you can still find him out there working whatever room he’s in.

This month, Bobby released Sitting on ‘Top of the Blues’, his 26th studio album and 75th career release on Aug 16th. Bobby reflects on his legacy, his last encounter with B.B. King, a meeting with Martin Luther King Jr., and the importance of being himself as a performer.