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August 3rd, 2019- The 41st VanWineFest Part One – The Californians!

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The 41st VanWineFest Part One – The Californians!

By the Numbers..

• Over 25,000 wine fans
• 16 countries
• 160 wineries; including 53 from featured region California
• 50 participating restaurants, hotels, caterers
• 1,450 wines.
• 42,000 bottles poured and/or purchased (2018 stats)
• 82,000 wine glasses used (2018 stats)

Our Numbers

32 interviews..
25 winemakers
7 CEO’s or General Managers.
Sleepless nights – 2
Hours budgeted for all interviews – 3
Minutes to missing last Harbour Air flight – 1

THE SHOW

41 years ago the Vancouver International Wine Festival opened their doors to the World’s wineries.
Only one showed up. Robert Mondavi brought his California wines to pour that day.
Some say California saved the show.


And so, here we are 41 years later and California is the feature region at the 41st VanWineFest.
What a line up. We couldn’t talk to them all but we did do pretty well.
Seventeen Californians and one certain Washington Red Mountain newbie.
Have a favourite California wine? Check the list below. See if it’s there or see if it’s there but go looking for a new California pal.
FYI – Next Week Gina Gallo. Jean Charles Boisset and 15 Canadian winemakers

Jon Bonne – Keynote Speaker. Author of The New Wine Rules

Here’s why I immediately liked Jon Bonne.
“ Not all pink wine need be Summer water But Whispering Angel should be cast into some Miltonian iteration of Hell”
Jon Bonné is one of the most influential American voices on wine. He is the senior contributing editor for PUNCH, and the author of The New California Wine and The New Wine Rules.
www.punchdrink.com

Jon Bonne

Bob Blue – Founding Winemaker at Bonterra, 1000 Stories and Elysian Collection.

In 2016 the Wine Enthusiast awarded Bonterra as its American Winery of the Year because of its commitment to organic farming and it’s quality of affordable wines. Bonterra is the most popular organic wine in the USA.
Fetzer’s bourbon-barrel-aged Zinfandel 1000 Stories debuted in 2014. In the five years since, production has exploded from 5,000 cases to more than 140,000 annually!
www.bonterra.com
www.fetzer.com

Craig McAllister – Winemaker at La Crema

A New Zealand native, McAllister earned a bachelor’s degree in viticulture and enology from Lincoln University in Christchurch, New Zealand. His deep passion for winemaking has taken him all over the world, from New Zealand to Australia, Chile and Cyprus. Since moving to California, in addition to his work with La Crema, McAllister has also made wine for Wild Ridge, crafting elegant Pinot Noir from vineyards on the rugged Sonoma Coast.
www.lacrema.com

Randy Lange – Owner Lange Twins

Lange Twins

Randy Lange is a fifth-generation winegrower.
During the 1870’s his Great-Grandparents, Johann and Maria Lange, settled in Lodi. By 1916 they had the family’s first grape-ranch. It was on this ranch where their dad, Harold, was born in 1920.
In 1974 they decided to farm on our own. They finally built Lange Twins winery in 2006.
FYI – Lange Lodi vineyard produces spicy old-vine Zinfandel, concentrated Bordeaux-style wines and lively Rhone-style reds and whites—many from organically or sustainably farmed vineyards.
www.langetwins.com

Ondine Chattan

Chief Winemaker Share a Slash/Cannonball/Cowboys and Angels
High Dive and Astrolabe
Ondine is a passionate Sonoma County winemaker with experience ranging from cult boutique producers to notable household name brands. Her love of the diversity of Sonoma and California at large fuels her enthusiasm for making a range of varietals from Sauvignon Blanc to Cabernet. Started her career at Cline, Beam and Geyser Peak.
www.shareasplash.com

Emma Swain – CEO St Supery

Emma Swain, CSW and CEO of St. Supéry Estate Vineyards and Winery has worked in the wine industry for more than 20 years. Emma started in finance, before joining Niebaum-Coppola Winery and later worked at Sebastiani Vineyards and Winery for thirteen years as Chief Operating Officer
“Our primary focus is on Sauvignon Blanc and Cabernet Sauvignon, “We’re a 100 percent Estate Winery, which means that we grow and produce everything that we make, without a drop of anything else coming into the process. Of the more than 530 wineries in the area, there are only a handful in the Napa Valley that are 100 percent Estate.”
www.stsupery.com

Paul Wagner – Napa Valley College

Paul Wagner was honored by the American Wine Society as the winner of its annual Award of Merit for 2018. Other recipients of the award include Robert Mondavi, Gina Gallo, Warren Winiarski, etc
“Paul has influenced the way the public drinks wine and thinks about wine”
Paul Wagner has been an instructor for Napa Valley College’s Viticulture and Enology department for the past 23 years. In addition, he teaches at the Culinary Institute of America at Greystone, is a guest lecturer at many universities and has spoken at more than 80 conferences throughout the world on wine, wine education, wine tourism, public affairs, and wine marketing.
www.rickandpaulwine.com

David Gates Jr – Ridge Vineyards VP Vineyard Operations

After an obligatory stint in Napa Valley he made his way to Ridge in 1989. David’s duties include managing the historic Monte Bello vineyard in the Santa Cruz Mountains, the Whitton Ranch at Geyserville, and the Lytton Estate vineyards at Healdsburg, as well as monitoring and helping all Ridge growers in Sonoma, Napa, Santa Clara, and San Luis Obispo Counties.
Ridge’s fame started when it was placed fifth in the 1976 Judgment of Paris tasting. At the 30th anniversary tasting in 2006 it went several steps further, with its 1971 Monte Bello Cabernet winning first place in the original vintage category and the 2000 ranking top for new vintages.
www.ridgewine.com

Russ Weis – President Silverado Vineyards

In 2005, Silverado Vineyards pioneering winemaker Jack Stuart stepped down as general manager, and Russ Weis took the reins. Russ, a senior vice president with Robert Mondavi (launched Opus One), brought more than twenty years winemaking to Silverado. He is extremely passionate about the winery: “We enjoy an amazing array of meticulously cared for estate fruit. Even in the most challenging years, our vineyards guarantee us a level of quality which we can be proud to call Silverado.”
Silverado makes around 85,000 cases each year, of which 22,000 are Chardonnay and the rest Bordeaux-style wines. The vineyards are in cool climate Napa regions, Carneros and Stag’s Leap.
www.silveradovineyards.com

Harvest Duhig – Atlas Peak Winemaker/Grower Relations Wagner Family of Wines
Caymus.Conundrum.MerSoleil.Emmolo.Red Schooner

Born and Raised in Napa. In September of 2002 she tried selling grapes to Chuck Wagner. He declined the fruit but hired her to work with him.17 years later she’s Mountain Cabernet Winemaker for Caymus Vineyards. Harvest also has her own family winery Duhig, in Coombsville.
www.wagnerfamilyofwine.com

Kristen Barnhisel – Winemaker (White Wines) J Lohr

Also born and raised in Napa, Kristen brings two decades of viticulture and winemaking on three continents to making the whites at J Lohr.
Along the way she worked with mentors Zelma Long at Long Vineyard and Milla Handley at Handley Cellars.
www.jlohr.com

Ray Signorello – Owner/Winemaker Signorello Estates

Ray lost his winery to the Napa fires. The house his Father built and the buildings attached.
Surprisingly his wines mostly survived. Signorello was designed like a Bordeaux Chateau. Everything farmed in-house for the past 40 years. His surviving vines included 38 year old Chardonnay vines with the Cab vines not that far behind.

Ray Signorello

Ray was pouring his fabulous Signorello Estates Cab but also his new wines Fuse, Edge and Trim.
Signorello is Located in the heart of the Silverado Trail. Just North is Stags Leap and just West is Oak Knoll. There’s a new winery being built this year.
Ray on Social Media and Millennials
“They’re different from Gen X and Baby Boomers. They seem to be more interested in trying wines they haven’t heard of before – off-beat stuff – not necessarily the blue chip Napa Valley. So the challenge is how do we in Napa Valley make sure we’re engaging them”
www.signorelloestate.com

Randy Ullom Chief Winemaker at Kendall-Jackson

Randy Ullom

I cannot think of another winemaker who has stayed with the same winery for 28 years.
Randy oversees 12,800 acres of estate vineyards in cooler coastal California winegrowing regions. One third each in North Coast, Monterey and Santa Barbara counties.
www.kj.com

Randy Meyer Senior Winemaker Geyser Peak

A native of Santa Rosa Randy grew up tending the small family Muscat vineyard on their property.
He and his family promptly build a small cellar into a hill on their property and started production. As one does in wine country. Randy has interned at Piper Sonoma and Far Niente before spending 23 years with Korbel and Draxton Wine.
Geyser Peak was named Sonoma Winery of the Year in 2018 by The New York International Wine Competition. Farming in Sonoma plus The Russian River and Alexander Valleys.
www.geyserpeakwinery.com

Karl Wente – Wente Vineyards

Fifth generation winemaker and winegrower Karl Wente grew up working at Wente Vineyards and expanded his experience at the Peter Michael Winery in Sonoma and Brown Brothers winery in Australia. In 2013, Karl was named one of Wine Enthusiast’s “40 Under 40.
www.wentevineyards.com

Thank You to :
James Murray – Tech and production
Kristine Wilkinson (ThinkMilk.ca)
Bailey Jelinski (Milk)
Anna Stuber (Milk)

 

NEXT WEEK :

Van Wine Fest Part Two

Jim Cuddy – Cuddy by Tawse Wines

A special feature on “field blends”

Willie Mitchell & Brendan Morrison speak out on their/our role in saving
fishery

Chris Tolley Moon Cursor

Fort Berens

Andrea Sartori and 121 years of Italian Winemaking

Jason Priestley – 90210 and his California wine.

Parking in The Passion Pit with John Weber at Orofino!

July 27th, 2019 – Raise a glass to Harry McWatters.

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Harry McWatters dies. Raise a glass.

 

THE SHOW

 

Harry McWatters died in his sleep in Summerland this week. He was 74.

Harry was one of the singular leaders who paved the way and built the framework for the Canadian Wine Industry.

From opening the first estate winery Sumac Ridge, to the first sparkling wine – Steller’s Jay,

Launching the Okanagan Wine Festival, introducing Meritage blends into our lexicon, Launched BC VQA, the BC Hospitality Foundation, founding chair BC Wine Institute, Director BC Vintners Assn, started Encore Wines, Time Wines, McWatters Wines.

Vintage Consulting, Time Winery and Kitchen.

Harry had just celebrated his 50th vintage..and the first year for his downtown winery in Penticton.

Harry McWatters

 

On and On.

We’ve all  lost a leader and a great friend.

This tribute to Harry consists of moments from the many interviews we did together.

Starting with one of my first for Tasting Room Radio –  Summer 2007. In Penticton after Harry had swept the wine awards.

Cheers Harry.

https://timewinery.com

 

In honouring the builder and legend Harry McWatters, I felt the feature also needed another voice other than mine.  It was a natural move to pick up the phone and talk to Christine Coletta. Co-Founder of Okanagan Crush Pad and one of BC’s  current  wine leaders.

 

She was also a dear friend of Harry’s and as she explains..there would be no Okanagan Crush Pad or Christine Coletta in the wine business without the guidance and support of Harry McWatters in the early years.

I’m so pleased  I made the phone call.

https://okanagancrushpad.com

Interstellar Rodeo.  Pairing live music and wine   with Gurvinder Bhatia

The last segment of the show is a yearly story for Tasting Room Radio.

First there’s Gurvinder Bhatia..Quench Magazine Wine Editor, Global TV (Edmonton)  Wine Columnist, International Wine Judge, Italian wine  specialist and friend of Harry McWatters. And then there’s Interstellar Rodeo this weekend in Edmonton.

Gurvinder Bhatia

It features a wide portfolio of artists..some “artists to watch for” and many artists who’ve created their own fan base over many years of recordings and touring.  Headliners and those who want to be headliners.

Artists include Whitehorse, Rheostatics, Aloe Blacc, Sheila E, Southern Ave, Lucius, Asleep at the Wheel, Nathaniel Rateliff and the Night Sweats,

Gurvinder studies the music of each and then pairs his best wines to match the vibe and texture of the music.

 

Even if you can’t attend..you can find the artists on the Interstellar Website with their matching wines..and do your own Rodeo.

 

 

Here’s the link

https://interstellarrodeo.com/edmonton/beer-wine/

 

 

STORIES WE’RE WORKING ON:

 

Jim Cuddy – Cuddy by Tawse Wines

A special feature on “field blends”

Willie Mitchell & Brendan Morrison  speak out on their/our  role in saving fishery

Chris Tolley Moon Cursor

Fort Berens

Andrea Sartori and 121 years of Italian Winemaking

Jason Priestley – 90210 and his California wine.

Parking in The Passion Pit  with John Weber at Orofino!

 

Mulligan Stew July 20th, 2019- The Whole Stew!

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Special Guest: Frazey Ford

 

Mulligan Stew July 20  2019
Welcome to The Stew with terrydavidmulligan www.mulliganstew.ca Special guest Frazey Ford
miss ann delaney and bonnie to bonnie from delaney
roll with it (live) steve winwood greatest hits live
further on up the road (live) Eric Clapton Crossroad 2 live in the 70’s
www.deanehouse.com  Special Guest Frazey Ford
sick and tired boz scaggs come on home
what you gonna do N Miss All stars up and rolling
www.mulliganstew.ca Special Guest Frazey Ford
spanish moon (live) Little feat hot cakes and outtakes
i dont want anything to change (live() Bonnie Raitt and Norah Jones Bonnie Raitt and friends
Gone at last (live) Paul Simon Live in NYC
I put a spell on you Annie Lennox Nostalgia
Special Guest today Frazey Ford www.mulliganstew.ca
angel of Harlem U2 Rattle and Hum
Stir it up Delbert McClinton never been rocked enough
This is Mulligan Stew www.mulliganstew.ca
TB Sheets Van Morrison Bring out the Dead Soundtrack
I got a feeling The Beatles Let it be
The Pretender Jackson Browne The Pretender
www.coyotesbanff.com mulligan stew with tdm
Countrywide soul Jim Cuddy Countrywide Soul
Coming Up – Frazey Ford interview www.mulliganstew.ca
I’ll take you there The Staple Singers Best of
Never loved a man Aretha I never loved a man
Church Lyle Lovett Joshua Judges Ruth
How sweet it is (live) James Taylor JT Live
Frazey Ford Interview with tdm
Can you get to that Frazey Ford Single

EP 65 Jason Priestley Podcast

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Everybody knows Jason Priestley. Beverly Hills 90210, the series he starred in for 10 years, is still running all over the world. This interview was done on Willie Mitchell’s fishing boat off Tofino alongside Naomi Priestley and their kids Ava and Dash. Terry talks to Jason about wine, the 90210 reboot, and his series Private Eyes.

 

July 20th, 2019- BC Chefs work to save our fishery and Cowichan Valley Wine Festival  

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BC Chefs work to save our fishery and Cowichan Valley Wine Festival

  

THE SHOW

 Three stories from Vancouver Island.

We start by heading back to the 13th annual BC Seafood Festival in Courtenay-Comox.

 

For some it’s a getaway weekend.

 

However, for those who want to get involved..there’s oyster shucking on a massive scale, cooking classes, a chef competition that loves  a vocal audience, gala dinners, brunch heaven plus you get to connect with your new favourite chef.

However, this year all the talk among the chefs was saving our fishery.

 

We are/were so spoiled on the West Coast. Our fishery was the envy of all.

Not anymore.

It’s been overfished and as a result it’s starting to affect the food chain for whales, orcas, eagles, bears  and feed fish.

Chef Ned Bell says we’re so used to getting the centre of the plate.  Spring and Coho salmon. It’s time to start working “the edges” of the fishery.  Sole, shellfish, sardines, herring.  Eating down the food chain.

 

Chefs have to convince their customers that if they order alternative fish they can help save the fishery we’ve come to love.

Ask questions. Know your fisherman.

Take a break from some species. Find a few fish. Pinks for one.

Responsible aquaculture starts to become very important.

So, really this sustainability comes from the chefs, the fishermen, first nations, fish farms AND

You and I. The customers.

Every one of the guest chefs had something to say to all of us.

Ask questions…know your fisherman..if your restaurant can’t tell you where your fish is from , don’t order it.

Here  we go:

  • Chef Ned Bell –  Executive Chef, Ocean Wise, Vancouver, BC;
  • Jean-Francis Quaglia, Exec Chef/Founder. Provence Marinaside
  • Nathan Fong, Executive Chef Producer of the BC Seafood Festival; Fong on Food
  • Ricardo Valverde, Exec Chef Ancora Vancouver and West Van.
  • Quang Dang Exec Chef Top Table Group
  • Ryan Bissell  Director of Food and Beverage Villa Eyrie Resort Malahat
  • Chris Andraza   Exec Chef  Fanny Bay Oyster Bar and Restaurant

The 2nd annual Cowichan Valley Wine Festival takes place August 23-25.

In order that you can pull off a master plan for the weekend..we have invited three local  influencers to join us on a park bench in Ladysmith for a chat about who, why and where you should be heading for the Cowichan.

Mike Nierychlo  Co-founder/Winemaker Emandare Vineyard  Duncan

Lorin Inglis   Manager Enrico Winery Mill Bay

Karen Elgersma  Tourism Cowichan

Mike,Karen and Lorin

For your master plan, here’s the layout of The  Cowichan Valley Wine Festival Aug. 23 – 25

Aug. 23     Party at the Pavilion Shawnigan Lake School 6pm – 8pm – Kick off Public Tasting

Aug. 24 – 25   Winery Tour Weekend

All local wineries will be hosting free tastings and events over the weekend.

Check with the winery websites for what they’re up to..

https://www.tourismcowichan.com/

…and while we’re on Vancouver Island I had the distinct pleasure of tasting the wines of Brent Rowland from Averill Creek.

Brent Rowland winemaker

Brent creates the Averill portfolio but he’s also released two very special wines. They’re called Joue. There’s a Field Blend White and Field Blend Red…and unlike almost everyone  else in the BC wine business he puts the name field blend right on the label.

Brent has created wines all over the World. Alpha Box and Dice in Australia. By Farr in Australia, Calera in California, Escarpment in New Zealand and most recently at Pearl Morissette in Niagara

He wants these Joue wines to have perfume, poise, tension, elegance. Consummate wines.

“for me the field blend spirit is the clearest segue from the vineyard to the glass”

You’ll hear more of Brent’s creative  thoughts when we present The Field Blend Special in a couple of weeks.

In the meantime – check out these field blends from The Cowichan Valley

https://www.averillcreek.ca/

 

STORIES WE’RE WORKING ON:

 

Jim Cuddy – Cuddy by Tawse Wines

A special feature on “field blends”

Fire Season in The Okanagan

Willie Mitchell & Brendan Morrison  speak out on their/our  role in saving fishery

Chris Tolley Moon Cursor

Fort Berens

Andrea Sartori and 121 years of Italian Winemaking

Jason Priestley – 90210 and his California wine.

July 6th, 2019- Tofino Two – The Industrial Way Artisans and The 17th Food and Wine Festival

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It’s Tofino Two – The Industrial Way Artisans and The 17th Food and Wine Festival.

  

THE SHOW

Last week’s show was all about  spending weekdays in Tofino.  The Chefs of Tofino / Ucluelet  and Willie Mitchell..The Prince of Tides.

 This week, it’s about the craft artisans on Industrial Way  (Charcuterie, Brewing, Spirits & a very popular bakery.)

Summit Bread Co

Then it’s off to the 17th annual Tofino Food and Wine Festival.  Most wine festivals take place in hotels, conventions centres and meeting rooms.  Not this one.

 

As always it takes place in the Tofino Botanical Gardens.

As you stroll to the many tasting stations you come to realize you’ve left the “gardens” behind and now you’re surrounded by a Rain Forest.

Surreal and very memorable.

I swear the location makes  the wines taste better.  Just saying!

 

As a stark contrast we start the show on Industrial Way in Tofino.

 

Like all other towns and cities, Tofino has an industrial area where craft businesses share space with construction equipment, fishing supplies, boat and floats.

 

As Tina Windsor from Picnic Charcuterie  says of Industrial Way  “there’s no point in putting lipstick on a pig.  It is what it is but still people seek us out.  It’s high class, low brow”

Besides Picnic, we’ll spend time discovering the people and the craft behind Tofino Brewing, Tofino Distillery and Summit Bakery.

Picnic Charcuterie

 

At the Tofino Food and Wine festival we’ll taste and talk with:

Kira Rogers The Food and Wine Fest  Producer, Culmina, Black Market, Pentage, Tantalus/Stoneboat/Summerhill/Township 7 and Burnt Timber.

 

 

 

Then a wonderful surprise,. I bumped into David Gouge  co-owner of Sea Star Vineyards. (Pender Island/Saturna Island)

and  got caught up on one of the really fine winery stories in BC.

 Today’s guests are:

From Industrial Way:

Tina Windsor – Picnic Charcuterie https://www.picniccharcuterie.com/

Bryan O’Malley  – Tofino Brewing   http://tofinobrewingco.com/

Neil Campbell – Tofino Craft  Distillery https://tofinocraftdistillery.com/

Brendan Foell/Cassidy McCaughan – Summit Bread Company https://www.summitbreadco.com/

From 17th Tofino Food and Wine Festival

Kira Rogers – Producer https://tofinofoodandwinefestival.com/

Sara Triggs – Culmina Vineyards  https://www.culmina.ca/

Rob Hammersley – Conviction Ridge Vineyard/Black Market Wine Co. https://blackmarketwine.ca/

Paul Gardner – Pentage Wines   https://pentage.com/

David Gouge – Sea Star Vineyards https://seastarvineyards.ca/

Chris Smith (WayWestWines) – Tantalus, Burnt Timber, Summerhill, Township 7, Stoneboat.  https://twitter.com/waywestwines?lang=en  

 

 

STORIES WE’RE WORKING ON

 

Jim Cuddy – Cuddy by Tawse Wines

A special feature on “field blends”

Fire Season in The Okanagan

BC Shellfish Festival / Courtenay-Comox

Cowichan Valley Wine Festival

Assorted Chefs, Willie Mitchell & Brendan Morrison  speak out on their/our  role in saving fishery

Chris Tolley Moon Cursor

Fort Berens

Andrea Sartori and 121 years of Italian Winemaking

Jason Priestley – 90210 and his California wine.

 

June 29th, 2019- 4 days in Tofino – ( Part One) The Chefs plus Ike & Willie

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THE SHOW   

When someone says  “Go West ” Tofino is as far as you can go in Canada.

Originally  is was nick-named  “tough city” now shortened to “Tuff City”.  That’s because the road,  which was formidable, ended in Tofino.

For many years stories on this stunning coastline were about the surfing and fishing. Then it started to get noticed as a culinary destination. That’s because the  entire area was loaded with chefs. (The local food truck Tacofino became so popular they moved operations into Vancouver and now have 8 locations including Tofino.)

What’s remarkable is that there are less than 2,000 Toficians in town but almost 500 business licences.

Summer brings what feels like “The World.”  Walking miles of beaches, forest walks here are called forest bathing , swimming, surfing, fishing, diving  and dining have become part of the allure.

1909 Restaurant

This is part one of four days spent in and around Tofino.  Trying to answer the question, what’s Tofino like on a Wednesday or  Thursday?  Is it different from crazy times on the weekend?

Every guest on this show has a story to tell and one of them reveals a surprising announcement.

What doesn’t seem to change is the food and the accommodations.

I found both at the world famous Wickaninnish Inn.   I also discovered their new breathtaking “Howard’s Wine Cellar.”  That’s where we start.

 

Howards’ Wine Cellar at the Wick

 Guest Toficians  include:

Charles McDiarmid – Managing Director/Founding Family The Wickaninnish Inn

Ike Seaman – Director of Food & Beverage/Sommelier/The Howard Wine Cellar  The Wick

Ike Seaman,, Photo Credit: Michael Becker,

Executive Chef Carmen Ingham – The Pointe Restaurant , The Wick

Chef Carmen Ingham The Point

Chef/Owner/Author Lisa Ahier (eye-aye) – Sobo

Lisa Ahier – Sobo

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Willie Mitchell – X-NHL, Partner/President at Tofino Resort and Marina

Willie Mitchell

Executive Chef Paul Moran – Top Chef Canada Winner  1909 Restaurant at Tofino Resort and Marina

Chef Paul Moran

Chef Warren Barr and Lilly Verney-DowneyPluvio Restaurant & Rooms  Ucluelet

Warren and Lilly Plovio

https://www.wickinn.com/

https://thepointerestaurant.ca/dining/

https://thepointerestaurant.ca/wine-cellar/

http://sobo.ca/site/

https://tofinoresortandmarina.com/

https://tofinoresortandmarina.com/restaurant/1909-kitchen/

https://www.pluvio.ca/

https://tourismtofino.com/

https://www.tourismvi.ca/

 

(NEXT WEEK  -Part Two features craft artisans on Industrial Road and The Annual Tofino Food and Wine festival)

 

STORIES WE’RE WORKING ON:

Jim Cuddy – Cuddy by Tawse Wines

A special feature on “field blends”

Fire Season in The Okanagan

Tofino Part Two – Includes food and wine festival

BC Shellfish Festival / Courtenay-Comox

Cowichan Valley Wine Festival

Chefs speak out on their/our  role in saving fishery

Chris Tolley Moon Cursor

Fort Berens

Andrea Sartori and 121 years of Italian Winemaking

 

June 15th, 2019- Top Drop 2019- Victoria

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TOP DROP 2019 / FIRST TIME IN VICTORIA

The press release came in loud and clear.

For the very first time Top Drop was coming to Victoria.

Frankly, that’s all I needed to know.

I’ve been happily covering this small wildly successful wine gathering for
Six Years but Top Drop in Victoria is a whole other event. Why? Because
Victoria is a great wine town.

TOP DROP is Vancouver based so they needed a Victoria Host. Turns out the
Vessel crew have been watching this independent, craft wine festival seed
and grow in Vancouver, and spread to Calgary in 2018. This was their year to
launch it in Victoria for ONE DAY .

Victoria International Marina

Top Drop is an opportunity to celebrate authenticity in farming, terroir
and wine, with winery principals from around the globe.

Mirroring Top Drop Vancouver and Calgary’s flagship experience, the public
event is a walk around, grazing-style tasting where attendees enjoy sips
and stories from the principals of international and local wineries. There
has never before been a wine tasting of this scope and caliber in Victoria.

For me and TRR, the voice and face of Top Drop has always been Kurtis Kolt.
Wine educator and Wine writer for the Georgia Straight.

Kurtis and TD

Because of the foul weather, Kurtis and his partners were delayed in
Vancouver and could not attend while I was there.

Once again Kurtis Kolt and his partner Jeff Curry and a sensational team
have convinced some of the very best winemakers to pour at Top Drop.

What they have in common is craft and care!

In Kurtis’ column in the Georgia Straight he said this:

“Each year, our process begins the same. Our team casts out a wide net to
British Columbia-based importers and wineries, asking for winery
applications to participate in the event. First and foremost, Top Drop
wineries must fit with our general philosophy: that wines, indeed, express
terroir or offer a sense of place.

Whether we’re talking vines grown in mineral-rich soils or under
cool-climate growing conditions bringing bright acidity or in sun-drenched
regions offering generous, opulent fruit and so on, we want those elements
to be notable in the glass and for them to have arrived there authentically,
rather than via heavy-handed additions in the winery.

Sustainable farming is also key. There is a high priority on those who
employ these methods while farming their own fruit or who work with growers
who fit the mold.”

Winemaking Guests in Victoria:

(Check them out – Winners All!!)

Ross Borland Managing Partner/Vessel Liquor Victoria www.vesselliquor.com

Mitch Renaud Asst manager Vessel Liquor Victoria www.vesselliquor.com

Rhys Pender (MW) Little Farm/Similkameen Valley
http://www.littlefarmwinery.ca/

Angus Thomson Urlar/ Gladstone NZ http://www.urlar.co.nz/

Kelsey Rufiange – Echo Bay/OK Falls www.echobayvineyard.ca

Grant Biggs – Kitsch wines/Kelowna www.kitschwines.ca

Tyler Knight = Lightening Rock/Summerland www.lightningrockwinery.com

Larry Gerelus – Stags Hollow/OK Falls www.stagshollowwinery.com

Michael Shindler – A Sunday in August/Similkameen Valley
www.asundayinaugust.com

Dan Wright – Unsworth/Cowichan Valley www.unsworthvineyards.com

https://topdrop.ca/

STORIES WE’RE WORKING ON:

 

Ann Sperling Making new direction wines at Sperling Vineyards

Tofino Food and Wine

Charles Smith and Rose Gathering/Jet City Seattle

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

June 8th, 2019 – Bloom 2019 in Victoria

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BC’s VQA Wineries showcase Spring/Summer wines at Bloom 2019 in Victoria

 

THE SHOW

Wine fans across Canada and now around the world are increasingly aware of
what British Columbians have known for years – BC produces some
of the world’s most unique and in some cases very best wines

* Each year BC wineries contribute $2.8 billion
annually to the provincial economy and welcome more than 1,000,000
visitors.

* There are more than 10,499 acres under vine in British Columbia with
nine geographical indications (GIs) and two sub-geographical indications
(sub-GIs): Okanagan Valley, Similkameen Valley, Fraser Valley, Vancouver
Island, the Gulf Islands, Thompson Valley, Lillooet, Shuswap, and Kootenays.
Two sub-GIs include Golden Mile Bench and Okanagan Falls, and fall within
the larger Okanagan Valley GI.

Every Spring the wineries select their showcase wines, hit the road and
gather in Vancouver and Victoria. It’s the perfect opportunity for wine
lovers to kick off the season, celebrate new wine releases, meet the actual
makers of these wines and reconnect with those who share the same passion.

This feature is for those who attended and wanted to make further notes on
their experience.(which can be a busy blur)

However, it’s really for those of you who didn’t get to taste and make
notes.

 

As a public service and for “research purposes” we hit the floor of the
Crystal Ballroom in downtown Victoria and tasted our way through some 40
wines.

As always, we simply didn’t have time to talk to everyone. So we sought out
winemakers, owners and growers who took the time away from home and vines to
join us.

The Team

Very much appreciated.

If you are confused by the growing number of BC wines available we truly
hope this week’s show helps you find your Wine of the Year or at least The
Summer.

There is one special story here.

Michael Mosny was winemaking in Slovakia when he became a fan of Hollywood
and Vines TV co-hosted by Jason Priestley and myself. When he and his wife
Martina saw Jason and I visiting vineyards in The Okanagan it helped inform
the decision to move here. Years later we finally get to meet.

Michael and Martina Mosny Winemakers Cut

Thank You to
Kimberly Hundertmark – BC Wine Institute

www.winebc.com

Guests  this week include:

Joe Luckhurst – GM. Road 13 (Golden Mile)

2018 Canadian Winery of the Year

Joe Luckhurst

www.road13vineyards.com

Stefan Arnason – Head Winemaker Poplar Grove/Monster Wines (Naramata Bench)

www.poplargrove.ca

www.monstervineyards.ca

Michael Mosny Winemaker and Co-Owner Winemakers Cut (Oliver)

www.winemakerscut.ca

Bobby Gidda – Owner and President Volcanic Hills (West Kelowna)

https://volcanichillswinery.com/

Jeff Hundertmark – Head Winemaker Mt Boucherie (West Kelowna)

Jeff Hundertmark Mt Boucherie

https://mtboucherie.com/

Tim Turyk – Proprietor Unsworth Vineyards (Cowichan Valley, Vancouver
Island)

Tim Turyk Unsworth

www.unsworthvineyards.com

Bob Johnson – Owner Baillie-Grohman (Creston Valley/Kootenays)

www.bailliegrohman.com

Richard Da Silva – Proprietor and Vigneron Da Silva/Misconduct (Naramata
Bench)

Richard Da Silva Da Silva Wines

www.dasilvavineyards.com

Jody Switt – Hillside Wines (Naramata Bench)

www.hillsidewinery.ca

STORIES WE’RE WORKING ON:

Tofino Food and Wine

Top Drop 2019 Victoria

Charles Smith and Rose Gathering Jet City Seattle

A special on “field blends”

Fire Season in The Okanagan

The Wickaninnish Inn reopens a spectacular cellar

Tofino mid-week experience

BC Shellfish Festival

Cowichan Valley Wine Festival

June 1st, 2019- THE THIRD ANNUAL BC CIDER FEST… Bigger and Better!

hello

THE THIRD ANNUAL BC CIDER FEST… BIGGER AND BETTER!

 

The third annual BC Cider Week, took place from April 27th to May 5th.

This week long craft cider celebration saw many cider events, tastings and
festivities throughout British Columbia with tasting events from Kelowna to
Vancouver Island, including tap takeovers, cider pairing meals, and much
more throughout the week.

The highlight for me and many others is the final event. The gathering of up
to 40 Cideries at The Pipe Shop foot of Lonsdale in North Vancouver.

It’s one of the buildings my father Pat worked in during WW2.

The first interview had to be with Shawn Pisio, who co-founded the B.C.
Cider Festival three years ago.

Glenn Ennis, Lynn Colliar and the Geo Team

Just how popular is this event? It sells out within minutes.

Cider is going through the very same revolution that craft beers did 10-15
years ago.

The opportunity to grow more cider apples in B.C. is unlimited, but BC is
already home to many excellent craft cideries.

One of the cideries we interviewed was Twin Island Cider on Pender Island.
They were voted most popular Cidery at this event.

Finally, for those of you who still think that ciders are not for you
because they’re too sweet or something…FORGET ABOUT IT..

It’s a whole new world out in the orchard.

Enjoy!!!!

Our guests are:

Shawn Pisio – Txotx/ Co-Founder

Russ Johnson – Owner/Cidermaker Truck 59 Kelowna

Sydney Bottomley – Asst Cidermaker Broken Ladder Kelowna

Nick Farrer – Founder The Bricker Cider Co Sechelt

Mike Lachelt – Co-owner/Cidermaker Salt Spring Wild SS Island

Mathew Vasilev Co-Owner Twin Island Cider Pender Island

David Schneider – Persephone Brewing Gibson’s BC

Kathleen van der Ree – Northyards Cider – Squamish

Mike Petkau – Nomad Handcrafted Cider – Summerland

Glenn Ennis – Owner Geo Cider Co – Squamish

Lynn Colliar – Geo Cider Squamish

Jeff Nairn – Co-Founder Windfall East Van

 

http://bcciderfest.ca/

Photos by Linda C

STORIES WE’RE WORKING ON:

Melissa Etheridge and Cannabis infused wine

Bloom in Victoria

Top Drop in Victoria

A special on field blends

Fire Season in The Okanagan

Rose Day June 8th

Charles Smith in Jet City Seattle (Rose all day)

Tofino Food and Wine festival

The Wick reopens a spectacular cellar

Tofino mid-week