Tasting Room Radio

November 13th 2013

Tasting Room Radio AB_BANNER


 
Jim Cuddy, Photo: Pollock Heather

Jim Cuddy, Photo: Pollock Heather


We’re talking Rutherford Dust and the new Lake Sonoma label with wine partners Dan Zepponi (Napa) and Tony Stewart (Okanagan).

 Imagine being the Cellar Master at 240 yr old Veuve Clicquot. That’s the life of Dominique Demarville. He says Madame Clicquot is still in those cellars.
Richard Parsons has run Time Warner, General Counsel for  the White House and many more. His wine mentor was Nelson Rockefeller.
Likely one of the reasons why he became the owner of Italy’s Il  Palazzone
His motto?  We drink all the wine we can and sell the rest!!
Jim Cuddy from Blue Rodeo plays through the West for Gold Medal Plates. We talk about raising funds for Olympians  and why he’s all over Spanish Wines.
Martha Wainwright was a guest on Mulligan Stew last week. After we got through the music talk we discovered a mutual love for wine. Go figure!
And the Wine Diva returns with her take on this year’s Vines Magazine/ Intervin Wine Awards.
Who won best of show and the Gold medal winners from BC.
Daenna was one of 19 judges. This is the inside dope!!
 
 
 
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THE SHOW

 

Blue Rodeo, by Dustin Rabin

Blue Rodeo, by Dustin Rabin


Blue Rodeo have just released another album. In Our Nature is their 13th studio release in 26 years.
Recorded at Greg Keelor’s farm, its decidedly acoustic, in part because of Greg’s hearing loss.
I made plans to meet Jim Cuddy – his writing and singing partner – in the lobby of the Fairmont Pacific Rim in Vancouver as Jim was touring and playing as part of the annual Gold Medal Plates Culinary Competition.
We talked about the new music and  the addition of guitarist Colin Cripps who plays in The Jim Cuddy Band.
The bulk of the talk will be heard on Mulligan Stew @ CKUA radio Saturday Nov 16.
Jim and I always talk wine when we get together.
Because he has given so much to GMPlates, he’s asked to be  part of various trips that are auctioned off..so there are  stories there.
He’s discovered a new paella dish at Carmen in Toronto and thus he’s washing it down with Ribera del Duero wines.
 
Blue Rodeo’s 2014 tour starts
Jan 2-3 in Vancouver.
Alberta dates include

  • Jan 9  Red Deer
  • Jan 10/11  The Jube in Calgary
  • Jan 12  Lethbridge
  • Jan 16 Fort MacMurray
  • Jan 17/18 Jube Edmonton

The Devon Cuddy band opens the shows.
www.bluerodeo.com
 

Martha Wainwright

Martha Wainwright


There’s also a Mulligan Stew connection to the next guest Martha Wainwright..of the legendary Wainwright/McGarrigle Families.
Her brother is Rufus Wainwright. Her Dad is Loudon Wainwright 111.  Her Mother Kate McGarrigle  lost her battle with Cancer in 2010 just months after Martha had given birth to her first child.
All of those emotions played out in her current album Come Home To Mama.
At the end of our conversation..I asked Martha about her relationship with wine and off we went.
Because she’s pregnant again, she’s stopped drinking but you can tell she’s a wine fan through and through.
Way to go Martha.
www.marthawainwright.com
We’ve aired the story of Plume before on TRR.
A really good Napa Cab that come out of nowhere at $25.00 but  tasted like $35.
It was the result of a partnership between two wine families.
WCWP-Dan-Tony-Vineyard

Dan & Tony in the Vineyard


The Zepponi’s of Napa and Stewarts of The Okanagan.
Dan Zeponni first wine memory is planting vines along the Silverado Trail at the family vineyard.
Tony Stewart and his family did the same above BC’s  Okanagan Lake at Quails Gate.
Now they’re making Plume and introducing a new label into their portfolio –  Lake Sonoma.
Here’s the complete story and how they may just be the Tip of a very large Iceberg.
 
 
www.lakesonomawinery.com
www.plumewinery.com
quailsgate.com
 

Dominique Demarville

Dominique Demarville is the very lucky Cellar Master at Veuve Clicquot. The makers of fine champagne for 240 years.
Dom says he can still feel the presence of Madame Clicquot in the darkest corners of the cellars.
This quiet conversation made its way through the history of the label, how he felt when he first walked into those cellars and what makes Veuve so unique. We agreed on the value of the bubbles. Best bubbles in the World.
The label has a special place in this world. Whenever someone wants to celebrate a marriage..a graduation, a conquest or to remember someone departed..a bottle of Veuve Clicquot usually finds its way into the occasion. Special place that.
Salute!!
 
www.veuveclicquot.com
 
 
Richard Parsons/il Palazzone

Richard Parsons

Richard Parsons


Former Citigroup Inc.  Chairman Richard Parsons, whose career in banking and media saw him at the helm of the industries’ biggest companies, is betting he can make money in retirement in the wine-rich Tuscan hills.
Twelve years after buying Il Palazzone, a Montalcino vineyard perched on the ancient trail to Rome, Parsons is getting serious about winemaking, turning a hobby into a business. He’s built a new cellar he inaugurated with this year’s harvest and plans to double production of his finest wine, Brunello, turning Il Palazzone into a profitable activity within five years.
Despite its name, il Palazzone, or “the big palace” is actually quite a small winery making less than 1,000 cases of Brunello di Montalcino annually. While the estate is roughly 20 acres, the vineyard area authorized for the production of Brunello di Montalcino is a mere 10 acres.
Il Palazzone recently completed construction of a new cellar, designed to blend beautifully into the landscape and minimize its carbon footprint. While the cellar utilizes the best of modern technology, the vineyard still creates its Brunello in the traditional method by aging the wine in large, Slavonian oak barrels for nearly four years.
Great story this.
www.ilpalazzone.com
 
 
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Wine Diva at Intervin

 
Intervin
 
 
 
 
The InterVin International Wine Awards is designed to recognize and celebrate the very best wines available to Canadian consumers.
An entirely objective, blind tasting format has been developed that utilizes a team of qualified and respected judges. The panel features wine industry professionals with backgrounds in hospitality, media, education and winemaking.
Competing wines are  grouped by varietal or style ensuring that each is fairly evaluated. Judges awarded  gold, silver and bronze medals in each category as well as determine the prestigious top awards for the overall best wines.
One of the highly qualified judges was Daenna van Mulligen – The Wine Diva.
The results are now out but Daenna has her tasting notes and gives us the inside edge on who won what and why.
Wines included in our discussion were
 

Best in Show

  • Cavas la Capilla – Malbec
  • Tyler Harleton – Pinot Gris
  • Taylor Fladgate LBV Port
  • Stellars Jay Brut 2008
  • Mission Hill Compendium
  • Nk Mip  Qwam Qwmt  Riesling ice wine
  • Painted Rock Cabernet and Syrah
  • Poplar Grove – Pinot Gris
  • Quails Gate  – Chenin 2012
  • Quails Gate – Dry Riesling
  • Red Rooster – Reserve Viognier
  • Silk Scarf  Malbec-Cab 2009
  • Stellars Jay
  • Tinhorn Creek Pinot Noir 2009
  • Tyler Harleton  Viognier. Pinot Gris
  • Wild Goose
  • Stoney ridge
  • Tawse

 
www.winediva.ca
www.intervin.ca
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STORIES WE’RE WORKING ON

 

  • Carlo Mondavi at Continuum
  • The 17th annual Cornucopia. Whistler Wine Festival
  • Bistro Seventeen 89
  • A Return to La Morra Piedmont
  • Beppi Crosariol

November 6th 2013

Tasting Room Radio AB_BANNER   It seemed too good to be true. An offer to not only visit Barolo during harvest but also attend the Truffle Festival in Alba as the guest of Batasiolo. Begun in 1882, Batasiolo started with just 7 acres. They have become a winery that makes 10% of all Barolos. Our host: Fiorenzo Dogliani. A family so ingrained in the Piedmont wine region that they have a town named after them. Join us – Barolo and Truffles?  It IS a dream come true!

THE SHOW

Il Boscareto Hotel and SpaFor centuries Dogliani has been a name synonymous with the distinctive wines of Piedmont. Both as a picturesque town that has long been famous for wines produced from Dolcetto – Dolcetto di Dogliani – and today as the family surname of one of Piedmont’s most famous producers of Barolo. Il boscaretoFiorenzo Dogliani, CEO of the Dogliani family’s Beni di Batasiolo winery, runs the family enterprise, Batasiolo SPA. In addition to the winery, Batasiolo SPA has embraced a wine-country destination lifestyle with its newly built, 38-room luxury hotel and spa, Il Boscareto which was opened in Serralunga d’Alba in 2009.

Il Boscareto Hotel and Spa

The Dogliani family’s winegrowing history spans four generations in Italy’s Piedmont region and traces its origin to just seven and a half acres of Nebbiolo vines in Barolo. With the launch of Beni di Batasiolo in 1978, the company’s vineyard holdings now total 345 acres from nine vineyard sites and four growing regions: Barolo, La Morra, Monforte D’Alba and Serralunga D’Alba.

Fiorenzo Dogliani

Fiorenzo Dogliani


As CEO, Fiorenzo directs the company from the Beni di Batasiolo winery located in La Morra Cuneo. In the late 1950s, Fiorenzo is credited with reaching beyond the borders of Piedmont to market the family’s wines to restaurateurs in nearby Milan. It was this bold first move that established a presence for the company’s wines on the domestic market and foreshadowed Fiorenzo’s future role as an evangelist for the Piedmont region on the world market.   Fiorenzo was among the first Piedmontese winegrowers to travel extensively to promote his wines   Fiorenzo’s early efforts helped raise visibility for the company’s long-lived Barolo and Barbaresco wines and establish a reputation for quality, one that is rigorously pursued at Batasiolo. By 1979 he was traveling to New York and Toronto introducing the trade and consumers alike to joys of Nebbiolo, an effort that helped speed the evolution of American palates at the time towards the appreciation of dry, sophisticated wines.    
Richardo March

Richardo March


Canada is the number four market in the World for Batasiolo.  In order to talk to Fiorenzo and also travel the Piedmont district we needed a translator, wine expert and driver and we found him in Richardo March. Director of US and Canada sales for Batasiolo.

 
 
www.batasiolo.com http://www.boissetfamilyestates.com http://www.barolodibarolo.com/inglese/ http://www.lonelyplanet.com/italy/liguria-piedmont-and-valle-daosta/piedmont
 

Kimberly and Ziggy in Alba

Kimberly and Ziggy in Alba


 
Also along for the trip and guesting on the special were:   Our host and organizer of the trip … Kimberly Charles – Charles Communications &  Associates in San Francisco. http://www.charlescomm.com/     Ziggy Eschliman,  known to most simply as The Wine Gal. Her radio shows are broadcast throughout wine country and are available on the internet. As a leading American speaker, consultant, and wine writer. Ziggy is a driving force behind a national movement toward making wine hip, fun and accessible. http://www.ziggythewinegal.com
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
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The World Wine Guys - Mike and Jeff in Alba

 
 
The World Wine Guys MIKE  DeSIMONE and JEFF JENSSEN, also known as the World Wine Guys, are wine, spirits, food, and travel writers, educators, and hosts. They are award winning journalists as well as best selling and award winning authors. Mike and Jeff are the Entertaining and Lifestyle Editors at Wine Enthusiast Magazine and are regular travel and wine contributors for The Huffington Post. DeSimone and Jenssen are the authors of the best-selling Wines Of The Southern Hemisphere. Mike and Jeff are members of the International Food, Wine, and Travel Writers Association, The Society of Wine Educators, and The James Beard Foundation.   http://worldwineguys.com/    
 
 
 
 
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    The Truffle Master   The famous ‘Tartufo d’Alba‘ is a marvelous gift of nature and a symbol of the rich cuisine of Piemonte.   The truffle was known in antiquity, not just for its inherent culinary qualities but also as an aphrodisiac! Scientists discovered that truffles contain a volatile alcohol with a strong musk flavor, a chemical brother of testosterone. No doubt this is something the ancients knew all along. The secret to enjoying the truffle is to avoid using it with other strong flavors. It is perhaps best served as an antipasti, buttered on whole meal toast or over pasta as shards with butter and parmigiano reggiano cheese.   In a country where food equates with love as one of life’s great pleasures, ‘tartufi’ are literally worth their weight in gold. The delicate white truffle variety, only served raw, grows in Northern Italy and Umbria. Piedmonte is the heart of white truffle country, where the famous Alba festival provides a magnificent backdrop of Romanesque ruins, Gothic spires and Baroque bell towers every October.   Thank you Batasiolo. Thank you Kimberly and thank you Italy!!
The name says it all    
 

Stories we are working on:

The Lake Sonoma Story
Dominque Demarville – The Cellar Master at Veuve Clicquot
Martha Wainwright – singer/songwriter/wine fan
Richard Parsons – Ill Palazonne
Thierry Threlfall – sommelier of the Year pours his new wine TNT
Carlo Mondavi returns to Vancouver
2012 World Winemaker of the Year Jorge Riccitelli of Bodega Norton
2013 Cornucopia Wine festival – Whistler
 

October 30th 2013

Tasting Room Radio AB_BANNER


Steve Meyer..The Chief Winemaker at Wyndham Estate Wines in Australia..pours George Wyndham Founders Reserve Shiraz at Fable in Vancouver
And Chef Trevor Bird from Fable Kitchen creates four different courses to go with that big down under red.
Rene Schlatter  co-owner and President of MerryVale  and Starmount wines talks Napa.
Laure Viasserman from the Rhone Valley Wine Council takes us on a tour of Rhone Valley Wines.
And while I was in Italy..The Wine Diva was in Chile – again!! We compare notes.
 
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THE SHOW

 
Daenna van Mulligen..The Wine Diva headed for Chile last week. At the very same time I headed for Barolo in Italy.

Daenna Van Mulligen

Daenna Van Mulligen


(Next week..its a one hour special on the wines of Barolo and Truffle Festival time)
As soon as I got back, I phoned Daenna and we traded road stories.
Daenna had been there 5 years ago.
This time she went to South America as the guest of Santa Rita.
Expect an update on the wines of the very popular Santa Rita and her observations of Chilean  wine country.
www.winediva.ca
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Steve Meyer is the Chief Winemaker at Wyndham Estate Wines in Australia . 
Steve Meyer

Steve Meyer


‘His love affair with the wine industry comes from the core essence of wine making. For Steve to “have a look at the fruit in the vineyard and get an idea of its potential” is as paramount as when it eventually comes into the winery to process it.
Steve has shaped his career around the overriding philosophy that winemakers shouldn’t over do it with too many winemaking tricks. His mantra is “making products more regional”; something he suggests is the next big thing in the wine industry. “Consumers want to know where the wine comes from,  we should be able to show off distinctly where a wine comes from as an aspect of distinctly what we are trying to do”.
The opportunity now for Steve at Wyndham Estate is to make fully-fledged regional Shiraz in full flavoured styles.
The featured wine is the George Wyndham Founder’s Reserve Shiraz 2010 Vintage.  www.wyndhamestate.com 
Steve poured his wine at the fabulous  Fable Kitchen  on Fourth Ave in Kitsilano.
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Chef Trevor Bird was committed  to pair four different courses with one wine. Wyndham Founders Reserve Shiraz.
 
Trevor Bird

Trevor Bird


  Fable Kitchen  was opened in the spring of 2012 by Chef Trevor Bird (of reality show Top Chef Canada fame), and has become one of Vancouver’s “it” restaurants, showcasing the best of local farm to table cuisine. Chef Bird chose to plan the entire evening with this 2010 Shiraz as the only wine, thus showcasing the wine’s excellent versatility with food pairings from appetizers to desserts.
Chef Trevor Bird - Fable
The evening started with canapés—wonderful blue cheese and bacon filled dates along with shooters of parsnip and apple soup.  Trevor chose to highlight the herbaceous notes in the wine with the first course of rabbit legs and squash angolotti. For the second course, Braised Beef Stiletto, the Shiraz was used to braise the meat and create the au jus, making this a perfect pairing. The evening drew to a close with a sublime Dark Chocolate Terrine and Olive Oil Ice Cream  www.fablekitchen.ca
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Rene Schlatter – Co-owner and President of Merryvale and Starmont wines since 2008.  
 
Rene Schlatter Family

Rene Schlatter Family


 
The first winery built in Napa Valley following the repeal of Prohibition, Merryvale is located in the heart of America’s premier wine region.
In this celebrated home, sustainable winemaking thrives in the care of the Schlatter family.
The winery continues to capture the elegance and charm of its historic beginnings, with their historic Cask Room where they  host private events, seasonal wine club events and winemaker dinners, and unique Wine Experiences for visitors. The winery also features a state-of-the-art winemaking cellar that showcases the latest equipment to craft boutique wines.
Merryvale  Cask Room

Merryvale Cask Room


Merryvale has earned international acclaim for wines of outstanding quality.
Their 2008 Profile was awarded 96 Points by Robert Parker.
 
www.merryvale.com
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and finally we finish with a trip to the Rhone Valley without ever leaving The Tasting Room.
 
Rhone Valley
 
Laure Viassermann is with the Rhone Valley Wine Council and as such has a wonderful perspective on what makes Rhone wines so very special.
This interview and guest are for all those people (like myself) who have a desire to know more about Rhone wines and why they seem to have a delicious hold on us.
As I learn more about all things Rhone, perhaps you can as well.
Rhone Valley Wines

Rhone Valley Wines


“The vineyards of the Rhone Valley are a world apart, a shifting landscape which winds and unwinds around a fluid axis: the Rhone, king of rivers, carrying silt and a sense of history. The Rhone is the linking factor, holding together these contrasting landscapes. From Vienne to Nîmes and Avignon, and on to the borders of the Luberon, on both banks of the river, there is a wealth of places to explore”. Christophe Tassan, “Flânerie dans le Vignoble de la Vallée du Rhône
The Rhone Valley is France’s second largest
80% of the production is Red
Northern Rhone is the birthplace of Syrah
Tavel is the only 100% dry Rose Appellation from France.
Southern Rhone Reds pair well with Stews, soups, roasts, salmon, spicy food, pork belly and game
Northern Rhone Reds pair best with tomato based pasta dishes, grilled foods, grilled beef, chicken, veggies, lamb, ribs, steak and tuna.
Rhone  rose pair with charcuterie, pate, cheeses, BBQ and smoked salmon. Roses are perfect for Asian food.
The whites are made from Viognier, Marsanne, Roussanne and Grenache Blanc go well with cheese, white fish and sushi.
 
www.vins-rhone.com
 
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STORIES WE’RE WORKING ON

  •  A one hour special next week on our trip to Piedmont Italy.  The Northern home of Italy’s wine region.
  • Barolo, La Morra, Asti and Alba. Our host is the legendary Barolo winery Batasiolo.
  • We tour, we talk, we drink (OMG) and we eat from sun up to sunset.
  • Everything you may have wanted to know about Barolo will be asked and answered.
  • Details coming on Tastingroomradio.com 

October 16th, 2013

Tasting Room Radio AB_BANNER


All Righty then!!
It’s the 9th annual Iron Chef Okanagan. A culinary smack down between Chef Ned Bell and Chef Paul Rogalski of Rouge in Calgary.
Special guests on the night include Poplar Grove, Summerhill, Twisted Tomato, Intersection, Naramata heritage Inn and Jay Blackford..Our host and co-owner of Cabana Grille in Kelowna.
The Wine Diva has a new Best of BC wine list.
And Merridale Cider on Vancouver Island takes the next big step!!!
 

THE SHOW

 
I was pleased and honoured to be a judge at the annual Gourmet and Grapes/Iron Chef Okanagan at the Cabana Grille in Kelowna.
The chefs have one hour to open a black box and create 2 dishes. The ingredients include a mystery item that makes it just that much tougher.
 

Chef Ned Bell

Chef Ned Bell


Chef Ned Bell has been in all 9 showdowns, losing only once to a 9 year old from Cawston.
Ned is a partner in Cabana Grille but spends most days creating fabulous culinary treats at Yew at Vancouver’s Four Seasons Hotel.
He’s fast, very competent and totally focused on winning once the hour starts.
I once made the mistake of tasting his ingredients that he foolishly placed in front of me during combat.
When he saw me eating his food he came very close to climbing over the counter and slugging me.
Full contact cooking. www.yewseafood.com
 
Cabana Grille

Cabana Grille


In May of 2001 Olivier Reynaud and Paul Rogalski combined their tremendous experience to create The Cross House Restaurant, and in April 2003 introduced us to ROUGE – At The Cross House.
Paul Rogalski

Paul Rogalski


Since the formation of their partnership, they have enjoyed outstanding reviews. It’s more than just the critics who are taking notice, though. Calgarians are making ROUGE a part of their Calgary culinary scene.
Rouge Calgary
When Rouge was voted #60 in S. Pellegrino World’s Best Restaurants in 2010 the phone started ringing and hasn’t stopped since.
He promises Ned Bell is going to Dance like a monkey!! www.rougecalgary.com
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While the competition was going on there was nothing to judge..so I grabbed my trusty recorder and talked to the following guests.

[divider]
The Wine Diva is in fact Daenna van Mulligen..wine reviewer and friend of the family.
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Who else do we know would taste over 1000 wines in a year AND SPIT THEM ALL OUT!
If you go to www.winediva.ca and look up her new list The Best of BC you can follow along as we try and
Give you the goods on as many as possible.
And this is a good thing because BC Liquor stores will be showcasing these wines for the next month.
Enjoy!!
[divider]
Rick Pipes and Janet Docherty are the great people behind Merridale Estate Cidery in Cobble Hill Vancouver Island.
They make Cider, Fortified and Spirits.

Janetand Eick from Merridale

Janetand Eick from Merridale


Now comes Hoptimized.
Made from Cowichan Valley Cider Apples and Vancouver Island Hops, it is perfect for beer lovers who might be hesitant to cross-over to cider. Hoptimized has proven to be so popular that they have pre-sold most of it to private liquor stores before they have even bottled it!
Lets get our Merridale on.
http://www.merridalecider.com
 

Shows we are working on:

Merryvale/Starmont Winery in Napa
Wyndam Estate pours  Shiraz at Fable
Laurie Vaissermann – A primer of Rhone Wines
A very special report on Batasiolo Wines and the annual Truffle festival in Barolo Italy.

October 9th 2013

Tasting Room Radio AB_BANNER

THE SHOW

Nicolette Novak. The Queen of Niagara. What a delight!!


Nicolette Novak

Nicolette Novak


A lifelong native of Niagara, Ontario, Nicolette is one of the area’s best resources. She always has one ear to the grapevine to uncover what’s new and exciting in the community. Her enthusiasm and passion for what she does has earned her many well deserved accolades as well as many fans among her vast clientele. Time spent with Nicolette is time well spent.
As many people over the years have observed, Nicolette is The Good Earth! Her wit, sense of fun and genuine caring are just some of the ingredients that have made
The Good Earth such a success.
This is her family’s farm. She started the cooking school and then planted the vines..
How many times have you heard chefs and sommeliers say ”combining the grapes and food from the same soil..is the best of both Worlds”
And with Good Earth and Wine she has done just that.
Can’t tell you how much fun this interview was. Hope you like it.
http://www.goodearthfoodandwine.com
[divider]
John Clerides is the owner of Marquis Wine Cellar in Vancouver and is a respected voice in the wine community.
He’s opinionated and totally dialed in.
John Clerides

John Clerides


Thus we find him on a vacation on a ship off the coast of France..conducting wine tours.
I thought he’d be relaxed and laid back right?
Wrong!!
We cover French wines, BC wine laws and the new expanded store he’s about to open.
http://www.marquis-wines.com
[divider]
When I left the Naramata bench 2 years ago Stewart Glynes was the chef at Bench Market above Penticton.
Now he’s the chef and Co-owner with his wife Heather . So I thought we’d check back in with the very popular Mr Glynes.
If you’re headed to the Naramata Bench… don’t miss the opportunity to stop and check out where everyone in the wine community hangs out.
http://www.thebenchmarket.com/
[divider]
 
VINPIN-Corey Wood

Corey Wood


Corey Wood. Crime fighter and web master.
He and his team have done a remarkable job transforming our website.
I have limited skills in that area so asked Corey to walk me through some of the new points.
This is brisk but helpful for me and hopefully for you.
Corey also has a winery promotion platform called VINPIN.com it’s all about WINE | FOOD | FRIENDS | the perfect pairing!  Some see it as the “Pinterest of wine” others a modern way of promoting and aggregating your wineries products , social media and story.  Check it out
http://vinpin.com/wineries/promotion
 
[divider]
The Wine Diva – Daenna van Mulligan sits down just long enough to share her latest list from her website.
Daenna Van Mulligen

Daenna Van Mulligen


These are Thanksgiving wines.
Meant for family and friends.
Meant to compliment the food of the harvest and the season.
Follow along by finding the list on her website
www.winediva.ca
[divider]
….and finally Denis Cotter at Hastings House Salt Spring Island.
Denis Cotter For the Love of Food
Born in Macroom, Co. Cork, Denis worked in banking for eight years before leaving to follow an ambition to work with food. Already a vegetarian, he trained as a cook in the famous Cranks restaurants in London.
Back in Ireland, after a spell in a wholefood restaurant, Denis’ frustration with the limitations of the vegetarian industry sparked the opening of Cafe Paradiso in 1993, to create an environment where he could evolve a personal style of cooking focussed on the pleasure of food rather than the perceived negativity of vegetarianism.
Among the many awards bestowed on Cafe Paradiso, Denis Cotter was voted ‘Chef of the Year ’ by Food & Wine (Ireland) magazine in 2005.
Denis Cotter

Denis Cotter


Denis Cotter is also the author of four books. Atrium, an imprint of the Cork University Press, published his first book, ‘The Café Paradiso Cookbook’ in June 1999; and his second, ‘Paradiso Seasons’ in June 2003. The first book was shortlisted for the British Guild of Food Writers Awards. ‘Paradiso Seasons’ won ‘Best Vegetarian Cookbook in the World’ at the Gourmand World Cookbook Awards in Barcelona in 2004, and was shortlisted for the James Beard Awards in New York in 2005.
November 2007 saw the release of Denis’ third book, titled ‘wild garlic, gooseberries & me’ and published by Harper Collins. Giving equal rein to his writing talent and ability to create inspirational recipes, ‘wild garlic…’ was shortlisted for the Andre Simon Awards in 2008.
His latest book, ‘for the love of food’, published by Harper Collins in April 2011, is easily Denis’ most accessible collection of recipes, focussing on home cooking with delicious flavour combinations.

http://www.cafeparadiso.ie/about/denis-cotter
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STORIES WE’RE WORKING ON

 
IRON CHEF OKANAGAN

  • Chefs ned Bell and Paul Rodalski from Rouge Calgary
  • Ian Sutherland Poplar Grove
  • AK Campbell Naramata heritage Inn
  • Jesse Croy – Chef at Summerhill
  • Bruce Schmidt – Intersection Wines
  • Carl Maerz – Twisted Tomato Kelowna
  • Jay Blackford – Cabana Grille   
  • Merridale Ciderworks –
  • Wine Diva – Best of BC  

 

October 2nd 2013

Tasting Room Radio AB_BANNER


Niagra Wine Festival
It’s the 62 annual Niagara Grape and Wine festival.
Food. Wine. New Friends.
 [divider]

THE SHOW

Downtown St. Catharines

Downtown St. Catharines


The Niagara Wine Festival — or Grape and Wine  as its been called — is back for its 62 year.
Over the years its kept growing  until it now takes over most of wine country..not just downtown St  Catharines.
I was invited by Executive Director Kimberley Hundertmark to host a wine panel called East vs West.
I discovered they weren’t talking about BC vs Ontario but regions within Niagara.
As it turns out the panel never took place but I did get to Introduce The Spoons at the Friday night concert (that’s was fun) and then drove around Niagara and stopped into wineries for a taste and chat.
This episode of TRR  is all about Niagara and the people who make it special.
What a sensational destination.
The wines just keep getting better and better..some are World Class.
As a BC based wine fan, I wanted to know about several important things.
How’s Niagara doing 2013?
Are they now shipping wine to consumers across Canada?
Now that Ontario wines are welcome in BC, which wines are available?
And How Much do they like the Alberta customer ? (they like Alberta..)

Guests include

Allan Schmidt – President of Vineland / Chair of The Wine Council of Ontario  www.winecouncilofontario.ca www.vineland.com
Charlie Pillitteri – CEO/President Pillitteri Estate Winery  www.pillitteri.com
Curtis Fielding – President of Fielding Wines. Grape grower of the year 2012/13  www.fieldingwines.com
Sportscaster Bob McGown – CEO Stoney Ridge Estate Winery.   Partner in Mike Weir Wines www.stoneyridge.com
Rob Power – Winemaker at Creekside Estate Winery.  Matt Loney Sales and marketing Creekside www.creeksidewine.com
Gillian Tinsley – Estate Sommelier.  Martin Werner – Winemaker at Ravine Vineyard  www.RavineVineyard.com  
Deborah Pratt – Winery Public Relations  Great Estates Niagara. (Inniskillin Jackson-Triggs. Clos Jordanne) www.greatestestatesniagara.com

[divider]

STORIES WE’RE WORKING ON

Nicolette Novak – The Good Earth Food and Wine Company.
Merridale Cider launches their Spirits Line  on Vancouver Island.
Denis Cotter – One of the world’s greatest Vegetarian Chefs comes to Hastings House Salt Spring Island .

September 25th 2013

Tasting Room Radio AB_BANNER


The Wine Diva visits Painted Rock and hands us 6 wines to watch
Makini Howell. The vegan queen of Seattle
Hester Creek rocks the Golden Mile
Susane Balbo
Hester Creek Two
 
 

[divider]

The Show

The Wine Diva has two stories this week.
wn
First is about the remarkable destination known as Painted Rock.
Painted Rock
Combining award winning wines and a profile that strides across the
landscape with ease.
John Skinner opens his winery and BOOM..he’s holding two Lieutenant Govern
awards.

john Skinner

john Skinner


Talk about making your presence felt.
Finally after two years of planning John has opened his new tasting room and
event center just South of Penticton, overlooking Skaha Lake.
If you can’t get there not to worry.
Daenna van Mulligan – The Wine Diva – will take us through the two wines
they poured at their opening.
Chardonnay and Syrah!
The Daenna has a half a dozen wines she’s been reviewing and we pass those
on to you. Enjoy!

  • Upper Bench Estate Winery Merlot
  • Mt. Boucherie Family Estate Summit Reserve Blaufrankish
  • J.G. Carrion Cristallino “Jaume Serra” Brut Nature Reserva Cava
  • Bodegas Ateca ‘Garnacha de Fuego
  • Howling Bluff Sauvignon Blanc~Semillon
  • TIME Estate Winery White Meritage

[divider]
Makini Howell 
Makini Howell at Plum
www.plumbistro.com Plum Bistro,
Seattle’s wildly popular vegan restaurant, is known for its delicious and
innovative vegan recipes using local ingredients. Now there a cookbook to go
with the restaurants. Sure to please both vegans and meat-eaters, Plum:
Gratifying Vegan Dishes features Plum’s flavorful, comforting dishes for
brunch, soups, salads, entrées, desserts, and more. Makini Howell’s book
features 60 recipes, including Pesto Plum Pizza, Good Old-Fashioned French
Toast, Barbecue Oyster-Mushroom Sliders, Fresh Blueberry Shortcake, homemade vegan pasta, and more.
Plum.  The Book
Makini Howell has been passionate about creating a chic dining experience
that appeals to vegans, foodies, and omnivores alike since her days of
living in New York City. In 2005 she moved back home to Seattle with the
goals of redirecting her family’s restaurant business and creating a new
perception of veganism. Makini is focused on using organic and non-GMO
seasonal produce and herbs from family-owned farms in combinations that are
both comforting and unexpected. As an entrepreneur she has developed a
sustainable business model using what the earth provides to supply
wholesome, nourishing food.
Couldn’t wait to ask Makini why many vegans are opinionated and such a pain.
She agreed.
[divider]
Hester Creek  
Hailing from the Niagara region, it seems natural that Rob Summers figures
large in the Canadian wine industry After acquiring an Honours Degree in
Food Science (BSc, Hons) from the University of Guelph he worked at
Hillebrand Estates, Henry of Pelham, Cave Spring Cellars, and Peller
Estates. While at Peller, Rob directed VQA winemaking for two vintages in
the Okanagan where he saw the vast potential that the south Okanagan Valley
held, and was inspired to relocate his family to Osoyoos He joined the team
at Hester Creek Estate Winery in 2006 and his signature winemaking style has
since gained accolades from his fellow winemakers and seasoned wine experts
alike.
Rob Summers and Mark Sheridan   Hester Creek
Born and raised in the Barossa Valley in Australia, and after earning a
Bachelor of Agriculture Science at Adelaide University, Mark Sheridan went
on to work for some of Australia’s largest wine producers. Mark was
attracted to BC, as he saw the Okanagan as the world’s next wine frontier,
so in 1999, he moved to Canada to be director of vineyard operations for
Vincor Canada. He was recognized for his talents and called “a rising star
in a young industry”.
Now, as Hester Creek’s general manager, Mark oversees all aspects of the
winery’s business, from viticulture through to the finished wines and then
into the marketplace
While tasting and talking about their new Fall releases we also talked about
wine shipping laws, the growing season and The Okanagan today.
[divider]
Susana Balbo
Susana Balbo  Argentina
In a country dominated by male winemakers, Susana Balbo stands out not only
for her gender, but for her incredible skill and experience. She has been
making wine since she earned her enology degree in 1981, and she has
probably produced a wider variety of wines than any other winemaker in
Argentina. Susana was the first Argentine winemaker to be hired as a
consultant to make wine outside of Argentina. She has made wine in
Australia, California, Chile, France, Italy, South Africa, and Spain, and
she spends a month each year in a different wine region of the world
studying with local winemakers and growers. After twenty years of producing wines for others, Susana decided it was time
to apply her education and experience to her own wines and put her name right on the bottle.
Susana strives for balance in her wines, with layers of complexity coming from the individually fermented varietals. She wants
people who drink her wines to feel that every sip from the glass is as
exciting as the first.
www.dominiodelplata.com.ar


[divider]

STORIES WE’RE WORKING ON

The 62 Annual Niagara Food and Wine festival
Bob McGown
Ron Power
Nicolette Novak
Charlie Pilliterri

September 18th, 2013

Tasting Room Radio AB_BANNER


The Wine Diva has two dozen wines for the Season. Falling in Love with Autumn Wines
We travel to Cowichan Valley on Vancouver Island for their wine festival.
Sean Heather – One of the most interesting restaurateurs in Vancouver enters the Hall of Fame.
[divider]
THE SHOW
300x310xwine,P20diva,P204.png.pagespeed.ic.SaIdA6Pg5n

Daenna Van Mulligen


Daenna van Mulligen returns as The Wine Diva.
Falling in Love With Autumn Wines.
It’s that change of season ..heading fully into Fall. Most of us start looking for more “involved”
Wines..switching from the bright and light of summer to bigger reds and more complex whites.
The Diva brings it…
If you miss info..it’s always listed here and on her website.

  1.  Peter Lehmann ‘Portrait’ Shiraz, Barossa Valley, Australia
  2.  Castiglion Del Bosco Rosso di Montalcino DOC, Tuscany Italy
  3. Allegrini Palazzo della Torre, Veronese, Veneto Italy
  4. Antinori ‘Peppoli’, DOCG Chianti Classico, Tuscany Italy
  5. Montebuena ‘Cuvee KPF’ D.O. Rioja, Spain
  6. Plume Cabernet Sauvignon, Napa Valley California
  7. Brazin Old Vine Zin, Lodi California
  8. Tinhorn Creek Chardonnay, Okanagan Valley BC
  9. Quails’ Gate Chardonnay, Okanagan Valley BC
  10. Howling Bluff ‘Summa Quies” Pinot Noir Reserve, Okanagan Valley BC
  11. Altos Las Hormigas, Malbec Classico, Mendoza Argentina BC:
  12. Delas Cotes-Du-Ventoux, Rhone Valley, France
  13. Bartier~Scholefield ‘BS’ Red Table Wine, Okanagan Valley BC Winery
  14. Campo di Sasso Insoglio del Cinghiale, Bibona Tuscany Italy
  15. Blue Mountain Vineyard and Cellars Pinot Noir, Okanagan Valley BC
  16. Evans & Tate ‘Metricup Road’ Shiraz, Margaret River Australia BC
  17. Belle Glos Pinot Noir ‘Clark & Telephone Vineyard’, Santa Maria Valley, Santa Barbara, Calif.
  18. Mer Soleil ‘Gold’ Barrel Fermented Chardonnay, Santa Lucia Highlands
  19. Kettle Valley Viognier, Okanagan Valley BC Winery
  20. La Vieille Ferme Rouge Cotes~du~Ventoux, Rhone Valley France
  21. Sebastiani Chardonnay, Sonoma County
  22. Penfolds ‘Thomas Hyland’ Shiraz, Adelaide Australia
  23. Whitehaven Pinot Noir, Marlborough New Zealand
  24. Stoneboat Vineyards Pinotage, Okanagan Valley  

www.winediva.ca
[divider]
Cowichan Valley Wine Festival
We’re off to Vancouver Island and the annual Cowichan Fall Wine Festival.
Just south of Duncan lies the most beautiful farmland and forests.  The ocean view helps as well!
Cow Bay
A breathtaking drive over the Malahat Highway or a picturesque ferry ride brings you to the southern end of Cowichan Valley and the communities of Shawnigan Lake, Mill Bay, Duncan and Cobble Hill. Sheltered by a ridge of high mountains to the west and warmed by the Strait of Georgia to the east, the valley has long been called by local First Nations people ‘The Warm Land’. Indeed the region boasts the highest average temperature in Canada, which creates ideal growing conditions for almost any crop. Approximately a quarter of Vancouver Island’s cultivated land is found in the valley and it’s a local tradition to sell products fresh off the farm.
Keep an eye out for vineyards with Tasting Room Open signs, where you can sample aromatic wines that are nurtured by rich soil and the climatic combination of warmth and moisture. Local winemakers work with vinifera favourites such as Pinot Gris, Ortega, and Pinot Noir, along with lesser-known varietals carefully matched to the maritime climate.
Keep an eye & ear out for Blattner Wines.
Valentin Blattner is a grape breeder living on the edge of the Jura Mountains in Switzerland. As a young man he had a vision to breed new grape varieties for a changing world, vines that would not require the usual spraying for fungal diseases that most popular grapes need. Of course these new vines needed to produce wines that were both unique yet reminiscent of traditional wine flavours.
Today in Germany, Switzerland, Belgium, Holland, British Columbia, Ontario and the Canadian Maritime Provinces the dream has been realized. After many years of field trials of the vines and wines, there are finally critically acclaimed wines being released from the Blattner Selections.
Cowichan valley
My hosts were Linda and Mark Holford of Rocky Creek Wines.

Linda and Mark Holford

Linda and Mark Holford


They asked me to host a panel at the winery which I gladly accepted.
Rocky Creek Winery
Guests on the panel included:
Treve Ring Sommelier. Writer. Consultant. Editor. Outspoken and opinionated. Perfect!!
Troy Townsin Author (Wine Feast: Eat. Drink & Discover BC Wine) and Host of Time for Wine on CBC Victoria. Great Overview!
Chris Turyk The new voice and face of Unsworth Vineyards. Doesn’t look like a dirt farmer.
Unsworth
Mark Holford President. Owner of Rocky Creek Winery. And this is his second job!!
Bailey Williamson Winemaker at Blue Grouse. Learned his craft with Michael Bartier at Road 13. Wants to make great bubble.
Tereza Roux Wine Director at Clayoquot Wilderness Resort. Flight Delayed by Fog. Was Missed.
Other guests included:
Tim Turyk and Daniel Gosman Owner and Winemaker at Unsworth Vineyards. 

[divider]
This episode of Tasting Room Radio concludes with long overdue interview with Sean Heather.
Sean Heather
Sean arrived in Vancouver from Ireland with the intention of earning enough money to finance a trip to Berkeley, where he hoped to work with Alice Waters.
He soon realized that the only way to beat the grind of the restaurant business would be to work for himself.
He partnered with his sister Roisin and  soon to be wife Erin. Then he opened the Irish Heather in 1997. He worked behind the bar five nights a week, pouring pints for his regulars, while his wife served tables and his sister worked weekends.
Next came Shebeen Whisky House, which opened in 2000, and then the Salty Tongue Café in 2003. After opening Salt to rave reviews in 2006, Sean’s business world grew in leaps and bounds.
Next came Fetch, a coffee kiosk in the old B.C. Electric building at Carrall and Hastings streets, opened in 2009; Judas Goat, a Spanish-style tapas bar next door to Salt, as well as Chinatown coffee shop Everything Café and the Pennsylvania Hotel bakery, all opened in 2010.
There’s also Penn Bakeshop, Bitter and his latest project Rainer Provisions.
He has opened and operated highly successful destinations on some of the toughest streets and alleys on the West Coast.
Plus…he quietly supports local charities including The Portland Hotel Society, The Rainer Hotel and Beauty Night Society.
And That’s why he’s being included into the BC Restaurant Hall of Fame and a very welcome guest on Tasting Room Radio.
http://www.bcrhof.ca/
www.scoutmagazine.ca Gluttony‎
http://www.shophhg.ca/pages/about-us
 


[divider]

STORIES WE’RE WORKING ON:

The 62nd annual Niagara Wine Festival

September 11th 2013

Tasting Room Radio AB_BANNER


This week: 14 BC wineries pour their latest releases and the Dean of Canadian Wine Writers John Schreiner ..shares his tasting notes.
Okanagan Crush Pad
[divider]

THE SHOW

It’s the annual Colour BC VQA Fall Release Tasting at the Vancouver Convention Centre
Take a BC wine journey through the growing wine regions of British Columbia!
The largest annual tasting of BC VQA wines in Vancouver, this event hosted 75 BC wineries, showcasing more than 300 BC VQA wines.
We are so pleased to present the talented people behind the wines. We hope you have fun as you discover their new fall releases.
There was ONE other question that I asked most of the people below.
ARE YOU CURRENTLY SHIPPING YOUR WINES TO THE REST OF CANADA?
Some very surprising comments came back my way.
For years many of these same wineries were in denial.
Either ducked or wouldn’t answer the question
NOT ANY MORE!!
[divider]
The new BC wines pour their latest in Vancouver.
The Bartier Boys
Michael Bartier Bartier Bros/Okanagan Crush Pad. Perhaps the busiest winemaker in BC
Ian Sutherland Poplar Grove/Monster Vineyards Between Poplar Grove and Monster..enough wine for everyone
Ian Sutherland Poplar Grove
Jay Drysdale – Bella Ah bella.. Bella!!! Bella!!!!!!! Love that Bubble
Richard DeSilva – Misconduct Pair his wines with Chef Abul Adame and its Heaven
Randy Picton – Nk Mip The one and only Winemaker Nk Mip has had. Solid and very talented.
Randy Picton Nk Mip
Graydon Ratzlaff – Recline Ridge Amazed how good their pours were.
Adrian Cassini – Cassini Cellars Built a beautiful winery south of Oliver. To showcase his award wining wines.
Mike Raffan – Township 7 T7 in two locations. Naramata bench and just outside Vancouver.
Bill Eggert – Fairview Cellars Troublemaker who makes complex, thoughtfull wines.
Ezra Cipes – Summerhill One of the most popular wine destinations anywhere.
Ezra Cipes. 2nd from left
James Cambridge – Backyard Vineyards James brings his talents from Le Vieux Pin. It’s all good
Marty Farrell – Clos du Soleil Great circle of friends, working together. Ace in the Hole? Winemaker Ann Sperling
Helene Pannekoek – Fort Berens in Lillooet. One of the new wine regions in BC. Amazing Reisling.
Nirmal and Pinki Gidda – Mt Boucherie They own over 300 acres. Half the room has sought their grapes and its Pinki’s first interview
John Schreiner – Author. The Dean of Canadian Wine Writers. He reveals his tasting notes on several wines.
John Schreiner


[divider]

STORIES WE’RE WORKING ON

Sean Heather. First question, which do you have more of Children or Restaurants.
The man behind Irish Heather, Salt tasting Rooms, Judas Goat. Shebeen, Salty Tongue etc.
One of which he sold this week.
The Cowichan Valley Wineries throw a party
Niagara presents its 62 annual Fall Wine Festival
Balbo Argentina

Tasting Room Radio AB Sept 4th 2013

Tasting Room Radio AB_BANNER


As September begins to take over our lives..certain things start to come into view.
One is harvest.
The second is a run of Wine Festivals, of all shapes and sizes.
Three food and wine festivals are profiled on this week’s TRR.
Cowichan Valley on Vancouver Island
The 62th annual Niagara Food and Wine Festival
The 33rd Okanagan Fall Wine Festival.
Interviews with all three organizing groups and a feature interview with Winemaker JM Bouchard at Road 13 on the Golden Mile. South Okanagan.

[divider]

THE SHOW

Rocky Creek WineryWe start in the Cowichan Valley with Linda Holford from Rocky Creek Winery.
Linda has  invited me to host a discussion at Rocky Creek  on Saturday Sept 14th with three local winemakers from Rocky Creek, Blue Grouse and Unsworth plus wine experts Treve Ring, Tereza Roux from Clayoquot Wilderness Resort and Troy Townsin from CBC Victoria’s Time for Wine.
We’ll focus on two questions
What is The Grape for Vancouver and the Gulf Islands?
Cowichan Valley in the Fall
And for the island wineries..what do you want to be when you grow up??
Linda fills us in on their events Sept 7-15
I also was able to find a panellist,  Troy Townsin..just to get a reaction to the questions I’m asking and the general lay of the wine land.
He joins us from Kelowna.
www.wines.cowichan.net
http://www.rockycreekwinery.ca/
Then we’re off to  Ontario  for the 62th annual Niagara Wine Festival.  Sept 14-29
They too have asked me to host a discussion.  This time about East vs West. On Sunday Sept 22nd
Kimberly Hundermark  -  Niagara
It’s not about BC vs Ontario, it’s about West Niagara vs Eastern Niagara. It’s shaping up to be quite an event.
It pits competing wineries..competing families and competing regions in a winner take all format.
Joining us on the show are Barry Katzman, co-chair of the festival and president of Mike Weir wines and Stoney Ridge winery and Kimberly Hundermark the Festivals Executive Director.
www.niagarawinefestival.com
 
Okanagan Crush Padand the last wine festival featured is the 33rd annual Okanagan Fall Wine Festival
Blair Baldwin Festival founder and Ellen Walker Mathews from Thompson Okanagan Tourist Assn take us through the ever expanding schedule of events that shape BC’s premier festival.October 4-14
Then its straight south to the Similkameen Valley to George Hansen Owner/Winemaker at Seven Stones to find out what’s being planned down there.
www.thewinefestivals.com/events
 
JM Bouchard  Road 13
We finish this episode of Tasting Room on The Golden Mile..just south of Oliver, BC.
JM Bouchard has firmly established himself as the winemaker of record at Road 13.
He’s driven, stubborn and dedicated to making the already fine wines of Road 13 even better.
We run through the growing portfolio, the events of the Fall and where he’s taking the wine program in the future.
www.road13vineyards.com
[divider]

STORIES WE’RE WORKING ON

Wine festival specials  in
Cowichan Valley
Niagara
Okanagan
The new BC wines pour their latest in Vancouver.