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Saturday, February 27, 2010



...all reflect a boom in the cookbook publishing business. A paperback
reprint will lower the cost to the purchaser, and also give a publisher
a chance to correct egregious errors or add a postscript. Some will
reissue a book in paper covers with a new layout or photos. Others will
rearrange existing material to present it as more informative text
while keeping the focus tight. Here are some recent "re-editions"...

15. LIQUID MEMORY; why wine matters (Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2009;
distr. D & M Publishers, 262 pages, ISBN 978-0-374-27257-9, $26 US hard
covers) is by Jonathan Nossiter, the director of the documentary
"Mondovino", which I felt was a terrific film. This is his first book,
originally published in French in 2007. Log rolling includes Bill
Buford and Neal Rosenthal (the latter appeared in the documentary and
has written "Reflections of a Wine Merchant"). For Nossiter, wine is an
essential art form, like movies, literature, music, and art. His book
is a mix of coverage. It is part memoir, part interview, part screed
(against snobs and fraudsters). Part I is about terroir, the sense of
place. Part II deals with power in the wine world, the motif of
"upmanship". Part III shows us his concern with Burgundy. And Part IV
is about authentic wines. It's a personal book, as all memoirs are, and
he does have a point of view. In fact, personal views do shape our
awareness of wine. His faves must be Burgundy followed by Bordeaux
since those have the most references in the book. And of course he has
a lot to say about Robert Parker, Jr. and Michel Rolland – both
strongly influential on changes to the Spanish wine industry, and not
for the better. I shouldn't be telling you these things, read it for
yourself. Quality/Price rating: 91.
16. RAISING STEAKS; the life and times of American beef (Mariner,
2009, 402 pages, ISBN 978-0-547-24769-4, $15.95 US soft covers) is by
Betty Fussell, a free lance writer who contributes to Gastronomica,
Food & Wine, Saveur, New Yorker, et al. She has also written ten
previous books, one most notably on corn. The book was originally
published in 2008 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, and this is a straight
reprint. This is a scholarly book, with copious endnotes, a
bibliography of trade journals and books and foodbooks, and index. The
21 or so recipes, all indexed under "recipes", come from a variety of
sources, all acknowledged. Her story of beef is one best told through a
series of historical clashes, from the British pastoralists vs. the
Spanish ranchers, through buffalo vs. cattle, cowboys vs. industrial
machines, up to and including natural vs. growth hormones. She covers
breeds (e.g. Angus), feed and anti-biotics, slaughtering and abattoirs,
packaging and distribution, with details on butcher shops, tanneries,
steakhouses, the role of Chicago, and buffalo meat (much better for you
than beef). There are lots of facts and figures, augmented by
reproductions of archival posters, paintings and photos. For us in
Canada, there are occasional references, with headings in the index
such as "mad cow disease" and beef imports. No websites are listed in
the resources section. Preparations have their ingredients listed in
avoirdupois measurements, but there is no metric table of equivalents.
Quality/Price Rating: 88.
17. A TASTE OF MY LIFE (Corgi Books, 2009, 463 pages, ISBN 978-0-55215-
731-5, $23.95 CAD paper covers) is by Raymond Blanc, a French chef who
opened Le Manoir aux Quat' Saisons (in 1984) near Oxford England. This
is his 2008 autobiography, self-described as "one man's hunger for
perfection". It's in memoir form, with stories from his French
childhood and his early apprentice days. The BBC described the original
of this book as "a rattling good read". It is a thorough and
comprehensive read. Blanc was instrumental in teaching Marco Pierre
White and Heston Blumenthal. Read his takes on molecular gastronomy and
on sustainability, plus children and food, hand washing, the Slow Food
movement, and even crows and dancing. Typical preps that he is
associated with (and are here in this book) include braised oxtail,
iced pineapple parfait, exotic fruit gratin with coconut rice, and eel
in teriyaki jelly. Preparations have their ingredients listed in either
metric or avoirdupois measurements, but there is no table of
equivalents given. An important read. Quality/Price rating: 87.

18. OLIVES & ORANGES; recipes & flavor secrets from Italy, Spain,
Cyprus & beyond (Houghton Mifflin, 2009 reprint, 372 pages, ISBN 978-0-
618-67764-1, $35 US hard covers) is by Sara Jenkins and Mindy Fox.
Jenkins, daughter of food writer Nancy Harmon Jenkins, has cheffed
mostly in New York city; she just opened Porchetta in the East Village.
Mindy Fox is a focusing food writer, now food editor at La Cucina
Italiana. Log rolling includes pieces by Mario (Batali), Paula
(Wolfert), Adam (Gopnik), and Molly (O'Neill). The preps are
Mediterranean, but for family reasons there is a strong run of Italian
and Eastern Mediterranean dishes. Try Fattouche from Lebanon; Green
beans with shaved onion, fried almonds and parmesan; Red onions cooked
in orange juice; Pan-roasted Brussels sprouts, turnips, and beets with
farm faro; or North African spiced shrimp. She begins with a
description of her "flavor pantry" (oils, salts and salty products,
grains and legumes, broths, herbs and spices, and cheeses) and then
moves on to small plates, salad, soup, pasta-risotto-polenta, fish,
poultry, meats, and then sweets. There is a US sources list and all
weights and measures are in avoirdupois (with no metric conversion
tables). There are no wine recommendations. Quality/price rating: 86.

19. LIGHTEN UP (Quadrille Publishing, 2009, 224 pages, ISBN 978-1-
84400-701-1, $24.95 CAD soft covers) is by Jull Dupleix, who was the
Cook at The Times for six years. She has authored 14 other cookbooks.
This book was originally published in 2007, and in 2008 it was the
winner of the Guild of Food Writers (UK) Award for Work on Healthy
Eating. It is a basic book, taking classic regular preps and lightening
them up in terms of fat and calories and meats. She has sidebars to
cover bananas, raw food, breads, tofu, and umami. The book is arranged
by theme, so she gets you off to a good morning with a fully loaded
breakfast, followed by salads and soups, some spicy foods, some fast
food, some slow food, some easy food, some steamy food, and some
veggies and fruits. What I like about the book is the large typeface
and the ease of the instructions and the movement around the book. Try
her Thai beef with lemongrass, spring minestrone, spinach chana dal,
Japanese mushroom noodles, spaghetti alla puttanesca, or pineapple and
coconut soufflé. Preparations have their ingredients listed in
avoirdupois measurements, but there is a metric table of equivalents.
Quality/Price rating: 89.
20. FLAVORS OF TUSCANY; recipes from the heart of Italy (Ryland Peters
& Small, 2006, 2009; distr. T. Allen, 160 pages, ISBN 1-84597-889-1,
$21.95 soft covers) is by Maxine Clark, a well-traveled food writer and
teacher specializing in Italian cuisine. It was originally published in
2006. There are also photos of the Tuscan surrounding area, farms,
markets, restaurants, bars, museums, and the like. So it is like a
"week at a cooking school", with photo demos and classic dishes. The
selection of regional dishes is arranged in meal order (antipasti,
soups, pasta, secondi, sides, and dolci). She has short essays on local
ingredients such as olives and olive oil, meats of white cattle or
fennel salami or wild boar, sheep cheese (pecorino), beans, mushrooms,
and wine including Vin Santo. Many dishes can also be varied with
different sauces and pesto (recipes furnished). There is a resources
list and website URLs for Italian and US mail orders. While US volume
measurements are used for the recipe ingredients, there is a metric
conversion chart on p.157. Try anchovies marinated in lemon; pancetta
and fennel puffs; ribollita soup; chestnut and pancetta soup;
pandiramerino (rosemary, sultana, and olive oil bread); fennel sausage
risotto. Quality/Price Rating: 85.
21, THE NEW SAVORY WILD MUSHROOM (Greystone Books, 2009, 250 pages,
ISBN 978-1-55054-179-3, $28.95 CAD paper covers) is by Margaret
McKenny, who wrote the first edition in 1962. Since then it has been
revised in 1971 and 1987, and here it has been reissued. Over the
years, Daniel Stuntz and Joseph Ammirati have created the enlarged
editions. This classic now covers 199 fungi; it is a field guide to
picking and eating wild mushrooms, principally on the west coast.
Colour photos provide great identification, answering two important
queries: what is it? And can I eat it?. Full written descriptions give
identifications. Te book is arranged by species, beginning with
boletes, and then moving onto chanterelles, gilled mushrooms,
polyspores, spine funghi, coral funghi, jelly funghi, puffballs,
morels, and truffles. There is a chapter on mushroom poisons, and a
chapter on how to cook mushroom by Angelo Pellegrini. The book
concludes with a bibliography for advanced reading. Quality/Price
rating: 88.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Tasting: Fosters Wine Estates, 75 wines, Feb 18/10

 The Time and Date:  Thursday, February 18, 2010  2PM to 5PM

The Event: Fosters' Wine Estates Presents 75 Estate Wines

The Venue: Fermenting Cellars, Distillery District

The Target Audience: sommeliers, restaurateurs, wine writers.

The Availability/Catalogue: most wines are currently available somewhere iin the LCBO distribution system, including Permanent Consignment, Current Consignment, and Upcoming Consignment.

The Quote/Background: There was a charity component in the evening. This has now become an annual event from Fosters, to display their California wines (Stags' Leap, Beringer, TAZ, St. Clement, et al) and their Australian wines (Wolf Blass, Penfolds, Greg Norman, et al).

The Wines: 18 wineries were presented, but I did not taste every wine.


**** Four Stars (91+ in Quality/Price Rating terms):

-Beringer Knights Valley Cabernet Sauvignon 2006, +352583, $39.95 Vintages ESSENTIAL

-Beringer Cabernet Sauvignon Private Reserve 2005, not available

-Wolf Blass Black Label Cab Shiraz 2005, +960468, $75.00    LCBO

-TAZ Pinot Noir 2007 Santa Barbara, $30  Private Order

-Souverain  Alexander Valley Chardonnay 2008, +158600 $24.95

-Souverain  Winemaker's Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon 2005, $49.95 cons

-St. Clement Orropas Cabernet Sauvignon 2006, +655670, $64.95 Private



***1/2 Three and a Half Stars (8890 in Quality/Price Rating terms):

-Beringer Knights Valley Alluvium Red 2005, +393447, $49.95

-Beringer Napa Valley Merlot 2005, +919647, $29.95

-Castello di Gabbiano Chianti Classico Riserva 2005, $24.95 Consignment

-Matua Valley Paretai Sauvignon Blanc 2008, +144634, $24.95

-Etude Pinot Gris 2008 Carneros, +142851, $29.00      LCBO

-Etude Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon 2005, +4994     $99.95

-Wynns Coonawarra Estate Cabernet Sauvignon 2006, +84996, $24.95

-Saltram Mamre Brook Shiraz 2006, +32227, $23.95

-Saltram Mamre Brook Cabernet Sauvignon 2006, +48579, $23.95 cons

-Greg Norman Aus Estates Reserve Shiraz 2003, +585828, $49.95

-Greg Norman Aus Estates Cabernet Merlot 2007, +552075, $24.95 Vint ESSENTIAL

-Greg Norman California Estates North Coast Cabernet Sauvignon 2007 +8722     $24.95     

-Wolf Blass Gold Label Cabernet Sauvignon 2007, +606939, $27.95

-Wolf Blass Grey Label Shiraz 2006, +390872, $34.95   LCBO

-Penfolds RWT Shiraz 2005, +564278, $107.60

-Penfolds Hyland Shiraz, +611210, $19.95  Vint essentials

-Penfolds Bin 128 Shiraz 2006, +509919, $34.95  LCBO

-Stags' Leap Napa Valley Merlot 2006, +655399,  $44.95

-Stags' Leap Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon 2005, +996405, $49.95

-Stags' Leap Napa Valley Viognier 2007, +263987, $29.95 Private Order

-TAZ Goat Rock Syrah 2006 Santa Maria Valley, +157339, $34.95

-Cellar No 8 Zinfandel 2007,  $16.95      consignment

-Sbragia Family Wines Home Ranch Merlot 2006, $39.95  consignment

-Sbragia Family Wines Dry Creek Single Vineyard Cab 2006, $49.95 cons

-Sbragia Family Wines Home Ranch Chardonnay 2007, +79178    $54.95 LCBO

-St. Clement Carneros Chardonnay 2008, +128934, $24.95


*** Three Stars (8587 in Quality/Price Rating terms):

-Beringer Knights Valley Alluvium White 2007, +403188, $34.95

-Matua Valley Estate Pinot Noir 2008, +158873, $29.95

-Wynns Coonawarra Estate John Riddoch Cabernet 2006. +466748, $69.95

-Rosemount Estate Show Reserve 'Traditional' 2005. +484097, $34.95

-Saltram No. 1 Shiraz Barossa,$49.95      consignment

-Wolf Blass Gold Label Shiraz Viognier 2006, +606301, $27.95

-Wolf Blass Gold Label Barossa Shiraz 2007, +590273   $27.95      LCBO

-Penfolds Bin 28 Kalimna Shiraz 2006, +422782, $34.95

-Penfolds St. Henri Shiraz 2005, +510875, $75

-Stags' Leap Napa Valley Petite Syrah, +590356, $44.95      consignment

-TAZ Pinot Gris 2008 Santa Barbara, $30  Private Order

-Souverain  Alexander Valley Merlot 2006, $29.95      Private Order

-St. Clement Napa Valley Merlot 2006, $39.95    Private Order


The Food: some serious cheeses (Manchego, goat Gouda, et al)

The Downside: dim lighting at Fermenting Cellars – this has always been a problem for serious wine tasting.

The Upside: it was a good chance to taste many of these wines since they don't appear to be exhibited elsewhere.

The Contact Person:

The Marketing Effectiveness (numerical grade): 85.



Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Feb 20/10 LCBO Vintages Releases: Tipsheet

By DEAN TUDOR, Gothic Epicures Writing
"Wines, Beers and Spirits of the Net Compendium" is guide to thousands
of news items and RSS feeds, plus references to wines, beers and
spirits, at (since 1995). Creator of Canada's leading wine
satire site at My tastings are based on MVC
(Modal Varietal Character); ratings are QPR (Quality-to-Price Ratio).
Prices are LCBO retail. Only my top rated wines are here. NOTE: The
LCBO does NOT put out all of the wines of the release for wine writers
or product consultants. Corked wines are not available for re-tasting.
TOP VALUE WHITE WINES under $20 or so.
1. Peller Estates Private Reserve Chardonnay 2007 Okanagan: delicious
creaminess, 14.5% ABV, overripe voluptuousness. +618298, $17.95, QPR:
2. Blackstone Sauvignon Blanc 2008 Monterey County: good fruit
complexity at this price level, sauvignon zest is slightly muted.
+586149, $15.95, QPR: 90.
3. Catena Alamos Chardonnay 2008 Mendoza: hard to pass up at this
level, buttery-burnet toast, 13.5% ABV. French oak. +801571, $13.95,
QPR: 90.
4. Domaine Wachau Terraces Gruner Veltliner 2008 Austria: softer and
more floral than in the past, longer finish, sip or with food. +155812,
$15.95, QPR: 90.
5. Agnusdei Albarino 2008 Rias Baixas: highly and brightly aromatic,
light lemons on finish. +146241, $17.95, QPR: 90.
TOP VALUE RED WINES under $20 or so.
1. Van Ruiten Old Vine Zinfandel 2007 Lodi: off-dry, jammy, juicy,
party wine. +58685, $18.95, QPR: 90.
2. Cristobal 1492 Oak Reserve Merlot 2007 Mendoza: dynamite blowout of
rich and oaky tones, black fruit and black chocolate. At this price,
buy it all!! +663096, $12.95, QPR: 93.
3. Cono Sur Vision Syrah 2007 Colchagua: 13.5% ABV, dense, chunky, not
yet ready but delicious. Some tomato and olive tones. +24661, $15.95,
QPR: 90.
4. Evans & Tate Cabernet/Merlot 2004 Margaret River: a Bordeaux-style
wine with snap, ready now, affordable. +721548, $14.95, QPR: 91.
5. Thorn-Clarke Terra Barossa Shiraz 2008 Barossa: ripe plums, spicy,
cedar, 15% ABV, twist top. +595306, $15.95, QPR: 90.
6. The Winery of Good Hope Cabernet Sauvignon/Merlot 2008 Stellenbosch:
North American style, twist top, 13.5% ABV, nicely affordable. +8748,
$11.95, QPR: 90.
7. Domaine Ferrer-Ribiere Tradition 2007 Cotes du Roussillon: delicious
raspberry complexity, longer length. Organic. +148627, $16.95, QPR: 90.
8. Mas des Bressades Cuvee Tradition 2008 Costieres de Nimes: very
Rhonish, ready now, good syrah hit for under $15. +143099, $14.95, QPR:
9. Terres d'Avignon Les Cardinalices Grande reserve Cotes du Rhone
2007: well-integrated, aging gracefully, terrific fruit, anise, and
length. 14% ABV. +155473, $14.95, QPR: 90.
10. Giordano Maestri Italiani Nebbiolo d'Alba 2007: a plush Barolo-like
hit. +159483, $16.95, QPR: 90.
11. Monte Antico Sangiovese/Merlot/Cabernet Sauvignon 2006 IGT Tuscany:
undersuperTuscan style, affordable. +69377, $15, QPR: 90.
12. Duque de Medina Gran Reserva 2000 Carinera Spain: aging well, with
leather and some snappy tartness that's enough for food accompaniment.
+148494, $19.95, QPR: 90.
Restaurants should consider offering these FINE VALUE wines at a $10
markup over retail; the wines are READY to enjoy right NOW. Consumers
should buy these wines to bring to restaurants with corkage programs.
1. Wilm Gewurztraminer 2008 Alsace, +156745, $26.95 retail (Kosher)
2. Domaine Chevallier Chablis 2007, +112227, $22.95.
3. Hugh Hamilton The Rascal Shiraz 2006 McLaren Vale, +595405, $26.95.
4. Castello di Querceto Chianti Classico Riserva 2006, +650754, $29.95.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

TASTING: Feb 5, 2010 -- Ontario Chardonnay: Seriously Cool Tasting

The Time and Date: Friday, February 5, 2010  11:20 AM to 1:30 PM

The Event: a tasting of "Ontario Chardonnay: Seriously Cool Tasting".

The Venue: LCBO, Scrivener Square

The Target Audience: Wine Writers' Circle of Canada

The Availability/Catalogue: just about all wines are available, except for most of the Library wines.

The Quote/Background: Bill Redelmeier of Southbrook Winery had organized a tasting of Ontario chardonnay wines in London, UK. He needed a tasting panel to choose the wines through a blind process. He offered most of these wines to the WWCC for a special tasting (not blind). They were arranged by flight, from the stainless through the woodies, with a special flight of older library wines.

The Wines: These rankings reflect my own personal tastes. Two wines were corked, one library wine had a faulty cork, and two non-library wines had evidence of madeirization.


**** Four Stars (91+ in Quality/Price Rating terms):

-Coyote's Run Estate Winery Unoaked Chardonnay 2008 Niagara, $14.95

-Chateau des Charmes Chardonnay Musque Estate Bottled 2008, $16.95

-Malivoire Moira Chardonnay 2005 Beamsville, $36.95

-Tawse Winery Robyn's Block Chardonnay 2007 Beamsville, $42

-Closson Chase S. Kocsis Vineyard Chardonnay 2007 Unfiltered Beamsville, $44.95

-Malivoire Chardonnay Moira 2007 Beamsville, $39.95.

-Norman Hardie Chardonnay Unfiltered 2008 Beamsville, $35

-Southbrook Triomphe Chardonnay Organic 2008 Niagara, $21.95

-Coyote's Run Estate Winery Black Paw Vineyard Chardonnay 2008, $22

-Malivoire Moira Chardonnay 2004 Beamsville, $64.95 (5 cases left)

-Cave Spring Cellars Chardonnay CSV Estate Bottled 2003 Beamsville, N/A – my fave wine of the tasting.

-Southbrook Poetica Chardonnay 1998 Niagara, $154 magnum


***1/2 Three and a Half Stars (8890 in Quality/Price Rating terms):

-Colio Estate Vineyards Chardonnay Musque 2007 LENS, $15.35

-Hidden Bench Estate Chardonnay 2007 Beamsville, $35

-Hidden Bench Tete de Cuvee Chardonnay 2006 Beamsville, $45

-Southbrook Poetica Chardonnay 2005 Niagara, $56

-Rosehall Run Chardonnay Rosehall Vineyard 2007 PEC, $29.95

-Creekside Estate Reserve Chardonnay 2007 Niagara, $26.95

-Peninsula Ridge Chardonnay Reserve 2007 Niagara, $24.95

-Tawse Winery Quarry Road Chardonnay 2007 Beamsville, $35

-Lailey Vineyard Winery Brickyard Chardonnay 2008, Niagara, $30

-Hidden Bench Estate Chardonnay 2008 Beamsville, $35

-Peller Estates Signature Series Chardonnay Sur Lie 2008 Niagara, $30

-Hillebrand Winery Trius Chardonnay Barrel Fermented 2008 Niagara, $18.95

-Hillebrand Winery Showcase Chardonnay Wild Ferment 2008 Niagara, $35

-Peninsula Ridge Estates Vintners Private Reserve Chardonnay 2003 Niagara, N/A

-Huff South Bay Vineyards Chardonnay 2007 PEC, $29.95


*** Three Stars (8587 in Quality/Price Rating terms):

-Colio Estate Vineyards Chardonnay 2006 LENS, $15.35

-Reif Estate Chardonnay Reserve 2006 Niagara, $19.95

-Henry of Pelham Family Estate Barrel Fermented Chardonnay 2007 Niagara Escarpment, $19.95

-Flat Rock Cellars The Rusty Shed Chardonnay 2008 Niagara, $24.95

-Ravine Vineyard Estate Winery Chardonnay 2008 Niagara, $24

-Ravine Vineyard Estate Winery Chardonnay Reserve 2008 Niagara, $38

-Rosehall Run Vineyards Chardonnay Cuvee County 2008 PEC, about $17.95

-Black Prince Winery Chardonnay Terroir Elite 2008 PEC, $29.75


The Contact Person:

The Marketing Effectiveness (numerical grade): 91.



Thursday, February 11, 2010

TASTING Feb 3, 2010: Ontario Wines being shown at Cuvee Feb 19, 2010

The Time and Date: Wednesday, February 3, 2010  10:30 AM – 2:30 PM

The Event: The Wine Council of Ontario and Cuvee presented the top scoring wine submitted to Cuvee from each participating winery.

The Venue: Bank of Montreal, 100 King St West, 68th Floor.

The Target Audience: wine press and wine sommeliers.

The Availability/Catalogue: all wines are available at the respective winery, but only a mere handful are at LCBO or Vintages.

The Quote/Background: The wines are representative of the best wines from each winery that will be poured at Cuvee, but do not necessarily represent the award winning wines, which were announced at the Gala on Friday, February 19, 2010. 56 wines were presented, but I did write any notes on the 11 icewines, nor on the three sparklers. For some reason, there were no late harvest wines or other off-sweet wines. There was lots of impressive fruit from the warm 2007 vintage.

The Wines: prices are retail.


**** Four Stars (91+ in Quality/Price Rating terms):

-20 Bees Cabernet Merlot 2007, $9.95 – a decent VQA wine under $10

-Alvento Elige 2006 (Cab-Merlot), $23.95

-Angels Gate Winery Old Vines Chardonnay 2008, $23.95

-Colchester Ridge Estate Winery Meritage 2007, $19.80

-Creekside Estate Winery Reserve Viognier 2008, $28.95

-Flat Rock Cellars Reserve Chardonnay 2007, $35

-Harvest Estates Winery Gewurztraminer 2007, $11.95

-Hernder Estates Winery Cabernet Sauvignon 2006, $14.95

-Inniskillin Wines Reserve Series Cabernet Franc 2007, $18.95

-Peller Estates Winery Signature Series Merlot 2007, $35

-Rosewood Estates Winery Semillion 2008, $18

-Southbrook Vineyards Poetica Cabernet Merlot 2007, $60

-Thirty Bench Wine Makers Small Lot Benchmark Red 2007, $60

-Vineland Estates Winery Cabernet Franc Reserve 2005, $40.20


***1/2 Three and a Half Stars (8890 in Quality/Price Rating terms):

-Cave Spring Cellars Pinot Noir Estate 2007, $39.95

-Closson Chase Vineyards Chardonnay S. Kocsis Vineyard 2007, $44.95

-Featherstone Winery Onyx 2007, $29.95

-Five Rows Craft Wine of Lowrey Vineyards Sauvignon Blanc 2008, $25

-Frogpond Farm Organic Winery Cabernet Franc 2007, $16.80

-Jackson Triggs Niagara Estate Winery Proprietor's Grand Reserve Syrah 2007, $32.95

-Lailey Vineyard Impromptu 2007 (Syrah, Malbec, Petit Verdot, Cab Sauv), $45

-Mountain Road Wine Company Reserve Chardonnay 2006, $25.95

-Niagara College Teaching Winery Dean's List Pinot Noir Canadian Oak Project 2007, $38.95

-Peninsula Ridge Estates Winery Reserve Chardonnay 2007, $24.95

-Stonechurch Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon Reserve 2007, price N/A

-Stoney Ridge Estate Winery Warren Classic Pinot Noir 2006, $15

-Twenty Twenty-Seven Cellars Featherstone Vineyard Riesling 2008, $24.95.


*** Three Stars (8587 in Quality/Price Rating terms):

-13th Street Wine Sandstone Vineyard Old Vines Gamay Noir 2007, $26

-Calamus Estate Winery Cabernet Sauvignon, $23.20

-Cattail Creek Estate Winery Merlot Reserve 2007, $40

-D'Angelo Vineyards Estate Winery Baco Noir 2007, $15

-DeSousa Wine Cellars Cabernet Sauvignon Reserve 2006, $21.95

-Fielding Estate Winery Syrah 2007, $39.95

-Grange of Prince Edward Estate Winery Dianna Block Pinot Noir 2007, $34.80

-Kacaba Vineyards Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon 2007, $44.95

-Lakeview Cellars Estate Winery Merlot Reserve 2006, $22.95

-Legends Estates Winery Diva 2008 (Semillon, Sauv Blanc), $14.95

-Mike Weir Wine Cabernet Merlot 2007, $18.95

-Nyarai Cellars Chardonnay 2007, $16.20

-Strewn Winery Chardonnay Barrel Fermented Amalgam 2007, $23.95

-Tawse 17th St Pinot Noir 2007, $58

-Wayne Gretzky Estates Estate Series Shiraz/Cabernet 2007, $22.95.


The Food: sandwiches and wraps, salads, fresh fruit and baked goods, coffee, milk, fruit juices and pop.

The Downside: I ALWAYS get lost finding this place's location, so I allow for plenty of time. This year I was 15 minutes early.

The Upside: a great way to taste through really significant Ontario VQA wines.

The Contact Person:

The Marketing Effectiveness (numerical grade): 89.