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Sunday, May 30, 2010

THE REISSUES, THE REPRINTS, AND THE NEWER EDITIONS...

 

 

...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"...

 

 

 

6. RACHAEL RAY'S BOOK OF 10; more than 300 recipes to cook every day (Clarkson Potter, 2009, 384 pages, ISBN 978-0-307-38320-4, $20 US paper covers) is another sign of celebrity sighting in the book cases. It is not enough that celebrity cooks are producing books at an alarming rate. They must also be titled with the name of the author in large letters and possessed by something, e.g. RACHEL RAY's. Much of the material in this book originally appeared in several other of Ray's 2005 books; hence, its appearance in this column. This time the material has been arranged by THIRTY categories for FELSO (fast, easy, local, seasonal, possibly organic) cooking. These are her top ten recipes for family favourites, comfort foods, $10 meals, most requested, burgers, vegetarian, pasta, seafood, one-pots. There's some kid food here, but mainly in the chicken category. Preparations have their ingredients listed in avoirdupois measurements, but there is no metric table of equivalents. More advice is at www.rachaelray.com.

Quality/Price rating: 85.

 

 

7. TOMATO; a fresh-from-the-vine cookbook (Storey Publishing, 2004, 2010; distr. Th. Allen, 278 pages, ISBN 978-1-60342-478-3, $16.95 US paper covers) is by Lawrence Davis-Hollander, who founded and directed the Eastern Native Seed Conservancy (preservation and rediscovery of heirloom plants). It was originally published in 2004 as "The Tomato Festival Cookbook". Most of the preps come from 28 named chefs (including Massimo Capra of Toronto). Log rollers include Alice Waters and Deborah Madison. It has been lightly revised -- the sidebars on tomato lore, chef profiles, descriptions of heirloom varieties, and gardening tips remain. The bibliography stops at 2002. Presumably the directory of sources and tomato festivals is current, with phone numbers and websites. Recipes are grouped by theme or plate, and include desserts (tomato pies, jams, tarts – even a sorbet). Try Catalan tomato toasts, herbed goat cheese broiled in tomato sauce, tomato-rice casserole with poblanos, of the lovely and delicate Imam Bayildi. Preparations have their ingredients listed in avoirdupois measurements, but there is no metric table of equivalents. Quality/Price rating: 88.

 

 

THE VEGETABLE GARDENER'S BIBLE, 2nd edition (Storey Publishing, 2009; distr. T. Allen, 351 pages, ISBN 978-1-60342-475-2, $24.95 US soft covers) is by Edward C. Smith, a Vermont gardener with a 1500 square foot garden. It was first published in 2000, and this edition is being touted as the "Fully Updated 10th Anniversary Edition", claiming sales of over a quarter-million in the previous decade. His WORD system remains intact: Wide rows; Organic methods; Raised beds; and Deep soil. The dictionary arrangement of vegetable specific information remains. New is coverage of 15 additional vegetables, with an expanded section on salad greens and European and Asian veggies. There is more – and newer – growing information in general, new photos of cultivars, and a section on extending the season into the winter months (bringing stuff indoors). And he proposes more solutions for small-space gardening. And of course, he takes into consideration the variety of North American gardening regions.  Overall, the book does a great job in answering the question "should I grow my own vegetables?"  Quality/Price rating: 88.

 

 

PASTA ET CETERA A LA DI STASIO (Transcontinental Books, 2007, 2009, 191 pages, ISBN 978-0-9809924-8-9, $29.95 CAD paper covers) is by Josee di Stasio, who had a cooking show on French-Canadian TV. This book was originally published in French in 2007 as a tie-in with that show. It's a basic Italian cookbook, divided into chapters dealing with antipasti and minestre, pasta (the main part), and dolci. Preparations have their ingredients listed in both metric and avoirdupois measurements. The layout and photography is very good, but there is a lot of white space. So a gorgeous-looking book it is. She begins with cheese tuiles, salami chips, and little leek balls (none of which you see in too many Italian cookbooks), and ends with lemon sorbet and limoncello, lime budino, and an olive oil and lemon loaf (which you don't see too often). Pastas are pretty basic, although there are some like cauliflower penne, cacao e pepe, and lemon pasta that are not ordinary. Maybe it is time for someone to put out a definitive pasta book which defines the field, with about 2000 variations. She also covers the basic Italian pantry. Page numbers for recipes in the index have bold face, which is always a good idea. Quality/Price rating: 86.

 

 

LIGHTHEARTED AT HOME; the very best of Anne Lindsay (John Wiley & Sons Canada, 2010, 486p, ISBN 978-0-470-16077-0, $38.95 CAD hard covers) is by long-time food writer Anne Lindsay, a member of the Order of Canada. It collates many of her best recipes from previous Heart and Stroke Foundation books as well as 40 preps from her Key Porter books and 28 from her Ballantine book. Here are 500 recipes in total, designed to ease your heart with their low-fat approach. All courses are covered, and the book (which weighs over 4 pounds because of the coated paper) can serve as a general cookbook since it has many recipes for each part of the meal. Indeed, there is an assortment of 29 menus at the back, each prep listed with a page number, and good for a variety of occasions such as brunch, vegetarian, the four seasons, family dinners, breakfasts, luncheons, and buffets. There is also a glossary of nutritional terms and a reproduction of the Canadian Food Guide (2007).

Preparations have their ingredients listed in both metric and avoirdupois measurements. The book has large fonts in almost-bold typefaces, a boon to the cook who always casts an eye on the recipe in the kitchen. Good leading in the index makes it easier to read and quickly locate a recipe. The binding is durable and useful for repeated use; I say this because many of her earlier books were in paperback and fell apart after awhile. Each prep has nutritional analysis and had been reviewed by the Heart and Stroke people, who also get a portion of the proceeds from the book sales. Distributed throughout are tips and advice on healthy eating, cooking techniques of use for the lighthearted cook, make ahead instructions, and even ingredient substitutions. Some recipes are attributed to others such as Elizabeth Baird. It's an extremely useful but pretty basic book. For exciting dishes, do try the shepherd's pie (made with pork, beef and lamb), Moroccan vegetable couscous, hoisin-glazed halibut, and Provencal saffron chicken. Quality/Price rating: 88.

 

 

WINE ALL-IN-ONE FOR DUMMIES (Wiley Publishing, 2009, 670 pages, ISBN 978-0-470-476326-0, $29.99 US paper covers) is mainly by Ed McCarthy and Mary Ewing-Mulligan, with additional contributions from Maryann Egan, Tony Aspler, and Barbara Leslie. McCarthy and Ewing-Mulligan are the team which has produced several Dummies books, such as "Wine for Dummies" (now in its 4th edition) and Dummies books on French, Italian, and California wines. Egan has done a Dummies book on Australian and New Zealand wines, while Aspler and Leslie co-wrote a Dummies book on Canadian wines. Other parts of this book come from Dummies books on Paris and Germany, and there is also some California material from Frommer's. The "All-in-One" book series for collates and revises existing Dummies books. This makes the book a bargain revision of several reprinted items. There are lots of sketch maps and bulleted information with thumbnail sketches of just about everything. You can also get cheat sheets and charts from www.dummies.com. This is a fat basic book that is just perfect for anybody wanting to know about wine. It's an entry-level book without a lot of pictures and tasting notes, but there are plenty of wines listed and pronunciation guides right next to the foreign word. Quality/Price rating: 90.

 

 

PROFESSIONAL COOKING, seventh edition (John Wiley and Sons,

2011 [sic], 1088 pages, ISBN 978-0-470-19753-0, $70US hard covers) is by Wayne Gisslen. It was last revised in 2007 as a textbook

meant for cooking courses at community colleges and chef schools. It has evolved into both a textbook and a book for the serious home cook. There's still some stuff on the food service industry, but not so much anymore. It has also come down a lot in price. Overall, there are about 650 recipes with another 600 variations, plus over 1,000 instructive illustrations. About 100 new recipes have been added since the last edition, mainly on veggies and grains with an international slant.

All courses and all meals are covered, plus some selective international cuisine such as oriental, Mexican, and Italian.

Mostly pretty basic stuff, but with lots of new colour photos to illustrate the step-by-step techniques and plated dishes. There is good material on how to create, to structure and to use recipes, beginning with menu construction and menu building. Other chapters concern the handling of convenience foods and meat cuts. The book concludes with an up-to-date and useful bibliography plus a glossary of food terms. Preparations have their ingredients listed in both metric and avoirdupois measurements, and there also are tables of equivalents.

The book is heavy and fat, and there is nothing on

wine at all, except for a few sauce preps. Recipe contents are at the front, and there is a recipe index at the back. Quality/Price rating: 88.

 

 
 

Saturday, May 29, 2010

May 3, 2010: APVSA Tasting, French wines.

 The Time and Date: Monday, May 3, 2010   10 AM to 6 PM

The Event: APVSA tasting (Association pour la promotion des vins et

spiritueux en Amerique du Nord).

The Venue: Delta Chelsea Inn

The Target Audience: wine agents.

The Availability/Catalogue: no wines are currently available in

Ontario. The group is here to try to get some agents to agree to rep

the principal. Some of the wines are available in Quebec and Alberta.

Most of the wines were French, and there are often sales staff

available to comment on the prices and production. This road show also

visits New York, Los Angeles, Seattle, Las Vegas, Calgary and Montreal

The Wines: The problem I had with the wines, and one that must be

acknowledged, is that they were no better than the wines that we

already have here in Ontario. There really did not seem to be any price

advantages, either. These 60 or so wines could be made available

through Vintages or Consignment. In the past, many have been picked up

for sale in Ontario. Here were my faves, regardless of price (all

prices are ex-cellar Euros):

 

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

-Chateau Grand Ferrand 2008 Bordeaux 2008, 2.60 E

-Chateau de Peyguerol Costieres de Nimes 2007, $2.36 E

-Domaine du Petit Romain Grande Reserve Costieres de Nimes 2007 Vieilles Vignes, 2.90 E

-Dom. Gardien Blanc Perle de Chassignolles MC NV Loire Brut, 4.85 E [PN + oak]

 

***1/2 Three and a Half Stars (88 – 90 in Quality/Price Rating terms):

-Chateau Cap d'Or 2007 St Georges St Emilion, 5.45 E

-Chateau Croix de Thomas 2008 St Georges St Emilion, 5.45 E

-Chateau Touran 2007 St Emilion, ? E

-Chateau Bois Benoist Muscadet Sevre et Maine sur Lie 2007, 3.30 E

-Dom. La Chardoisie Villebois Brut MC NV Loire, 4.65 E

-Dom. La Chardoisie Villebois Sauvignon Blanc 2009 Loire, 3.40 E

-Dom. La Chardoisie Villebois Chinon Cabernet Franc 2008, 3.90 E

-Dom. Gardien St. Pourcain Rouge 2009, 3.10 E

-Dom. Gardien DQS St. Pourcain Rouge Reserve des Grands Jours 2006, 4.24 E

-Dom. Gardien Rosee de Chassignolles MC NV Loire Brut, 4.85 E

 

*** Three Stars (85 – 87 in Quality/Price Rating terms):

-Chateau Jacques Blanc 2007 St Emilion Grand Cru, ? E

-Domaine du Petit Romain Costierees de Nimes Rose 2009, 2.35E

-Vig. Du Soleil Crozes Hermitage 2005 Rouge, 5.75 E

-Chateau Bois Gautier Muscadet Sevre et Maine sur Lie 2009, 2.95 E

-Dom. La Chardoisie Petit Villebois Sauvignon Blanc Loire, 2.90 E

 

The Food: none.

The Downside: selection is eclectic and bottles arrive haphazardly.

Some bottles never arrived at all, but we were not told this until we

got there.

The Upside: a chance to taste some engaging wines not available here.

There is a listing of wines with FOB prices in Euros.

The Contact Person: Pascal p.fernand@apvsa.ca

The Effectiveness (numerical grade): 84.

 
 
 

Saturday, May 22, 2010

May 29 Vintages Releases (World Wine Watch)

WORLD WINE WATCH (LCBO VINTAGES TIP SHEET) FOR MAY 29, 2010
^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^
By DEAN TUDOR, Gothic Epicures Writing deantudor@deantudor.com.
Creator of Canada's award-winning wine satire site at http://fauxvoixvincuisine.blogspot.com. My
"Wines, Beers and Spirits of the Net Compendium" is a guide to
thousands of news items and RSS feeds, plus references to wines, beers
and spirits, at www.deantudor.com since 1995. 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. Catena Chardonnay 2008 Mendoza: minerals, body, oak, initial fruit
follows through on the length. +918805, $19.95, QPR: 90.
2. Vinecol Torrontes 2009 Mendoza: made form organic grapes, very good
tropical fruit set, finishes dry. +32748, $13.95, QPR: 90.
3. D'Arenberg The Olive Grove Chardonnay 2007 McLaren Vale: unoaked but
balanced fruit and acid, body from storage on lees. +702845, $17.95,
QPR: 90.
4. Domaine du Petit Coteau Les Grenouilles Sec Vouvray 2008 Loire:
organic grapes, body of chenin blanc but extra-dry with a long zesty
finish. +106815, $16.95, QPR: 90.
5. Domaine Lecomte Quincy 2008 Loire: very well developed, balance of
fruit and acid, with zest showing. Quite elegant. +172528, $18.95, QPR:
90.
6. Dr. Loosen Blue Slate Riesling Kabinett 2007 Moselle: Riesling with
a spicy kick and minerals, great body and a long finish. +160846,
$20.95, QPR: 89.
7. Librandi Critone Bianco Val di Neto 2008 OGT Calabria: interesting
and compelling blend of chardonnay and sauvignon blanc from a hot
climate, floral, lots of body, great finish for a sipper. +169169,
$13.95, QPR: 91.
 
TOP VALUE RED WINES under $20 or so.
^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^
1. Camelot Merlot 2006 California: toasty oak on nose and finish, words
"magisterial merlot" appear on the label, 13.5% ABV, good value for a
California merlot under $15 in Canada. +658070, $14.95, QPR: 91.
2. La Posta Pizzella Family Vineyard Malbec 2008 Uco Valley Mendoza:
soft, ready soon, very French and elegant. +166298, $15.95, QPR: 90.
3. Laura Hartwig Reserva Cabernet Sauvignon 2007 Colchagua: dynamite
tastes and finish, a bit taut right now, cellar for a year, 14% ABV.
+727495, $13.95, QPR: 90.
4. Zilzie Shiraz 2008 Barossa: quality but wavers between "shiraz" and
"syrah" depending on where it lands on your palate. A Gold Medal in a
competition that was "judged with food". 14.5% ABV. Twist top. +58016,
$17.95, QPR: 90.
5. Chateau La Raze Beauvallet 2005 Medoc: good basic Bordeaux with
typical MVC plus some smoke and underbrush. +170316, $16.95, QPR: 90.
6. Domaine Bois Mayaid Saint-Nicolas-de-Bourgueil 2008: gold medal
winner, with very good cabernet franc kick, red fruit tones, best
paired with food. +168971, $15.95, QPR: 90.
7. Mas del Perie Tradition Malbec Cahors 2006: rich and full but
tannic, needs cellaring time. This is what Malbec is like at home in
France, but do try it against a classy Argentine Malbec. +171561,
$18.95, QPR: 90.
8. Frescobaldi Castello di Pomino 2006 Rosso: compelling red fruit
flavours from the blend of pinot noir, sangiovese, and merlot. Longer
food finish and body. +939223, $19.95, QPR: 90
9. Vinha d'Ervideira Colheita Seleccionada 2007 Alentejo: rich and
ripe, smokey, complex enough to give your palate a workout, long
finish. +168773, $15.95, QPR: 90.
 
VALUE: "RESTAURANT READY" or "BRING YOUR OWN WINE BOTTLE" over $20
^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^
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. Luca Chardonnay 2008 Uco Valley Mendoza, +167338, $28.95 retail.
2. Kim Crawford Kim's Favourite SP Chardonnay 2007 Gisborne, +90126,
$24.95.
3. Domaine Raoul Gautherin Vaillons Chablis 1er Cru 2007, +159236,
$29.95.
4. Backsberg Pumphouse Shiraz 2006 WO Paarl, +652651, $21.95.
5. Vriesenhof Kallista 2004 WO Stellenbosch, +160093, $27.95.
6. Lan Gran Reserva 2003 Rioja, +928622, $28.95.
 

Thursday, May 20, 2010

April 29, 2010: New Zealand Wine Fair

The Time and Date: Thursday, April 29, 2010  1:30PM  – 5:30 PM
The Event: New Zealand Wine Fair in Toronto
The Venue: Design Exchange
The Target Audience: wine trade
The Availability/Catalogue: the catalogue was another model of
perfection, with all data of availability listed and contact details.
Good job with the spiral binding too.
The Quote/Background: One agent told me that women are lapping up pinot
grigio from wherever, but are stalling at pinot gris. It is all in a
word? Or maybe just the Italian light style?
The Wines: I decided to try the Pinot Gris, since they have the highest
percentage increase year over year. I also tried the off-beat wines
too. We had most of the Chardonnays and Pinot Noirs in a seminar.
 
**** Four Stars (91+ in Quality/Price Rating terms):
-Kumeu River Chardonnay Auckland 2007, $32.25
-Ostler Pinot Noir Waitaki 2006, $50
-Gladstone Vineyard Pinot Gris Wairapara 2009, $22.95
-Lawson's Dry Hills Gewurztraminer Marlborough 2008, $18.45
-Ngatarawa Alwyn Winemakers Reserve Chardonnay Hawke's Bay 2007, $24.95
-Spy Valley Gewurztraminer Marlborough 2008, $19.95
-Envoy by Spy Valley Gewurztraminer Marlborough 2007, $31.95
-Staete Landt Chardonnay Marlborough 2008, $37.95
-Vinoptima Gewurztraminer Gisborne 2006, $55
 
***1/2 Three and a Half Stars (88 – 90 in Quality/Price Rating terms):
-Waimea Chardonnay Nelson 2008, $19.99
-Crossroads Chardonnay Hawke's Bay 2008, $19.95
-Borthwick Vineyard Pinot Noir Wairarapa 2008, $34.95
-Ata Rangi Pinot Noir Martinborough 2008, $64.99
-Felton Road Pinot Noir Central Otago 2008, $66.95
-Pegasus Bay Winery Pinot Noir Waipara 2007, $46.95
-Churton Sauvignon Blanc Marlborough 2008, $19.95 Merchant Vintner
-Churton Pinot Noir Marlborough 2007, $33.95 Merchant Vintner
-Coopers Creek Single Vineyard Hawke's Bay Chardonnay The Limeworks
2008, $19.95
-Gibbston Highgate Estate Heartbreakers Chardonnay Central Otago 2008,
$24.95
-Hawkshead Pinot Gris Central Otago 2009, $27
-Jackson Estate Shelter Belt Chardonnay Marlborough 2008, $20.95
-Saint Clair Family Marlborough Chardonnay 2008, $16.95
-Sileni Cellar Selection Sauvignon Blanc Marlborough 2009, $14.95
-Southbank Estate Gewurztraminer Hawke's Bay 2007, $17.95
-Spy Valley Riesling Marlborough 2008, $19.95
-Envoy by Spy Valley Pinot Gris Marlborough 2008, $29
-Envoy by Spy Valley Chardonnay Marlborough 2007, $37
-Envoy by Spy Valley Pinot Noir Marlborough 2007, $43.95
 
-Staete Landt Pinot Gris Marlborough 2009, $37.95
-Stoneleigh Pinot Gris Marlborough 2009, $16.95
-Stoneleigh Rapaura Sauvignon Blanc Marlborough 2009, $22.95
-Te Awa Left Field Chardonnay Hawke's Bay 2009, $22.
-Te Kairanga Martinborough Estate Chardonnay 2007, $16.50
-Spinyback Chardonnay Nelson 2008, $15.95
-Waimea Chardonnay Nelson 2008, $17.95
 
*** Three Stars (85 – 87 in Quality/Price Rating terms):
-Stoneleigh Chardonnay Marlborough 2008, $16.95
-Vidal Estate Pinot Noir Hawke's Bay 2008, $29
-Neudorf Vineyards Pinot Noir Nelson 2008, $27
-Carrick Chardonnay Central Otago 2007, $33
-The Crossings Pinot Noir Marlborough 2008, $18.95
-Ata Rangi Petrie Chardonnay Martinborough 2008, $25.99
-Coopers Creek Unoaked Chardonnay Gisborne 2008, $16.95
-Babich Merlot/Cabernet Sauvignon Hawke's Bay 2008, $17.95
-Coopers Creek Gisborne Viognier 2008, $18.95
-Elephant Hill Chardonnay Hawke's Bay 2009, $21.95
-Elephant Hill Merlot Hawke's Bay 2009, $19.95
-Gibbston Highgate Estate Dreammaker Pinot Gris Central Otago 2008,
$24.95
-Highfield Estate Chardonnay Marlborough 2008, $29.95
-Konrad Gewurztraminer Marlborough 2009, $18.25
-Mud House Pinot Gris South Island 2009, $15.95
-Nautilus Estate Chardonnay Marlborough 2008, $24.95
-Omaka Springs Estates Falveys Chardonnay Marlborough 2008, $24.95
-Wairau River Chardonnay Marlborough 2009, $17.95
-Sileni Estate Selection The Triangle Merlot Hawke's Bay 2008, $19.95
-Southbank Estate Pinot Grigio Hawke's Bay 2008, $17.65
-Te Awa Cabernet Sauvignon/Merlot Hawke's Bay 2009, $25
-Villa Maria Private Bin Riesling Marlborough 2008, $15.95
 
The Food: the media got a seminar and a gourmet sandwich luncheon. The
trading floor got mini-pavlovas, international and Quebec cheeses
(including Blue Benedictine), other sweets, coffees, breads and
crackers.
The Downside: I had to go to a concert, so I arrived late and only
tasted half the wines that I normally do.
The Upside: the New Zealand wine industry wants to be 100% sustainable
by 2012.
The Contact Person: nzwine@ketchin.com
The Marketing Effectiveness (numerical grade): 91.
 
 
 

April 28, 2010: A night out with Corby's

The Time and Date: Wednesday April 28, 2010   6Pm to 10 PM
The Event: The National Logo Design Contest for the New Face of Fiction
Programme (Winning Design), for Random House of Canada. Partially
sponsored by Stoneleigh Winery of New Zealand, repped here by Corby.
The Venue: Design Exchange, followed by a Corby dinner at Czehoski.
The Target Audience: designers, wine people, publishers, and associated
flacks and hacks.
The Availability/Catalogue: I was mainly concerned with Stoneleigh
wines. They are the official wine partner of Random House of Canada in
its book club ventures (www.bookclubs.ca/stoneleigh).
The Quote/Background: Jim Robertson from Stoneleigh attended, made a
speech, and then we all departed by cab to dinner. Jim spends half of
his time traveling around the world as a global representative. He told
me that exports of NZ wines to Canada were up 81% year over year, with
pinot gris leading the percentage increase at 1022% (smaller base).
Even so, sauvignon blanc was up 65% and chardonnay up 122%, while pinot
noir was essentially flat. Stoneleigh has two ranges of wines, 11
labels in all.
The Wines: we had three wines to sample, all Stoneleigh of Marlborough
New Zealand: their Chardonnay 2007 ($16.95 LCBO, good minerality),
Pinot Noir 2008 ($19.95, somewhat fleshy in body), and Sauvignon Blanc
2009 ($16.95, great zest lemony finish).
The Food: at DX, a whole host of apps such as brioche sandwiches, bacon
wraps, samosas, smoked salmon, and avocado creams. At Czehoski, we hand
samples of a variety of good eats: PEI oysters, poutine with ham hock,
mac 'n' cheese, halibut, risotto, charcuterie platters, steak and
frites.
The Downside: I was at my third wine event today, beginning at noon, so
I had to leave to get home before dessert and coffees.
The Upside: strange as it may seem, we did not talk about wines at
dinner.
The Contact Person: adrienne.smith@corby.ca
The Marketing Effectiveness (numerical grade): 93.
 
 
 

Monday, May 17, 2010

April 28, 2010: Austrian Annual Wine Trade Fair

 The Time and Date: Wednesday, April 28, 2010 Noon – 4 PM
The Event: Austrian Annual Wine Trade Fair Toronto 2010
The Venue: Rosehill Venus Lounge
The Target Audience: wine trade
The Availability/Catalogue: most wines are available through
consignment or private order, with handful at Vintages. The catalogue
was divided by tables with full information (but no prices). There were
numerous indexes by agent, by region, and by style of wine.
The Quote/Background: 34 Austrian wineries and many winemakers came on
this trip; some were seeking representation.
The Wines: I did not try every wine, but I did try to taste all the
Rieslings, Traminers, etc. I did not try any wineries seeking an agent.
I had had many of the Rabl wines the night before.
 
**** Four Stars (91+ in Quality/Price Rating terms):
-Nigl Gruner Veltliner Privat DAC Reserve 2009, $48.95 retail (Le
Sommelier PO)
-Nigl Riesling Privat DAC Reserve 2009, $64.95 Retail (Le Sommelier)
-Meinklang Pinot Gris 2008, $19.95 PO Living Vine
-Meinklang Gruner Veltliner 2009, $16.95 PO Living Vine – Gold Medal
BioVino
-Nikolaihof Wachau Gruner Veltliner 2007, PO $59.95 Living Vine
-Stadt Krems Riesling Grillenparz Kremstal Reserve 2008, $25.55 LCBO
-Angerer Gruner Veltliner Unfiltriert 2006, $45 B & W
-Rabl Pinot Noir V.O. 2008, $39 David Thompson
-Rabl Riesling Schenkenbichl V.O. 2008, $28  David Thompson
-Brundlmayer Sekt Brut 2006 MC, $37 HHD Imports [PN/Ch]
-Loimer Gruner Veltliner Reserve Terrassen 2008, $48 Licensee Le
Sommelier
-Loimer Riesling Reserve Seeberg 2008, $48.95 L Le Sommelier
 
***1/2 Three and a Half Stars (88 – 90 in Quality/Price Rating terms):
-Nigl Gruner Veltliner Garting 2009, $20.95 retail (Le Sommelier) cons
-Nigl Gruner Veltliner Senftenberger Piri DAC 2009, $27.95 (Le
Sommelier PO)
-Meinklang Pinot Noir 2008, $21.95 Con Living Vine
-Nikolaihof Wachau Steiner Hund Riesling Reserve 2005, $65.95 PO Living
Vine
-Stadt Krems Gruner Veltliner DAC 2009, $14.95 LCBO
-Stadt Krems Riesling Stenterrassen DAC 2009, $16.95 LCBO
-Angerer Spies Gruner Veltliner 2009, $24.95 B & W
-Rabl Gruner Veltliner Reserve Kaferberg 2008, $28 David Thompson
-Loimer Cuvee In Gumpoldskirchen 2008, $15 Licensee Le Sommelier
-Johanneshof Reinisch Rotgipfler Reserve 2007, $42 Merchant Vintner
 
*** Three Stars (85 – 87 in Quality/Price Rating terms):
-Nigl Riesling Dornleiten DAC 2009, $29.95 Le Sommelier PO
-Nigl Riesling Senftenberger Piri 2009, $43.95 Retail Le Sommelier PO
-Meinklang Saint Laurent 2007, $24.95 Living Vine
-Nikolaihof Wachau Hefeabzug Gruner Veltliner Smaragd im Weingebirge
2007, $59.95 PO Living Vine
-Stadt Krems Gruner Veltliner Weinzierlberg 2009, $16.95 LCBO
=Stadt Krems Gruner Veltliner Wachtberg Kremstal Reserve 2008, $25.55
LCBO
-Angerer Riesling Donatus 2009, $29.95 B & W Wines
-Angerer Gruner Veltliner KIES 2009, $19.95 B & W
-Rabl Gruner Veltliner V.O., $25 David Thompson
-Rabl Traminer TBA 2007, $50 half-bottle  David Thompson
-Brundlmayer Riesling Kamptaler Terrassen 2009, $23  HHD Imports
-Brundlmayer Riesling Steinmassel 2008, $29 HHD Imports
-Kracher Traminer TBA No. 2 2007, $49 half-bottle HHD Imports
-Lenz Moser Cuvee Prestige TBA [blend] 2007, $20 half-bottle HHD
Imports
-Salomon Undhof Traminer Nobler Reserve 2007, $24.50 half-bottle
Lamprecht
-Loimer Gruner Veltliner LOIS 2009, $12 L Le Sommelier
-Loimer Gruner Veltliner 2009, $17.95 L Le Sommelier
-Loimer Riesling 2009, $17.95 L Le Sommelier
-Huber Riesling Engelreich 2009, $22.95 PO Mark Anthony
-Johanneshof Reinisch Pinot Noir vom Steinfeld 2008, $21 Merchant
Vintner
-Johanneshof Reinisch Gruner Veltliner 2008, $21 Merchant Vintner
-Tement Gelber Muskateller Steirische Klassik 2009, $25 Woodman
 
The Food: as in previous years, cubed cheeses and fruits, bread.
The Downside: with an ocean of Gruner Veltliner there seemed to be a
sameness about many of the white wines.
The Upside: there were more red wines, some quite good.
The Contact Person: Toronto@advantageaustria.org
The Marketing Effectiveness (numerical grade): 87.
 
 
 
 

April 27, 2010: Austrian/Ontario Wine Tasting (OntWineSociety)

The Time and Date:  Tuesday, April 27, 2010   6PM to 9PM
The Event: "An Austrian/Ontario Wine Experience" meeting of the Ontario
Wine Society.
The Venue: University of Toronto Faculty Club
The Target Audience: members and guests of the Ontario Wine Society
The Availability/Catalogue: all the Ontario wines are available, and
most of the Austrian wines also.
The Quote/Background: The OWS wanted to taste and compare similar wine
varieties from Austria and Ontario. With the co-operation of the
Austrian Trade Commission (Toronto) and Inniskillin/Jackson-Triggs, we
all had samples of Weingut Rabl (repped by David Thompson in Ontario)
and the Vincor wines. The guest speakers were Karl Kaiser, who retired
from Inniskillin in 2006 (and who was originally from Austria), and
Rudolf Rabl, winemaker at his family's winery. We were not told which
wine was which, and we were asked to identify them. It could be a
fairly simple exercise, based on common points of colour and length. I
was at an expert's table, and of course we were able to spot which
wines were which. Tasted were riesling, sauvignon blanc, pinot noir,
merlot, and ice wine. Rabl generously offered two kinds of Gruner
Veltliner as a reception wine and as an apr├Ęs tasting wine.
The Wines:
 
**** Four Stars (91+ in Quality/Price Rating terms):
-Inniskillin Riesling Legacy 2008 VQA, $39.95
-Rabl Merlot Vinum Optimum 2006, $55-60
 
***1/2 Three and a Half Stars (88 – 90 in Quality/Price Rating terms):
-Rabl Gruner Veltliner Spiegel 2009, $17.95
-Rabl Gruner Veltliner "G" 2008, $27.95
-Rabl Sauvignon Blanc Limited Vinum Optimum 2008, $25
-Rabl Pinot Noir Vinum Optimum 2006, $55-60
-Inniskillin Merlot Two Vineyards 2007 VQA, $22.95
-Inniskillin Pinot Noir Three Vineyards 2007, $22.95
-Inniskillin Vidal Ice Wine Commemorative Oak Aged 2006, $59.95 375mL
 
*** Three Stars (85 – 87 in Quality/Price Rating terms):
-Rabl Riesling Steinhaus 2009, $22.95
-Jackson-Triggs Sauvignon Blanc Delaine Vineyard 2008, $23.95
-Rabl Gruner Veltliner Eiswein 2006, $47.95 375mL
 
The Food: with the white wines, we were served charcuterie, greens and
breads. With the red wines, we had potato salad, wiener schnitzel, and
sausage. With dessert, there was dutch apple pie.
The Downside: I thought we'd have apple strudel, not the dutch apple
pie.
The Upside: it was great to have the winemakers talk about their wines
and their styles.
The Contact Person: www.ontariowinesociety.com or sdarby@rogers.com
The Marketing Effectiveness (numerical grade): 89.
 
 

Saturday, May 15, 2010

April 26, 2010: Expose Portfolio Tasting of Vincor International

The Time and Date: Monday, April 26 2010  1PM to 4 PM
The Event: Expose, the premier wine & spirits collection of Vincor
The Venue: AGO, Baillie Court
The Target Audience: wine trade
The Availability/Catalogue: all wines are at the LCBO, and there are
some consignment wines as well.
The Quote/Background: There were about 30 brands, and 100 different
products, ranging from coolers to spirits to top-end Le Clos Jordanne
and Osoyoos LaRose. There was also a lot of socializing.
The Wines: I tasted all the BC wines, and selectively for all the
others.
 
**** Four Stars (91+ in Quality/Price Rating terms):
-Inniskillin Okanagan Discovery Chenin Blanc 2007, $16.95 Consignment
-Inniskillin Okanagan Discovery Petit Verdot 2006, $29.95 Consignment
-Jackson-Triggs Okanagan Proprietor's Grand Reserve Merlot 2007, $24.95
Consignment
-Clos du Bois North Coast Merlot 2006, $18.95 +124883
-Nk'Mp Qwam Qwnt Cabernet Sauvignon 2007, $29.95 Consignment
-See Ya Later Ranch Semillon 2007 Okanagan, $19.95 Consignment
-See Ya Later Ranch Ping 2007 Okanagan, $24.95 Consignment
-Sumac Ridge Black Sage Vineyard Chardonnay 2007 Okanagan, $14.95
Consignment
-Sumac Ridge Black Sage Vineyard Meritage 2006 Okanagan, $24.95
Consignment
-Barossa Valley Estate Ebenezer Shiraz 2004, $39.95, +971705
-Barossa Valley Estate Ebenezer Cabernet Sauvignon 2004, $39.95, +39537
-Inniskillin Legacy Riesling 2007 Niagara, $29.95 Upcoming Classics
-Le Clos Jordanne Le Grand Clos Chardonnay 2007 Niagara, $65, +34561
-Le Clos Jordanne Claystone Terrace Chardonnay 2007 Niagara, $40,
+56929
-Le Clos Jordanne Le Grand Clos Pinot Noir 2007 Niagara, $70, +34553
-Osoyoos LaRose Le Grand Vin 2006 Okanagan, $39.95 +626325
-Robert Mondavi Cabernet Sauvignon Reserve 2006 Napa, $139.95, +670463
 
***1/2 Three and a Half Stars (88 – 90 in Quality/Price Rating terms):
-Inniskillin Okanagan Dark Horse Meritage 2007, $24.95 Consignment
-Jackson-Triggs Okanagan Proprietor's Reserve Viognier 2008, $15.95
Consignment
-Jackson-Triggs Okanagan Proprietor's Grand Reserve Cabernet Shiraz
Viognier 2007, $29.95 Consignment
-Jackson-Triggs Okanagan SunRock Cabernet Sauvignon 2006, $34.95
Consignment
-Jackson-Triggs Okanagan Proprietor's Reserve Merlot 2008, $14.95,
+543876
-Kim Crawford Central Otago Pinot Noir 2007, $24.95 Consignment
-Nk'Mp Qwam Qwnt Chardonnay 2008, $24.95 Consignment
-See Ya Later Ranch Brut NV Okanagan, $23.95 Consignment
-Sumac Ridge Pinnacle Red 2005 Okanagan, $49.95 Consignment
-Kim Crawford Boyzone Pinot Gris 2007, $24.95 Consignment
-Kim Crawford Gisborne Gewurztraminer 2005, $19.95 Consignment
-Barossa Valley Estate E-Minor Shiraz 2008, $17.95, +71043
-Inniskillin Legacy Cabernet Franc 2007 Niagara, $39.95 Upcoming
Classics
-Inniskillin Reserve Pinot Noir 2008 Okanagan, $18.95 Vintages Aug 7
-Jackson-Triggs Okanagan Proprietor's Grand Reserve Chardonnay 2008,
$19.95, +643542
-Jackson-Triggs Okanagan Belaine Vineyard Syrah 2007, $32.95, +86553
-Le Clos Jordanne Village Reserve Chardonnay 2007 Niagara, $25, +33936
-Le Clos Jordanne Village Reserve Pinot Noir 2007 Niagara, $25, +33894
-Le Clos Jordanne L.C.J. Vineyard Pinot Noir 2007 Niagara, $40, +33902
-Le Clos Jordanne La Petite Colline Pinot Noir 2007 Niagara, $40,
+33944
-Robert Mondavi Cabernet Sauvignon 2006 Napa, $35.95, +255513
-Toasted Head Chardonnay 2008 California, $17.95, +594341
 
*** Three Stars (85 – 87 in Quality/Price Rating terms):
-Jackson-Triggs Okanagan SunRock Shiraz 2007, $34.95 Consignment
-Nk'Mp Qwam Qwnt Syrah 2007, $34.95 Consignment
-Jackson-Triggs Proprietor's Grand Reserve Merlot 2006 Niagara, $19.95,
+563197
-Hardy's Stamp of Australia Riesling Gewurztraminer 2009, $8.95 +448548
-Inniskillin Cabernet Franc 2007 Niagara, $13.50, +317016
-Jackson-Triggs Okanagan Proprietor's Reserve Sauvignon Blanc 2008,
$13.95, +593111
-Sumac Ridge Cabernet Merlot 2008 Okanagan, $14.95, +157487
-Sumac Ridge Gewurztraminer 2008 Okanagan, $14.95, +157495
-Robert Mondavi Private Selection Chardonnay 2008, $16.95, +379180
-Woodbridge by Robert Mondavi Cabernet Sauvignon 2008 California,
$13.95, +48611
 
The Food: I'm not quite sure what they were aiming for, since the
invite specifically said wines "perfectly paired" with hors d'oeuvre.
There were curious mixtures of bistro food (sliders and fries) which
did not go with many things, but there were also shrimp, smoked salmon,
quiche, brioche sandwiches, and others that I did not get to. The beet
appetizers were superb\, and best with chardonnays.
The Downside: there was some initial mixup over who to RSVP and where
the media invites had been.
The Upside: a good clear shot through the offerings of Constellation in
Ontario plus Vincor's BC holdings.
The Contact Person: Melanie.dasilveira@vincor.ca
The Marketing Effectiveness (numerical grade): 88.
 
 
 

Friday, May 14, 2010

SOME NEW PRODUCTS TASTED THIS MONTH of May, 2010

SOME NEW PRODUCTS TASTED THIS MONTH
 

1.Pom'Or Tradition Sparkling Cider (Ciderie St-Nicolas, PQ), $13.45
June 26 Vintages, 750 mL with a sparkling wine cork and hood, 7% ABV.
Off-dry, fresh apples on the nose but also some nuances of baked
caramel tones and some pie spices. Some light honey touches, long crisp
finish, actually best with food (pork dishes, cheeses, light semi-sweet
desserts). Cuve close, 4 months cool fermentation. Made from a
combination of older heirloom and newer apple varieties in one of the
oldest apple orchards in PQ.
 
2. Featherstone Estate Winery Pinot Noir 2007 Twenty Mile Bench
Niagara, $39.95: winery only, 68 cases produced, expect cherries and
other red fruit, some French oak and toast and smoke, long finish, in
an atypical bottles (Bordeaux-style shape, plus screw cap). Wild yeast
strains used. 13% ABV, and should be long lasting.
 
3. Featherstone Estate Winery Select Late Harvest Cabernet Franc 2008
Twenty Mile Bench Niagara, $19.95 for 375 mL half-bottles. About 190
cases, available only at winery. Predominantly strawberries, excellent
for dryish desserts, certainly with strawbs coming available in June.
Some noble rot makes it taste a bit exotic.
 
4. Featherstone Estate Winery Gewurztraminer Icewine 2008 Twenty Mile
Bench Niagara, $34.95 for 200 mL bottle: about 73 cases produced, only
available at the winery. This is my fave type of icewine, with that
intense gewurztraminer flavour and long, lingering finish. Since all
you need is a small dose, the 200 mL is certainly within reach of most
pocket books.
 
5. Featherstone Estate Winery Gewurztraminer 2009 Featherstone Vineyard
Niagara, $19.95: all stainless steel fermentation after cold soaking.
Alsatian style but lighter in body. Some may say lychee tones, but
there is also a slight bitter aftertaste, characteristic of the grape
variety. 100 cases, available this summer at the winery only. Good buy.
 
6. Featherstone Estate Winery Canadian Oak Chardonnay 2008 Twenty Miler
Bench Niagara, $21.95, only 86 cases made. It is a treat to be able to
taste real Canadian oak. But most I've tasted have the flavours of
something between French and American oak, so maybe it can be all right
to use a mix of oaks for the same kind of flavour profile.
Nevertheless, it makes it more Canadian and keeps our money at home. In
oak for a year, with flavours on the pear side of fruit tones. I liked
it.
 
 

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

World Wine Watch for May 15, 2010

WORLD WINE WATCH (LCBO VINTAGES TIP SHEET) FOR MAY 15, 2010
^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^
By DEAN TUDOR, Gothic Epicures Writing deantudor@deantudor.com.
Creator of Canada's award-winning wine satire site at http://fauxvoixvincuisine.blogspot.com. My
"Wines, Beers and Spirits of the Net Compendium" is a guide to
thousands of news items and RSS feeds, plus references to wines, beers
and spirits, at www.deantudor.com since 1995. 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. Peninsula Ridge Inox Reserve Chardonnay 2007 Beal Vineyards
Beamsville Bench VQA: lovely development of white flowers, very good
consistency, quite floral. No oak. +7328, $18.95, QPR: 90.
2. Las Moras Reserve Chardonnay 2008 San Juan Argentina: excellent all
round chard at this price, a bit of fruit, wood, zest, long finish.
Snap it all up!! +32896, $11.95, QPR: 92.
3. Rodney Young Chalk Hill Chardonnay 2007 Sonoma: lovely tropical
fruit, crisp finish and toast. 14.3% ABV. +275552, $19.95, QPR: 90.
4. La Joya Viognier Reserve 2008 Colchagua Chile: enjoyable floral
flavours, good price, but best with food rather than as sipper, 14.3%
ABV. +168542, $13.95, QPR: 90.
5. Sileni Cellar Cellar Selection Sauvignon Blanc 2009 Marlborough:
tasty, zesty, nervy, good food finish. +662882, $15.95, QPR: 90.
 
TOP VALUE RED WINES under $20 or so.
^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^
1. Renwood Sierra Foothills Red Label Syrah 2005: good wood and syrah
development, uplifting, lovely finish. +588095, $15.95, QPR: 90.
2. Santa Julia Cabernet Sauvignon 2009 Mendoza: good price for a wine
made from organic grapes, hits all the cab notes, finishes well.
+68452, $12.95, QPR: 90.
3. Chateau Hauchat 2006 Fronsac: good Bordeaux MVC, nice finish.
+123489, $14.95, QPR: 90.
4. Villa Girardi Bure Alto Ripasso Valpolicella Classico Superiore
2007: very tasty but North American fruit bomb appeal, long length.
+161844, $17.95, QPR: 90.
5. Bod. Valcarlos Fortius Reserva 2004 Navarra: raisins, nicely aged,
well-priced. +166611, $16.95, QPR: 90.
 
VALUE: "RESTAURANT READY" or "BRING YOUR OWN WINE BOTTLE" over $20
^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^
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. J. Lohr Arroyo Vista Chardonnay 2007 Monterey, +171272, $29.95
retail.
2. Heggies Vineyard Chardonnay 2008 Eden South Australia, +903559,
$23.95.
3. Roux Pere & Fils La Chateniere Saint-Aubin 1er Cru 2007, +169177,
$39.95.
4. William Fevre Chablis 1er Cru 2007, +169805, $29.95.
5. Dr.Nagler Riesling Auslese 2002 QmP Rudesheimer, +161646, $22.95.
6. Quails' Gate Pinot Noir 2007 Okanagan VQA, +585760, $24.95.
7. Kaesler Stonehorse Shiraz/Grenache/Mourvedre 2007 Barossa, +6551,
$23.95.
8. Chateau La Confession 2006 St-Emilion Grand Cru, +563684, $62.
9. Domaine Daniel Rion & Fils Les Grandes Vignes Nuits-St-Georges 2007,
+981548, $44.95.
10. Marchesi de Frescobaldi Castelgiocondo Brunello di Montalcino 2004,
+650432, $49.95.
11. Querciabella Chianti Classico 2007, +728816, $34.95.
 
 

April 23, 2010: BioVino at the Green Living Show

The Time and Date: Friday, April 23, 2010  Noon – 4 PM
The Event: BioVino eco-friendly wine exposition at the Green Living
Show.
The Venue: Direct Energy Centre, Exhibition grounds.
The Target Audience: wine trade
The Availability/Catalogue: the catalogue was unfortunately buried in
the Green Living show catalogue, which was not conveniently available.
We were not told this until later. But most of the wines were listed,
along with availability (LCBO, consignment, etc. And most of the wines
came from the portfolio of The Living Vine (www.thelivingvine.ca).
The Quote/Background: There were continuous seminars, about 15 minutes
each, with 15 minutes off, on a variety of themes relating to
sustainable or organic or biodynamic wineries. Many speakers were top
notch, and principals: Bill Redelmeier (Southbrook), Nicolas Joly
(writer and grower), Luca Tommasini, Monty Waldin, and others. The show
went on Fridays and Saturdays.
The Wines: I did not taste all wines, and I did not taste wines that I
had already recently written about.
 
**** Four Stars (91+ in Quality/Price Rating terms):
-DogRidge The Pup Sparkling Chardonnay 2009 McLaren Vale, $19.90
licensee (Le Sommelier)
-DogRidge Shirtfront Shiraz 2006 McLaren Vale, $36.95 licensee (Le
Sommelier)
-Peju Persephone Vineyard Zinfandel 2006 Napa, $42.70 licensee (Le
Sommelier)
-The Sadie Family Palladius 2008 Swartland South Africa [chenin blanc &
chardonnay], $79.95 The Living Vine
-The Sadie Family Columella 2007 Swartland South Africa [shiraz &
mourvedre], $99.95 The Living Vine
-Ceago Vinegarden Winemakers Blend 2005 Lake County [red], $46.95 The
Living Vine
-Robert Sinskey Vineyards Vandal Cabernet 2005 Napa, $39.95 The Living
Vine
-Chateau Monty's French White 2008 Roussillon, $19.95 The Living Vine
-Chateau Monty's French Red 2008 Roussillon, $19.95 The Living Vine
-Champagne Fleury Carte Rouge Brut Blanc de Noirs NV, $56.95 The Living
Vine
-Champagne Fleury Fleur de L'Europe NV, $56.95 The Living Vine
-Champagne Fleury Rose NV, $79.95 The Living Vine
-Domaine Barmes Buecher Gewurztraminer Rosenberg 2007 Alsace, $30.95
The Living Vine
-Collefrisio Montepulciano Uno 2007 Abruzzo, $26.95 B&W Wines
 
***1/2 Three and a Half Stars (88 – 90 in Quality/Price Rating terms):
-Marcel Deiss Pinot d'Alsace 2004, +165365 Vintages ($16.16 licensee)
-DogRidge Sqaurecut Cabernet 2006 McLaren Vale, $36.95 license (Le
Sommelier)
-Organic Vignerons Viognier 2008 South Australia, +148981, $17.95
-Paxton Vineyards AAA Shiraz/Grenache 2008 McLaren Vale, $19.95 The
Living Vine
-Enoomah Bore Wine Shiraz/Cabernet 2007 South Australia, $15.95,
Vintages July 10
-Peju Persephone Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon 2005 Napa, $66.45 licensee
(Le Sommelier)
-Temple Bruer Vineyards Sparkling Pure White 2009 [chenin blanc &
viognier] Langhorne Creek, $18.95 The Living Vine
-Temple Bruer Vineyards Preservative Free Shiraz 2007 Langhorne Creek,
$22.95 The Living Vine
-Millton Vineyard Opou Chardonnay 2007 Gisborne NZ, +92478, $22.95
-Millton Vineyard Clos de Ste Anne Chardonnay 2007 Gisborne NZ,
+141549, $42.95
-Stratus White 2006 VQA Niagara, +660704, $44
-Az. Agric. Sangervasio Chianti 2008, $21.95 B&W Wines
 
*** Three Stars (85 – 87 in Quality/Price Rating terms):
-Paxton Vineyards Chardonnay 2008 McLaren Vale, $24.95 Living Vine
-Paxton Vineyards Quandong Shiraz McLaren Vale, $26.95
-Temple Bruer Vineyards Grenache Shiraz Viognier 2007 Langhorne Creek,
$19.95 The Living Vine
-Millton Vineyard Riverpoint Viognier 2009 Gisborne NZ, +158816, $22.95
-Richmond Plain Sauvignon Blanc 2009 Nelson NZ, $16.95 The Living Vine
-Ceago Vinegarden Del Lago Chardonnay 2007 Lake County, +145870, $25.95
The Living Vine
-Ceago Vinegarden Del Lago Merlot 2006 Lake County, $28.95 The Living
Vine
-Tollgate White 2007 VQA, $16.10 licensee Stratus Niagara
-Tollgate Red 2007 VQA, $16.10 licensee Stratus Niagara
-Domaine Barmes Buecher Riesling Rosenberg 2007 Alsace, $27.95 The
Living Vine
-Domaine Ostertag Riesling V'dE 2007 Alsace, $27.95 The Living Vine
-Collefrisio Montepulciano 2008 Abruzzo, $18.95 B&W Wines
 
The Food: really good crusty bread, unidentified, but presumably
sustainable or organic.
The Downside: no spit buckets – we had to carry our own as well as
write notes, etc.
The Upside: a chance to taste all of these wines together. It was a
good mesh with the earlier tasting at Earth.
The Contact Person: mark@thelivingvine.ca
The Marketing Effectiveness (numerical grade): 89.
 
 
 

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

April 21,2010: LCBO Vintages Green Evoluition wine show

The Time and Date: Tuesday, April 21, 2010   2:30 PM to 4:30PM
The Event: Vintages Presents Green Evolution: eco-friendly wine tasting
and dinner.
The Venue: Earth, 1055 Yonge Street
The Target Audience: wine media
The Availability/Catalogue: all wines were available at the Vintages
event that evening, but we were allowed to taste in the afternoon. I
begged for a look at the catalogue; it had some information about the
winemakers and wineries.
The Quote/Background: the wines were a mix of sustainable, organic and
biodynamic wines (also known as SOB wines). Just about every wine was
an event exclusive,
The Wines: There were about 15 wines which were not tasted, or were
only at dinner.
 
**** Four Stars (91+ in Quality/Price Rating terms):
-Dom. Weinbach Schlossberg Cuvee St. Catherine Riesling 2008 Alsace,
$84
-Comp. de Vinos Telmo Rodriguez Lanzaga 2008 Rioja, $29
-Arboleda Cabernet Sauvignon 2008 Chile, $18
-Paul Dolan Zinfandel 2007 Mendocino, $19
-Paul Dolan Deep Red 2006 Mendocino, $56
 
***1/2 Three and a Half Stars (88 – 90 in Quality/Price Rating terms):
-Pommery Brut Royal Champagne NV, $60
-Southbrook Poetica Cabernet Merlot 2007 VQA, $60
-Yealands Estate Sauvignon Blanc 2008 NZ, $19
-Dom. Weinbach Reserve Personelle Gewurztraminer 2007 Alsace, $43
-Dom. Weinbach Schlossberg Riesling 2008 Alsace, $55
-Comp. de Vinos Telmo Rodriguez Pegaso 2007 Spain, $39
-Benziger Lake and Sonoma Counties Sauvignon Blanc 2008, $20
-Benziger Signaterra Pinot Noir 2007 Sonoma, $69
-Benziger Signaterra Three Blocks 2006 Sonoma, $69
-Paul Dolan Sauvignon Blanc 2007 Mendocino, $18
-Dom. Weinbach Furstentum Vendanges Tardives Gewurztraminer 2005, $134
750mL
 
*** Three Stars (85 – 87 in Quality/Price Rating terms):
-Pommery POP Earth Champagne, $60
-Southbrook Triomphe Cabernet Merlot Reserve 2007 VQA, $26.95
-Southbrook Rose 2009 VQA, $18.95
-Yealands Estate Pinot Gris 2008 NZ, $19
-Yealands Estate Riesling 2009 NZ, $19
-Dom. Weinbach Pinot Blanc 2008 Reserve Alsace, $41
-Dom. Weinbach Cuvee Theo Riesling 2008 Alsace, $45
-Arboleda Carmenere 2008 Chile, $18
-Arboleda Syrah 2008 Chile, $18.95
-Paul Dolan Pinot Noir 2007 Mendocino, $34
 
The Food: bread and water
The Downside: it was my third wine tasting of the day, and I had to re-
set my palate several times throughout the day. Also, we were not given
a catalogue.
The Upside: a chance to taste a variety of sustainable wines from many
regions in one room.
The Contact Person: Calibrium International and Lifford Wine Agency.
The Marketing Effectiveness (numerical grade): 86.
 
 
 

Monday, May 10, 2010

Beer and Butter Tarts

Folks, there is a new Food Aggregator in town...One that wants to go
national...It's Beer and Butter Tarts, and it likes to tie up and link together
all of the food blogs in Canada...a noble idea.

Try it at Beer and Butter Tarts

It'll serve as a master list and index to all Canadian food bloggers.

Thanks, guys!!!

April 21, 2010: Discover the Wine Flavours of Argentina

The Time and Date: Tuesday, April 21, 2010  1PM to 5 PM
The Event: "Discover the Flavours of Argentina from Salta to Patagonia"
The Venue: Intercontinental Hotel, Front Street.
The Target Audience: wine agents and wine press, sommeliers.
The Availability/Catalogue: just about all of the wines are not yet
available. These 19 wineries are looking for agents in Ontario. Some
had already signed up by show time.
The Quote/Background: This was a major wine show initiative, conducted
with grace. Not a single winery or principal was pushy.
The Wines: There were more wines than were listed in the catalogue, and
some of the wines listed never made it here. There were about 8 wines
each (total of 160?). Some prices varied from those listed in the
catalogue. I did not taste all the wines. I did not report on the
sparklers. Prices are APPROXIMATE.
 
**** Four Stars (91+ in Quality/Price Rating terms):
-Carelli Malbec 2006 La Consulta-Mendoza, $78.99
-Don Cristobal Triana [Malbec/Syrah/CabSauv] 2007 Mendoza, $27.99
-Don Manuel Villafane Grand Reserva Malbec 2007 Mendoza, $25.99
-El Porvenir de Los Andes Laborum Cabernet Sauvignon 2005 Cafayate-
Salta, $48.99
-Finca Las Yeguas Gozzo Viognier 2008 Perdriel Mendoza, $12.99 ORGANIC
-Las Canitas Juan Cruz Navarro Torre Reserva Malbec 2008 Valle de
Calamuchita – Cordoba, $39.99
-Mi Terruno Reserva Chardonnay 2008 Mendoza, $16.99
-Palo Alto Yllum Grand Reserve Blend [Malbec/CabSauv/Merlot] 2005
Mendoza, $47.99
-San Huberto Nina Cabernet/Malbec 2007 La Rioja, $29.99
 
***1/2 Three and a Half Stars (88 – 90 in Quality/Price Rating terms):
-Carelli Gran Malbec 2006 La Consulta-Mendoza, $105
-Casa Montes Alzamora Grand Reserve Malbec 2006 San Juan, $19.99
-El Porvenir de Los Andes Laborum Malbec 2006 Cafayate-Salta, $48.99
-El Porvenir de Los Andes Laborum Torrontes 2009 Cafayate-Salta, $17.99
-Finca Las Yeguas Malbec 2007 Perdriel Mendoza, $52.99 ORGANIC
-Finca Las Yeguas Cabernet Sauvignon 2007 Perdriel Mendoza, $52.99
ORGANIC
-Las Canitas Familia Navarro Torre Reserva Cabernet Sauvignon/Malbec
2008 Valle de Calamuchita – Cordoba, $23.99
-Mi Terruno Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon 2008 Mendoza, $16.99
-Mi Terruno Mayacaba Malbec 2007 Mendoza, $47.99
-Palo Alto Yllum Malbec Reserve 2006 Mendoza, $23.99
-Palo Alto Yllum Cabernet Sauvignon Reserve 2006 Mendoza, $23.99
-San Huberto Nina Petit Verdot 2007 La Rioja, $39.99
-Secreto Patagonico Malbec Roble 2006 Patagonia, $43.99
-Secreto Patagonico Chardonnay 2007 Patagonia, $17.99
-Tierras de Ponte Privado Malbec 2006 Tulum Valley-San Juan, $26.49
-Vasija Secreta VAS Torrontes 2008 Cafayate-Salta, $21.99
-Vasija Secreta VAS Sauvignon Blanc 2008 Cafayate-Salta, $21.99
-Vasija Secreta VAS Malbec 2007 Cafayate-Salta, $31.99
-Vasija Secreta VAS Reserva [CabSauv/Malbec/Tannat] 2007 Cafayate-
Salta, $32.99
 
*** Three Stars (85 – 87 in Quality/Price Rating terms):
-Don Manuel Villafane Reserva Malbec 2007 Mendoza, $17.99
-El Porvenir de Los Andes Laborum Tannat 2006 Cafayate-Salta, $48.99
-Finca Las Yeguas Gozzo Torrontes 2009 Perdriel Mendoza, $12.99 ORGANIC
-Las Piedras Pura Vid Pannunzio Giovanni Vincenzo Cabernet Sauvignon
2008 Maipu Mendoza, $16.99
-Mi Terruno Limited Reserva Blend Malbec/Cabernet Sauvignon 2008
Mendoza, $21.99
-Sietefincas Cabernet Sauvignon 2008 Tupungato-Mendoza, $15.99
-Tanino Argentina El Rosal Reserve Malbec 2006 San Rafael-Mendoza,
$17.99
-Tierras de Ponte Privado Cabernet Sauvignon 2006 Tulum Valley-San
Juan, $26.49
-Secreto Patagonico Malbec 2008 Patagonia, $19.99
 
The Food: roast beef with Yorkshire pudding and/or bun, skewered meats,
lots of cheeses, tempting seafood and vegetarian one-biters. First
rate!
The Downside: interpreters slowed down pouring, but what else can you
do when there is no agent to take responsibility for telling clients
what's in the wine and how much it cost?
The Upside: two rooms, not crowded, everybody seemed to know what they
were doing.
The Contact Person: info@winespeak.ca
The Marketing Effectiveness (numerical grade): 92.
 
 
 
 

April 20, 2010: APVSA Tasting

 The Time and Date: Tuesday, April 20, 2010   10 AM to 6 PM
The Event: APVSA tasting (Association pour la promotion des vins et
spiritueux en Amerique du Nord).
The Venue: Delta Chelsea Inn
The Target Audience: wine agents.
The Availability/Catalogue: no wines are currently available in
Ontario. The group is here to try to get some agents to agree to rep
the principal. Some of the wines are available in Quebec and Alberta.
Most of the wines were French, and there are often sales staff
available to comment on the prices and production. This road show also
visits New York, Los Angeles, Seattle, Las Vegas, Calgary and Montreal
The Wines: The problem I had with the wines, and one that must be
acknowledged, is that they were no better than the wines that we
already have here in Ontario. There really did not seem to be any price
advantages, either. These 60 or so wines could be made available
through Vintages or Consignment. In the past, many have been picked up
for sale in Ontario. Here were my faves, regardless of price (all
prices are ex-cellar Euros):
 
**** Four Stars (91+ in Quality/Price Rating terms):
-Dom. Du Bicheron Gaec Rousset Macon Peronne 2008, 3.80 E
-Jean Pierre Legret Champagne Grande Reserve NV, 12.80 E
-Maison Gille Cote de Nuits-Villages 1999, 9.00 E
 
***1/2 Three and a Half Stars (88 – 90 in Quality/Price Rating terms):
-Dom. De la Chaise Touraine Sauvignon Blanc 2009, 2.85 E
-Dom. Du Parc Saint Charles Cotes du Rhone Rouge 2009 Cuvee St Charles,
2.90 E
-Jean Pierre Legret Champagne 2000, 14.00 E
-Jean Pierre Legret Champagne Cuvee Speciale Brut Blanc de Blanc NV,
11.80 E
-Maison Gille Cote de Nuits-Villages 2003, 6.00 E
-Maison Gille Cote de Nuits-Villages 2006, 5.94 E
-Maison Gille Nuits-Saint-Georges "Les Brulees" 2007, 11.78 E
-Maison Gille Nuits-Saint-Georges "Les Cailles" 2005, 18.29 E
 
*** Three Stars (85 – 87 in Quality/Price Rating terms):
-Dom. Les Girard du Boucou Chateauneuf-du-Pape 2007, 12.50 E
-Jean Pierre Legret Champagne Brut Tradition NV, $10.50 E
-Jean Pierre Legret Champagne Demi-Sec NV, 10.50 E
-Jean Pierre Legret Champagne Rose Brut NV, 11.50 E
-Moreteaux et Fils Bourgogne Chardonnay 2009, 3.30 E
-Moreteaux et Fils Bourgogne Aligot 2009, 3.20 E
-Maison Gille Bourgogne Pinot Noir 2008, 4.44 E
-Maison Gille Cote de Nuits-Villages 2004 5.97 E
-Maison Gille Cote de Nuits-Villages 2005, 6.06 E
-Maison Gille Cote de Nuits-Villages 2007, 5.94 E
-Maison Gille Nuits-Saint-Georges "Les Cailles" 2006, 18.02 E
 
The Food: none.
The Downside: selection is eclectic and bottles arrive haphazardly.
Some bottles never arrived at all, but we were not told this until we
got there.
The Upside: a chance to taste some engaging wines not available here.
There is a listing of wines with FOB prices in Euros.
The Contact Person: Pascal p.fernand@apvsa.ca
The Effectiveness (numerical grade): 84.
 
 
 

Saturday, May 8, 2010

April 19, 2010: 30th Annual Canadian Tour for the California Wine Fair

The Time and Date: Monday, April 19, 2010  2:30PM to 5 PM
The Event: The 30th Annual Canadian tour for the California Wine Fair
The Venue: Fairmont Royal York
The Target Audience: wine trade
The Availability/Catalogue: the catalogue was very well done,
informative, and with all the basic data except for prices.
The Quote/Background: There were over 120 wineries, many with over 4
wines each.
The Wines: I could not taste everything. Luckily, I had some wines
during an earlier press preview, but only about 15% of the total.
Today, because I was not impressed with the Chardonnays at that earlier
press preview, I did as many Chardonnays as I could handle. Plus some
other wines.
 
**** Four Stars (91+ in Quality/Price Rating terms):
-Galante Blackjack Pasture Cabernet Sauvignon 2005 Carmel Valley, $100
-Hahn Family Meritage 2008 Central Coast
-Hess Collection Su'skol Vineyard Chardonnay 2007 Napa
-Nichols Winery Merlot 2000 Paso Robles, $37.95
-Nichols Winery Chardonnay Paragon Vineyard 2001 Eden, $42.04 licensee
-Rutherford Wine Co. Scott Family Estate Chardonnay 2008 Arroyo Seco
 
***1/2 Three and a Half Stars (88 – 90 in Quality/Price Rating terms):
-Andretti Chardonnay 2008 Napa Valley
-Artesa Winery Chardonnay 2007 Carneros
-Chappellet Mountain Cuvee 2007 Napa, $36.95
-Christine Andrew Viognier 2007 Lodi, $25
-Cuvaison Chardonnay S Block 2008 Napa
-Galante Red Rose Hill Cabernet Sauvignon 2007 Carmel Valley $71.20
Licensee
-Galante Rancho Calante Cabernet Sauvignon 2006 Carmel Valley $44.98
licensee
-Heitz Chardonnay 2007 Napa
-Hess Collection Select Chardonnay 2008 Mendocino
-J. Lohr Estates Riverstone Chardonnay 2008 Arroyo Seco
-Landmark Vineyards Overlook Chardonnay 2007
-Murrieta's Well Meritage White 2007 Livermore, $34.95
-Murrieta's Well Meritage Red 2007 Livermore, $34.95
-Nicols Winery Silver Fox Cabernet Sauvignon/Black Label 2000 Paso
Robles, $50
-Oakville Ranch Chardonnay 2007 Oakville
-Robert Mondavi Private Selection Cabernet Sauvignon 2007 California
-Rutherford Wine Co. Round Hill Chardonnay 2008 California
-Schug Carneros Chardonnay 2007
-St. Clement Chardonnay 2008 Carneros
-Stag's Leap Wine Cellars KARIA Chardonnay 2007 Napa
-Stonehedge Winery Gewurztraminer 2008 Mendocino
-Truchard Vineyards Chardonnay 2008 Carneros
 
*** Three Stars (85 – 87 in Quality/Price Rating terms):
-Francis Ford Coppola Presents Diamond Collection Gold Label Chardonnay
2008 Monterey
-Liberty School Chardonnay 2007 California
-Lucas & Lewellen Vineyards Chardonnay 2008 Santa Barbara County, $22
-Lucas & Lewellen Viognier 2008 Santa Barbara County
-Starmont Chardonnay 2007 Napa
-Miner Family Viognier 2008 California
-Parducci Chardonnay 2008 Mendocino
-Robert Mondavi Cabernet Sauvignon 2006 Napa
-Rutherford Wine Co. Lander Jenkins Chardonnay 2008 California
-Signorello Vineyards Vieilles Vignes Chardonnay 2008 Napa, $60
-Stag's Leap Winery Viognier 2008 Napa
-Stag's Leap Winery Chardonnay 2007 Napa
 
The Food: cheeses and breads, some pate, fruits.
The Downside: too many wines were shown – it gets bigger every year,
and the only way to go through it is by variety.
The Upside: a good show to peruse if you go for only one variety or
region. It should be a show over two days.
The Contact Person: calwine@sympatico.ca
The Marketing Effectiveness (numerical grade): 87.