The Date and Time: Thursday, May 26, 2016 4PM to 6PM
The Event: Ontario's Southwest City Fare 2016
The Venue: 99 Sudbury
The Target Audience: wine media
The Availability/Catalogue: there was a passport to keep track of where you were. It was all organized by iyellow Wine Club.
The Quote/Background: over 40 wine, beer and culinary vendors were present, along with actual chefs, brewmasters and winemakers. So I made three pasts, starting with wine, then beer, and then food (I had lunch earlier in the day).
The Wines: I was most interested in wines, but I did not try them all. All wines are from Southwest Ontario, all are VQA.
**** BEST -- Four Stars (91+ in Quality/Price Rating terms):
-North 42 Degrees Cabernet Franc 2013 $20.95
-Muscadere Merlot 2014 $20
***1/2 BETTER -- Three and a Half Stars (88 – 90 in Quality/Price Rating terms):
-North 42 Degrees Riesling 2012 $17.95
-North 42 Degrees Gewurztraminer 2013 $19.95
-North 42 Degrees Cabernet Sauvignon 2012 $20.95
-Oxley Wowza 2014 [white] $16.95
-Oxley Rose 2013 $15.95
-Oxley Cabernet Merlot 2013 $18.95
-Muscadere Cabernet Sauvignon 2012 $30
-Cooper's Hawk Chardonnay Unoaked 2013 $14.95
-Cooper's Hawk Cabernet Merlot 2013 Reserve $18.95
-Cooper's Hawk Touche Gewurtztraminer/Riesling  $18.95
-Colio Lily Sparkling $16.95
-Sprucewood Shores Riesling 2015 $13.95
-Sprucewood Shores Lady in Red Cabernet Merlot 2013 $14.95
*** GOOD -- Three Stars (85 – 87 in Quality/Price Rating terms):
-North 42 Degrees Sauvignon Blanc 2012 $17.95
-North 42 Degrees Pinot Noir 2013 $19.95
-Quai du Vin Amore Muscat Petillants 2015 $14
-Oxley Cabernet Franc 2013 $18.95
-Muscadere Riesling 2014 $16
BEERS: There were so many to sample, and just about everybody could not believe that I only wanted half an ounce to tasting (no swallowing). There is a Ontario's Southwest Ale Trail map, compiled by Blue Elephant Craft Brew House (with beer on site such as North Shore lager). I sampled, and enjoyed among others, Dead Elephant ale (Railway City Brewing), Dubbel and Belgian Blond (New Limburg), Troll Toll (Refined Fool), 1815 Gluten-Free ale (Strathroy Brewing), Dakota Peach [potato] ale (Ramblin' Road).
There were also hard apple ciders: Bonnie Heath Estate produced a good regular and an apple-cherry cider.
The Food: such a huge variety – Teresa and Tony's Original Kettlecorn (made from a "mushroom" variety of popping corn, with smooth rounded globes and low husks); Philippe Lehner's Habitual chocolate (wafer chocolate 56%); Pauline Bucek's Sixthirtynine (maple glazed goat meatballs) in Woodstock for casual fine dining; Elmhurst Inn's BBQ pulled Berkshire pork; Mountainoak Cheese's Gouda, flavoured with wild nettle, or smoked, or with black truffle; Debb's cuisine (Bourbon Street Caesar, chicken breast with fried goat cheese) on Queen in Dunnville; the Windsoreats Traveller Mobile Bar; marshmallows from the Arts and Cookery Bank; Cindy Walker's Chocolatea bacon chocolate, lavendar drops, and vanilla bean chocolates; Smackwater Jack's Taphouse and the pig rinds with bacon cream; the smoked duck on cinnamon with Stilton at Pickles Please; and queso fresco at Local Dairy.
The Downside: it got crowded really fast
The Upside: a chance to takes Ontario Southwest, which appears all too infrequently in Toronto.
The Contact Person: email@example.com
The Event's Marketing Effectiveness and Execution (numerical grade): 88.