BC wines – #ONtastesBC

 

Lineup
There are five wine growing regions within BC and they are considerably more north of the Ontario growing region that spans the latitudes N42° and N44°. The southern-most growing regions (and western-most) are the Vancouver Island and Gulf Island regions around the N48° latitude, whereas the Fraser Valley, Similkameen Valley and Okanagan Valley regions snuggle against the 49th parallel, with Okanagan extending nearly to the N51° latitude, thereby northerly crossing the so-called wine growing belt that spans the N35° and N50° latitudes. The first thought may be that being so north and so close to Rockies, the climate would be cold and quite unpredictable, however these regions have in common a mild and relatively dry climate that is ideal for viticulture and aids in producing intensely aromatic wines.

 

Trickledown effect – Second video tasting

GrapeSelections was recently invited to participate in a second online video wine and cheese tasting (first one can be watched here) organized by Natalie MacLean. This article summarizes what is involved in preparation to make the video happen (on my end) as well as to feature the wines and cheeses and how they pair together.

 

 

Tasting with Wolf Blass

On Monday, September 10th 2012, as ‘GrapeSelections’, I was invited to a dinner/wine tasting of Wolf Blass wines – presented by THE MAN himself, together with Chris Hatcher (the chief winemaker) and hosted by Natalie MacLean (the author of the book ‘Unquenchable’). The premise of this event was to promote the book ‘Unquenchable: A Tipsy Quest For The World’s Best Bargain Wines’ together with Wolf Blass wines, as in her book, Mrs. MacLean wittingly shares her experience meeting Mr. Blass as well as other stories of her visiting ‘the wine country’.

Video Wine and Cheese Tasting Live on Google Hangouts – July 25th 2012.

With the team of wine enthusiasts, each an expert in one area or another, we joined Google Hangouts to see how live video tasting would work. At the beginning, technology was not cooperating and while we were waiting for Natalie MacLean to set it up, we were goofing around – trying out different cheeses with the wines (other than the sparking, which was to be opened live) and were just having a lot of fun. After a while Natalie fixed the issue and so the ‘Tasting bunch’ composed of (according to introductions) Allie Hughes, Bethany Harpur + Holly Bruns + Nita Boushey, Corinna Horton, myself, Dawn Montgomery, Gaby Israel, Jason Solanki and Nina Syas under the direction of Natalie MacLean proceeded with the live tasting of the three wines (see below) and six cheeses (listed in my previous post).

 

Twitter Wine and Cheese Tasting – July 19th 2012

The preparation

The logistics – first we had to receive the wine and the cheese, in my case I had them both sent directly to work as there are always people who can sign for it. The day when the wine came, the FedEx guy brought in this big box, and though we receive many parcels each day, some of my colleagues noticed that this one was different. I proceeded to open it, while anxious to find out which wines I am receiving, I got a nice surprise – I expected six bottles, but there were seven. Some of my colleagues (knowing what I do for fun) asked if there will be any leftovers that they can share. About a week later, I received another parcel, this one with the cheese. Now everyone knew what I was up to and so they gathered to see what cheeses I got. I must say, almost nothing like the actual visual sensation of wine or cheese on a weekday morning at work brightens up the day more.