May 7, 2016 § 1 Comment
Always looking to improve on the offerings here, I have enlisted some of the most respected palates in the Craft Beer world to provide a Beer of the Week Each Week.
This week features Jami Wood of Spinnaker’s Spirit Merchants in James Bay.
For Jami this beer was so good that it inspired her to bake a cake with the beer being a key ingredient.
Pick of the Week: Bridge Brewing Lemon Gin Saison
Availability: Private Stores only; very limited stock available – get it now!
Tasting Notes/Technical Info: Brewed with the addition of juniper berries, lemon peel, coriander, and pink peppercorns, and fermented with a French Saison Yeast, this beer is unique and super drinkable. Juniper, used in moderation, emphasizes the gin flavours, while coriander adds depth and complexity. The saison yeast used expresses peppery, spicy and citrusy notes, which play well with the lemon zest and pink peppercorn.
ABV 5.5% IBU 24
the Dork UnCorked
January 23, 2016 § Leave a comment
Today’s show is all about exploration without the risk. The world of wine is immense and encompasses far more than those that are top of mind like Cabernet Sauvignon, Malbec, Shiraz or Chardonnay. Today we feature a number of wines that represent great value, are likely not wines you have heard of before and are different enough from your favourites to be interesting, but similar to make you feel at home.
Episode 13 – Link to Podcast
Segment 1 ~ Shout Outs
Shout out to the teams at Lifecycles and Spinnaker’s for coming together to create Backyard Blend Cider. This is a cider made from apples collected from backyards throughout Victoria. It truly is a cider of the community and the taste of Victoria – well done!
Shout out to Chef Sam Harris at Agrius and his mussels. I had the wonderful experience of lunching there with a dear friend and I am a sucker for mussels. Done in a classic white wine sauce and served with Fol Epi’s world famous (certainly famous in my world) Boule. Heaven!
Shout outs to Keith, Deborah, Jason, Karin, Pam, Ernest & Jami for their continued engagement and lively discussion.
Segment 2 ~ A Side Step From Malbec/Shiraz
Here are some wines that are different enough from Malbec and Shiraz to be interesting but share their fruity depth and luscious body.
Nero D’Avola (Italy)
Cusumano – $16-$17 widely available at both private and government liquor stores.
Monte Nobile – $14 distributed mostly in government stores on Vancouver Island.
Montalto Nero-Cabernet – $11 widely available in both private and government liquor stores.
Luccarelli – $13 mostly available in government stores.
Mezzomondo – $9 widely available
Segment 3 – A Side Step From Cabernet Sauvignon & Merlot
Lopez de Haro Crianza – $17-$18 available only in private stores and by the glass at Bodega by Trounce Alley in Victoria (great Charcuterie board for lunch if you are in the neighbourhood).
Campo Viejo – $15 widely available
Periquita – $9 widely available
Grao Vasco Dao – $9 widely available
Segment 4 – A Side Step From Chardonnay
Yalumba Y Series Viognier (Australia) – $18 widely available
Cono Sur Bicicleta (Chile) – $10 mostly available in government stores.
Best Buy of the Week
Grao Vasco Dao 2012 – $9 a true delight for a wine under $10. A wonderful glass that pairs well with grilled or roasted poultry, pasta, pizza even steak or a roast of beef.
the Dork UnCorked
Tune in Saturday afternoons at 2pm on CFAX 1070 for the Dork UnCorked Radio hour.
December 24, 2015 § 3 Comments
Truth be told I am a bubble head (as if you didn’t know that already), and I firmly believe that the world would be a better place if everyone enjoyed a glass of sparkling wine a day.
I was in a bit of a funk the other day and my spirits needed lifting so I endeavoured to find a sparkling wine that would put a smile on and in my mouth and a skip in my step. Enter Perseus Sparkling Chardonnay.
Price ~ $21-$22
Score ~ 8.6/10 Over Delivers
The packaging isn’t all fancy and it comes with a classic beer cap instead of a big cork with a cage around it. Simply pop the cap off and immediately your spirits will lift.
The aromas (scent) is brimming with fresh apples, bartlett pears and hints of citrus. Isn’t this the combination aromatherapy uses to bring one’s energy up… I see a trend here, alas I digress.
The mousse (the head if you are a beer drinker) is made up of thousands of tiny bubbles that dance upon the palate while also making the texture a little softer and creamier. The juicy, citrus flavours come alive and heighten the senses.
As you can tell I truly loved this wine and will be making a regular around the house.
Grapes ~ 100% Chardonnay
Store Section ~ Sparkling Wine
Availability ~ Limited, Private Stores including Everything Wine, Metro Liquor, Spinnakers, Cork & Barrel and Caddy Bay Liquor.
the Dork UnCorked
Tune in Saturday’s from 2-3pm on CFAX 1070 for the Dork UnCorked Radio Hour.
November 2, 2015 § Leave a comment
In Episode 2 it is all about Halloween- what wines & beers pair with classic Halloween fare (from the Candy/Chip Bowl), a Halloween Punch, some great conversation with our Craft Beer and Cocktail Correspondents, and, of course, the week’s Best Buy.
Click here to listen to Episode 2: Halloween
Wine Pairings For Classic Halloween Treats
Skittles – Gewurztraminer, Sauvignon Blanc or Pinot Grigio depending on how sweet, spicy and crisp you like your wines.
Sweeter/Spicy wine = Gewurztraminer (Recommendations Under $20: Tinhorn Creek, Cono Sur Bicicleta)
Crisp/Full Flavoured = Sauvignon Blanc (Recommendations U$20: Lurton Les Fumees Blanches, Oyster Bay, Casa del Bosque Reserva)
Fresh, Fruit Forward = Pinot Grigio (Recommendations U$20: Mezzacorona, Prospect Winery, Ca’ Montebello [private stores only])
M&M’s/Snickers Bars– Tempranillo, Sangiovese, Grenache/Garnacha depending on how soft, juicy, spicy or silky you like your wine.
Juicy/Spicy = Tempranillo (Recommendations U$20: Masia F [private stores only], Lopez de Haro Crianza [private stores only], Torres Coronas}
Silky = Sangiovese (Recommendations U$20: Giacondi, Gabbiano Chianti, Antinori Santa Cristina)
Soft/Juicy = Grenache/Garnacha (Recommendations U$20: Borsao, Le Paradou [private stores only] Rosemount Grenache Shiraz)
Reeses Peanut Butter Cups – Sherry, Tawny Port depending on whether you favour the nutty side or chocolate side of the Peanut Butter Cup.
Nutty Side – Amontillado Sherry (Recommendations U$20: Emu Amontillado, Alvear Medium Dry)
Chocolate Side – Tawny Port (Recommendations U$30: Penfolds Club Tawny Port [private stores only], Warres Optima)
Candy Corn and Rockets – Prosecco, Chardonnay or Moscato depending on whether or not you prefer sparkling wines, fruity or sweeter lighter alcohol wines.
Sparkling Wines – Prosecco (Recommendations U$20: Nua [private stores only], La Marca, Villa Teresa)
Fruit Driven & Dry – Chardonnay (Recommendations U$20: Grove Ridge [private stores only], Wente Morning Fog, De Martino Limari)
Sweeter & Fruity: – Moscato (Recommendations U$20: The Tapas Collection, Ca’ Montebello [private stores only], Ogio]
Doritos – Barbera, Gamay Noir or Bonarda depending on how heavy, grapey, juicy, floral or spicy you like your wines.
Grapey/Juicy/Medium Bodied – Barbera (Recommendations U$20: Ca’Montebello [private stores only], Ricossa Barbera D’Asti, Briccotondo Barbera D’Alba)
Juicy/Floral/Light Bodied – Gamay Noir (Recommendations U$25: Desert Hills [private stores only], Duboeuf Beaujolais)
Grapey/Spicy/Medium Bodied – Bonarda (Recommendations U$20: Argento Bonarda [private stores only], Tilia Bonarda [private stores only]
Popcorn – Chardonnay or Viognier depending on how fruit forward and unctuous you like it.
Fruit Forward/Creamy/Rich – Chardonnay (Recommendations U$20: Grove Ridge [private stores only], Wente Morning Fog, Lindemans Bin 65 Chardonnay)
Cheetos/Cheesies – Sauvignon Blanc (Recommendations U$20: Seven Terraces, Oyster Bay, Les Fumees Blanche)
Classic Potato Chips – Sparkling Wine is the best choice and there are lots of great choices depending on your budget.
Over $40 – Veuve Cliquot, Tattinger, Bellavista Franciacorta
$20-$40 – Blue Mountain Brut, Mumm’s Napa Prestige, Paul Zinck Cremant D’Alsace
Under $20 – Jean Louis Blancs de Blancs [private stores only], Cristalino Cava, Hungaria Cuvee Brut
BBQ Potato Chips – Pinot Noir, I guess the good news is that Under $20 there are only a coveted few to recommend.
Under $20 – Simple Life Pinot Noir, Casa Viva Pinot Noir [private stores only], Unduragga Sibaris Pinot Noir
Skittles – Pale Ale
M&M’s/Snickers Bars- Porter or Brown Ale
Reeses Peanut Butter Cups – Chocolate Stout
Candy Corn – Witbier or Weizen
Rockets – Sour Beers
Doritos – Witbier or Weizen
Popcorn – ESB
Cheetos/Cheesies – IPA or Stout
Classic Potato Chips – Belgian Dubbel
BBQ Potato Chips – Porter
Pumpkin Beer Recommendations – Jami Wood, Craft Beer Correspondent
Lighter Bodied Beer – Nelson Organic Pumpkin Ale
Medium Bodied Beer – Central City Red Racer Pumpkin Ale
Full Bodied Beer – Howe Sound ‘Pumpkineater’ Imperial Pumpkin Ale (available in most liquor stores)
Halloween Punch – Shawn Soole, Cocktail Correspondent
Cocktail Recipe for Fernet Branca – Toronto (What is Fernet Branca?)
Dash of angostura bitters
Shawn’s book Cocktail Culture can be found at Munro’s, Bolen’s and through this link to Amazon.ca
This week’s Best Buy: Simple Life Pinot Noir