Everything Wine And More

Marcia Hamm
 
January 13, 2020 | Marcia Hamm

Wines To Warm From the Inside Out


It seems every year about this time, we have a cold snap, and we are rendered immobile for a week or two at a time, usually between the dates of December 26-to around mid-February. We got lucky this year and enjoyed a mild December and even January started out relatively balmy…until Saturday. Temperatures fell to -26C (for my American friends who speak Fahrenheit, that’s -14.8F) That’s during the day. Tonight, it will plummet to -38C. I know that when we get to -40C, it’s the same in Fahrenheit! In other words... freaking cold. Schools are still in session, city transit still runs, and if our cars our “plugged in”, they start with ease. We learn to adapt here. Big hoods, long underwear, boots that come up to our knees especially made to withstand the harsh cold tundra, scarves, bulky mitts…you name it to wear to keep warm, we own it! It’s business as usual, and unless you CAN’T start your vehicle, you’re at work at the required time!


I don’t know about you, but when it’s this cold, I don’t want to go anywhere. As soon as the time clock dings after my eight hours, I’m heading home to change into my cozy jammy bottoms, and hunker down under a large, thick blanket with the TV on and a glass of my favourite full-bodied red. If I had a fireplace, that’d be stoked too! .


So what’s in your glass if you’re in a place that gets so cold your nose hairs freeze? Here are four recommended selections that are sure to warm you from the inside out!


2015 Tridente Tempranillo- Spain

From the Gil Family Estates, the Bodegas Tridente winery, located in the Castilla y Leon territory in Northwest Spain, makes this massive tempranillo from old vines cultivated on very sandy soils covered with gravel in a hot area of the Duero Valley. The grapes are small (old vines will eventually give smaller and smaller berries and/or yields), with loads of concentrated flavours of black cherry and black berry. It’s also aged in French oak for 15 months, so it also has huge aromas and flavours of cinnamon and nutmeg spice, along with dark chocolate. At a whopping 16%abv, it’s almost like drinking port, and sure to warm you up nicely!

SR $26CAD

 

 

2016 1000 Stories, Bourbon Barrel-Aged Zinfandel – United States

This Zinfandel is bursting with field berry fruit flavours, and then made more complex with the addition of ageing in ex American bourbon barrels. In order for a bourbon to be labelled as “Kentucky Straight”, it requires (among other things), to be aged in a NEW charred American white oak barrel, that is only used once. After the bourbon gets put into the bottle, the barrels are obsolete. But not to worry, used barrels are a great commodity to other areas of the liquor industry, specifically this winery, which in the past, used to neutralize the flavours before using the barrels, but now, they are used to add those complex flavour nuances that come from the bourbon itself previously aged inside the barrel. This 1000 Stories wines uses small lots Mendocino fruit with ageing first in traditional French and American Oak before being transitioned into the bourbon barrels. The charred, smoky vanilla from the bourbon barrel merges with the dried fig, dried cherry, plum and cigar box of the wine to create an overall warming sensation that is sure to have your senses tingling!

SR $26CAD

 

 

2014 Nugan Estate Alfredo Dried Grape Shiraz- Australia

Alfredo Nugan, originally from Spain, went to Australian in the late 1930’s with a vision to create a great new life for his family. Of course, the name Nugan Estates is now synonymous with successful enterprise Down Under. Now in its third generation, this Spanish family is maintaining family traditions and sharing passion for good wine. Like the amarone style of Italy, a portion of the Shiraz grapes were dried on specialized racks to increase flavour intensity and concentration. Maturation took place in both American and French oak for 18 months giving this wine further structure and intensity. Dense ruby colour, you’ll find warming aromas of cherry, plum, chocolate and herbaceous notes, while your palate will be enticed by further warm and rich flavours complemented by the velvety smooth tannins at the finish. This wine will no doubt put a fire (the good kind) in your belly!

SR $29CAD !

 

 

2010 Cantine due Palme Selvarossa- Italy

Salice Salentino is a region in Puglia, the heel of Italy’s boot that grows mostly Negro Amaro, a red grape that has multiple personalities – some of the best rosati is made with this grape, yet it also yields rich, dark red wine! This wine has “Terra” on the label, and only the best vintages of Selvarossa are marked with this. Ancient negro amaro vines are hand harvested from the red clay soils, and also like the amarone style, a portion are sent to the drying racks to increase flavour concentration. With the addition of malvasia nera to soften the harsh tannins, the combination of appassimento fruit and fresh fruit are blended together, with time first in French oak barriques, then finished in stainless steel to preserve freshness. The end result is a rich, thick, full bodied wine that is most assuredly able to warm you from the inside out with aromas and flavours of ripe cherries and plums, along with hints of vanilla, and the classic negro amaro spice and shoe polish!

SR $35CAD


Buy your wine on your way TO work, so you can go straight home after work to hunker down and enjoy your wine! Stay warm people!

Time Posted: Jan 13, 2020 at 6:45 PM
Marcia Hamm
 
January 3, 2020 | Marcia Hamm

The World of Italian Wine

Where Do I Begin?


Traditionally, other than pinot grigio, moscato and prosecco, the world of Italian wine is largely misunderstood and honestly, intimidating. Yes, those that follow scores will undoubtedly understand Brunello di Montalcino, Amarone and Barolo, but what about the unsung hero grapes like aglianico, verdicchio, negro amaro or nerello mascalese?


When I was studying Italian grapes, there was 690 registered grape varieties in Italy, with about another 470 identified but not yet registered, which totals over 1000 grape varieties in one country alone. To this point that number on both counts has likely risen. There is more than probably over 700 registered grapes now, and perhaps a few more identified, which still leaves us at that staggering number. No wonder Italy is confusing.


I often get asked by many, “I want to start trying Italian wine, where do I start?” This is a perfect topic to start the year off, and many new people to this group reading our posts/tweets will have a whole list of wines they’d like to try, made with Italian native grapes!


When I go the Vinitaly Trade Show in Verona every year, I make it my mission to try as many native grapes as possible, or to revisit some of the more rare ones that I can ONLY taste in Italy! Grapes like ortrugo, moscato rosa, pelaverga, durella and lagrein are not often seen in market, but are incredibly fun and educational to try when in Italy!


To start your foray into Italian wine, let’s start with something fun!


Brachetto – native to Piemonte, the grape grows mostly around the town of Acqui area and will have Brachetto d’Acqui on the label. This wine was never meant to be sparkling (the still, dry versions are spectacular) but the frizzante style has made it incredibly appealing and sellable. The frizzante style has also helped put Brachetto on the map, so to speak. One of the few aromatic red grapes, it’s like drinking red berry fruit cocktail, with rose aroma and fizz! Delightful! Perfect for those that want something besides moscato and as a dessert wine, it pairs beautifully with chocolate covered strawberries!


La Gironda is proud of their area of Monferatto/Nizza, where some of the best wines of the world are made! They are a completely sustainable vineyard with no herbicides/pesticides, hand harvesting, and reduced consumtion of environmental resources! That’s the whole package folks, and ALL the wines from their portfolio are simply amazing. If you have a chance to find them in your market, I highly recommend trying ALL of them!


White wine (other than those mentioned above J) from Italy is often a tough sell. I must confess that before I started really studying wine, all Italian white wine tasted like bitter almonds, but this was because I didn’t understand the grape and didn’t know what I was looking for! This is a myth. There are some white wines that offer a great deal of complexity in the glass the different flavour profiles. The other myth is that white wine doesn’t age. Period. I know this is a myth because I’ve had a LOT of Italian white wines with significant age on them and they were beautiful, complex and stunning. One such grape is Verdicchio


Verdicchio – from the Marche region on the Adriatic coast, labels will have Verdicchio di Castelli di Jesi or Verdicchio di Matelica. There is a difference in the flavour, with Jesi being closer to the sea and grown on hillsides, whereas Matelica is mountainous and cool, so the wines tend to be more mineral and austere with higher acidity. Both of these have lees ageing though, which is what sets Verdicchio apart. Lees is the dead yeast cells, and after the yeast has finished changing the sugars to alcohol, it falls to the bottom of the barrel as lees. The lees stays in the wine and stirred in to add texture and mouth feel to the final product. Verdicchio is one of the few wines that has the ability to age. No small feat for white wine. I have tasted Verdicchio back to 1998 and the acid structure is still incredibly high, but the typical flavours of pears, yellow apples (and yes, almond) have changed to a rich butterscotch and sponge toffee aroma and flavour. And like any white wine with age, dark in colour.


Lorenzo Marotti Campi of Marotti Campi wines, showcases several Verdicchio in the portfolio, but when I have chardonnay drinkers approach me for something different, Lorenzo’s Salmariano Verdicchio is always the first wine I think of! With 20 % aged in oak barrels and the other 80% done typically in stainless steel with lees contact, it’s got the best of both worlds in freshness and mouth feel. The stainless ageing keeps it fresh and lively, yet the small amount in oak gives it the warm, glycerol, full body, rich mouth feel that often comes from drinking full bodied white wines – a perfect foray for the chardonnay drinker to try something Italian!


Carricante – This, my friends, is another ageable Italian white grape! Carricante you say? Where the heck is this from? If you’ve heard of Mount Etna and have had either white or red from the region, you have most assuredly had Carricante! Labeled Etna Bianco, there can be an additional 30% of a grape called cataratto, but the best of Etna Bianco, are 100% carricante and a must try Italian wine! Normally I would talk about the red grape of Mt Etna (because it happens to be my favourite), but recent trip to Sicily and the Mt Etna area, gave me a view through the microscope of this fabulous region. Wines from Sicily are hot, hot, hot right now, but none moreso than the grapes of Mt. Etna. Carricante can grow up to 1000m, yet still ripen in these cool, mountainous temperatures.


Pietradolce is a winery on the northern slopes of Mt Etna, which as one might think, is cooler than other parts of the mountain. It’s also one of the more prestigious areas, so wines coming from the northern slopes seem to have a certain caché about them. Their 100% Etna Bianco wine is eye catching because it is the bottle with “scribbles on the label”, which represents the explosive energy of the volcano itself! (the red has red scribbles and the rosé, pink, making these bottles easily recognizable). Using a combination of rich local traditions and modern winemaking techniques, Pietradolce is making a name for itself in an area that is becoming a force to be reckoned with.

Time Posted: Jan 3, 2020 at 10:33 AM
Marcia Hamm
 
December 16, 2019 | Marcia Hamm

Tis The Season

Not all bubbles are created equal. Many come into any retail store and ask for Champagne, not really knowing what it means. Here’s the lowdown:


Champagne- Can only be called such if it’s made in the Champagne region by the Methode Champenois, or second fermentation in the bottle. Essentially that means the bottle you buy off the shelf is the very same bottle the wine did its second fermentation in. If you see Blanc de Blanc, it’s made with 100% chardonnay grapes. Blanc de Noir means there’s red grapes in it – pinot noir and Meunier. These are the classic Champagne grapes and each provides something tasty to the bottle. Champagne is expensive though, due to its extensive ageing (minimum 36 months) on the lees (the dead yeast cells that give texture and taste to wine)


Crémant – We’re still in France, but outside Champagne, it’s called Crémant. These beautiful sparkling wines are made in the Loire Valley, Alsace, Burgundy, Limoux and even Bordeaux (although rare) with grapes such as chenin blanc, pinot blanc, riesling and the indigenous grape mauzac (Limoux). These are typically great sparklers at great price points, but the toasty notes that are present in Champagne, may not necessarily be present in Crémant, because these are typically aged for less time before going to market. With that said, Crémant is a great alternative to Champagne – French without the price tag!


Cava – Welcome to Spain! Another great alternative to Champagne is Cava, coming from (mostly) the Penedes region of Spain, close to Barcelona. Traditionally, grapes used are macabeo, parellades and xa-rello, but more and more we see these wines being made with more international grapes like chardonnay and pinot noir. If you’re looking for something to drink on Christmas morning (a Mimosa maybe?), think Cava! The price points are reasonable, and the flavours are lean, bright and fresh!


Prosecco – The sparkling wine created by the grape glera, coming from the Veneto region or Northeast Italy, it’s taken the world by storm and is at the top of its game. Unlike their counterparts mentioned above, Prosecco is made via the tank method, which means the bubble tend to be bigger and rounder vs. the creamy, delicate mousse of the Champagne, Crémant and Cava. However, its versatility makes it a popular choice amongst consumers. Choose brut style for classic prosecco from the Valdobbiadene hills for a standalone solid sparkling. Choose extra dry from Treviso if you want to create your Aperol Spritz, Bellini or Mimosa. Check out the Prosecco Pyramid by the Prosecco wall, or talk to one of our knowledgeable staff to get in the know about Prosecco!


Methode Ancestrale- Based on the name Ancestrale, one can probably guess that this is an old method of making sparkling, but it is risky and difficult to control. While Champagnes are made with a blending of base wines to produce a house style, then the addition of yeast and sugar in the bottle to kick start the second fermentation, in the Ancestrale method, the primary fermentation process is stopped before completion. The secondary fermentation (still occurs in the bottle) will stop when the yeast has completely finished converting the sugar to alcohol. There’s no disgorgement and there’s no dosage (the extra sugar added AFTER the wine has sat on its lees to determine how sweet your finished product will be: brut, sec, and demi-sec). That’s all clear right? Usually not…there’s typically sediment in any bottle of Methode Ancestrale! J


Petillant Naturel - Pet-Nat for short, has taken the world by storm, and you’ll likely find it in any trendy wine or cocktail bar. It’s like the method Ancestrale mentioned above, but even more natural. It’s often not as sparkly as other sparkling wines, and tends have that certain “funk” to it. It can made with any grape and might even be considered “orange” – another on trend for the millennials!


Sparkling Wine – The truth of the matter is, all countries make sparkling wine, and from every grape imaginable! If you buy it from Canada or the USA, Chile, Argentina, Australia or New Zealand, it’s simply called Sparkling Wine. In fact, some of the Champagne Houses of France have set up shop in the USA, with their house names attached to the area of the USA where it’s made. An affordable option to the champagne name without the Champagne price! The good news is we have ALL of the above mentioned wines in our store! The holiday season is a great time to open a bottle of bubbly, by yourself while watching a cheesy Hallmark Christmas movie, or with family and friends around the table eating great food, playing fun games, or simply to put a smile on your face! Cheers!

Marcia Hamm

Time Posted: Dec 16, 2019 at 5:41 PM
Ruth Blakely
 
July 30, 2019 | Ruth Blakely

Two fingers of Whisky please

Whisky, Whiskey, Rye, Bourbon, whatever your preference brown liquor is experiencing a renaissance thanks partly to a renewed interest in classic cocktails and the Millennial generation’s interest in quality craft products. 

When people think of Canadian whisky, Rye is what often comes to mind – Canadian Club for example, is known around the world.  Rye is a signature flavour even though most Canadian whisky also contains large amounts of corn or other ingredients. Distillers across the country are experimenting with a variety of grains to produce their own signature style whether it is the well-known Wayne Gretzky whiskies or the new to the market delicious offerings from the likes of Two Brewers. Named Micro Distillery of the year, what started as a brewery in the Yukon became a distillery in 2009 and their quality malted whisky has now made its way to Alberta 

When you say whisky a lot of people think specifically of Scotch.  Scotch – not surprisingly- comes from Scotland.  It can be blended – like Johnnie Walker or single malt such as Bowmore and prices can vary wildly for either option.  Scotch can be very ‘peaty’ meaning it carries heady aromas of the peat smoke over which the grain is dried. Certain producers, such as Laphroaig are noted for a campfire nose.   Blended Scotch has made a huge comeback with premium brands such as Compass Box offering complex well-made whisky.

Whiskey is what the brown nectar is called in Ireland.  It is triple distilled and peat isn’t part of the recipe for most producers.  Jameson’s owns a massive share of the market thanks to decades of producing a quality product at a reasonable price but top offerings from distillers such as Redbreast with notes of nuts and ginger have added interest to the category.

The biggest growth in the category comes in Bourbon.  This corn based, barrel aged spirit originates in Kentucky and while legally it can be called Bourbon when made elsewhere, more than 90% of Bourbon comes from the Blue Grass State.  Makers Mark is ubiquitous, but the market has seen an explosion of quality offerings.  Michters, Basil Hayden and other small batch offerings may command a higher price tag to offset the cost of production, but it is a worthy investment for your bar.  Think caramel and vanilla! Whether you are drinking it straight, on the rocks or in a whisky sour, there is Bourbon on the shelf that will hit the right notes for you at the right price!

Time Posted: Jul 30, 2019 at 11:19 AM
Ruth Blakely
 
June 24, 2019 | Ruth Blakely

Canadian Wine – Big Business and Big Wine!

The Canadian Wine industry estimates it’s worth 9 billion dollars a year.  A person could wonder why it seems slow to gain respect in some quarters.

When people from outside of Canada think of Canadian wine they will invariably think of Ice Wine.  That’s fair; we make some of the best ice wine in the world.  Canadian Ice Wine wins gold medals at international competitions on a regular basis.  It’s rich, sweet and delicious.

The Canadian wine scene though has SO much more to offer.

Gorgeous fresh sparkling wine comes from Nova Scotia – Benjamin Bridge has helped to put the area on the map.  

Ontario has three distinct wine regions – Niagara, which most Canadians are aware of, Prince Edward County which is producing some lovely wine and Lake Erie North Shore.  

Here at Everything Wine we are proud of our selection from our neighbours in British Columbia.  From fresh and fun Pinot Grigio to deep dark and delicious Rhone or Bordeaux style reds; the wines produced are as diverse as the province from which they hail.  

Even within the Okanagan Valley the wines reflect their region.  Crisp whites often hail from north of Kelowna.  Whether it’s a well-known established winery such as Gray Monk or one of the ‘newer’ producers like Ex Nihilo, the wines are a reflection of their beautiful surroundings.
Just south of Kelowna the big guns of Quail’s Gate and Mission Hill have spent years earning their reputations. Smaller wineries dot the entire wine route.

On the east side of the lake,  Naramata is a hot spot for visitors and for terrific wines thanks to good soil, great exposures and a microclimate that has allowed Nichol Vineyards, Bella Wines and many others to produce surprising wines from the region.

As Highway 97 winds further south past Okanagan Falls to Oliver and Osoyoos, hot summer days allow the grapes to ripen fully.  There you’ll find big bold wines from places such as Burrowing Owl, Nk’Mip and Osoyoos Larose

The Similkameen (just west of the Okanagan) is getting a lot well deserved attention and even Vancouver Island is getting into the act with wines from the Cowichan Valley.

Canadian wine is as diverse as the topography and climate from which it comes.  If you have not tried any in a while – give it a chance.  You’ll likely find a pleasant surprise in one of those bottles.

--RB--

Time Posted: Jun 24, 2019 at 10:51 AM
Ruth Blakely
 
April 23, 2019 | Ruth Blakely

Spring into Rose!

Spring into Rosé


Longer days, sunshine and warmer temperatures seem to just beg for fresh bright wines.  Whether it’s to sit and sip on the patio or to enjoy with seafood, turkey or ham, rosé is a perfect spring sipper.

Rosé – Rosado in Spain and Rosato in Italy - is defined by its colour, but that colour can vary widely from pale peach or coral to a rich deep pink.  
Virtually every wine region in the world has rosé and the aromas and flavours are as diverse as the grapes used to make to make them.

Red wine gets the vast majority of colour from contact with the skin (most red wine grapes have white flesh). Rosé doesn’t spend long in contact with the skin which limits the amount of tannin present in the wine and results in the paler colour. Longer time on the grape skins results in darker wine.  

Some wines are actually a blend of red and white grapes as is the case in rosé Champagne which can be composed of Chardonnay which is a white grape and Pinot Noir and Pinot Meunier which are red.   

The saignée, or “bleeding,” method produces not just a rosé but a red wine as well. In this process, a winemaker will make a red wine according to standard methods but will, early in the process, remove or “bleed” some of the juice from the tank leaving a more concentrated red wine behind. The product that has been removed is sold as rosé.  This practice is less common than the other production methods.

In decades past, rosé in North America was thought of as a gateway to wine.  There are still plenty of sweeter, easy drinking pink wines on the market such as ‘White Zinfandel’ or Rosato Moscato, but they’ve given up a lot of the pink market share to wines made in a more traditional crisp fresh style.

Southern France is the heartland of rosé with full bodied wines from Tavel to the classic pink wines from Provence. The primary grape in these classics is Grenache – the strawberry and citrus aromas wake up your palate and are a lovely accompaniment for food. Tavel is rosé for red wine lovers, carrying a bit spice along with the berry fruit.

Rosé is often a great value with stellar bottles under $30 and many quality offerings near or below the $20 mark

 

Time Posted: Apr 23, 2019 at 9:55 AM
Ruth Blakely
 
March 13, 2019 | Ruth Blakely

Tuscany: Beyond Sangiovese

Many of us grew up buying a cheap bottle of Chianti that came in a basket and college kids turned into a candle holder.  As the decades passed fantastic wines from the Chianti region made their way into the Alberta market.  The wines made primarily from the Sangiovese grapes remain some of the best food wines in the world.  

In the mid to late 20th century, some maverick wine makers scoffed at the strict Italian wine rules and began making premier wine with grapes that most people associated with France.  Fantastic wines made with Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot started to garner rave reviews and loyal fans.  Wine critic Robert Parker is often credited with coining the term ‘Super Tuscan’ to describe these special wines.

The Italian DOC and DOCG rules meant some of Italian wines commanding the highest prices had to be called Vino da Tavola – or ‘table wine’.  The rules changed in 1992 when the IGT (Indicazione Geografica Tipica) classification was created to accommodate them.  Now some of the premier DOCs include Super Tuscans.

Wines such as Sassicaia, Masseto, Ornellaia and Solaia come with big price, but deliver consistently spectacular wine.  They age incredibly well and are often a trophy holding pride of place in a fine wine cellar.

There’s good news for the rest of us though.  You don’t have to spend hundreds of dollars to enjoy these wonderful wines.  Antinori’s Tignanello is an opulent Tuscan superstar at less than half the price of the others - blending the traditional Sangiovese cherry aromas with deeper darker fruit from the Cabernet Sauvignon. 

Castel’In Villa’s Santacroce is another massive Cabernet Sauvignon blended with Sangiovese that delivers fruit, structure complexity and depth. It’s not priced like most people’s everyday drinker but is less than the cost of a gas fill-up for a big SUV.

Even more budget friendly is the Tenuta Sette Ponti Crognolo which is both Sangiovese and Merlot resulting in a wine that’s bursting with flavour without completely blowing the budget.  

Sangiovese still accounts for more than half of the vines planted in Tuscany, but they are not the only game in town.

Viva Italia!

Time Posted: Mar 13, 2019 at 2:07 PM
Ruth Blakely
 
January 19, 2019 | Ruth Blakely

Wines of the Rhone Valley

Winter – the Perfect Time for Wines from the Rhone

The Rhone valley in Southern France is one of our favourite regions here at Everything Wine and More. The full bodied multi-layered wines pair perfectly with a winter stew or a nice roast.

The Rhone is divided into North and South.

The north is dominated by Syrah, the rich blackberry, clove and pepper finish shows exceptionally well in the premier wines of Cote-Rotie. Producers such as Guigal and Cuilleron (among many others) make wine that show both power and elegance. While some can be consumed young, many really shine after years in the bottle. If you are drinking your Cote-Rotie young it will improve with decanting and something meaty to pair. 

Also from the north comes the rich black pepper and smoked meat aromas from the stunning Cornas. The region itself is very small but it produces some of the ‘biggest’ wines in the Rhone. Cornas is known for grippy tannin and is another wine that is at its best after some time in the bottle.

Affordable ($40 and under)  tasty options from nearby Crozes-Hermitage are a great introduction to the region.

White wine lovers have much to celebrate in the northern Rhone as well as it’s the home to Condrieu, arguably the best expression of Viogner anywhere in the world. The tropical fruit aromas play well with a hint of citrus and some will find gingerbread and allspice. Keep these in mind for upcoming Easter dinner. 

In the hotter south Grenache is dominant. From the well-priced Cotes-du-Rhone to the powerful Chateauneuf-du-Pape, Grenache is king of this sometimes underappreciated region. In Chateauneuf-du-Pape, the Grenache is blended with Mouvedre to give it structure, Cinsault for bouquet and more than a dozen other grapes producing a bold, well-balanced wine. Look for Beaucastel at the top of the market, but there are dozens of other excellent producers in the region. Cotes-du-Rhone is a bargain hunter’s dream.

The whites in the south are most often Rousanne and Marsanne. Often blended together the fatty rich mouth-feel of the Marsanne is well balanced by the more acidic and elegant Rousanne. The wines are medium bodied and often exhibit apricot and mandarin notes.

The next time you think of French wine – think Rhone!

Time Posted: Jan 19, 2019 at 8:09 AM
Katrina Schlegl
 
March 31, 2018 | Katrina Schlegl

Ciders for the Summer!

My go to cider is usually Strongbow Original Dry.  It is always crisp, dry, and refreshing! I decided to try some new ciders and hopefully find a new summer drink.

Broken Ladder
Okanagan, British Columbia
4-pack for $15.49 (cans)

This premium craft cider is made from six different kinds of BC apple varieties. It has no added flavors, colours, water, or sugar. It is also not made from concentrate. This means it classifies as a “real” apple cider. You can immediately tell it is made 100% from apples because of how flavorful and bright it tastes. While considered a dry cider it does have a bit of natural sweetness making it the perfect summer drink. I highly recommend this to anyone who enjoys a sweeter cider and wants to try something new.

 

Savanna Dry Cider
South Africa
4-pack for $12.99 (bottles)

This premium cider is able to perfectly balance the crisp apple flavors with a dry mouth feel. It doesn’t have that overwhelming sweetness or syrupy texture that ciders with added sugar have. Try with a lemon wedge to top it all off!

“The cider equation: Apples + fermentation + micro-filtering + chill-filtering = Savanna Dry” - Savanna Cider

 

Pommies Original Cider
Ontario
4-pack for $17.49 (bottles)

Pommies Cider is made from 100% Ontario apples from the Pommie cidery in Caledon, Ontario. I found this was the lightest of all the ciders I have tried. This makes it very easy drinking and refreshing. It is also nice and bubbly without tasting overly carbonated.

While browsing the Pommies website I also discovered a great recipe to try this summer!

POMMSICLE
This Pommies Popsicle is sure to do the trick this summer.
WHAT YOU WILL NEED:

355ml bottle of Pommies Cider

Mint Leaves

Freshly Squeezed Lemon Juice

Greek Yogurt

Strawberry Purée

DIRECTIONS:

Layer one

- Pour 20% Pommies Cider, 80% strawberry purée with freshly squeezed lemon (mixed) into mold

- Let sit for 30 minutes before starting next layer

* A tip, add a splash of honey to your layers for flavour

Layer Two

- Pour 20% Pommies Cider, 80% Greek yogurt and mint leaves (mixed) into a mold

- Let sit for 30 minutes before starting next layer

Layer Three

- 20% Pommies Cider, 80% freshly squeezed lemon

Once everything is poured into the mold, put mold in freezer and let sit for 3-5 hours. Once complete, enjoy an adult-friendly booze Popsicle!

Time Posted: Mar 31, 2018 at 12:47 PM
Katrina Schlegl
 
March 5, 2018 | Katrina Schlegl

Who Doesn't Love Sauvignon Blanc

Most people start drinking popular New Zealand Sauvignon Blancs such as Kim Crawford or Oyster Bay. If you're looking for something out of the ordinary,  try one of these recommendations instead!

Sea Breeze Sauvignon Blanc $17.99
Marlborough, New Zealand

This is a great inexpensive pick if you are wanting to try something new! This light Sauvignon Blanc has a balanced acidity and excellent flavour characteristics. It has herbaceous notes as well as fruity flavours such as passionfruit and gooseberry. Pairs perfectly with pasta and seafood.

Astrolabe Sauvignon Blanc $20.99Marlborough, New Zealand

If you are looking to try a great quality Sauvignon Blanc this is for you. Astrolabe makes incredible wines that express New Zealand's long, cool growing season. This particular wine is medium-bodied with a variety of citrus and fruit flavours, which creates a complex mouth feel. It has a gentle acidity and a minerally finish. Pair with chicken and a light salad.

Greywacke Sauvignon Blanc $27.99
Marlborough, New Zealand

Last but not least, we have my favorite Sauvignon Blanc. The 2016 vintage of Greywacke was awarded 91 points by Decanter and 93 points by Wine and Spirits. I was not disappointed when I tried this for the first time and would definitely spend the $27.99 all over again. It has surprising fruit flavours such as peaches and cantaloupe. You may also notice light floral notes or elderflower.

 

BONUS

Casas del Bosque Sauvignon Blanc $19.99
Casablanca Valley, Chile

New Zealand is known for its Sauvignon Blancs, but other countries have created notable Sauv Blancs as well. If you are feeling adventurous and want to try something quite different this is the wine for you. The first thing you might notice is the stronger jalapeno pepper notes on the nose. In the mouth, some of the jalapeno pepper notes will transfer over along with flavors of ginger and citrus zet.

Time Posted: Mar 5, 2018 at 11:58 AM
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