Want a chance to drink Riesling and support a charitable organization? That’s like a gift with purchase at the cosmetic counter – except that you get a couple of samples of Riesling instead of an obscure lipstick colour.
Saturday May 25 at the Scottsdale LCBO the 7th Annual Ontario Consumer’s Riesling Challenge takes place [noon - 4 pm. Put it in your iPhone calendar now!] with proceeds going to the Bracelet of Hope Foundation. That sounds like a good deal to me for the following reasons …
- My man Orest [Vintages Specialist at the Scottsdale LCBO] throws a great party.
- Riesling is Ontario’s finest white wine varietal [in my opinion - an opinion shared by people more knowledgable than me].
- Noon is the perfect time to start drinking white wine. Unless the doors open at 11 am.
- 14 participants are bring their best Riesling for you to try.
- $10 gets you 4 samples [and maybe more if I know my wine makers and sales reps].
- The collected admission goes directly to Bracelet of Hope.
- The Featherstone winery uses roaming sheep to prune their vines [the call it "Sheep Labour"] and will be there with their Black Sheep Riesling.
- Fact #7 is darn cute!
- There will be free food
- My man Orest is worth the price of admission [seriously]
Featherstone’s Sheep Labour
On my most recent visit to the wine store I was approached by another customer. I took this as a sign that I appeared to be a confident shopper and therefore likely to have answers for a lady who frankly, looked lost. ”Excuse me”, she started, “do you put rum in your piña coladas?” she asked.
I was completely taken back. I looked down at my shirt thinking maybe I had the same one on as the employees. I didn’t. I realized I wasn’t really sure what she had just asked me.
“Do I put rum in MY piña coladas?”, I replied, “Or do you mean is rum the alcohol that is used to make piña coladas?”.
By this time I had said the words “piña colada” more than any other time in my life combined. I’ve also never had a piña colada so I wasn’t sure of the answer.
Then I became alarmed. Not because I started singing that horrible “If You Like Piña Coladas” song [which I haven't gotten out of my head yet], and not because I didn’t know the answer, but because apparently I looked like a guy who drinks piña coladas.
That’s not the look I’m going for. I may not get over this for a while.
For the record the last rum I purchased was a sipping rum and it was delicious.
|APPLETON ESTATE EXTRA RUM
LCBO 105742 | 750 mL bottlePrice $ 35.95
I have gotten a lot of mileage in this blog about Al Gore “inventing” the internet and winning a Nobel Peace prize (I didn’t imagine that).
I just found out that …
- he won a Grammy
- he roomed with Tommy Lee (Men in Black) Jones at Harvard
- PETA is mad at him for not being a vegetarian [I think there are some PETA people with anger issues]
- his daughter Kristen is a writer for my favorite TV cartoon Futurama
- he made the closing speech at the World Meeting on Climate Change & Wine held in Barcelona in 2008 [now I'm impressed]
- there is absolutely no truth to the rumour that Al Gore is taking credit for inventing Gewürztraminer
I really think Spring is upon us. I put a perfectly good Côtes du Rhône outside on Sunday and it saw it’s shadow. So I drank it.
For those of you looking for a good red wine under $12 [unfortunately $12 is the new $10] look no more.
This will be my one and only post on the drink known as Jägermeister – the German 70-proof digestif made with 56 herbs and spices. Those of you that have used Buckley’s cough syrup already know what it tastes like. In truth, Jägermeister was originally made to be a cough syrup. Now it is the friend of college kids everywhere who want to drink 70-proof digestifs.
As you can tell, I’m not a big fan. Alarmingly my wife is.
However – it caught my attention this week in a Sports Illustrated article. It appears that Croatian soccer coaches have the same discerning taste as a college student at the liquor store on a Thursday night.
If I ever steal a credit card from a professional soccer player and find myself in a wine store I don’t think I’m buying $680 of Jägermeister. Just sayin’.
I have recently come to the conclusion that I have the gift of making great gravy. I think that’s important. In fact I think some of you right now are saying “I wish I knew how to make great gravy”.
Here are the secrets to my success.
- French copper pot purchased in Paris (point of purchase optional)
- A whisk, some butter, some flour to make a slightly browned roux
- Drippings from the meat that you just cooked
- Boiling water from a kettle and a small amount of a stock cube
- A good glug or two of what ever red wine you’re drinking.
My guess is that the glug of red wine makes all the difference.
What wine do you use to make gravy?
My favourite gravy quote comes from a Simpsons episode.
Dr. Hibbert: Well, your cholesterol level is lethally high, Homer, but I’m more concerned about your gravy level.
Homer Simpson: Now, wait a second. You doctors have been telling us to drink eight glasses of gravy a day!
Dr. Hibbert: [laughs] Well, you’re a little confused.
Homer Simpson: Oh, confused, would we?
Whenever I feel like my wine selection has gone off the map I go back to a Côtes du Rhône. Really any CDR will do.
Whenever I feel like my perspective on wine has gone astray and I start using flowery descriptive words I go back to Billy Munnelly – my wine guru / sansei / Yoda.
Billy’s back with a fresh new web site and a great Facebook feed of wine recommendations and descriptions. His last recommendation that I acted on was the Chateau Hauchat Fronsac – a Bordeaux for under $15. I bought 6!
Check out Billy’s “Wine by Mood” – the cleverest thing ever written about wine.
Who is Billy? Billy is my favourite wine writer – funny, irreverent, slightly silly, and a man who appreciates a good glass of wine (although I suspect that it seldom stops at one glass).
What’s not to like about this man?