Author Archives: Travis Oke

About Travis Oke

Wine writer / consultant

Social Lite

I love the format dictionaries use for pronunciation. Like “Skeptical [skep-ti-kuh l]- inclined to scepticism; having an attitude of doubt.”  skep-ti-kuh l.  Amusing.

This past week i was contacted by a small company that makes premium vodka soda. SoCIAL LITE.  I admit that my first thought was “I don’t want to drink Fresca and vodka”.  However, i am willing to be wrong about stuff.  Also, their story is a good one. The drink was developed while entertaining friends in their kitchen.   While i like soda and i like vodka, what I don’t like is sweet “made for frosh events” drinks.  I was skep-ti-kuh l.

There are two flavours of SoCIAL LITE vodka, Lime-Ginger and  Lemon-Cucumber-Mint.  I was a little ascared, as it poured like Fresca [i don’t know why i keep saying that because i actually like Fresca], but it was delicious, refreshing, not sweet at all, and subtle in it’s flavours. It is a perfect drink for an afternoon on the patio. The Lime-Ginger is available at the LCBO at $10 for four 355 mL cans [kans].

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Water Research

Each year i feel it’s my responsibility to ask the difficult questions about water. Mostly questions that lead me to my preformed conclusion that we should be drinking rosé instead.

This is what i found this year about water – and it’s alarming.

  1. The rule of drinking 8 glasses of water a day is based on the fact that people already drink that much water. So it’s an urban myth that we should be doing it. I don’t know about you but I feel strongly that “urban” myths are the scariest of all myths  – including creation and trickster myths.
  2. If you’re not already scared then google the words “renal excretory capacity”.  That’s something i do not want to either increase or exceed. Tell me brother-in-Spain that’s not as scary as an urban myth!
  3. I read this quote on the internet about people who drink lots of water, “However, the group of patients with the highest urine output also had the lowest serum sodium, suggesting that, in fact, they were driving the high urine output with a high fluid intake.” You okay with that? Too soon? Too scary?

So here are my reckless suggestions. Drink rosé this summer. Chill it well, pick nice stemware, and substitute a crisp white wine if you don’t have emergency bottles of rosé on hand [for those who care, i just learned about the Oxford comma this week and used it correctly].

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Muga Rosé – Spain $13.95

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Marques de Riscal – Spain $12.70

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Family Business

I’m so proud.  My daughter M posted on Facebook about how much she loved a wine I bought for her and sounded like me on my blog. Just pure fun. No tasting notes … other than “this wine is too good not to share”.  Also, she hashtagged #pullthecork #moveoverpapa – that’s just funny.

I may leave the blogging to her soon.  And I did go out and buy 2 for Casa Oke.

Columbia Crest H3 Cabernet Sauvignon —VINTAGES#: 210047   |   WAS $19.95 $17.95 Washington, USA


Rustico 

I was surprised by an inexpensive red this week. It was deliciouso.  Can you tell i’m learning Italiano?  The secret is to put an “o” at the end of every word0.  Well, almost.

 

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Folonari Valpolicella Doc Valpolicella—LCBO#: 828  Regularly $13.95. Now on sale for $11.95 until April 24.

What I love about it is the light cherry fruit. It’s a delicious light red wine and is perfect chilled. This is a really good summer wine.  If you buy a case you won’t be disappointed – and you’ll save many €Euro [the currency formerly known as ₤Lira].


Tetra pack

Why oh why don’t we have these in Canada?  I double dog dare somebody in Niagara or PEC to make these.

   
 Cuando en España hacer como el español

When in Spain ….


Irish research

I have some Irish in me – not enough to want a “kiss me I’m Irish” t-shirt – but I do look Irish and I can imitate a leprechaun’s voice if necessary. So before St. Patrick’s day I may find the time to reread Thomas Cahill’s “How the Irish Saved Civilization” but I will certainly find time to get my drinks in order.

Breaking from tradition I’m going to pair ale with whiskey to celebrate – no wait, that is tradition.

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Tullamore and Smithwick’s.

Here’s what you need to know

  1. Smithwick’s is pronounced “Smith-icks” or “Smitt-icks”
  2. You can also pronounce it /ˈsmɪðᵻks/ – but I don’t know how to read that
  3. /ˈsmɪðᵻks/ is a red ale – clear and dark red in colour, less sweet than a brown ale
  4. Tullamore dew is a well priced Irish whiskey [$32]
  5. Irish whiskey always ends “ey” unlike scotch whisky “y”
  6. The two are produced a short 1 hr drive from each other in the heart of Ireland
  7. Limerick always makes me giggle

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Wine & Donuts

My wife knows stuff about wine – mostly how to drink it.  She doesn’t normally purchase wine, instead entrusting me with that task and then letting me know if she likes it or not.  Between you and me [and i guess her, since she will probably eventually read this] she likes more than she doesn’t.

So this week, while on vacation without me in Florida, she was forced to take matters into her own hands and pair wine with food. The food? The finest donut in ‘Merica that isn’t made by Krispy Kreme – Entenmann’s.  This is what she came up with.

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Oh, i just started salivating. I am very impressed with her pairing – American Cab Sav with Entenmann’s chocolate covered cake donut. It’s so affirming that after 22 years of marriage she can instinctively pair these classic ‘Merican foods. Don’t tell me our friends south of the 49th parallel don’t understand food.

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The folks at Bogle [also the name of a fascinating family favourite word game – alliteration acknowledged] make a fine cabernet sauvignon.

So find your favourite Cabernet and your favourite donut [somebody please use a boston cream] and let me know how it goes.

 

 


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