TWB Bursting with Bubbles for Champagne Day

If you enjoy Champagne, you may want to know that October 19 is Global Champagne Day.  TWB at Provence Marinaside is celebrating with Champagne of course.  Here are the details.

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(Vancouver, BC) – As novelist F. Scott Fitzgerald once said “too much of anything is bad, but too much champagne is just right.” How lucky for us that October 19 is Global Champagne Day  – a day to raise a glass of the quintessential wine of celebration.  According to TWB-The Wine Bar’s Wine Director Joshua Carlson, “Bubbles turn any occasion, whether meeting friends after work or dropping by after the game, into a mini-celebration. They’re also very food friendly and go with everything from brunch to oysters to popcorn.”
Where better to celebrate Global Champagne Day than at TWB –The Wine Bar  and Provence Marinaside where they have 35 different bubbles on their wine list including 17 French champagnes. Prices for bottles range from $45 – $1,750.  If a bottle seems like too much of a good thing, you can always indulge your champagne passion with a glass or two. TWB has the largest selection of bubbles by the glass (35) including 17 French champagnes ranging from $28 for glass of Marie Demets Tradition Brut to $110 for the Louis Roederer Cristal if you are feeling very extravagant. Of course there are always non-champagne bubble options starting from $8 a glass./$45 bottle.
 In honour of Global Champagne Day, TWB and Provence Marinaside will be offering 25 percent off all bubbles (both glasses and bottles) on Friday, October 19. If you can’t make it in, they’ll be offering the same discount for their regular Sparkling Saturday the following day.

“Everything is better with bubbles… life itself feels a little brighter when you’re sipping something sparkling. It’s going to be a lot of fun offering so many selections to our guests. Our wonderful patio, the view over-looking the Marina, and a glass of bubbles, is just about perfect when it comes to making your day exceptional,” concludes Carlson.

And don’t forget, Provence’s special three-course Taste of Yaletown menu starts this Thursday, giving you another tasty reason to drop by.

Whether you are in a celebratory mood, need a pick-me-up, or looking to unwind after work, TWB-The Wine Bar and next door Provence Marinaside have you covered this coming weekend.

All photos by Emrys Horton

Enjoy Drinks and Tasty Dishes at Joe Fortes Rooftop Patio

Patio season is well underway in Vancouver. But have you ever considered enjoying the city view from a rooftop patio in downtown Vancouver? If not, give Joe Fortes on Thurlow, just off of Robson, a chance. I attended their patio kickoff recently, and they had great food from seafood and chicken tacos, oysters on the half shell, and other varieties of seafood. In addition they have a bar on the rooftop patio, so enjoy a glass of wine, or a glass of sparkling wine, beer, or other drink along with the great food. Below are a few pictures of the event to entice you.  I was sipping Segura Viduas Reserva Cava, Spanish sparkling.  It goes very well with seafood.   Enjoy the summer!

Joe Fortes: Crab legs prawns mussels oysters lobster and tuna for the taking

Joe Fortes: Crab legs prawns mussels oysters lobster and tuna for the taking

Joes Gold special oysters

Joes Gold special oysters

Two tacos from Joe Fortes rooftop patio

Two tacos from Joe Fortes rooftop patio

 

Haywire Baby Bub

The Arrival of Haywire Baby Bub!

BC Sparkling Rose wine = Summer Treat.  Enjoy it.  Please see the announcement that I received from Okanagan Crush Pad, then stock up!

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The team at Okanagan Crush Pad is thrilled to announce the arrival of Baby Bub. On June 20, 2014 at 5:30pm 3,600 – 375 ml bottles, weighing 3,240 Kg, were bottled at the winery, just in time to enjoy summer.

Baby Bub was crafted by Jordan Kubek, Okanagan Crush Pad’s cellar assistant with direction from chief winemaker Michael Bartier. “The Baby Bub is tasting fresh, fruity and fabulous”, noted Jordan, “and I am very happy with the results. We stayed consistent with the 2012 Pink Bub giving Baby Bub six grams of residual sugar. I love the texture as it has quite a bit of yeasty fullness. Although it is a new born, the bubbles are quite fine and you can see the direction the wine will take as it ages.”

The wine was made in the classic style using Chardonnay and Pinot Noir grapes with secondary fermentation occurring in the bottle. It was hand riddled and warm disgorged with a red wine dosage being added at final bottling. Like its bigger siblings, Baby Bub is closed with a crown cap ensuring that cork taint does not interfere with the wine.

This tiny bottle is a young, bright shade of pale rose and is packed full of raspberry, strawberry patch and lime zest character. Its singularly distinctive taste is gun flint which lends a smokey, stoney edge to the wine and keeps it in balance with its more berry salad side.

The first 100 cases of Baby Bub is being released this July long weekend at the winery and through the order desk exclusively. Priced at $13.90 and delivered in 12 – 375 ml bottle cases, sporting hot pink artwork, Baby Bub is sure to be a big hit this summer.

Come Taste Oyster Bay Wines at Seasons in the Park

Oyster Bay Brut and Rose sparkling wines

Oyster Bay Brut and Rose sparkling wines

This email reached me recently about one of the upcoming wine tastings, of Oyster Bay Wines from New Zealand, at Seasons in the Park Restaurant in Queen Elizabeth Park.  The restaurant has a spectacular view of downtown and the North Shore mountains, day or night.  Oyster Bay Wines, and New Zealand wines in general, are bright and are great for spring and summer enjoyment. So check out the announcement, buy your tickets and enjoy!

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Spring is upon us and summer is just around the corner!

Come celebrate the beginning of Vancouver’s beautiful, sunny weather by joining us for a tasting of Oyster Bay Wines and delectable canapes paired perfectly by our chef team on April 15. A wonderful way to ring in the spring!

Described by leading London wine writer, Michael Kime, as “pretty close to being the elusive stuff of dreams“, the wines of Oyster Bay are the proud progeny of a single-minded passion — to capture the pure fruit flavours of one of the world’s great wine-growing regions.

  • Sparkling Rosé
  • Pinot Grigio
  • Sauvignon Blanc
  • Pinot Noir

Event is on April 15, 6:30 – 8:00pm

Tickets are $35 per person (not including tax & gratuity)

For more information or to purchase tickets, please feel free to contact us!

604.874.8008 or seasonsevents@vancouverdine.com 

Please note: There are no physical tickets for our tasting events. Once your purchase is completed, you will be added to our guestlist. Please check in at the front desk upon arrival. Tasting starts promptly at 6:15pm.

Wines from Spain Spill into Consumer Glasses April 4th and 5th

Wines from SpainDo you love Spanish wine, or want to learn about Spanish wine?  There is of course Tempranillo, but there is also other grapes like Mencia you may not have heard of, or what about Spanish sparkling wine?  There is a chance for you on April 4 and 5 through BC Liquor Stores to try and learn a bit about Spanish wines.  The details are below.

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Vancouver, BC – Two FREE consumer tasting events kick off a province-wide Signature Store promotion at BC Liquor Stores Cambie Kitchen this month:

Dates: Friday, April 4 and Saturday, April 5, 2014
Time: Drop-in any time between 3 and 6pm
Location: Cambie and 39th Signature Store
5555 Cambie Street, Vancouver

The event will feature live Flamenco music by Canadian fusion guitarist Dave Martone with mouthwatering visuals of Spanish wines, their regions and their cultures. Accredited wine professionals will pour samples for visiting shoppers with descriptions of the wines and the foods that go with them. Of course, it wouldn’t be a proper wine event without delectable foods to accompany the wines so Vancouver caterer Christine Moulson of Little House will be on hand with the finest in Spanish flavours to nibble on in between sips for all who come out for the fun. As an added bonus, all who arrive to taste wines will take with them a little something. (No purchase necessary.)

Seven wines take part in the promotion, winding consumers through a virtual tour of Spain’s booming wine regions and their various styles:
Cava PARES BALTA – BRUT ORGANIC $19.99 <Karl: a must try>
Jumilla LAS HERMANAS ORGANIC MONASTRELL $15.95
Ribera del Duero TORRES CELESTE $24.99
Toro ELIAS MORA $19.99
Monsant MALONDRO BESLLUM $19.99
Bierzo LOSADA MENCIA $24.99 <Karl: Mencia is a red grape you may not have heard or tried.>
Rioja MARQUES DE MURRIETA FINCA YGAY RESERVA $29.99

Bottega Gold Prosecco for Valentines Day

Bottega Gold Brut Prosecco

Bottega Gold Brut Prosecco

Have you been thinking about what sparkling wine you can buy for your Valentine without breaking the bank? Champagne may have first popped into your mind, but maybe you could also consider Italian Prosecco? Prosecco is generally made, lighter bodied and maybe a bit off dry, making it a fun indulgence to share with friends and family.

I recently received a bottle of Bottega Gold Brut (BC $24.99) to sample.  It comes in a very striking gold coloured bottle, making it look very special for a special day like Valentine’s Day.

In the glass this wine is pale lemon in colour.  A light intensity nose of flowers and citrus, with a hint of lime in the background.  This one is dry on the palate with medium plus acidity and light body.  Agressive, medium sized, creamy bubbles.  Citrus, apple, a hint of lime, and some lemon rind on the palate.  Medium length.  Overall a straight forward wine to enjoy with friends.  It should pair well with crab cakes, stuffed mushrooms, goat cheese, and a fresh fruit salad.

If you are interested, here is the website for the Bottega winery to get more info on this wine and their other wines.

Score Big Amour Points – Dine Out At Bistro Pastis

Valentines and wine

Valentines and wine

French cuisine and wine brings out the romantic in all of us.  With Valentine’s Day this week, Bistro Pastis has a special menu for you and your spouse or significant other.  Check out the details.  The rack of lamb looks really good.  So does the raspberry dark chocolate tart.  Don’t forget to have a bottle of bubble too. Enjoy!

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In France, ‘love’ is an art celebrated every day. Practice really does make perfect and there is no one better at it than the French. However, even if you’re not French, you can pretend you are on St. Valentine’s Day.

Whisking the ‘love of your life’ off to Paris for dinner, while bound to win you brownie points, will definitely empty out your wallet. An equally romantic and more cost effective solution is bring them to Bistro Pastis for a flirtatious ‘diner pour deux.’

Our special Valentine’s table d’hote will transport you to France in the bat of an eyelash – five courses for only $75 with an optional wine pairing for $45 available only on Thursday, February 14th – St. Valentine’s Day.

Reservations: 604-731-5020 / http://www.bistropastis.com/reservations/

Joyeux Saint Valentin

Amuse Bouche
Smoked Salmon Pavé, Herbed Goat Cheese

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Chicken Liver and Foie Gras Terrine
Toasted Brioche, Mȃche Salad, Pomegranate
Chateau Saint Martin de la Garrigue

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Lobster Tortellini
Tomato and Mint, Corn Nage
Chardonnay Mȃcon Solutré-Pouilly Joseph Burrier

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Roasted Rack of Lamb, Braised Lamb Shoulder
Peas, Ricotta Gnocchi, Preserved Lemon
Domaine de Nizas Languedoc

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Raspberry Dark Chocolate Tart
Whipped Mascarpone, Spiced Honeycomb
Sparkling Crémant de Limoux, Languedoc

$75.00 / Person
Wine Pairing 45.00

Bistro Pastis
2153 W 4th Ave. Vancouver, BC V6K 1N7 | Tel: (604) 731.5020 | Fax: (604) 731.5039
www.bistropastis.com

 

Enjoy the Sparkling Wines of Blue Mountain Vineyards Tasting

Blue Mountain Vineyard and Cellars

Blue Mountain Vineyard and Cellars

Blue Mountain Vineyards in the Okanagan is well-known for their sparkling wines.  If you have not had a chance to enjoy them, the BC Wine Appreciation Society is having a special tasting here in Vancouver on Feb. 12 at the Listel Hotel.  The announcement is below.

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What better way to celebrate a winter evening than with some festive sparkling wine?

Matt Mavety of Blue Mountain Vineyard is coming to see us on Tuesday February 12th, just in time for Valentine’s Day, and he’s bringing four of his celebrated sparkling wines, plus six of his award-winning table wines: two Pinot Gris, two Chardonnay, and two Pinot Noir. We’ll be able to taste one Cream Label and one Reserve Striped Label of each varietal – what a treat!

To make this even more special, we are going to be able to try two amazing vintage sparklers, the 2005 Reserve Brut, and the 2006 Blanc de Blancs. Both are very rare, and we’re very lucky that Blue Mountain is generous enough to let us try them!

Ian and Jane Mavety purchased the 80 acre Blue Mountain property over 40 years ago. Matt Mavety, the current winemaker and son of Ian and Jane, had his first real job in the vineyard at age 14. Loving the work, Matt studied agriculture at UBC, and also studied viticulture and oenology at Lincoln University in New Zealand. Matt started full-time back at Blue Mountain in 1997, and became the official winemaker in 2005.

Matt feels that farming grapes in an environmentally sustainable way leads to the best expression of terroir for the wines. The focus of Matt’s talk will be about what makes Blue Mountain unique, including biodynamic farming, the making of the sparkling wines, cellar aging benefits, their barrel program, and how the wine clones they’ve chosen work with the land they live on. We’re sure this will be fascinating, especially as we get to taste several of the results!

The Wine Lineup

Brut Non-Vintage

2008 Rose

2006 Blanc de Blancs

2005 Reserve Brut

2011 Pinot Gris Cream Label

2010 Pinot Gris Reserve Striped Label

2011 Chardonnay Cream Label

2010 Chardonnay Reserve Striped Label

2011 Pinot Noir Cream Label

2010 Pinot Noir Reserve Striped Label

Wouldn’t this make a wonderful Valentine’s outing for you and your favourite wine-lover? And if you want to come on your own, bubbly wine is always a cause for celebration, no matter what day it is!

Our previous tasting sold out. Sign up quickly to make sure you don’t miss this one!

Where, When, and How Much?

Date: Tuesday February 12, 2013

Time: 7:30 to 9:30 pm

Place: Listel Hotel, 1300 Robson St., Vancouver

Guests: $52

Click here to sign up:  http://www.bcwas.com/BlueMountain.html

Raise a Glass to BC’s Blue Mountain Winery – Free Tastings

Blue Mountain Vineyard and Cellars

I like to pass along info to everyone about free wine tastings, and this one is special because Blue Mountain makes a very nice sparkling wine, that I hope you get a chance to try.  Enjoy and maybe clink a glass with me!

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Raise a Glass to BC’s Blue Mountain Vineyard and Cellars at TWO Complimentary Tastings & Bottle Signings

May 29, 2012 (Vancouver, BC) – Taste premium wines from BC’s Blue Mountain Vineyard and Cellars at two FREE consumer tastings.  The events will occur on Thursday, June 7 2012 at Everything Wine’s North Vancouver location and Friday June 8 at Marquis Wine Cellars in downtown Vancouver.  Blue Mountain winemaker Matt Mavety will be on hand to share his passion for the wines and their place of origin.

Wines featured at the tastings will include:

  • Blue Mountain Brut Sparkling Wine
  • 2010 Blue Mountain Pinot Gris
  • 2010 Blue Mountain Chardonnay
  • 2010 Blue Mountain Pinot Noir

 

Thursday, June 7 2012
4:00 – 6:00pM
Everything Wine
998 Marine Drive, North Vancouver

Friday, June 8 2012
4:00 – 6:00pm
Marquis Wine Cellars

1034 Davie Street, Vancouver

 About Blue Mountain Vineyard and Cellars

Located in BC’s South Okanagan, Blue Mountain Vineyard and Cellars is distinctive among Canadian wineries in that all its wines are produced exclusively from grapes grown on the estate’s vineyards.  Ian Mavety purchased the land which is now Blue Mountain Vineyard in 1971.  Current owners Ian, Jane, Matt, and Christie Mavety continue to work to realize the potential of the region, utilizing sustainable farming methods and winemaking practices.  Blue Mountain produces complex, age-worthy varietal wines that are consistent in style while allowing the expression of both the terroir and the individual growing season.

My Bada Bing Food Truck Experience

Bada Bing Truck with menu

After a quick meeting downtown today, it was almost noon, so I decided to try a food truck.  Beside the Burrard Skytrain station was the Bada Bing truck. They proudly list that they make a chicken and a steak Philly Cheese sandwich.  I decided to go for the chicken this time.  The sandwich came on a foot-long bun, loaded with bite sized pieces of chicken in a light Middle Eastern flavoured sauce to me, along with lots of fried onions, and melted provolone cheese.  The sandwich was piping hot, the way I like it.  I didn’t try to add any extra condiments, but wished I did.  The sandwich was good, and filling, but there was no bright or sour flavours to complement the chicken & fried onions.  I think some dill pickle, or picked banana peppers would have been a great addition to the sandwich.  I will have to try next time.

What wine would I have with this Chicken Philly Cheese?  I think a juicy Gamay would be my first choice.  Not overly heavy bodied or too much dark fruit flavours.  A few gamays that I can recommend are:

  • Bada Bing Chicken Philly Cheese

    Henry Fessy Julienas 2009, France ($25.99). If you like lighter bodied reds, such as from Pinot Noir, you may also like this wine, which is made from the Gamay grape. Nice medium ruby colour. Light cherry nose.  Medium body with light tannins and medium acidity. Cherry flavours. Easy to enjoy.

  • Henry Fessy “St. Amour”, 2009, France ($24.99). This is a Beaujolais from the eastern part of France (south of Burgundy), made from the Gamay grape.  Pale ruby in colour.  Cherry bon bon nose. Light body and lower tannins.  Cherry flavour. Lighter in body than a Bordeaux, similar in weight to a lighter Pinot Noir.
  • Volcanic Hills Estate Winery Gamay Noir 2009, BC ($12.90).  An unbelievable price for a single varietal wine from the Okanagan. This is a nice light bodied wine that you can serve slightly chilled.  The wine was pale cherry in colour.  Restrained aromas of red cherry and red currants, and a hint of smoke. On the palate there was violets, roses, cherries, black pepper and a bit of spice.  Refreshing acidity and quite a long finish.

If you do not like red wine, try these white wines:

  • Stags Hollow Viognier and Sauvignon Blanc 2010

    Stags Hollow Viognier 2010, BC. This Viognier was pale in colour with some sweetness, orange, and flower aromas. Very pretty. Tropical fruit and cinnamon flavours.  Medium body.

  • Thornhaven Estates Winery Pinot Gris 2010, BC. I think there is something specific about the terroir for this wine that makes this Pinot Gris have a wonderful grapefruit nose and flavour.  I haven’t seen this in other Okanagan Pinot Gris. Pale lemon in colour with red grapefruit nose. Flowery with citrus, grapefruit flavours. Yum.
  • Monmousseau Cuvee JM Brut 2007, France ($19.99). This sparkler is made from 100% Chenin Blanc grapes. Light lemon in colour .  Light citrus with a hint of honey aromas.  Cinnamon greets your lips up front on the palate, followed with citrus and apple flavours.  Medium acid and length.  Very tasty.

I hope to have more time to visit other food trucks in downtown Vancouver this summer, and give you my wine pairing recommendations. Enjoy!