On the Road with the Grape Guy

On the Road with the Grape Guy is a on-going feature that follows me from event to event ... I post my thoughts, feelings and reviews of what happened and what I tasted ... basically it is here that I review the events I attend and the things that thrilled me.

Report from - Wines of Spain on the General List Tasting – August 9, 2007

21 Aug 2007

Of late I have been extolling the virtues of Spanish wine in my Vintages Release reports and tasting notes:  the value, the ageability, the flavours and aromas and most importantly (to me lately) real wine aging laws.  Spain is one of the few countries with the word “Reserve” canonized into their wine laws with minimum aging lengths and acceptable terminology.  To use these words you have to follow certain regulations (see my rant in Newsletter #58).  If the word “Crianza” appears on the label of a bottle of Spanish wine it means the wine has been aged a minimum of 2 years (24 months) from harvest date and at least 6 of those months in oak.  “Reserva” is a minimum of three years, with a year in oak; and “Gran Reserva” is wine that’s a minimum of 5 years old with 2 years in oak and three years in bottle.  You’d think with all this waiting time, minimum oaking requirements and tied up capital that Spanish wine would be expensive, but surprisingly they offer some of the best wine deals on the general list at the LCBO and some of the best aged wines (that you can still age longer).  On Thursday August 9th, I got a chance to try almost all of the general list wines from Spain – which means most of these are readily available at an LCBO near you.  26 of a potential 33 wines were on display – here are the best of a good lot (there are 7 and none will break the bank; best of all, they will leave you smiling and wanting more) ... (Read more)


To check out the On the Road With the Grape Guy blog and all the other feature articles click here.


Report from - Jackson-Triggs Twilight in the Vineyard with the Philosopher Kings – August 3, 2007

09 Aug 2007

An event like no other you’ve experienced; when me and 500 (or so) of my closest friends brought lawn chairs and a love of music to the Jackson-Triggs amphitheatre, located behind the winery in Niagara-on-the-Lake, to watch and listen to the Philosopher Kings.  The amphitheatre is a beautiful, intimate venue, nestled at the back of the vineyard, where, as promised, “there isn’t a bad seat in the house”; and the canopy is the star-filled sky – which after dark was a sight to behold, unlike, say, at the Molson Amphitheatre in downtown Toronto where the closest thing to a star you’ll see is an airplane making its way slowly across the sky.

The night starts at about 5:30 when the venue opens and you can start to select your “seats” … (Read more)


To check out the On the Road With the Grape Guy blog and all the other feature articles click here.

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