Wednesday, March 01, 2006

Drinking elsewhere

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See you there!

Tuesday, January 31, 2006

Sperling goes South(brook)

Southbrook Winery, Toronto's closest winery has announced that they have landed the Ontario Wine Awards' 2004 Winemaker of the Year, Ann Sperling as their new winemaker. Sperling is best know for her Malivoire Ladybug Rosé and was the first winemaker at Cilento Wines Wines. Colio's current winemaker Carlo Negri was the 2005 Ontario Wine Awards Winemaker of the Year.

News Release

Southbrook Winery Announces New Winemaker
Ontario's 2004 Winemaker of the Year Ann Sperling
A Sterling New Addition to Southbrook's Team

Southbrook Winery announces the appointment of Ann Sperling as Managing Winemaker, effective January 1, 2006. An esteemed Canadian wine professional, Ann will assume the lead in the production and management of Southbrook's extensive line-up of top tier, handcrafted VQA wines. She joins Southbrook's assistant winemaker, Steve Byfield.

"We couldn't be more delighted to have secured such an exceptional and talented winemaking professional," says Bill Redelmeier, proprietor of Southbrook Winery. "Ann has the right combination of skill, experience and instinct to lead us on our continued pursuit of winemaking excellence."

As the Ontario Wine Awards' 2004 Winemaker of the Year, Ann is a well-known and respected winemaking authority in Ontario and throughout the country. She practices her craft with the philosophy that fine wine is grown - not manufactured - and that the winemaker's task is to steward the wine from vineyard to bottle to most accurately capture the expression of the origin of the grapes and the vintage.

Southbrook Winery will make announcements in the coming weeks and months regarding new developments that will work towards further establishing Southbrook's position as a leading producer of handcrafted, VQA wines. Ann will play a lead role in these developments.

"I believe a gentle touch and minimal intervention make for wine of the utmost character and distinction," says Ann. "I am honoured to join with Bill Redelmeier to lead Southbrook's quest to set increasingly higher standards for Ontario wines."

Ann boasts nearly two decades of hands-on winemaking experience and successfully directing winery start-ups. Most recently, Ann held the position of Managing Winemaker for The Malivoire Wine Company in Beamsville. Early in her career, she held the position of Winemaker at CedarCreek Estate Winery in British Columbia's Okanagan Valley, prior to commencing a consulting business that has worked with numerous top flight Ontario wineries, and as far a field as South Africa.

Bill Redelmeier

Friday, January 27, 2006

Anything to Declare?

December 2005 for me, were days of wine and roses. I was fortunate enough to spend 5 weeks in Perth and Sydney, Australia and Auckland, New Zealand. This of course, made mandatory trips to Margaret River and The Hunter Valley.

I'll be getting into more detail about the wines, wineries and people i met in the respective wine regions but until then I wanted to list what the good people at Canada Border Services Agency (Canada Customs) allowed me to bring back into the country.

I'm looking forward to digging into these over the next year or so. Some I may hold onto a bit long but it'll be tough to resist.

Hunter Valley

Margaret River

New Zealand

Saturday, January 21, 2006

Yet Another Quebec Scandal

This time the Liberal Party have nothing to do with this one (at least not yet anyway). The Quebec liquor board know as the Société des alcools du Québec (SAQ) has launched an internal investigation based on allegations of price-fixing with European suppliers.

Tuesday, January 17, 2006

Like they need another excuse to drink

Not that this would have helped me much with my wine purchases in Margaret River or Hunter Valley but Decanter is reporting that Australian wine will get cheaper. Much of what I brought back (I'll be posting the list here soon) cost more than $15-$20 AUD/bottle that will be seeing price reductions. My Aussie friends will certainly be taking advantge of it though.

Friday, January 13, 2006

20 Questions

Not where I'd usually go looking for wine news but eWeek has an article on a kiosk that will play 20 questions with you in order to help you select a wine based on your taste buds. By asking a series of 'taste' questions about your preference for such things as sweeteners and coffee the kiosk spits out recommendations based on your answers and price point complete with Wine Enthusiast Magazine recommendations.

Its targeted at retailers whos primary business is not wine so don't expect it to show up at Loblaws, Costco or Wal-Mart because we all know that in Ontario you can't get wine ANYWHERE accept the good ole LCBO.


Or 'Yet Another Wine Blog' if you prefer. Welcome to wineboffin. As the name states, wineboffin is my attempt and sharing my (limited)knowledge and love of the humble grape. As you can see by the numerous blogs and websites listed in the Link Cellar I am not alone in my enthusiasm for all things wine related. So why another wine blog then? Well, wine to me has gone from the weird grape juice I use to watch my grandfather make as a kid in his basement to something I ordered when I went out to dinner because it made me feel grown up to my current obsession where I need to consume every written word on the subject, where it's not a vacation if it doesn't have a wine region to visit and much of my disposable income is spent on ferment grape juice so why not blog about it?

It's never been about just what's in the bottle. It's about the people I've met who do it for love not money. It's about the most beautiful parts of the world I've seen from Niagara On the Lake, to Bordeau to Margaret River. It's about the bottles of wine I remember and love most are the ones I shared with family, friends, and lovers.

I guess Robert Louis Stevenson summed it up best when he said "Wine is bottled poetry". Indeed.

Tuesday, January 10, 2006


"Wineboffin/ / noun "Someone who is enthusiastic for and knowledgeable in any pursuit, activity, study, etc., especially a wine enthusiast".

- Macquarie Dictionary, Third Edition.