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May 5th, 2018-Okanagan Falls


OK Falls Welcomes The Wine World




Every Spring the wine regions of BC show up on the West Coast.

This week it’s Okanagan Falls.  The wineries of the region share Skaha Lake – just south of Penticton.

OK Falls – Noble Ridge and John Schreiner

Just a head’s UP They throw a great Summer event called Party in the Park  July 6th in Kenyon Park (on the beach)

Starts at 5PM.  What a night!!


Winemakers and Principals pouring and taking us through the wines include:

Evan Saunders – Winemaker at Blasted Church

Christie Mavety – Family Member/Owner

Gerry Thygesen – Owner –Winemaker  Skaha/Krase Legz

Alison Moyes – Winemaker  Liquidity Wines

Janice Stevens-Meyer  – Co-Owner Meyer Family Vineyards

Daniel Bibby – Co-Owner Nighthawk Vineyards

Jim & Leslie D ‘Andrea – Owners Noble Ridge Vineyard and Winery

Lauren Skinner – Family member Painted Rock Estate Winery

Julie Rennie – Co-Owner Pentage Winery

Larry Gerelus – Co-Owner Stag’s Hollow Winery

Alan Dickinson – Owner/Winemaker Synchromesh Wines

Roland Kruger – Owner/General Manager  Wild Goose Vineyard

Back row

  1. Evan Saunders, wine maker, Blasted Church
  2. Jim D’Andrea, Proprietor, Noble Ridge
  3. Ian MacDonald, Proprietor, Liquidity

2 back row

  1. Larry Gerelus, Proprietor, Stag’s Hollow
  2. Linda Pruegger, Proprietor, Stag’s Hollow
  3. Roland Kruger, Proprietor,  Wild Goose
  4. Janice Stevens, Proprietor, Meyer Family Vineyards
  5. Julie Rennie, Proprietor, Pentage

3 back row

  1. Dan Schell – Agent (Nobel Ridge)
  2. Michael Garrett, Agent (Pentage)
  3. Alison Moyes,  winemaker Liquidity
  4. Barb Mills, Agent (Liquidity)
  5. Leslie D;Andrea, Proprietor,  Noble Ridge
  6. Lauren Skinner, Director of Sales, Painted Rock

Front row

  1. Tysha Pope, Crescent Hill Winery
  2. Carson Pope, Crescent Hill Winery
  3. Terry David Mulligan
  4. Daniel Bibby, Proprietor, Nighthawk Vineyards
  5. Christie Mavety, Blue Mountain Vineyard and Cellars

Events Archive | OFWA – Okanagan Falls Winery Associations

Okanagan Falls Wineries Map & Wine Tour Guide | OFWA




Savio Volpe – New wine, Top 15 in Canada and a new Nicks Spaghetti House

Vintage 2017 – Clos du Soleil, Hester Creek, Roche, Haywire, St Hubertus, Quails Gate

Sal Howell – Deane House. Calgary






April 21st, 2018- Top Drop Vancouver !


Full Natural Wines  with Lock & Worth &  Bella, Top Drop 2018 and The Okanagan Wine Initiative




Matthew SherLOCK and Ross HackWORTH.  Lock and Worth. 

Jay Drysdale and Bella…

 Want to get a sense of BC’s wine future?  Matt and Jay will be a the very front, leading the movement.

Honest, single vineyard wines of time and place – priced for everyday consumption.

Mathew Sherlock

 We strongly believe that one should be able to drink high quality, single vineyard (non-commodity), small production wines that are priced reasonably from British Columbia. We plan to be around 20 years from now, not by becoming a large company but by creating a sustainable business within our community. For us part of that means making wines that always over deliver

 Sherlock and Hayworth farm organically and work the vineyards by hand whenever possible. They use native yeasts for fermentations, limited sulfur, and a gentle touch that avoids punch downs or pumping over or racking during élevage. The wines are bottled without fining or filtration.

Up the road at Bella, is a winery owned by Jay Drysdale and his wife, Wendy Rose. Bella only makes sparkling wines and only works with Chardonnay and Gamay Noir.

Bella ’s annual production is 2000 cases, split between a vineyard series and a natural series. Each wine in the vineyard series highlights a single grape, from a single vineyard, and single vintage. Dry-farmed and organic vineyards from Kelowna to Kamloops supply the fruit. The natural series uses the same vineyards, plus Bella’s four-acre estate vineyard.

The vineyard series wines are made using the traditional Champagne method, with commercial yeasts and sugar added to the wine to trigger a second fermentation. Jay and Wendy make the natural series wines by pressing whole cluster grapes and allowing wild yeast fermentation to begin in neutral barrels.

No additives, allowing fermentation to finish in the bottle.  This process is called méthode ancestral and Bella is the first winery in western Canada to use it.

Jay and Wendy


The natural process causes some of the bottles to be cloudy.  As Jay has said “Yes, they’re cloudy. Get over it”

Here’s a quote from a go-to wine human Kurtis Kolt in the Georgia Straight

Natural wine.  It’s wine made with minimal intervention. This means organic (and sometimes biodynamic) farming (without the use of pesticides and such), naturally occurring ferments with wild yeasts in the cellar, and winemaking without fining, filtration, or manipulation.


Kurtis Kolt –  Top Drop 2018

Kurtis Kolt

Wonderful and Unique two-day festival brings together international wineries, craft breweries, cideries, gastronomy & more. At Roundhouse Mews in Yaletown.

On May 17th and 18th 2018, Top Drop Vancouver returns, with a continued focus on sustainably-farmed, handcrafted wines offering a distinct sense of place, without heavy-handed winemaking trickery to get in the way.


They believe in the importance in farming one’s own fruit and/or being constantly engaged with grape-growers to ensure sustainability and a high standard of viticultural practices. They believe in wines that reflect their vintage, and wines that aren’t suffocated by vinicultural trickery. They believe in winemaking decisions that are made by a winemaker, and not by a board of directors or marketing team. They believe in those who take chances. They believe these kinds of wines, honest wines of integrity, need a time and place to have their story told.

They also believe craft beer, cider, along with authentic and sustainable produce, dairy, meat, and seafood are part of the same conversation, which is why they ’re proud to showcase some of the very best in those areas.

An Astonishing gathering of wine professionals.  Check out all the guests and details at


Christine Coletta Member of Okanagan Wine Initiative (Haywire)


Tdm & Christine Coletta

Even after doing the interview I’m still not quite sure what the role of this 7 member group will be. The thing is, they’re capable of doing just about anything they set their minds to.

The story broke just before we went to air and I made a cold call to Christine Coletta from Okanagan Crush Pad to try and get the essence of the story.

Here’s the press release:

Seven leading BC wineries: 50th Parallel Estate Winery, Culmina Family Estate Winery, Haywire Wines, Liquidity Wines, Painted Rock Estate Winery, Poplar Grove Winery, and Summerhill Pyramid Winery, have formed a partnership, The Okanagan Wine Initiative.

The association groups together seven Okanagan wineries to share resources and collaborate on varying projects internationally, across Canada, and in their home market, British Columbia. The members share a common passion to drive one-another to excel and adopt best business practices and to help elevate the identity of the Okanagan as a premium wine producing region and superb wine tourism destination.

I do know one thing..this group..these thinkers and doers..will make things happen and this week may be the start of BC taking its expanded place in the World of Wine.



The Naramata Bench Wineries pour new releases in Victoria.

The Okanagan Falls Wineries pour new releases in Vancouver.



April 14th, 2018-The Artisans of Vancouver Island & The Gulf Islands


13 guests for The Annual “Locals Only 3.0″The Artisans of Vancouver Island & The Gulf Islands.




It was an afternoon exploring the diversity & creativity of our coastal producers.

Through the interviews below we get to meet the farmers, fermenters and distillers that define our cool climate coastal appellation.


Event photos by @socialtyvr


This is Locals Only 3.0 – 2018

No fancy marketing campaigns or graphic trickery.  Just an opportunity to taste clean honest products from the producers who are defining our cool climate coastal appellation. 

  • Speak with the producers who were natural before it was fashionable
  • Learn more about distilling while speaking with a Master
  • Meet and taste with the people who planted the vines and then made the wine

Locals Only is about keeping it real, real honest and really local.


Organic estate farming , clean winemaking , neutral barrels & vessels, amphora, orange wines, concrete, spontaneous ferments, dry farming + way more. Discover the next destination you just have to check out.

Off Shore craft makers.


Guests include:

 Massey Wines –  Louise Fedyk.  Co-Organizer of event

 Mike Rathjen – Rathjen Cellars

Mike Nierychlo –  Emandare Vineyards    

Dave Brimacombe – Wayward Distillery (Unruly Gin/Vodka)

Jason MacIsaac – Sheringham Distillery

Andy Johnson  – Averill Creek

Loretta Zanatta – Zanatta Vineyards

Chris Turyk – Unsworth

Bailey Williamson – Blue Grouse

Dan Dragert – Kutatas Vineyards ( Koo Tah Tass) You’re on your own. Well worth The Search.

Brenda Hetman-Layne – 40 Knots   

Marilyn Venturi –   Venturi-Schulze Vineyards

Julia Powell – Alderlea Vineyards







 Bella – Jay Drysdale goes full frontal bubble. (All natural)

Lock and Worth – Matt Sherlock finds balance between Nichol and  Lock & Worth (All natural)

Naramata Bench Pours in Victoria. 










April 7th, 2018 – Jann Arden Returns to the Tasting Room!


Jann Arden returns To The Tasting Room.

(joined by  Ricasoli, La Crema, Giant Head and Gurvinder Bhatia)



Gurvinder Bhatia   (Quench magazine)



Gurvinder Bhatia


The first two interviews took place at this year’s VanWineFest.

After 2 One hour specials,  I grabbed my  recorder and sought out journalist Gurvinder Bhatia and  Winemaker Craig McAllister,  at La Crema.

Gurvinder is well known in wine circles. As a judge, educator and reviewer.

Wine Editor for Quench Magazine, columnist for The Edmonton Journal and  for Global TV (Edmonton). He’s currently the wine buyer for  UnWined in Edmonton.  He specializes in Italian wines.

Because of his legal background and the fact he lives in Alberta, I thought we could talk about wines and BC’s  wines banned in Alberta.


Craig McAllister – Winemaker at Le Crema (Sonoma)

A New-Zealand native, Craig McAllister spent his first 20 years in Christchurch, New Zealand, then lived in London for six years. He has travelled extensively throughout the world. He found himself drawn not just to the wine industry, but to the wine lifestyle due to his love of cooking, traveling and being outdoors. This led him to Lincoln University in New Zealand, where he received his Bachelor of Science degree in viticulture and enology.

Craig McAllister La Crema



Craig’s deep passion for winemaking has taken him all over the world, from New Zealand to Australia, Chile and Cyprus. Craig first joined the La Crema team in 2007 as the Harvest Enologist.

After gaining additional experience abroad, he joined the La Crema team full-time in 2009.

He has been a steward of La Crema’s Monterey program and worked extensively on the Sonoma Coast Chardonnay. He also helped to further develop La Crema’s esteemed collection of single vineyard Chardonnay and Pinot Noir wines. He was promoted to head winemaker in 2017.



Francesco Ricasoli  – (Barone Ricasoli)

Francesco Ricasoli

The name Ricasoli has been associated to wine since 1141, when Brolio Castle was acquired by the Ricasoli family.


Bettino Ricasoli (1809 – 1880) was the promoter of the most famous Italian wine in the world today: Chianti.

Today it is the largest domaine in the Chianti Classico area: Castello di Brolio, where Baron Bettino Ricasoli came with the Chianti formula in 1872, is surrounded by 1,200 hectares in the towns of Gaiole and Castelnuovo Berardenga.

Since 1993 Francesco Ricasoli  is the 32nd  family member to lead  the family winery. Second oldest in the World and oldest in Italy.

We welcome the charming Francesco to Tasting Room Radio.


Jann Arden – Feeding My Mother: Comfort and Laughter in the Kitchen as my Mother Lives With Memory Loss.

“Jann Arden is one of the most honest and talented women I’ve ever met, and her love for her mother is so rich.” —Chef Lynn Crawford

Even though Jann and I have known each other for 30 years it didn’t make the book any easier to read.

The pain of watching her Mother fade away commands each and every page of this cookbook and then you turn the page and it’s

a recipe for split pea soup.

We talk about dealing with the slow loss of her Mother and “Candy Grams for Mongo”

That’s exactly what a Jann Arden concert is like..crazy fun one moment and heart wrenching  the next.

As each day steals more and more of her Mother’s  memory, it’s her  kitchen  and the food in it that connects  Jann and her Mother.

Amazing book.

Fascinating performer.

Wonderful friend.


John Glavina – Owner of Giant Head Winery  (Summerland)


John was born in Montreal in 1960. His father, an immigrant from Malta, was a computer technician with Honeywell. In 1985 the family moved to Vancouver where John  graduated from SFU with a  degree in computer science, with a minor in business.

John Glavina

He met his wife Jinny Lee at SFU and together they had a dream  of owning a farm.

Finally in 2002, the couple and their two children moved to the Okanagan and bought an apple orchard near Summerland.  After a couple of years farming apples Jinny Lee  admitted grapes would be better.

They grow Pinot Noir, Merlot, Gewürztraminer and – for blending with the latter – about 100 vines of Riesling. Both took viticulture courses but John leaves much of the viticulture up to Jenny Lee.

First they were strictly growers but then came their  2014  vintage. It was the first one they sold.


My pal Herschel Miedzygorski  invited me to attend the release of the latest Giant Head Tap and Barrel right next door to the Convention Centre. It was John’s birthday and a new release pour. The room was jumping.

John was  proud of his Canyonview Chardonnay, his 2016 Merlot, a  2016 Pinot Noir, a Rose made from Merlot and his 2016 Blanc De Blanc,  made from his Pinot.






I couldn’t get anywhere near Jenny Lee with my microphone as she was being congratulated by a large group of friends all night long.



Stories we are working on:

  • IVSA Pour in Victoria
  • BC Cider Festival. North Vancouver
  • Locals Only – Granville Island
  • Naramata Bench Pours on the Coast
  • Spring releases from OK Falls
  • Matt Sherlock (Lock and Worth/Nichol Vineyards) and Jay Drysdale (Bella) Natural Wines and New Directions




March 24th, 2018- Oaxaca City, Mexico!


Heading to The Home of true Mexican Cooking in Oaxaca with Susana Trilling.




Cheers and welcome to Year 10 of Tasting Room Radio.

You can find the Podcast on iTunes, Airs at 11am Pacific every Saturday at Roundhouse Radio 983 Vancouver.

Alex Chen – Canadian Culinary Championships – Gold Medal Winner


Chef Alex Chen wins GoldWe start in Vancouver at the Boulevard Restaurant at The Sutton Place Hotel with Gold Medal Winning Chef Alex Chen.

He’ll be answering the question – How did he do it?  How did he beat the very best chefs in Canada in the Canadian Culinary Championships.

He’s a totally engaging and passionate guest, very much like his cooking.

Alex  was one of 11 chefs who won Gold Medal Plates regional competitions held across the country in 2017 to earn the right to compete in the national championships, which began with a Mystery Wine pairing event on Friday night and continued Saturday with a Black Box competition that allowed chefs just one hour to prepare a dish using seven mystery ingredients.

The two events culminated in Saturday night’s grand finale, where Chen prepared the same signature Parfait of Wild BC Shellfish, ‘Chowder’, Northern Divine Caviar and Bull Kelp ‘Brioche’ — paired with Sea Star Estate Farm and Vineyards’ 2016 Ortega from Pender Island, BC — that earned him top spot at the Gold Medal Plates regional competition in Victoria, BC last October.

Please meet our first guest Chef Alex Chen.  Pure Gold!

/blvdyvr on Facebook / @blvdyvr on Twitter and Instagram.


Susana Trilling – Seasons of my Heart  –  Oaxaca, Mexico


SusanaTrillingOaxaca (Wha-haka) is the home of traditional Mexican cooking. It’s also the epicenter of Mescal and Mole Sauces.

How lucky was I to find a place to sit in the shade in a small courtyard and see her sign right in front of me?

Surely,  here was a perfect guest for the show. A chef and author who discovered the historic centre of true Mexican cooking and never left. Teaching and advocating as she went.



Check out just a small part of Susana’s personal history.


Susana Trilling is a chef, teacher, caterer, author, TV hostess, food consultant and director of Seasons of My Heart Cooking School and Sazon de Mi Corazon S.A. de C.V., producing gourmet Mexican products.

She owned 2 NYC restaurants, a restaurant in Fremantle, Western Australia and has lived in Oaxaca since 1988, where her two sons were born and raised on her ranch outside of the city.

She wrote My Search for the Seventh Mole and Seasons of My Heart; A Culinary Journey through Oaxaca, Mexico to accompany her 13 part PBS series, that ran for 6 years.


A renowned authority on Oaxacan cuisine, Susana has filmed and hosted numerous TV programs in addition to her own series including: Two Hot Tamales, MexicoOne Plate at a Time with Rick Bayless A Cooks Tour with Chef Anthony Bourdain, Andrew Zimmern’s  Bizarre FoodsThe Diary of a Foodie, and Jeff Corwin’s series Extreme Cuisine.


. She was awarded a Lifetime Achievement Award at the Oaxacan International Food and Wine Festival in 2002 and in 2012 was presented with the Espiga de Oro Award for her work promoting Oaxacan cuisine internationally. She has been featured at many Food and Wine and Cacao Festivals and been a celebrity chef at CIA San Antonio’s annual Paella Challenge.

Susana’s company, Sazon de mi Corazon, SA de CV produces the Seasons of My Heart line of gourmet Mexican food products available internationally in both retail and food service presentations.

She is a member of Slow Food, IACP, The Mexican Mycology Association and is currently promoting her newest book, titled  FromMilpa Seed to Salsa, written in collaboration with CEDICAM and others about rural Mixtecan farmers in Oaxaca, their system of growing organically and sustainably and the recipes that result.






Please enjoy this mid-afternoon chat with Susana Trilling. If you get a chance please Google her complete history. It’s fascinating.







Oaxaca City is quite simply an amazing city, full of sensational food, extremely friendly people and fantastic history! Go VISIT!


Paola ManriquezManager of La Contra  Mexican Wine Store in Oaxaca

 Paola was nervous that her English wasn’t good enough for radio.

I was concerned that I would butcher every label pronunciation.

Somehow we managed to pull it off.

Paola Manriquez


We won’t ever see a lot of Mexican wines in Canada. A basic fact of life there is that Tequila has the inside political track and the Government’s attention. Not surprisingly, the Mexican government makes it almost impossible to export or even carry their wines back home with you.

It’s a damn shame because their wines are getting so much better as young winemakers learn their craft in the USA and then return to bring change to the wines back home.

I was delighted to find La Contra open for business and selling only small independent local and regional wines with Ensenada and the Guadalupe Valley leading the way.


There are La Contra stores opening across Mexico, so keep an eye out.


Calle Gomez Farías 212-B
Colonia Centro C. P. 68000
Oaxaca, Oax.



Tel. 01 951 5152335 o 5157977
Cel. 9515471082

[email protected]
+ Facebook

[email protected]

Alison Moyes  – Winemaker.  Liquidity Wines (OK Falls)  Wins Gold at Chardonnay du Monde

Liquidity Wines estate-grown 2016 Chardonnay Reserve has been listed as the number one wine in the Top 10 Chardonnays to receive Gold medals at the recent 2018 Chardonnay du Monde Awards.

Alison Moyes

The Awards recognize the world’s best Chardonnays as evaluated by a panel comprised of 300 international experts. This year, 679 wines from 39 countries were tasted by the judges.

Liquidity’s award-winning 2016 Chardonnay Reserve features layered aromas of toasted almond, pear and peach with a subtle whisper of allspice. Complex yet well-balanced, the wine captures flavours of lime zest, pineapple, lemon curd and intense minerality, and leaves a lingering finish on the palate. The wine will be available for purchase in April to Liquidity’s Equity Tasting Club members, followed by Club Liquidity members ($42, plus tax); it will also be available in the winery tasting room in July (while supplies last).

Originally from Southern Ontario, Alison moved to Halifax  to attend Dalhousie University and pursue an interest in science, studying Microbiology. During this time, she had the opportunity to work at some of Halifax’s finest restaurants. As her palate developed, she began to consider a career in winemaking and acquired a degree in Oenology & Viticulture from Brock University.

Following several seasons working in the Niagara region, the Okanagan beckoned. Alison brings experience from two top wineries in the Okanagan, having worked under Pascal Madevon at Osoyoos Larose and as Winemaker for Stoneboat Vineyards for five years.

The big surprise is that although she obviously can craft a world class Chardonnay, Alison at heart is a 100% Pinot Head.

When the Chard runs out,  as it certainly will, I urge you to taste the Pinot Noirs.

And the Viognier and Pinot Gris.  OK… just try everything!



Parksville Unplugged and Untapped

IVSA Pour in Victoria

John Weber  (Orofino)

Joe Luckhurst (Road 13)

BC Cider Festival. North Vancouver

Locals Only – Granville Island

John Glavina – Giant Head Wines

Craig McAllister – Winemaker at La Crema Russian River

Gurvinder Bhatia – Edmonton Wine Expert ay VanWineFest

Naramata Bench Pours on the Coast

Spring releases from OK Falls




March 10th, 2018- Van Wine Fest part 2!


Hour Two of 2018 VanWineFest




Last week’s show focused of Spain and Portugal.

This week its friends and neighbours.

BC, Washington, California, Nova Scotia and a final Spanish Winemaking Star Alvaro Palacios.

Loved doing this hour.  Winemaking friends from all over sharing thoughts and opinions.

VANCOUVER, BC – FEBRUARY 26: The 2015 Vancouver Wine Festival at the Vancouver Convention Centre February 26, 2015 in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. (Photo by Jeff Vinnick)


We talk about the Alberta Wine Ban and its effect.

I felt it was important that I ask the question “What are you pouring here today and why?”

Co-hosts were Sandra Oldfield and Daenna van Mulligen (The Wine Diva). They did a great job!  /

Guests include:


DJ Kearney – Wine Director

Christine Coletta – Co-Owner of Okanagan Crush Pad (Haywire)

Galen Barnhardt – Winemaker at Monte Creek. Kamloops

Chris Turyk – Brand Ambassador Unsworth. Cowichan Valley

Bruce Ewert – Co-Owner/Winemaker L’Acadie Vineyards. Nova Scotia

Howard Soon – Head Winemaker Vanessa Vineyards

John Skinner – Owner Painted Rock

Nikki Callaway – Winemaker Quails Gate

Kurtis Kolt – The Bottle / Georgia Straight. Top Drop Vancouver.

Calla Bischoff – Sileni Estates NZ

Jim Robertson – Stoneleigh  NZ

Alvaro Palacios – Spanish wine legend

Ray Signorello –  Owner Signorello Estates. Napa

Randy Ullom  – Chief Winemaker – Kendall-Jackson.  Sonoma

Eugene Mylnczyk.  Master of Wine . Charles Smith Wines. Washington



Alex Chen – Gold Medal Winning Chef

John Glavina – Giant Head Wines

Naramata Bench pours on the Coast

Susana Trilling – Seasons of my Heart Oaxaca, Mexico

Craig McAllister – Head Winemaster  La Crema Russian River Valley

John Weber – Owner.  Orofino Vineyards. Similkameen Valley

CC Jentsch – On the Golden Mile Bench






February 17th, 2018 – Alberta Bans BC Wine!


Alberta Bans BC Wine. Here’s the Pushback!        



BC/ Alberta showdown

 Nobody saw it coming.

We all woke up on a recent Monday morning to the news that the Alberta Government in retaliation to the BC Government’s environmental concerns about the interprovincial pipeline took the highly unusual step of banning BC Wines from sale in Alberta.

That’s 30% of BC’s wine sales.

That’s just as many tourism  visits every year from our neighbour.

At first I could definitely hear the voice of Albertans. They were pissed and mad as hell!

BC was messing with their livelihood. After all the highs and lows what they really didn’t need in Alberta was a neighbour creating more hurdles to jump.

BC  responded that they were protecting their invaluable coastline but in the middle of all of this were the farmers, growers, small businesses and stores of the BC wine industry and Alberta partners.

BC Wine Country

So I went to talk to the winemakers and stores. . I sought out people who had a sense of the battle ahead and why they were having a battle at all.

Some remarkable comments here:

 Guests include:

Christine Coletta – Okanagan Crush Pad/Haywire

John Skinner – Painted Rock Winery

John Clerides – Marquis Wine Cellar

Michael Bartier – Bartier Bros.  (his brother/partner lives in Calgary)

Bob Shaunessy – Former Albertan and former owner of Tinhorn Creek.  (currently in NZ)

Bruce Ewert – L’Acadie Vineyards Nova Scotia. Removed from the fray but former BC winemaker


Roberto Roberti – Beverage Manager  Fountana Group Canada (Canadian Rockies Whisky)

This interview with Roberto was supposed to be included in our coverage of the Victoria Whisky Festival but we ran out of time in the show.

Roberto Roberti


The interview is timely because their feature whisky Canadian Rockies is made from Alberta grain and corn. It’s  welcomed and sold in BC.

Lots of great whisky information included.





Francesco Ricasoli – Oldest winery in Italy

Alex Chen – Gold Medal Plates wins Gold in Canada. This is how he did it.

2018 Van Wine Fest







February 3rd, 2018 – The Victoria Whisky Festival!


The 13th Victoria Whisky Festival.  Have a Wee Dram.



Harry Hertscheg  on wines at VanWineFest

And pairing Cheese and Wine at The Savvy Series with Pam Cohen/Allison Spurrell (The Cheese Queen)

And Bill Jones from Deerholme Farm on his Foraging Classes.



Harry Hertscheg  – Executive Director VanWineFest


Harry Hertscheg The 40th annual Vancouver Wine Festival is mere days from now   Feb 24 – March 4.

173 Wineries from 15 countries  Featured regions are Spain and Portugal. 

Harry Hertscheg organized a media tasting of some of the participants..more like a serious tease.

I am of course,  never without my trusty recorder and fresh batteries.

Our starting point was over Steely Dan’s Aja Album which I had played on Mulligan Stew that weekend.

I was amazed that it was over 40 years since they released those outstanding tunes.  Harry says “that’s about the same age as this festival – 40 years”  and off we went.  We touch on the wines of Portugal and Spain, some of the many highlights of the festival and as always I ask Harry about his single best tip for the first timer at the consumer tastings which can be daunting.


FYI – Tasting Room radio will have a roundtable studio set up where the Spanish wines are being poured.

Our March 3rd show will be hour one and March 11 show will be hour two.

Guest list next week.

The 13th annual Victoria Whisky Festival


Victoria Whisky Festival

Speaking of daunting, I have very little history with whisky.

At the 13th Victoria Whisky fest  I was well out of my element but eager to learn and discover.

I thank Heather Leary the media contact and thanks as well to  David de Kergommeaux for steering me in the right direction and of course for his invaluable book Canadian Whisky:  The Portable Expert.

I set up shop in the lobby of Victoria’s Grand Hotel. It was filled with whisky experts and fans.  Perfect!

The festival ran from the 18th to 21st of January and just a heads up – it sells out as soon as the tickets are released.  For some, it means sleeping out overnight to be first in line.

Tickets for 2019 will go on sale this November.

How popular is this festival?  This year for the first time anywhere all 11 brand ambassadors from around the World for Balvenie attended, taught and poured in Victoria.

Guests include:

 Davin De Kergommeaux –  Author and host of the Thursday Night Awards Event.


Davin de Kergommeaux

Davin de Kergommeaux describes himself as “a certified Malt Maniac and trained sommelier who has been analyzing, writing, and talking about whisky, as an independent commentator, for nearly two decades.”

He spent six years in university studying whisky grains – barley, wheat, rye, and corn.  You can find his writing in many magazines and at many places on the web including In the fall of 2011, he was appointed Canadian Contributing Editor to Whisky Magazine.

Frank Hudson – Director and Organizer of the Victoria Whisky Festival

Frank Hudson


Dan Volway –  Errington Americas

Dan Volway

 Dan is the Whisky Brand Ambassador.  Includes Maccallan. The Famous Grouse. Highland Park. The  Snow Leopard. Cutty Sark etc.

Started his career as a Sommelier.

Tish Harcus – Canadian Club Global Brand Ambassador  (Beam.Suntory)

Tish Harcus

 What a life. Canadian Club is Canada’s most famous whisky brand and as such is poured all over the world. That’s Tish’s beat.

She was pouring some rare fine whisky and for research purposes, I tasted a dram. At 11am. On a Friday.

I also did an interview with Roberto Roberti from Canadian Rockies but ran out of show time.  I will air his interview sometime in the next two weeks. 


 Pamela Cohen and Allison Spurrell   – The Savvy Series pairing Cheese and Wines. (next wednesday)


Late last year I discovered The Savvy Series at Marquis Wine Cellar on Davie.

It’s back again.

Wednesday, February 7th, the Marquis resident Sommelier, Pam Cohen, and cheese master and Les Amis de Fromage owner, Allison Spurrell, guide participants through a selection of wines and cheeses, paired for the occasion. Learn why certain pairings are matches made in heaven.

.Andrea Rinaldi 2014 Moscato d’Asti “Bug Juice” DOCG   – Piave Vecchio

DOP- cow’s milk

Domaine Octavie 3016 Touraine Sauvignon Blanc      – Chevre Frais

Happy Days Dairy BC

Domaine Albert Mann 2014 Gewurztraminer Ferstentum    –   Fou du Roy

cow’s milk – Quebec

Haden Fig 2014 Pinot Noir Willamette Valley      – Prima Donna – cow’s

milk  – Netherlands

Heras Cordon 2010 Rioja Reserva     – Queso de Cabra Romero    – goat’s

milk- Spain

Monteraponi 2015 Chianti Classico     – Il Classico Stagionato  – cow /

sheep’s milk – Sardegna

Check out the rest of The Savvy Series and events at Les Amis du Fromage 

 Bill Jones  – author and chef.  Deerholme Farm  (Duncan)

Bill Jones

 Bill Jones,  the owner/chef at Deerholme Farm has an amazing array of experiences behind him. Bill has cooked in Michelin-starred restaurants in France and England. He is also a renowned author and expert on the foods of the Pacific Northwest. Bill’s unique specialty is wild foods from the forest, fields, and oceans. Many people have visited the farm and when they leave they take with them knowledge, good nourishment, and a little happiness.

Foraging at Deerholme Farm

We’ll talk about his events this year but will pay attention to the very popular foraging classes.  Bill holds a doctorate in Rainforestology (whatever).

Upcoming in 2018:

Annual Happiness Dinner – February 17th, 2018 – Food that elevates your mood

Medicinal Mushroom Cooking Class – February 24th

Mushroom Cultivation Workshop – March 3rd

Mastering Stocks and Sauces Cooking Class – March 10th

Spring Foraging Workshop – March 17th

Spring Wild Foods Dinner – March 24th

Spring Foraging Workshop – March 31

Spring Wild Foraging Weekend – April 14-15 (forage and cooking class)

Morel Mushroom Dinner – April 21





Naramata Pours

Okanagan Falls Pours

What BC wines are they drinking in Alberta

Jim Cuddy – The Cuddy by Tawse

Roberto Roberti – Canadian Rockies Whisky


January 27th, 2018 – New York Times spotlights Canadian foods!


Sam Sifton   NY Times Food Editor: Food and Politics

DJ Kearney – on

Vikram Vij – VIJ. The Life and The Book





The New York Times culinary  writers last week spent 7 days focusing on  Canadian cooking.

Sam Sifton, food editor for The Times lead the team.

Sam Sifton NYT -David McMillan – Joe Beef

In Toronto they were taken with the many Syrian refugees who landed in Canada and immediately started cooking Syrian food to an interested  clientele. It’s not something they would see south of the border. Politics would be involved “down there”.

The team also went to Montreal and met with David McMillan, the famous chef and co-owner of Joe Beef/Liverpool House.

David McMillan – Joe Beef

Certainly about the food but also about the unique politics involved in French Canadian cooking.

They’re very protective of Quebecoise cooking and nobody muddles those waters better than David. He brings British influences  into the mix and politically that’s a no no.

Sam also sent Food Critic. Pete Wells to Vancouver to review Kissa Tanto.

This is a very engaging conversation (mainly on Sam’s part) as the dialogue ebbs and flows around people, places and things.

A two part interview with Sam Sifton that also includes a brief but involved discussion about – The New York Times – as a headline. As a story unto itself.  Being repeatedly called out by The President of the USA.

My first question is “what’s it like in the building these days”?


DJ Kearney  – Director of Wine


DJ Kearney

Deej is one of the key tastemakers in Canada and most certainly on The West Coast.

She is now making waves as the Director of Wine at

It’s a store and a wine-on-line destination.

Many many wine fans  believe in her taste and instincts.

DJ judges, lectures and instructs but what she does best is choose wines for all of us to consider.

Frankly, I’m like many wine fans. If it’s OK with DJ it’s OK with  me.

This week DJ runs through recent choices and wine trends we should know about.


Vikram Vij  – VIJ   A chef’s one-way ticket to Canada with Indian spices in his suitcase


Vij – The Book

This interview takes us behind the legendary culinary and tv figure that we all know now.

Back to the very in India. Coming to Canada… overcoming all odds to eventually open his own restaurant. It’s a fascinating story. So many hurdles to cross and hoops to jump. Fragrant with the smells of cumin, turmeric fennel and cloves, Vij reveals the story of Vikram Vij, one of Canada’s most celebrated chefs and entrepreneurs.

Co-owner of the world-famous Vij’s Restaurant in Vancouver, his story is a true rags-to-riches tale of a college dropout from northern India who made it to Europe’s temples of high cuisine, then with a one-way ticket bound for Canada, found fame serving some of the world’s most transcendent Indian cuisine.




Harry Hertscheg – Update n the VanWineFest

Bill Jones – Deerholme farm gears up for Foraging classes

Victoria Whisky Festival

Van Wine Fest – 2 One hour specials






January 20th, 2018 – Dine Out Vancouver!


It’s  Dine Out Vancouver Year 16 – Now until Feb 4th!


How much fun is this?

There are over 300 restaurants signed up to host Dine Out Vancouver Food Fanatics and every year we keep creating bigger line ups.

It’s a great success story and one Vancouver and Tourism Vancouver can be proud of.

16 years ago it started as an idea.  As one of the originals Tim Pawsey says the idea was simply – “Let’s put Bums in Seats”

Juke fried chicken

This year the food media  gathered in the  H2 Restaurant/Bar   in The Westin Bayshore.  We ate small bites, tasting BC VQA wines and everyone was asking the same question – where are we going?

We were rounded up in groups  of 5 to 10 people and off we went in trolley cars and busses.

Victor at Parq

From what I can remember – this is what happened and who I talked to  –what a night!

  • Lucas Pavan                        Producer of Dine Out.  (Tourism Vancouver)
  • Jason Ocenas                     Manager of Township 7 Langley
  • Allison Scholefield           Haywire. Okanagan Crush Pad
  • Lyndsay O’Rourke           Winemaker/Co-Owner Tightrope Winery
  • Tim Pawsey                        The Hired Belly
  • Amber Sessions                Tourism Vancouver
  • Howard Soon                     Chief Winemaker Vanessa Vineyards
  • Laura Serena                      Serena PR (original Media contact Year 1)
  • Laura Kittmer                     Wine BC
  • Grant Nelson  GM           Victor at Parq Vancouver
  • Valerio Pescetelli             Exec Chef  Victor
  • Filippo Bevilacqua            Bev Manager/Sommelier
  • Jade Dynasty                     Old School Dim Sum
  • Joscelyn Werner              Canadian Craft Tours
  • Justin Tisdall                       co-owner Juke Fried Chicken
  • Jean-Sebastien Dupuis  Homer Street Café  (Beverage Director)
  • Chris West                          Homer Street Café  ( Chef de Cuisine)


Twitter: @TVANMedia


Moon Cursor

Harry Hertscheg – Wine Fest Update

Sam Sifton  New York Times Food Critic (on Canadian Food)

DJ Kearney –

Coyotes Banff

Bill Jones – Foraging Classes in March

Van Wine Fest  – 2 one hour specials