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Best LCBO Wine Reviews: Vintages Ratings October 31

Natalie Decants - October 29, 2020 - 2:34pm

You can access the 136 wines that I reviewed as a text wine list with my complete tasting notes, scores, food matches. If you are a Paid Member, you can add my wine picks to your custom shopping list with one click and access that list on your smartphone to find the stock for each wine in your closest LCBO store. These are just some of the benefits of supporting out wine community as a Paid Member. Inventory stock numbers are usually posted online a day or two before the release based on the LCBO doing so. Curious about what […]

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Categories: Wine

Best Wine Pairings for Vegetarian Food + Recipes (Video)

Natalie Decants - October 28, 2020 - 9:29am

  Join me for a live tasting of wines paired with delicious vegetarian recipes from Food & Drink magazine created by editors Victoria Walsh and Eric Vellend.   You’ll find us on YouTube here this Monday, November 2nd at 7:30 p.m. eastern. (Click on the “Set Reminder” button at the link above.)   Add this event to your calendar now so you don’t miss it:   3 Tips for Veggie Sips   Tip #1: You’re Just My Type • Consider the types of veggies in the dish: flavour, weight and texture? • Light or bold? Crisp or creamy? Mild or […]

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Categories: Wine

Moms Sipping Sangria and Talking Wine with Sheila Walsh and Anita MacArthur

Natalie Decants - October 28, 2020 - 2:58am

Introduction Which hilariously named Sangria recipe should you try today? How did an unintentional restaurant order spark my passion for wine? Why should you serve Pinot Noir in a big glass? How can you safely expand your wine horizons the next time you go to a store or restaurant? What do you need to know about low-cal wines? How can you use the “wet t-shirt trick” to quickly cool a bottle of white wine? In this episode of the Unreserved Wine Talk podcast, I’m being interviewed by Sheila and Anita for the Moms Sipping Sangria podcast. You can find the wines […]

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Categories: Wine

Risotto with Radicchio and Pecorino Cheese Recipe Paired with Monte Zovo Sa’Solin Valpolicella Ripasso

Natalie Decants - October 26, 2020 - 1:46pm

Monte Zovo Sa’ Solin Valpolicella Ripasso pairs well with this wonderful fall recipe. Risotto with Radicchio and Pecorino Cheese Ingredients for 2 people:160 g Carnaroli rice1 radicchio1/2 vegetable stock cube1/2 glass of Valpolicella Ripasso1 tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil2 tablespoons of grated Pecorino cheese Fill a pot with about 400 ml of water. Add the stock cube and keep the broth hot on low heat. Cut the radicchio into strips and stir fry it in a saucepan with a tablespoon of oil for few minutes, then add the rice. Toast it, deglaze with the Valpolicella Ripasso and cook over […]

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Categories: Wine

Tagliatelle with Pumpkin and Sausage Recipe Paired with Monte Zovo Sa’Solin Valpolicella Ripasso

Natalie Decants - October 26, 2020 - 11:53am

Monte Zovo Sa’ Solin Valpolicella Ripasso pairs well with this wonderful Fall recipe: Tagliatelle with Pumpkin and Sausage Ingredients for 2 people:200 g di tagliatelle400 g pumpkin pulp1 onion400 g pork sausage200 ml vegetable broth4 spoons of grated cheeseOlive oilNutmeg to taste Mince the onion, cut pumpkin into cubes and add with 2 tablespoons of olive oil in the saucepan. Cook for 5 minutes, then add the broth and cook for 10 to 15 minutes until it’s creamy. Add cheese and a sprinkle of nutmeg. Meanwhile, crumble the sausage and brown it in a pan. Cook the tagliatelle in salted […]

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Categories: Wine

Family-Run Wineries v Corporate-Owned? Henry of Pelham’s Daniel Speck

Natalie Decants - October 21, 2020 - 2:58am

Introduction What was it like being part of the budding Niagara wine scene? Why are wineries so well-suited to be family-owned? How does the terroir of the Niagara bench influence what you taste in Henry of Pelham wines? Why is Henry of Pelham so well-known for their Baco Noir? What hidden message can you find on the label of Henry of Pelham Family Tree wine? In this episode of the Unreserved Wine Talk podcast, I’m chatting with Daniel Speck of Niagara’s Henry of Pelham Family Estate Winery. You can find the wines we discussed here.   Highlights How was Daniel’s […]

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Categories: Wine

Baked Pumpkin Slices Recipe Paired with Monte Zovo Sa’Solin Valpolicella Ripasso

Natalie Decants - October 17, 2020 - 11:27pm

Monte Zovo Sa’ Solin Valpolicella Ripasso well with this wonderful fall recipe for Baked Pumpkin Slices. Baked Pumpkin Slices Ingredients:1,5 kg pumpkin20 g pumpkin seeds1 rosemary sprigSalt to tasteExtra virgin olive oil20 g flaked almondsSmoked paprikaBlack pepper Cut the pumpkin into slices, oil a baking tray and place them on. Sprinkle them with oil and chopped rosemary. Season with salt, pepper, paprika, pumpkin seeds and almonds. Bake in a preheated oven at 180°C for 40-45 minutes. Serve with Monte Zovo Sa’ Solin Valpolicella Ripasso This post is a partnership with the team at Monte Zovo Winery, who provided the recipe. Wine reviews […]

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Categories: Wine

The Shape of Wine Taste with Australia’s Wakefield Wines

Natalie Decants - October 14, 2020 - 1:58am

Introduction How can you visualize the taste of wine in a chart? How would those charts be different for Cabernet Sauvignon, Chardonnay, Riesling and Shiraz? What makes the wines from Australia’s Clare Valley unique? What is bâtonnage and what flavours and aromas will result in the wine? How does acidity improve your tasting experience? Why is balance one of the most critical aspects of a great wine? In this episode of the Unreserved Wine Talk podcast, I’m chatting with Justin Taylor and Neil Hadley of Australia’s Wakefield Wines. You can find the wines we discussed here.   Highlights What was […]

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Categories: Wine

Pairing Wine and Halloween Treats (Video)

Natalie Decants - October 13, 2020 - 10:25am

 Lots of laughs on CTV’s The Social this week! Click the arrow above to watch the video. The hosts chose the theme of a Royal Halloween, so Lainey dressed as Prince George, Cyn was Daenerys from Game of Thrones, Mel was Megan Markle and Marci was Queen Ramonda from the Black Panther movie. I channeled my inner (royal) wine witch and brought my broom shtick to the show. What a hoot we had together! Here are the tips, tricks and wines we discussed … Something a bit scary happens on Halloween: we’re surrounded by lots of treats, but will […]

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Categories: Wine

Pairing Wine and Halloween Candy: The Monster Match

Natalie Decants - October 13, 2020 - 7:30am

Buzz Lightyear and the Wine Witch chat about great wine pairings with Halloween treats on Breakfast Television. Dina: Just call Natalie MacLean for pairing wine and Halloween treats, she’s an online sommelier and what a brilliant idea. Great to see you all festive Natalie. Natalie: Great to see you Dina. Dina: Or as well you are at the door trick-or-treating, the kids are at the door you thinking ‘what’s in it for me?’ We tend to dip into the kids snacks, well I do anyways- Natalie: Yes! Dina: A lot of parents do. Natalie: You bet. Dina: So you are […]

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Categories: Wine

The Best Georgian Wines to Try Now + Wine Regions (Video)

Natalie Decants - October 11, 2020 - 11:59am

On CTV News, we chat about Georgian wines. So let’s get our bearing first by looking at a map. Georgia, the country, not the state, hugs the Black Sea, with its neighbours being Turkey, Azerbaijan, Armenia and Russia. It was formerly part of the Soviet republic.       Almost three-quarters of the country’s wine is produced in Kakheti like this full-bodied, savoury dry red wine from Mukuzani.             United Stars Mukuzani Dry 2015                                                […]

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Categories: Wine

The Best Croatian Wines to Try Now + Wine Regions

Natalie Decants - October 11, 2020 - 11:47am

On CTV News, we dive into Croatian wines. Let’s first take a look at Croatia on the map and where the wine regions are. Croatia hugs the Adriatic Sea, and is neighbours with Slovenia, Hungary, Serbia and Montenegro.     There are four major wine regions, but the best-known vineyards are on the Dalmatian islands planted on steep hillsides and getting lots of sunlight to ripen the grapes. Here’s a wine to help you remember that region, the Dalmatian Dog is from Dalmatia and made from the Babić grape: it’s full-bodied with dark plum flavours.           […]

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Categories: Wine

A Day in the Life of Toro Malbec from Argentina

Natalie Decants - October 9, 2020 - 9:31am

Our team recently tasted Toro Centenario Malbec from Mendoza, Argentina. We’re sharing our reviews of this terrific, value-priced wine here, plus photos we took with the wine below. Taking our inspiration from photo essays and books that focus on one topic for a day, we’ve assembled our pictorial interpretation of California’s Toro Malbec. We’re also sharing these photos on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, Tumblr and LinkedIn. The hashtag is Bodega Toro Winery Centenario Malbec 2019Mendoza, Argentina Like tango, soccer or a grilled steak, Argentines love the wines of their beautiful country, but their undisputed favourite is Toro. One out of […]

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Categories: Wine

Pairing Wine with Weird Thanksgiving Turkey Recipes (Video)

Natalie Decants - October 8, 2020 - 7:09am

 You may have some wines in mind for your Thanksgiving roast turkey, but what should you drink with non-traditional recipes, like turducken or deep-fried turkey? That’s what Lindsey and I chat about on CTV’s Your Morning, the country’s national breakfast show. Let’s start with beer can turkey. What is it and which wines should we have with this dish? So for this wonderfully weird recipe, you sit the turkey on a beer can on a grill, which results in a moist meat, and a crispy, satin-brown skin. Of course, you could pair this dish with beer since you cooked with […]

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Categories: Wine

Taco Bell’s New Jalapeño Noir Wine: Should You Try It?

Natalie Decants - October 7, 2020 - 1:58am

Introduction Taco Bell just launched its first wine called Jalapeño Noir, a Pinot Noir, get it? Is the wine any good? Should you try it? Does it pair well with tacos? What will surprise you about making the wine, especially the winery that made it? What was the stealth marketing plan behind the launch? What’s next, Big Macs and Bordeaux? In this episode of the Unreserved Wine Talk podcast, I’m going solo to do a live taste test for you. You can find the Jalapeno Noir wine here.   Highlights How well did Taco Bell’s new Jalapeño Noir wine perform […]

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Categories: Wine

Fall Wines: A Warming Taste Trend

Natalie Decants - October 2, 2020 - 8:00am

Wine styles are as seasonal as clothing. In the summer, I drink light, refreshing wines that remind me of a simple T-shirt and shorts: perfect for sun-baked beaches and country road strolls. But in the fall, my wine, like my clothes, becomes warmer, more layered and better able to combat those cool winds of October. In the video above, Leanne and I chat about fall fashions in wine, from the run-way to your dining room table. The wines featured in this show include: Robert Mondavi Private Selection Chardonnay, California Toasted Head Chardonnay, California Clos du Bois Cabernet Sauvignon, California Santa […]

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Categories: Wine

5 Tips to Pick Wines for Thanksgiving

Natalie Decants - October 2, 2020 - 5:00am

No other holiday celebrates the gift of wine like Thanksgiving. Wine is a taste of the harvest along with all the delicious dishes on the table. But actually choosing a bottle can feel like a thankless task, especially with so many flavors to match. Relax. Have a drink. And try some of my suggestions for great wines to pair with Thanksgiving turkey and all the trimmings that Leanne and I chat about in the video above. You can also watch our first video on fall wines here. In my free online matching tool, you can click on “turkey holiday dinner” […]

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Categories: Wine

Which Wine Pairs Best with Blue Cheese? Janice Beaton Makes the Match

Natalie Decants - September 30, 2020 - 2:58am

Introduction Why are wine and cheese your best bets when entertaining? If you’re not a fan of blue cheese, where do you start to acquire a taste for it? How is blue cheese made? Can blue cheese actually have no blue colour? Where should you take a wine-and-cheese themed vacation? In this episode of the Unreserved Wine Talk podcast, I’m chatting with Janice Beaton, owner of Janice Beaton Fine Cheese which was known as Calgary’s best place to buy artisanal, fresh-cut cheeses from around the world. You can find the wines we discussed here.   Highlights Why are wine and […]

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Categories: Wine

Taco Bell Jalapeno Noir Wine: Taste Test Verdict (Video)

Natalie Decants - September 23, 2020 - 12:22pm

Taco Bell just launched a new wine called Jalapeno Noir, a Pinot Noir produced by the boutique Queenston Mile Vineyard in Niagara-on-the-Lake. Is this a perfect pairing or marketing mistake? Watch the video above to find out and let me know what you think of this combo in the comments below please. Cheers, Natalie   🍷 Queenston Mile Vineyard We love saying “cheesy chalupa”…rolls off your tongue like the wine! . 🍷 Andrea Shapiro It’s really awesome that it is sold through Taco Bell too, a new revolution for wine sales. Many restaurants have adapted to selling wines with take […]

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Categories: Wine

Which Cheeses Go Well With Wine? Janice Beaton Shares Pairings

Natalie Decants - September 23, 2020 - 2:58am

Introduction Why does cheese, like wine, spark obsession? Why do certain wines and cheeses have a similar flavour profile? What makes Canadian cheeses unique? Do different types of cows’ milk produce different flavours in cheese? How do you pair goat cheeses with wine? In this episode of the Unreserved Wine Talk podcast, I’m chatting with Janice Beaton, owner of Janice Beaton Fine Cheese which was known as Calgary’s best place to buy artisanal, fresh-cut cheeses from around the world. You can find the wines we discussed here.   Highlights How did Janice develop her passion for cheese? What is it […]

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Categories: Wine