Sam, The Wine Teacher, has been an educator, a home winemaker, a wine judge for too many years to count and is the former Guild Master of the BC Guild of Wine Judges.

He has offered wine education and appreciation courses for Pacific Breeze Winery, Capilano College, Eden West fine foods, the Richmond School District Continuing Education department, the VAWA, the BCAWA as well as for various private functions. He also trains staff and offers cellar evaluations.

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French Wine Connection

Monday, May 5th, Cinco de Mayo, and this cool overcast day is not a day for Spanish wines, but it is appropriate for French wines and I’m off to the Renaissance Vancouver Harbourside Hotel for the French Wine Connection, a trade tasting of wine, spirits and beer.   My plan is to focus on the…

Brunch at Calabash Bistro

What should you expect when you walk into the Calabash Bistro on Carrall Street, between Hastings and Pender?  Expect the unexpected.  Some people go for the food; others go for the music.  This is a friendly, unassuming eatery decorated in bright Caribbean canary yellow and red.   Owner Roger Collins, originally from St Kits, has…

There’s an App for that!

Well if you are looking for an app to help you pair food and wine, help you decipher wine terms, or store photos and notes of your favourite wines, there is indeed an app, or more accurately, many apps for that.  Here is a sampling of some of them. Wine Terms A dictionary of wine…

Rosé Smack Down

Two weeks ago, in Vancouver, Haywire and Bartier/Scholefield went head to head with their Rosés.  It was a good publicity event as Michael Bartier and David Scholefield have been winemaking partners at the Okanagan Crush Pad for some time and produce wines under a variety of labels. Upon my arrival, Leann Froese, of Town Hall…

A late dinner at Cactus Club

A friend from Ottawa was in town for a meeting, so we met downtown at his hotel and went for a walk along English Bay to Third Beach in Stanley Park.  Then we headed back via Lost Lagoon and Robson Street.  We were debating where to eat and passed by Earl’s and Milestones looking for…

Intrigue Wines

Tucked in off Goldie Road in Winfield, just north of Kelowna, is one of the more recent Scenic Sip wineries.  In 2008, Roger Wong, his wife Jillian and another couple, Ross and Geri Davis, opened the winery. Roger is a noted winemaker, having worked previously at Gray Monk and at the former Pinot Reach (now…

Clos du Soleil Winery

Earlier this year, I was invited to a trade event at the Tap and Barrel in Coal Harbour, near the Vancouver Convention Centre.  The occasion was a release of Clos du Soleil wines.     Clos du Soleil is a small ten-acre winery located on Upper Bench Road in Keremeos, BC.  It was founded in…

Getaway to the Okanagan Spring Wine Festival

If you have some time available May 1st to the 11th, consider heading up to the Okanagan and taking in some of the amazing events happening there.  Whether you head to Osoyoos or Vernon or anywhere in-between (even Kamloops), you’re going to find lots to do with nearly two hundred planned events.  Over one hundred…

Gray Monk Winery

Gray Monk, the original Scenic Sip winery, is one of BC’s best known. The west facing slopes along Camp Road provide good air drainage and capture the sunlight reflected from the lake below.  Situated at approximately 50° north latitude, the vines need to capture whatever warmth they can.  Gray Monk pays homage to their location…

Ricardo’s Mediterranean Kitchen

Whenever I am up touring in the Kelowna or Lake Country wine regions, I usually reserve a night to dine at Ricardo’s Mediterranean Kitchen on the northern shore of Ellision Lake, just north of the Kelowna airport.  To get there, turn east at the blue and white sailboat on highway 97. Ricardo’s features Italian décor…

Rollingdale Ten Year Vertical Tasting

I attended “10 Years on: A Rollingdale Tasting 2004 – 2013” at The Hamilton Street Grill last week.  Rollingdale is an unassuming farm gate organic winery in West Kelowna owned by Steve and Kirsty Dale.  It lies on the western shore of Lake Okanagan just a short drive from downtown Kelowna.  They use organic practices…

Wine Reviews courtesy of Sam Hauck

Here are some suggestions for your weekend trip to the local wine store: 2011 Tinto (Malbec, Syrah, Bonardo) La Posta Cocina Mendoza, Argentina $17.99 Silver medal Tasted 2014 01   This is a blend of 60% Malbec, 20% Syrah and 20% Bonarda. Garnet red in colour with deep intensity. The nose shows aromas of plum,…

Want to Have Some Fun?

Consider inviting a few friends over and hosting a home wine tasting.  A blind tasting is even better, and no, I’m not talking about anything weird involving blindfolds.  Here’s one idea of how it could work.  Invite five or six couples over and everyone contributes $20; that would give you a budget of about $220…

To Score or Not To Score ?

  Well, the title says it all and it is a topic I can argue both sides.  As a member of the BC Guild of Wine Judges, I judge in a number of wine competitions every year and attend monthly blind tastings to keep my skills up.  It is true that some wines are better…

My Trip to Mendoza, Argentina

I was recently on a Holland America cruise with a friend, so most everything was planned out for us. We left a few days early in order to see Mendoza, Argentina. I couldn’t go to South America without visiting one of its most important wine regions.   Mendoza is a desert-like climate nestled at the…

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