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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Find Your Niche

Niche Winery One of the ‘small guys’, or garagistes, Niche Winery is a small family run operation set well off the main highway in West Kelowna. Opened in 2011 by James and Joanna Schlosser, they indeed have ‘found their Niche’. This small ten-acre, ‘Hugh and Mary’ vineyard, owned by James’ parents, Kathleen and Jerry Schlosser,…

Chardonnay from Around the World

Another evening with the tasting group. The tasting this evening featured eight Chardonnay wines from eight different countries. Quick, can you think of eight different countries that make Chardonnay? This was a blind tasting and all the wines were wrapped in brown paper bags. The group, for the most part, found all the wines to…

Evolve / Time / HMC

I recently sat down with friend and fellow wine judge Roger Ford to taste through a flight of wines from Evolve, Time and HMC. The task before us, six wines – two sparkling, one white and three reds. Let the tasting begin! We began with their Effervescent bubbly, a blend of Pinot Blanc and Chardonnay…

CheckMate Chardonnay

  In late September I was fortunate to be invited to a tasting of the Mark Anthony portfolio held high above the city on the 24th floor of the Telus Gardens (more about that in another article). The best part of the afternoon for me was a guided tasting of CheckMate Chardonnay. These are exclusive…

Tasting Plates Port Moody

Sometimes when you live in the area, you can be the last to know about new places. When Tasting Plates Port Moody was announced, it gave me the perfect opportunity to visit places I had heard about or driven by, always with good intention to try them some other time. Registration took place at Gabi…

BC Honey Producers Mead Competition

It all began with an email from a major Vancouver media outlet and a name I didn’t recognize.   Probably spam, but maybe not, so curiosity got the better of me and I opened it. After all, the subject line said, “Looking for a mead judge”. The person in the email mentioned that the BC Honey…

Tasting Ten September

I have written before about a private tasting group that I have been invited to sit in with from time. The most recent event contrasted BC and Argentinian wines. There were four whites and four reds, of which there were two white varieties and two red from each region. It was a blind tasting as…

Home Wine Tastings

One of the things I most enjoy doing is conducting wine tastings for private parties. The most recent one was close to where I live and I knew a few of the dozen or so people who had been invited. It had been decided that we would do three wine wines and three reds at…

Neighbour’s Blend & BC Wine Studio

  BC Wine Studios’ Mark Simpson is quite a philanthropist. Each year he selects a charity or cause and makes wine to help support them. His first launch helped to build a neighbourhood playground. This year his Neighbour’s Blend was made to help support Mount Pleasant Family Centre.   The Neighbour’s Blend is primarily Riesling,…

#WineWednesday Wine Reviews

2013 Sauvignon Blanc / Viognier Bonamici Cellars Okanagan Falls $21.90 This virtual winery, the creation of Philip Soo and Mario Rodi, uses the facilities at Synchromesh Winery in Okanagan Falls. The wine is straw coloured tinged with green and medium-minus in intensity. Peach and apricot aromas dominate the nose followed by delicate notes of honey,…

Best of BC Craft

  Liberty Wine Merchants do many things well, but the one that impresses me the most is how they take time to showcase and promote local beverage producers. Liberty holds several such events every year and always ties them in with charity fundraisers. The most recent event was the Best of Craft evening held at…

Hurray for Rosé!

Finally the good weather has arrived in Vancouver, so it seems a good time to run this article, which I wrote after attending an event earlier this year. International Vintners and Spirits Association takes the opportunity several times a year to showcase new products to those in the hospitality industry. I enjoy going to these…

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