Ontario’s bubbles are rising

2014 © Rachel Kenworthy, Glass of Bubbly

2014 © Rachel Kenworthy, Glass of Bubbly

I was very flattered when UK-based Glass of Bubbly magazine asked me to be their correspondent for all things sparkly and Canadian.

My first column was published in the August/September 2014 issue. I took a stand for Ontario sparkling wines, which as you may know from reading my blog, are something I take great pride in. I also profiled Handsome Brut, a new, delicious-tasting VQA sparkling wine from Angels Gate Winery and Goods & Services.

Order a free hardcopy of the magazine by going to their website. Or, click here to download an electronic version. My feature is on page 16 of the PDF (pages 30/31 of the magazine).

 

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Meet Handsome Brut: Sparkling wine’s newest man-about-town

HandsomeBrut_5

Move over craft beer, there’s a new man-about-town beverage in store this summer. Handsome Brut, a deliciously dry Ontario sparkling wine, is on a mission to prove that bubbles are the perfect summer-time tipple—and not just for special occasions.

Of course, clothes make the man, so the producers have dressed up Handsome Brut in contemporary packaging that makes the bottle a welcome guest at any gathering, formal or informal.

“The name and packaging give you a hint that this wine is fun and approachable,” says Sue McCluskey, one of the brand’s creators.

And forget the dainty champagne flutes. Handsome Brut can be served in any drinking vessel—the makers suggest a half-pint glass if a flute’s not your style.

“Men tend to have the misconception that sparkling wine is a feminine drink”, continues McCluskey. “But the fact is, anything that goes well with beer will go just as well, if not better, with Handsome Brut.”

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Putting the “POP!” in Popsicle!

Call me crazy, but I’ve never been too mad about ice cream and other frozen desserts. Sweets just aren’t my things, and that includes sweet wines. Savoury treats are my vice—especially washed down with a chilled glass of dry sparkling wine.

Nice ice, baby!1406507332005_wps_1_Product_Photography_by_Ma

That is, until now.

Today, while browsing my other vice (Shhh don’t tell anyone…it’s the Daily Mail), I heard about POPS, the world’s first (commercially manufactured) champagne popsicle. 

Made with 37% champagne, each lolly clocks in around 0.5 alcohol units (about half a glass of champagne)—just enough fizz for a lunch-time treat in the park that will send you back to your desk with a smile.

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A Recipe For Success: Champagne Cocktails

Old Fashioned

When it comes to sparkling wine, I like it the same as I like my bourbon—neat. No messing about with it.

That said, I’m somewhat of a convert after a recent experiment with champagne cocktails. I tried making a new-fashioned Old Fashioned, and it was pretty delicious. I’m not saying I’d drink a sparkling wine cocktail all the time—in fact, I’ll still choose a chilled glass of dry bubbly over just about anything—but when the mood strikes, this is now my go-to cocktail.

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Don’t be a Glasshole: Four Reasons to Ditch the Champagne Flutes

 

Global-Amici-Fleur-De-Lis-Glasses-11-Ounce-Set-of-6-0I moved to Canada recently from the UK. It’s taken me a while to sort my apartment out—from furniture to furnishings, and everything in between.

And now I know what you’re thinking—I must have bought wine glasses before I bought anything else. Quite right, although I’ve never been one to be conventional. Instead, I bought these cute little recycled glasses.

They’re perfect for most drinks, especially red and white wine. And frankly, you could drink sparkling wine out of them too—although my favourite glass for sparkling is a half-pint beer glass.

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VQA Winemakers Taste Success at Ontario Farmers Markets

MARY WASILIK OF ROSEWOOD ESTATES WINERY AT THE SORAUREN FARMER'S MARKET. - KRYSTLE MERROW

MARY WASILIK OF ROSEWOOD ESTATES WINERY AT THE SORAUREN FARMER’S MARKET. – KRYSTLE MERROW

I was so delighted to see this article published today on Yonge Street, which shouts from the rooftops about the success of the newly adopted pilot program that allows wineries to sample and sell their wares at farmers markets. The program is part of Ontario’s wider strategy to promote VQA wines—read more about this here.

In Toronto, VQA wine has been sold at 18 markets in Toronto alone—from Dufferin Grove Organic Market to Leslieville Farmers’ Market. Many of the wines being sold aren’t available at the LCBO, giving Torontonians an excellent opportunity to taste bottles they might never come across apart from on a hazy summer road trip around Niagara vineyards.

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Champagne Slob Enjoys a Glass of Bubbly

© Glass of Bubbly

© Glass of Bubbly 2014

I’m very delighted to announce that I’ll be writing for the next issue of Glass of Bubbly magazine, which comes out in August 2014.

Launched in January 2014, Glass of Bubbly is a UK industry publication about—yep, you guessed it—sparkling wine. The bimonthly magazine, which has an international distribution in print and online, harnesses the expertise and views of international wine bloggers, wine label owners and a selection of celebrities.

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