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A Wine Lover's Diary, part 223 (January 12, 2009)

Monday, January 5: Wrote an article on Chile for Post City Magazines. Since we moved we are no longer in the area that receives copies. I was passing Michael Carlevale's restaurant, Michael's on Yonge, and there was the January issue stuffed into the door handle. Since the restaurant is no longer in business I'm sure my friend Michael won't mind that I took his copy. I hear he's in Boston. Deborah made tourtière, which was perfect with Château Pey La Tour 2006, a Bordeaux Supérieur that punches above its weight.

Tuesday, January 6: Drove down to Niagara-on-the-Lake to attend John Marynissen's funeral in the St. Vincent de Paul church. The pews were full of winemakers and winery executives come to pay their respects. John's daughter Sandra gave a very moving eulogy.

Reverend Dale from Deborah's Unity church came to dinner. I was expecting a conference call at 6 pm from a woman in the States who is doing a PhD on wine blogs. She didn't call until 7 pm, just as Dale arrived. She interviewed three of us for an hour, so Deborah and Dale started on the Château des Charmes St. David's Bench Vineyard Sauvignon Blanc 2007 with salmon. When I joined them I opened a bottle of Flat Rock Nadja's Vineyard Riesling 2007. Dale, an American, had not tasted much Ontario wine and was very impressed.

Wednesday, January 7: Wrote my Tidings magazine Commentary about John Marynissen and his contribution to the Ontario wine industry. For dinner, pork loin with a fig glaze. The wine: Il Molino di Grace Chianti Classico Riserva 2004 – absolutely delicious.

Thursday, January 8: A tasting at Doug Towers's house with David Lawrason for Dinner, salmon again, with Gallo Family Sauvignon Blanc 2007. Not a lot of varietal character but very drinkable for the price.

Friday, January 9: Getting ready to launch the new website iWineandDine. The prototype looks very good. A meeting with executives from the Ritz Carlton hotel chain about the new Toronto property on Wellington Street just behind Roy Thomson Hall. A very exciting project. Then to the LCBO lab for a tasting of wines for the February 14th release. Deborah is out tonight at a reading by Laurence Hill from his The Book of Negroes. So I didn't open any wine. It's no fun to drink wine alone.

Saturday, January 9: This evening is a Saintsbury Society dinner at Irvin Wolkoff's. The theme is Châteauneuf-du-Pape. I brought a 1999 Château de Beaucastel. The guests tonight are Ted Kalaboukis and his wife Vula. Ted has taken over from Ron Fiorelli as Director of the German Wine Institute in Canada. Carol Wolkoff cooked a spectacular meal – smoked salmon with remoulade made with fennel, followed by breast of duck, cheeses. The wines:

  • Domaine Corne-Loup Tavel Rosé 2007 (served with baked pinwheels with green and black tapenade)
  • Château La Nerte Blanc 2006 (with the smoked salmon)
  • Coto de Hayas Garnacha Centenaria 2007 (Tony Hirons brought this wine that he imports. It comes from Campo de Borga and he justified it crashing a Châteauneuf-du-Pape tasting by telling us it was after all Grenache and the vines were 100 years old. So we drank it. And it was good.)
  • Le Vieux Donjon Châteauneuf-du-Pape 2006 (Ted's)
  • Marquis Anselme Mathieu Châteauneuf-du-Pape 2005 (Tony Hirons's)
  • Château de Beaucastel 1999
  • Château de Beaucastel Hommage á Jacques Perrin 1990 (from Irvin's cellar)
  • Taylor 10-Year-Old Tawny

Didn't feel the cold on the way home.




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