Posts Tagged ‘Aure Wines’

Clink & Drink Pink! The Rosé Report

Posted by David

Sunday, July 10th, 2016

The dog-days of summer mean vacations, backyard BBQs and hitting the beach to escape cool down. Whatever you’re doing, you’ll find a glass of these refreshing Rosé wines are both refreshing and delightfully surprising.

Our Savvy Sommeliers discovered five wonderful Rosé wines made in Ontario to feature in this month’s Bouquet of Rosés. Mark our words…you’ll love how they pair with everything that defines your summer:bouquet-of-roses

 Aure Wines White Gamay – award-winning Rosé
– Back 10 Cellars “Rose Coloured Glasses” – this is not a whimpy Rosé!
DiProfio Wines Gamay Rosé– Rich and fruity
– Palatine Hills Pinot Gris – easy drinking (maybe TOO easy!)
– Rosehall Run Pixie – a perfect summer sipping sparkling
– Trail Estates Winery Pinot Noir Rose
– A gem from The County

Your Bouquet of Rosés is EXTRA special, as none of the wines are available at the LCBO.

If you would like to order additional bottles or other hard-to-find Ontario wines (we do craft beers, too!), contact me at 613-SAVVYCO (613-728-8926) or

I’ll be happy to arrange a special delivery for you.

Here’s to summer!

Debbie & the Savvy Team


In this Bouquet of Rosés you will find…

~ Tasting notes by Savvy Sommelier, David Loan ~


Aure Wines White Gamay VQA 2014Aure Wines White Gamay VQA 2014

Beamsville Bench (Niagara)

Did you know? This wine won a Bronze Medal at the 2015 National Wine Awards. Well deserved!

 Savvy Sommelier Tasting Notes: Spicy and savoury, sweet and sour – the descriptors just kept coming as we tasted this. With a peach colour, just tinged with orange, it offers ripe honeydew and rose blossom notes. There’s honey, too, which pairs perfectly with its high acidity. The finish is quite complex, with honey and melon and tangerine.

Suggested Food Pairings: When our Savvy Team got together to sample the wines, Savvy Sommelier Debbie knew just what she wanted with this wine – Prosciutto Wrapped Cantaloupe (very simple recipe follows).


Back 10 Cellars ‘Rose Coloured Glasses’ VQA 2015back 10 cellars

Beamsville Bench (Niagara)

Did you know? The wine’s fun name was inspired by one of the winery owners’ daughters, who always wears her sunglasses with rose-coloured lenses, “because it makes the world a prettier place”.

Savvy Sommelier Tasting Notes: Blended from Pinot Noir and Gamay, this wine offers the best of both. It has a spectacular pomegranate juice colour and aromas of sour cherry, smoke, watermelon, and mint. The flavours surprise, with candied red fruit, slate and tobacco. Barely off-dry, with medium acidity, it finishes with red cherry notes that won’t quit.

Suggested Food Pairing: Go ahead and challenge this food with big, bold flavours
such as Buffalo chicken wings or ribs slathered in BBQ sauce; this wine will handle it.



DiProfio Wines Gamay Rosé VQA 2015Di Profio Wines Gamay Rosé VQA 2015

Twenty Valley (Niagara)

Did you know? Gamay is best known as the grape of Beaujolais Nouveau, but it has a growing reputation as a true Ontario star! Thriving in our cool climate, Niagara Gamay balances bright, fruity cherry and raspberry notes with lively acidity.

 Savvy Sommelier Tasting Notes: There’s an explosion of red currants when you sip this, tempered with great minerality, orange blossom, and pomegranate. At 13 per cent alcohol by volume, it’s medium-bodied and has a hint of sweetness. It’s a big, complex rosé that’s ready for the dinner table.

Suggested Food Pairing: This will stand up to spicy food, such as Mexican food.



Palatine Hills Pinot Gris VQA 2015Palatine Hills Pinot Gris VQA 2015


Did you know? Palatine Hills is located on land that was once a battleground during the War of 1812. An historic artifacts display in their tasting room shows some of the relics found in the vineyards, including officers’ buttons, clay pipes and musket balls!

Savvy Sommelier Tasting Notes: Not labeled as a Rosé, but winemaker Jeff Innes has let the skins of the lightly-purple Pinot Gris grapes bleed into the grape juice giving it a lovely copper colour. This shines with typical Niagara minerality, strawberry and gorgeous pink grapefruit flavours. It reminded us, too, of Juicy Fruit gum. This wine is just off-dry, with a pithy and white pepper finish.

This Pinot Gris is so new that at the time of writing it isn’t even on Palatine Hills’ website yet. You are the first to enjoy it. A true Savvy discovery!

Suggested Food Pairing: This accommodating wine easily accompanies summer dishes ranging from grilled peaches to BBQed Pizza (recipe below).


Rosehall Run Pixie VQARosehall Run Pixie VQA

Prince Edward County

Did you know? Sparkling wines made by the “Charmat Method” become bubbly through secondary fermentation in a large tank, in contrast to “Champagne Method” where it takes place in the bottle. Either way, bottles are initially capped with beer bottle-like “crown caps”, and more and more winemakers are choosing to leave these easily removed caps in place.

Savvy Sommelier Tasting Notes: Oh, boy, do we love this wine! Blended from Riesling and Chardonnay, it has just enough Zweigelt (one of owner/winemaker Dan Sullivan’s signature grapes) added to give it a lovely gold hued peach colour. The bubbles are light and fun, and this is gently sweet with some bracing lemon acidity for balance. And the flavours! Rhubarb, peach, strawberry, and lots of lemon on the finish.

 Suggested Food Pairing: We’d love to share this with friends in the backyard over a bowl of  Chilled Cucumber Soup – check out our recipe below.


Trail Estates Winery Pinot Noir Rosé VQA 2014

Prince Edward County

Did you know? Trail Estate is one of the newer wineries to enter the scene in Prince Edward County, and they have wasted no time making a name for themselves. Hildegard & Anton Sproll had just retired from running Sproll’s Fine German Bakery in Kitchener-Waterloo for 30 years.  Then, as the story goes, on a trip to The County, they fell in love with region.  They never intended to start up another business, but…

Savvy Sommelier Tasting Notes: Beautiful pale pink colour. Wild strawberry and an interesting clover flower notes on the nose give only an illusion of sweetness to come. There are hints of cherry vanilla, tangerine, and orange blossom, and a spice one taster thought was cinnamon.

The palate starts slightly sweet vanilla-cherry, with a slight roundness before going to rhubarb and cranberry for a crisp finish. The 6% Gamay adds some nice structure to the 94% Pinot, and the neutral barrel ferment gives that roundness noticed.

Suggested Food Pairings: A very versatile wine that will work with many dishes including summer salads (grilled lettuce), light appetizers, and grilled salmon.




• Rosé Recipe Box •
Summer time favourites enjoy with your Bouquet of Rosés


Chilled Buttermilk-Cucumber Soup

Recipe and photo from
Makes 4 servings

Ingredients Cucmber soup

2 cucumbers (14 ounces or 400 grams total), peeled, halved, and seeded, plus thin cucumber rounds, for serving
2 cups (500 mL) buttermilk
Coarse salt and ground pepper
Extra-virgin olive oil, for serving


Roughly chop 1 1/2 cucumbers; dice remaining cucumber half.

Place roughly chopped cucumber in a blender with buttermilk and

blend until smooth, 1 minute. Season with salt and pepper.

Divide soup among four bowls and stir in diced cucumber.

Scoop out into bowls and top with cucumber rounds, a drizzle of oil, and more pepper, if desired.


Grilled Pizza

Recipe and photo from: Simply Recipes

Serves 4

Following these directions you can make this summer pizza as simple (frozen crust, bottled sauce) or complicated (everything from scratch) as you want.

Ingredientsgrilled pizza

Pizza dough or frozen pizza crust

Olive oil

Standard toppings of tomato sauce, herbs, cheese (fresh buffalo mozzarella is the best!), and maybe some thinly sliced onions, tomatoes, mushrooms, or pepperoni

Some flour or corn meal for dusting the cookie sheet or pizza peel


Make the pizza dough or use prepared pizza dough.

Prepare the grill for high direct heat. Prepare a small bowl with olive oil for greasing the grill grates and for brushing the pizza. Prepare the toppings so they are ready to go on the pizza—tomato sauce, cheese, and anything else you wish.

Shape the pizza dough by flattening it with your hands on a lightly floured surface. Either use your fingers to stretch the dough out, or hold up the edges of the dough with your fingers, letting the dough hang and stretch, while working around the edges of the dough.

Once you’ve stretched the dough, let it sit for 5 minutes and then push out the edges with your fingers again, until you have a nice round shape, about 12-inches in diameter. Do not make a raised rim, it will interfere with the grilling process.

Once the grill is hot (you can hold your hands an inch over the grates for no more than 2 seconds), dip a tightly folded up paper towel in olive oil and use tongs to wipe the grill grates. Then place a pizza dough round on a lightly floured (or you can use cornmeal) rimless cookie sheet (or pizza peel if you have one). Let the dough slide off the cookie sheet onto the hot grill grates. Close the lid of the grill and let cook for 2 minutes.

After 2 minutes, open the grill and check underneath the dough to see if it is getting browned. If it is on one side, but not another, use a spatula or tongs to rotate the dough 90 degrees and cook for another minute. If it is not beginning to brown, cover the grill and continue to cook a minute at a time until the bottom has begun to brown. It should only take a couple minutes if you have a hot grill. The top of the pizza dough will start bubbling up with air pockets.

Once the pizza dough has browned lightly on one side, use your cookie sheet or pizza peel to remove it from the grill. Use a spatula to flip the dough over so that the grilled side is now up. Keep the grill covered so it retains its heat for the next step.

Paint the grilled surface of the pizza with a little olive oil, then cover with 1 ladle of sauce – no more, or you’ll end up with a soggy pizza. Sprinkle on your toppings, ending with Mozarella cheese (if using), and if using meat, put that over the cheese. Remember to go light on the toppings, or your pizza will be heavy and soggy.

Slide the topped pizza back onto the grill. If you are using a gas grill, reduce the heat. If working with a charcoal grill, close the vents on the cover almost all the way. Close the lid and cook for 2-3 minutes more, or until the bottom begins to char and the cheese is bubbly. Pull off the grate with a spatula onto a cutting board or other flat surface and let rest for a couple minutes before cutting into slices.

Slice and serve!


Red Curry Lentils

Recipe and photo from Pinch of Yum

Serves 6


1½ cups (300 g) lentils, rinsed and picked over
½ large onion, diced
2 Tablespoons (30 mL) butter
2 Tablespoons (30 mL) red curry paste
½ Tablespoon (4.5 g) garam masala
1 teaspoon (3 g) curry powder
½ teaspoon (1.5 g) turmeric
1 teaspoon (3 g) sugar
1 teaspoon (3 g) minced garlic
1 teaspoon (3 g) minced ginger
a few good shakes of cayenne pepper
1 14 ounce (385 mL) can tomato puree
¼ cup (125 mL) coconut milk or cream
cilantro for garnishing
rice for serving


Cook the lentils according to directions. Drain and set aside.

Melt the butter in a large saucepan over medium high heat. Add the onion and sauté for a few minutes until fragrant and golden. Add all the spices (curry paste, garam masala, curry powder, turmeric, cayenne, sugar, garlic, ginger) and stir fry for 1-2 minutes. Add the tomato sauce; stir and simmer until smooth.

Add the lentils and the cream. Stir to combine and simmer for another 15-20 minutes (the longer, the better)!

Serve over rice and garnish with cilantro.


Prosciutto Wrapped Melon

Recipe from Savvy Company
Photo credit: Pinterest

Serves 8 (hors d’oeuvres)

Ingredients wrapped melon

One cantaloupe
4 oz (112 g) paper-thin prosciutto


Peel and seed the cantaloupe. Cut it into cubes or wedges.

Wrap each piece of cantaloupe with a slice of prosciutto.

Serve and enjoy the rave reviews!


Have your fridge full of Rosés all summer long…bouquet-of-roses

Always have refreshing Rosé wines on hand this summer. To order additional bottles of your new-found favourite Rosés from this assortment OR to receive a Bouquet of Rosés next month call the Savvy Team at 613-SAVVYCO (728-8926) or order online at

The August Bouquet of Rosés will have a completely different selection of hard-to-find wines.

To order the August Bouquet of Rosés, call the Savvy Team on 613-SAVVYCO (728-8926) or order online

 Cheers & Enjoy your summer!


Aure Wines – A Treasure Find

Posted by Monique

Monday, August 17th, 2015

Savvy Selections wine of the month club
Featuring Aure Estate Winery
–  August 2015 –


The heat is on in Ontario folks!  While we cool ourselves off sipping on some crisp cool wines, Ontario’s vineyards are eagerly watching clusters of their little green grapes grow and ripen. (did you know all grapes start as green?).  August is also one of the busiest times of the year for wineries, as tasting rooms are bustling with crowds of visitors anxious to taste and discover the delightful wines they have to offer while in the cellar, they are finishing bottling the wines and making room for the chaotic activities that comes with harvest.

We are thrilled to introduce to you Aure Wines (pronounced oh-rah), a family run winery situated in the VinemountAureWines_color Ridge sub-appellation of the Niagara Escarpment.  Aure Wines is run, hands on, by the Hoare family, originally from London, England; with Dave and Annette at the helm.  This husband and wife team has devotedly enthralled themselves in the splendor of wine and food for countless decades.  They also raised a lovely family with that same unimaginable level of passion.  Together with their sons William, the winemaker; and James, the vineyard manager; and daughter Sarah, they aim to share their passion through handcrafting quality wines.

Ready to uncork & enjoy your Savvy Selections?

In this month’s Savvy Selections you will find 3 remarkable wines, each of which were made from estate grown grapes.  Consider these wines to be a definitive expression of what Aure Wines has to offer!

2014 White Gamay – An irresistible blush pink wine with enticingly fresh strawberry aromas.  This refreshing wine pairs well with…your patio! You will no doubt want to enjoy with a charcuterie platter and cheese.

2011 ‘Old Vines’ Marechal Foch – A customer favourite! This wine comes from a hybrid grape vine (winespeak: cross between a European vinifera grape varietal and a North American grape varietal) that was once very widely planted all over Ontario due to its early ripening and cold hardy nature.  Today, most Marechal Foch vines have been uprooted but the ones that do remain at Aure are over 50 years old!  By the same token, winemaking has certainly improved over the past five decades, allowing these grapes to produce an incredible expression of this wine.

2010 Reserve Cabernet Franc – A silver medal winner at the 2014 Concours International Des Vine in France and the first vintage Cabernet Franc. The layers upon layers of flavours will surely impress.

You won’t find these Aure wines at the LCBO

We have done it again!  Our Savvy Sommeliers have found wines (and great prices) that we are confident you will enjoy…every sip!  Aure Wines produces such small amounts that you won’t find them on the shelves in your LCBO.  Call on us at any time at 613-SAVVYCO (728-8926) for additional bottles of your favourite Aure wines – or other wineries we have featured in Savvy Selections.

Cheers & enjoy your summer!

Debbie & Savvy Team


Aure Wines

Presented by Sommelier Monique Ippolito


The Hoare family has always had a strong affinity for wine.  They originally moved to Canada’s east coast for business purposes; later bringing them to Toronto.  That second leap, sending them closer to Ontario’s grape regions, no doubt triggered something in their senses.  After countless visits through Niagara’s wine country, they took the plunge and sought to establish a winery of their own.  Aure was establish in 2007 and officially opened in 2011 with the first vintage coming from 2010 grapes. 2010 was a stellar year…so not a bad way to start!

A winery with an English cottage charm…

The property they finally settled on turned out to be a huge “fixer upper”.  The project involved salvaging as much as they could from an old barn to create what is now a charming Edwardian English _DSC0550Country Estate, adorned with various artifacts, photos and furniture from that era.  What is even more fascinating about this winery is their commitment to sustainability and the environmentally conscious initiatives they applied during the construction of the winery.

The Hoare family reused, recycled and re-purposed as much as they possibly could from the old barn that was on site.  If some of the salvageable items were not useful in the construction of their winery, they were donated to causes that would sure to benefit from it.  Today, a few of the key features of the winery include: a living ‘green’ roof, passive solar heating mechanisms and various methods of water conservation and the re-purposing of rain water.

The name is blowing in the wind

The Hoare family looked into their lineage for the inspiration to pretty much everything about the winery.  The name was no different.  Once they started tracing the name back a few centuries, the surname Hoare was discovered to be somewhat of a derivative of the ancient Greek name Aure, which translates to “a breath of air.”  Since the discovery, the Hoare’s could not resist how fitting the name was considering the location of the winery in addition to having a connection to their lineage.

Meet the winemaker…

William Hoare (photo at right) practically grew up in the hospitality industry and devewilliam_0loped quite an adventurous palate at a very young age.  As a teenager, he was actually thrilled to be washing dishes and bussing tables in a restaurant.  His work experience and penchant for exotic food motivated travels steered him towards studying Hospitality at Niagara College and obtaining a Diploma in Hotel and Restaurant Management.

Soon after, his love and appreciation for wine began to skyrocket. William then sought to educate himself as much as he could on the subject of wine.  He is a quick learner, not to mention a good student, although he feels that he never learnt enough about wine. “there is always more to learn.”

As with any job however there still seem to be little headaches here and there.  For instance William jokingly admits that his least favourite parts of the job are cleaning tanks and, of course, government audits.  However, his proudest moment so far has been winning a silver medal for the 2010 Cabernet Franc at the 2014 Cancours International Des Vine in France.  Luckily, there was enough of this award winning wine to include in your Savvy Selections shipment.  Plus, another fulfilling part of his job is being able to experiment with new/different techniques in wine making; like the impressive wild ferment Pinot Noir and Chardonnays that are available when you visit the winery.

What’s next?

In a span of four short years, Aure has built an incredible portfolio of wines and built several reasons to mark a visit to the winery when you are next in the area.  Be sure to stop in to Silo Bistro for lunch or English high tea.

In the vineyard, David is excited to be the first in the area to grow a new and somvineyard croppedewhat obscure grape called Siegerrebe.  It is an aromatic white grape variety originally from Germany with similar aromas to Gewürztraminer.  “We chose it because of its cold hardy characteristics and it should perform very well in the cool climate that we have in our vineyards”, explains David.

In the wine cellar, William shares the secret that they are planning to make a sparkling Gamay.

Altogether, this winery’s warmth, passion, commitment to environmental sustainability, and strong connection to heritage will no doubt keep producing exciting wines in the future!




Being on top of the Beamsville Bench in the Vinemount Ridge, Aure has focused on varietals that perform consistently well in the cool winds that run along the top of the escarpment.  The grapes here generally bud and ripen two weeks later than vineyards located lower on the bench.  Aure’s Gamay Noir, Cabernet Franc, Riesling and over 50 year old vines of Marechal Foch are the varietals the winery began with.  Sadly, this year, the Riesling vines originally planted were uprooted due to the back-to-back harsh winters that damaged the vineyard.  On the flip side, the hardy surviving vines are thriving and producing very well report David and William.

2014 White Gamay, $14.95

Savvy Sommelier Tasting Notes: Mark our words, you will not be able to resist this elegant blush pink wine!  Alluring aromas of ripe wild strawberries, cherry and a touch of lemon grass loom from the glass.  Expressions of strawberry, pink grapefruit and lemon zest come through more on the palate, ending with a crisp refreshing finish.  This wine is light bodied with a well-balanced acidity and a mouthwatering finish.

While called White Gamay, it is strictly speaking, a white wine made from a red grapes.  The Gamay Noir grapes are the signature varietal originating from the Beaujolais appellation in France.  It is traditionally a deep ruby-red hued wine so, naturally, when vinifying this wine with very limited skin contact, some of that pink hue comes through into the juice during the winemaking process.  Take a sip and you’ll find all the qualities of a ripe Gamay grape without the tannins.  Dry and crisp, it is a delicious summer sipping wine.

Suggested   Food   Pairings: Quite versatile!  This wine makes for a terrific pairing with a summer salad.  Try it with strawberry topped Greek salads, or simply enjoy as a plain ol’ 2 o’clock patio wine. 

Cellaring: Drink now.  Serve between 7⁰-10⁰C.

2011 Old Vines Marechal Foch, $19.95

Savvy Sommelier Tasting Notes:  A robust red wine!  Lovely layered notes of ripe blackberries, black currants, Foch_2011black plums, dark chocolate, leather and anise come through as you nose this wine.  Key flavours of  ripe berries, baking spices and a touch of earthy minerality sustain itself on the palate right through to a long finish.  This wine carries a silky smooth mouthfeel with luscious acidity and a medium-plus body.

The Old Vines Foch, being one of the original varietals frown on the property, is harvested from mature vines.  It has so far become the best seller of Aure Winery.  Its rich and bold characteristics make it a versatile comfort food pairing wine.  You do not necessarily have to wait until fall to crack into this bottle though.  I imagine it will pair quite well with Smokey BBQ ribs.

Suggested Food Pairings:  Osso Buco, hearty stews or anything off the BBQ. 

Cellaring: Drinking well now.  Can cellar for another 3 to 5 years.  Serve between 16⁰-18⁰C.

2010 Reserve Cabernet Franc, $35.00

Savvy Sommelier Tasting Notes:   This wine is one of Aure’s inaugural wines and an international prize winner at that!  The 2010 vintage in the Niagara’s wine country was quite phenomenal, so the wine has lovely notes of dates, ripe Reserve_2010_Cabblack plums, some graphite (minerality) and eucalyptus that lingers with each sip.  These aromas directly repeat on the palate with a luscious and satiny mouthfeel.  Tannins are still present but not overpowering.  Other characteristics of dark chocolate and dried cranberries come through more on the finish.

This full bodied wine is quite a proud bottle for Aura Wines.  It is well rounded and packed with complexity.  It is drinking quite nicely right now, but if you have extra bottles cellar them for another couple years.

Suggested  Food  Pairings:  Beef, bison, lamb or venison roasts.

Cellaring: Drinking well now or can cellar for up to 3-5 years.  Serve between 16⁰-18⁰C.




With The White Gamay…

Blackened Chicken Salad

From Monique’s Kitchen (modified from Whole Foods Market recipe)
Blackening Seasoning Mix from
Serves 4 side salads or 2-3 large dinner salads

 This dish is fantastic in a sandwich, a wrap or in a pasta salad as well.  Be as creative as you like!


3 chicken breasts
¾ cup mayonnaise (substitute with Just Mayo for egg free mayonnaise)
¼ cup dijon mustard
¼ cup apple cider vinegar
1 large carrot (grated or julienne)
½ of a red onion (sliced)
4-5 scallions (chopped)
1/3 cup blackening seasoning
1-2 tablespoons olive oil (substitute with avocado oil or coconut oil)

Blackening Seasoning Mix

1½ tablespoons of paprika
1 tablespoon garlic powder
1 tablespoon onion powder
1 tablespoon ground dried thyme
1 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 teaspoon dried basil
1 teaspoon dried oregano
Combine all ingredients in a bowl until evenly mixed.  Store in an airtight container in a cool dry place.


Coat chicken thoroughly with blackening seasoning mix and let it sit for about 15 minutes.  Then, heat olive oil in skillet and stir fry chicken breasts over medium heat for approximately 10-12minutes or until fully cooked and set aside to cool.  Once cooled, slice into ¼ inch thick strips. *Option: Grill chicken breasts on the BBQ. 

Mix together mayonnaise, apple cider vinegar and Dijon mustard; then set aside. Combine chicken strips, carrot, red onion and scallions together in a large bowl. Pour dressing over the chicken mixture and combine thoroughly. Garnish with some extra chopped scallions and enjoy with your White Gamay.


With Marechal Foch…

Osso Buco (Braised Veal Shanks)

From (recipe & photo credit)
Serves 4-8


8 – 10 large 2 ½ inch thick veal shanks (patted dry & tied securely with string to keep the meat attached to the bone)
All purpose flour for dredging the veal shanks
7 Tbsp unsalted butter, plus additional if necessary
3 Tbsp olive oil, plus additional is necessary
1½ cups white wine (I tend to use Fumé Blanc or unoaked Chardonnay)osso bucco
1½ cups finely chopped onion
¾ cup finely chopped carrots
¾ cups finely chopped celery
4 cloves minced garlic
3-4 cups chicken or beef broth
1½ cups drained canned plum tomatoes (chopped)
1 cheesecloth bag containing 6 sprigs of fresh parsley, 4 sprigs of fresh thyme and 1 bay leaf
½ teaspoon salt & pepper (or to your taste)


Season veal shanks with salt and pepper and dredge them in the flour, shaking off the excess. 

In a heavy skillet, heat 3 tablespoons of the butter and 3 tablespoons of the oil over moderately high heat until the foam subsides.  Then brown the veal shanks in batches, adding some of the additional butter and oil as necessary and, once browned, transfer unto a platter. 

Add the wine to skillet and stir, scraping up the brown bits from the bottom and sides of the skillet.  Boil the mixture until the liquid is reduced to about ½ cup, and set aside in a small bowl.

In a flame proof casserole dish – large enough to hold all the veal shanks in one layer – combine onions, carrots, celery, garlic and remaining tablespoons of butter over moderately low heat, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are softened; then add shanks with any juices that have accumulated on the platter, the reserve mixture and enough broth to almost cover the shanks.  Spread the tomatoes over the shanks, add the cheesecloth bag and salt and pepper to taste; and bring the liquid to a simmer over moderately high heat.

Braise the mixture, covered, on the middle rack of a preheated 325⁰F oven for two hours, or until veal is tender.

Transfer the shanks with a slotted spoon to an ovenproof serving dish, discard the strings, and keep the shanks warm.  Skim the fat and strain the pan juices into a saucepan, pressing hard on the solids.  Boil the juices for 15 minutes, or until liquid is reduced to about 3 cups.  Baste the shanks with some of the reduced juices and bake (basting 3-4 times) for another 10 minutes, or until they are glazed.


With Reserve Cabernet Franc…

Beef Brisket Pot Roast

From (recipe & photo credit )
Serves 8-12


4-5lbs beef brisket
1-2 Tbsp olive oil
3 large onions
5-6 cloves of garlic (minced)
2-3 large carrots
1 sprig of thyme
1 sprig of rosemary
3-4 bay leaves
2 cups beef sock
1Tbsp mustard (optional)


On one side of the brisket there should be a layer of fat, which you want to keep.  If there are any large chunks of fat, cut them off and discard them.  Large pieces of fat will not be able to render out completely.  Using a sharp knife, score the fat in parallel lines – about ¾ inch apart.  Slice through the fat, not the beef.  Repeat in the opposite direction to make a cross-hatch pattern.  Salt the brisket well and let it sit at room temperature for 30 minutes.

You’ll need an oven-proof, thick-bottomed pot with a cover (Dutch oven or casserole dish) that is just wide enough to hold the brisket roast with a little room for the onions.  Pat the brisket dry and place it, fatty side down, into the pot and place it on medium high heat.  Cook for 5-8 minutes, lightly sizzling, until the fat side is nicely browned.  (If the roast seems to be cooking too fast, turn the heat down to medium.  You want a steady sizzle, not a raging sear.)  Turn the brisket over and cook for a few minutes more to brown the other side.

When the brisket has browned, remove it from the pot and set aside.  There should be a couple tablespoons of fat rendered in the pot, if not, add some olive oil.  Add the chopped onions and increase the heat to high.  Sprinkle a little salt on the onions.  Sauté, stirring often, until the onions are lightly browned (5-8 minutes).  Stir in the garlic and cook 1-2 more minutes.

Preheat the oven to 300°F.  Use kitchen twine to tie together the bay leaves, rosemary and thyme.  Move the onions and garlic to the sides of the pot and nestle the brisket inside.  Add the beef stock and the tied-up herbs.  Bring the stock to a boil.  Cover the pot, place the pot in the 300°F oven and cook for 3 hours.  Carefully flip the brisket every hour so it cooks evenly.

After 3 hours, add the carrots.  Cover the pot and cook for 1 hour more, or until the carrots are cooked through and the brisket is falling-apart tender. At this point, take the pot out of the oven and remove the brisket to a cutting board.  Cover it with foil.  Pull out and discard the herbs.

You can serve as is, or you can make a sauce with the drippings and some of the onions.  To make a sauce, remove the carrots and half of the onions, set aside and cover them with foil.  Pour the ingredients that are remaining into the pot into a blender, and purée until smooth.  If you wish, add 1 tablespoon of mustard to the mix. Put into a small pot and keep warm. Serve with the onions, carrots and gravy. Serve with mashed, roasted or boiled potatoes.

TIP: Notice the lines of the muscle fibers of the roast.  This is the “grain” of the meat.  Slice the meat perpendicular to these lines, or across the grain (cutting this way further tenderizes the meat), in 1/4-inch to 1/2-inch slices.

Enjoy your Savvy Selections!


Here’s an Outstanding wine list!

Posted by Debbie

Tuesday, October 16th, 2012

Everything is all set for this Friday’s Outstanding in their Fields wine tasting featuring 23 of Niagara’s Twenty Valley wineries.  Are you joining us? A limited number of tickets are left.

Here is a sneak peak of the wines that are ready for you to enjoy – none that you will find at the LCBO – so this is a perfect evening out sipping and stocking up on new wine discoveries.  There will be over 80 different outstanding wines ranging in prices from $12.95 to $44.95 – sparkling wines, lots of white and red wines,  a rosé, delicious icewines and even a port too!  There’s definitely something for everyone.

Taste a glass…buy a bottle

Exclusive at this event you can order ANY combination of outstanding wines from ANY of the wineries & they will be delivered by courier to your home or office. Free shipping on all orders of 12 bottles or more!

With so many wines and so little time, our Team of Savvy Sommeliers will be there to help you sharing wine tips & recommendations to find wines that you will undoubtedly enjoy.

Can’t make it to this event?

Don’t despiar…you can still stock up on your favorite 20 Valley wines.  Simply email us or call 613-SAVVYCO (728-8926) & we’ll be happy to make the arrangements for your order.  When placed before October 24th  shipping is free on a case of wine.

Looking forward to seeing you for an Outstanding night of wines from Twenty Valley!

Debbie & the Savvy Team


Wines that will be served at Outstanding in their Fields wine tasting on Friday October 19th:

13th Street Winery
2008 Premier Cuvee Sparkling $34.95

2010 Old Vines Riesling $23.95

2010 Reserve Sandstone Vineyard Chardonnay VQA $34.95

2011 Gamay Noir $19.95
NEWS: 13th Street will be the feature winery in November for our Savvy Selections wine of the month club.


Angels Gate Winery

2007 St. John Vineyard Riesling $16.95

2011 Mountainview Sauvignon Blanc $19.95

2010 Feet First Unfiltered Pinot Noir $21.95

2010 Scarpa $40.00


Aure Wines – a new winery that just opened this summer!

2011 Ice wine $20

2010 Riesling $15.25

2011 Gamay  $15.25

2010 Reserve  Cabernet Franc $32.00


Calamus Estate Winery

2011 Vinemount Ridge Riesling $16.20

2011 Pinot Gris $17.20

2010 Cosmic Red $19.95


Cave Spring Cellars

Blanc de Noirs NV $34.95

2011 Riesling Dolomite. $16.95

2009 Riesling CSV $29.95

2008 Cabernet Franc Dolomite $21.95


Creekside Estate Winery

2010 Laura’s White $18.95

2010 Reserve Sauvignon Blanc $26.95

2008 Broken Press Syrah $39.95 – Our Sommeliers chose this as a Savvy Selections wine

2007 Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon $34.95


De Sousa Wine Cellars

2011 Chardonnay Musqué $13.95

2011 Baco Noir $13.95

2007 Meritage Reserve $18.95

Tawny Port $39.95


Di Profio Wines  – a new winery that just opened this summer

2011 Riesling $16.35

2011 Gamay Noir $16.75

2010 Cabernet Sauvignon $19.79

2011 Select Late Harvest Vidal $18.75
NEWS: Di Profio will be featured in our Savvy Selections wine of the month club in March


Fielding Estate Winery

2011 Estate Bottled Pinot Gris $21.95

Brut (Traditional Method Sparkling) $34.95

2010 Cabernet Syrah $24.95

2007 Meritage $34.95 (Special price! Regular $44.95) – Our Sommeliers chose this as a Savvy Selections wine


Flat Rock Cellars

2008 Riddled Sparkling $24.95

2011 Twisted $16.95

2011 Riesling $16.95

2010 Pinot Noir $19.95


The Good Earth Food & Wine Company

2011 Betty’s Blend $17.95

2010 Dry Riesling $19.95 – our Sommeliers chose this as a Savvy Selections featured wine

2011 Rosé $17.95 – and this one too!

2010 Pinot Noir $21.95 – and this Pinot was definitely a Savvy Selections featured wine


GreenLane Estate Winery

2011 Pinot Grigio $16.95

2011 Unoaked Chardonnay $17.95

2011 Old Vines Riesling $22.95

2010 Cabernet $14.95


Harbour Estates Winery

2011 Pinot Gris $13.95

2011 Cabernet $14.95


Henry of Pelham Family Estate Winery

2010 Riesling Estate $17.95

2011 Estate Chardonnay $19.95

2010 Baco Noir Reserve $24.95

2009 Pinot Noir Estate $24.95

2010 Cab Merlot Estate $24.95

Kacaba Vineyard & Winery

2011 Barrel Fermented Chardonnay $22.95

2009 Single Vineyard Cabernet Franc $18.95 – this was featured in our Savvy Bin Ends last week

2009 Pinot Noir $22.95

2010 Reserve Merlot $44.95
NEWS: Kacaba will be featured in our  Savvy Selections wine of the month club in January


Malivoire Wine Company

2010 M2 Small Lot Chardonnay $19.95

2011 M2 Small Lot Gamay $19.95


megalomaniac – John Howard Cellars of Distinction

2006 Homegrown White $ 12.95

2006 Narcissist Riesling $17.95

Homegrown Red $14.95

2008 Bigmouth Merlot $24.95


Peninsula Ridge Estates Winery

2010 Vintner’s Private Reserve Sauvignon Blanc $24.95

2008 Reserve Chardonnay $24.95

2010 McNally Vineyard Proprietor’s Reserve Pinot Noir $24.95

2010 Vintner’s Private Reserve Merlot $29.95


Rockway Glen Golf Course & Estate Winery

2010 Patio 9 White $12.95

2011 Small Lot Reserve White Assemblage $16.95

2010 Small Lot Reserve Red Assemblage $16.95

2010 Small Lot Reserve Cabernet Franc $23.95


Rosewood Estates Winery & Meadery

2010 Long Rows White $13

2011 Mima’s Block Riesling $18

2010 Pinot Noir $20

2009 Merlot Reserve $36
NEWS: Rosewood will be featured in our Savvy Selections wine of the month club in February


Stoney Ridge Estate Winery

2010 Excellence Pinot Gris  $24.95

2010 Excellence Chardonnay $27.95

2010 Excellence Merlot $29.95

2009 Excellence Cabernet Franc $32.95


Sue-Ann Staff Estate Winery

2011 Vidal $15.15

2011 Riesling Loved By Lu $16.95

2011 Robert’s Block Riesling $26.00

2011 Baco Noir $15.15


Tawse Winery

2011 Riesling $21.95

2010 Estate Chardonnay $37.95

2010 Laundry Vineyard Cabernet Franc $31.95

2010 Growers Blend Pinot Noir $31.95 – a Savvy Selections featured wine



Niagara’s 20 Valley wineries are coming to Ottawa!

Posted by Debbie

Monday, September 24th, 2012

We are at it again!  The Savvy Team is excited to announce…

Winemakers and winery owners from Niagara ‘s Twenty Valley wine region – located between the Niagara Escarpment and Lake Ontario – are coming to Ottawa to raise a glass to this year’s outstanding harvest and to pour their wines at their  first ever Taste & Buy event.

“This is the first time the wineries of Niagara’s Twenty Valley have gone ‘on tour’ as a group to showcase their finely crafted wines”, said Twenty Valley Tourism Association President and winery owner Sue-Ann Staff.

“We are delighted to pour our elegant whites, robust reds and other specialty wines to the receptive Ottawa wine lovers. We are excited to work with the Savvy Company knowing their outstanding history, commitment to quality and extreme competence of putting together a fabulous tasting in Ottawa. Ottawa has a particular appeal to the wineries of Niagara’s Twenty Valley.  We know the people in Ottawa love great wine.  And we happen to make some of the best wines in Ontario.  Bringing the two together can only provide for an evening of great success.”

Twenty Valley encompasses the rural towns of Beamsville, Vineland and Jordan. Their wines continue to be recognized and awarded around the world for outstanding quality and for the talent of their winemakers.  Wine enthusiasts in Ottawa have the opportunity to taste the Twenty Valley terroir when winemakers and winery owners come to the nation’s capital.

The Taste & Buy event hosted by Savvy Company is taking place on Friday October 19 at 7p.m. in the Panorama Room on the 2nd floor of the National Arts Centre.

Tickets are available in advance only

$55.00 per person if purchased before October 10, 2012 and will be $60.00 after.
Groups of 4 people are $200.00. Ticket prices include HST.

To purchase tickets click here >>


All wine lovers are invited to sample over 50 wines while they meet grape growers, winemakers and winery owners.  Consumers will learn about the Twenty Valley wineries, their vineyards and may discover some favourite new wines.  At this Taste & Buy event, consumers will have the opportunity to purchase wines that are not available in the LCBO.  Free shipping by courier is available with the purchase of a case of wine.

The Valley comes to ‘The Hill’!

Participating wineries:

13th Street Winery


What is a Taste & Buy event?

Consumers can sample any number of the featured wines and order directly from the winery.  Exclusive at this event, orders can be ANY combination of wines from ANY of the wineries and the wines will be delivered by courier to an Ontario address.   And Savvy Company Sommeliers will be on hand to share wine recommendations and guide event goers to ‘must try wines’ based on their personal preferences.


The Twenty Valley Tourism Association hosts wine themed events year round including “Wrapped Up in the Valley”, “Winter WineFest” and “Get Fresh in the Valley”. Visit or follow @20Valley on Twitter.

Savvy Company specializes in creative social experiences – whether making the enjoyment of wine accessible to all, exploring the worlds of craft beer or discovering artisan cheeses.  Their team of accredited Sommeliers delight in designing wine, beer and food events, shining the spotlight on the people who make them.  Their Savvy Selections wine of the month club is Ontario’s largest featuring Ontario wines not available in the LCBO and delivered directly to the subscriber’s home or office.   Visit or follow @SavvyCompany on Twitter.


Media contacts:
JD Pachereva
Executive Director
Twenty Valley Tourism Association

Debbie Trenholm
President & Sommelier
Savvy Company
613.SAVVYCO (613.728.8926)