Posts Tagged ‘Ottawa Wine Challenge’

Raise a glass – it’s the holidays!

Posted by Debbie

Tuesday, December 9th, 2014
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Is your calendar overflowing with holiday parties all across town? Or are you going to host your own soiree for neighbours & friends this year?  However you deck the halls, here are some savvy tips & recipes that will make your season bright

Pop the corks!

wine_tasting_sparklingI always like to serve bubbly when the guests arrive.  In fact, you will notice that we always do this at every Savvy Event. The sound of popping corks sets the mood and the rush of bubbly wine overflowing the flute glasses easily brings on a smile. Sparkling wine is fun and you don’t need to break the bank by serving fine French Champagne either.  Here are some Ontario sparkling wines to have in the fridge for any occasion during the holidays:

Casa Dea Cuvee Rosé $17.95 – a glass of this dry bubbly from Prince Edward County adds WOW power with its gorgeous pink colour.  Available directly from the winery or make it a reason for a getaway to The County!

Palatine Hills Estates Prestige Sparkling $20.00 – a crisp, dry bubbly from Niagara-on-the-Lake that won gold at this year’s Ottawa Wine Challenge – the wine competition associated to the Ottawa Wine & Food Festival. Look for it in Vintages at the LCBO.

Serve up Seasonal Sparkling Sippers…

Both of these sparkling wines are ideal (and the right price) to make into cocktails with a holiday flare.

SOMMELIER TIP: serve bowls of potato (Ms Vickies is my favorite) or vegetable chips laced with sea salt for your guests.  The salt magically reacts with the bubbles of the sparkling wine making it feel like fireworks in your mouth!

Sparkling Red Poinsettia Cocktail

Makes 8-10 glasses
Ingredients
1 bottle of chilled sparkling wine – either white or rosé
½ cup (125 mL) of either Cointreau, Grand Marnier or Triple Sec, chilled
1 cup (500mL) cranberry juice, chilled

To make the cocktail…
Mix all ingredients together in a jug and pour into champagne flutes.

Garnish with fresh cranberry or sugared rim

Ginger Snap

Makes 8 – 10 glasses
Ingredients
2 teaspoons finely grated peeled fresh ginger
½ cup sugar
1 bottle of chilled sparkling wine – white is preferred 

To make the cocktail…
In a small saucepan, boil ginger, sugar and ¼ cup of water until syrupy (about 2 minutes).

Place a fine mesh sieve over a small bowl.  Pour syrup through sieve, discarding solids. (at this point, you can store syrup in airtight container in fridge for a week)

When ready to make cocktails, pour 1 tablespoon of ginger syrup into champagne flute glasses.  Top with sparkling wine & gently stir

Garnish with a festive swizzle stick or curl of citrus rind (mandarin or orange).

Shaking it up this year with craft beer & gin

Cocktails made with craft beer & gin are trending high this year.  There are over 12 craft breweries in Ottawa and small distilleries are cropping up in Prince Edward County & Niagara too.  These cocktails will WOW your friends with the chic look in the glass as well as the delicious taste.

Blue Spruce

Makes 1 cocktail
A creation by Dillon’s Small Batch Distillery located in Niagara www.dillons.ca

Blue Spruce CocktailIngredients
2 ounces of your favorite gin (Why not go local? Buy a bottle of Dillon’s Unfiltered Gin 22 at the LCBO or direct from the distillery)
1 package fresh blueberries
Squirt of simple syrup to taste (or use blueberry syrup/juice)
Juice & rind from lemon wedge
Tonic Water
Stem of fresh rosemary
Ice

To make the cocktail…
Place a handful of ice in a tumbler glass.

Pour in gin, lemon (juice & peel), a few blueberries (Feel free to give the blueberries a little mashing), syrup and top with tonic.

Give a little stir with the rosemary stem & serve

Festive Fizz

From the fine folks at www.drinkcraftbeer.com
Makes 1 cocktail

Ingredients

1 part of your favorite gin
1 part grapefruit juice
2 parts craft beer (try Perth Brewery Hopside IPA, Covered Bridge Brewery Dirty Blonde or Dominion City Brewery Earl Grey & Marmalade Saison)
1 tsp simple syrup (adjust to taste if you prefer a sweeter drink)
Sprig of mint
Wedge of grapefruit

To make the cocktail…
Shake gin, juice and simple with ice.

Pour into glass and top with beer.

Add sprig of month and wedge of grapefruit to the glass.

Can you believe it…just 2 weeks till Christmas!

Savvy Selections iconSavvy Hip Hops beer of the month clubIf you still haven’t found that perfect gift that will make a WOW impression this year, keep Savvy Company top of mind. Our team of Savvy Sommeliers & Brew Crew are ready to design a one-of-a-kind wine, craft beer and artisan cheese events for your family, clients & friends. And our Savvy Selections wine-of-the-month club is the largest in Ontario.

Did we mention that Savvy Hip Hops is the only club featuring craft beers brewed in Ontario???

Call on us ANYTIME! Savvy Hotline is 613-SAVVYCO (728-8926) or cheers@savvycompany.ca

Happy Holiday Cocktails to you & yours!

 

 

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The drumroll please….2014 wine winners

Posted by Amanda

Monday, November 3rd, 2014
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HOT OFF THE PRESS!

The winners of this year’s Ottawa Wine Challenge – the wine competition associated to the annual Ottawa Wine & Food Festival – have been announced.  We are thrilled that for the first time in ever that the Best of Show winning wines are all made in Canada!  Move over France, Australia & Italy…Canadian wines are taking top marks and the owning the podium at this challenge.

Ottawa wine challenge
The Savvy Team seizes every opportunity to wave the Canadian flag & we are excited that several of the wineries that we feature in our Savvy Selections wine-of-the-month-club as well as our Taste & Buy events won medals in this wine competition.  <Insert big round of applause!>.

Those Canadian wineries we have featured are highlighted.  Be sure to visit the winemakers & winery owners at this weekend’s show or subscribe to Savvy Selections to have award winning wines delivered year round!

Best of Show…

WHITE WINE – Strewn Winery Cottage Block Riesling 2012 – Ontario, Canada
RED WINE – Southbrook Vineyards Triomphe Cabernet Sauvignon 2010 – Ontario Canada
SWEET WINE – Domaine Pinnacle Ice Cider 2012 – Quebec, Canada

Gold Medal Winners…

Konzelmann Estate Vidal Icewine 2010 – Ontario, Canada
Konzelmann Estate Cabernet Sauvignon Icewine 2012 – Ontario, Canada
Palatine Hills Estate Prestige Sparkling Wine – Ontario, Canada
Oyster Bay Sparkling Rose Cuvee Brut Hawke’s Bay/Marlborough – New Zealand
Sideroad Twenty Cellars Red Tractor Cabernet Franc 2012 – Ontario, Canada
Rosewood Estates Origin Cabernet Franc 2012 – Ontario, Canada
Rosewood Estates Sussreserve Riesling 2013 – Ontario, Canada
Strewn Winery Cottage Block Riesling 2012 – Ontario, Canada
Southbrook Vineyards Triomphe Cabernet Sauvignon 2010 – Ontario, Canada
Domaine Pinnacle Ice Cider 2012 – Quebec, Canada

Silver Medal Winners….

Wither Hills Wairau Valley Sauvignon Blanc 2013 – New Zealand
Stoneleigh Sauvignon Blanc 2014 – New Zealand
Viticoltori d’Acqui Brachetto de’Acqui Sparkling Rose NV – Italy
Konzelmann Estate Special Select Late Harvest Vidal 2013 – Ontario, Canada
Mission Hill Family Estate Diabolica Red 2012 – British Columbia, Canada
Cantina Negrar Amarone 2010 – Italy
Domain Martin Plan de Dieu 2011 – France
Family Wine Merchants Sangre de Toro 2013 – Spain
Rosewood Estates Select Merlot 2012 – Ontario, Canada
Mission Hill Family Estate Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon 2012 – Canada
Alpine Valley Alpine Valley Sauvignon Blanc 2013 – New Zealand
Loosen Brothers Villa Wolf Riesling 2013 – Germany
Pelee Island Winery Alvar Pinot Noir 2012 – Canada
Konzelmann Estate Shiraz 2013 – Canada
Rancourt Winery Merlot 2009 – Canada (a new winery that we have not featured yet!)

Bronze Medal Winners…

Konzelmann Estate Unoaked Chardonnay 2013 – Ontario, Canada
Palatine Hills Estate 1812 Unoaked Chardonnay 2013 – Ontario, Canada
Lailey Vineyards Old Vines Chardonnay 2012 – Ontario, Canada
The Wine Group Chloe Chardonnay 2012 – USA
Oyster Bay Marlborough Chardonnay 2013 – New Zealand
Mission Hill Reserve Chardonnay 2012 – Canada
Bodgas Santa Julia Santa Julia Chardonnay 2013 – Argentina
Stoneleigh Chardonnay Malborough 2013 – New Zealand
Vina Santa Rita Reserva Chardonnay 2013 – Chile
Coyote’s Run Red Paw Vineyard Pinot Gris 2013 – Ontario, Canada
Pondview Estate Winery Bella Terra Pinot Gris 2013 – Ontario, Canada
Sandbanks Winery Pinot Grigio 2013 – Ontario, Canada
Mondo del Vino Barone Montalto Pinot Grigio 2013 – Italy
Oyster Bay Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2014 – New Zealand
Babich Wines Sauvignon Blanc 2013 – New Zealand
Brancott Estate Letter Series B Sauvignon Blanc Malborough 2012 – New Zealand
Sacred Hill White Cliff Sauvignon Blanc 2013 – New Zealand
Veramonte Winery Sauvignon Blanc 2013 – Chile
GA Schmitt Clean Slate Riesling 2013 – Germany
Rosewood Estates Mima’s Block Riesling 2012 – Ontario, Canada
Konzelmann Estate Canada White Riesling 2011 – Ontario, Canada
Lailey Vineyards Late Harvest Riesling Dry 2013 – Ontario, Canada
Konzelmann Estate Pinot Blanc 2012 – Ontario, Canada
Sandbanks Winery Dunes White 2013 – Ontario, Canada
Laroche Laroche de la Chevaliere Viognier 2013 – France
LGCF Chateau Cleray Muscadet 2012 – France
Willm Gewurztraminer 2013 – France
Torres Vina Esmerelda Moscatel Gewurztraminer 2013 – Spain
Diamond Estates 1914 Honour White 2013 – Ontario, Canada
Fuzion Wines Fuzion Alta Torrontes Pinot Grigio 2013 – Argentina
Brumont Gros Manseng Sauvignon Blanc 2013 – France
Coyote’s Run Estate Winery Black Paw Vineyard Pinot Noir 2012 – Ontario, Canada
Konzelmann Estate Pinot Noir 2012 – Ontario, Canada
Konzelmann Estate Reserve Pinot Noir 2012 – Ontario, Canada
Gnarly Head Cellars Pinot Noir 2012 – USA
Don Sebastiani & Sons Aquinas Napa Valley Pinot Noir 2012 – USA
Rosewood Estates Origin Pinot Noir 2012 – Ontario, Canada
Lailey Vineyards Syrah 2012 – Ontario, Canada
Deakin Shiraz 2013 – Australia
Lailey Vineyards Unfiltered Merlot 2012 – Ontario, Canada
Palatine Hills Neufeld Vineyard Merlot 2012– Ontario, Canada
Oyster Bay Hawke’s Bay Merlot 2013 – New Zealand
Irony Wines Merlot 2011 – USA
Noble Vines 181 Lodi Merlot 2012 – USA
Pelee Island Winery Vinedresser’s Cabernet Sauvignon 2010 – Ontario, Canada
Pondview Estate Winery Bella Terra Cabernet Sauvignon 2011 – Ontario, Canada
Torres Gran Coronas Cabernet Sauvignon 2010 – Spain
Gnarly Head Cellars Gnarly Head Cabernet Sauvignon 2011 – USA
Don Sebastiani & Sons Smoking Loon Cabernet Sauvignon 2012 – USA
Fuzion Wines Fuzion Alta Reserva Cabernet Sauvignon 2012 – Argentina
Bodgas Santa Julia Reserva Cabernet 2012 – Argentina
Rodney Strong Alexander Valley Cabernet Sauvignon 2011 – USA
Wente Vineyards Southern Hills Cabernet Sauvignon 2012 – USA
Maison Louis Latour Gamay 2011 – France
Bodegas Trivento Fair Trade Malbec 2013 – Argentina
Fuzion Wines Fuzion Alta Reserva Malbec 2013 – Argentina
Campo Viejo Tempranillo 2012 – Spain
Coyote’s Run Rare Vintage Cabernet Franc 2012– Ontario, Canada
Pondview Estate Winery Bella Terra Cabernet Franc 2012 – Ontario, Canada
Sandbanks Winery Reserve Baco Noir 2012 – Ontario, Canada
Torres Coronas Tempranillo 2011 – Spain
Costa Mediana Valpolicella Ripasso 2011 – Italy
Southbrook Vineyards Triomphe Cabernet Franc 2012 – Ontario, Canada
Bodegas Portia Faustino VII Rioja 2011 – Spain
Don Sebastiani & Sons Smoking Loon Old Vine Zinfandel 2012 – USA
Coyote’s Run Rare Vintage Cabernet Syrah 2012 – Ontario, Canada
Konzelmann Estate Family Reserve Cabernet Merlot 2012 – Ontario, Canada
Konzelmann Estate Heritage Red 2012 – Ontario, Canada
Lailey Vineyards Impromptu 2012– Ontario, Canada
Pelee Island Winery Singing Moon Cabernet Merlot 2012 – Ontario, Canada
Sandbanks Winery Shoreline Red 2013 – Ontario, Canada
Sandbanks Winery Mouton Noir 2013 – Ontario, Canada
Torres Infinite Red 2011 – Spain
Diamond Estates 1914 Valour 2013 – Ontario, Canada
Palatine Hills Estate Cabernet Merlot 2012 – Ontario, Canada
Rancourt Winery Meritage 2009 – Ontario, Canada
Mondo del Vino Barone Montalto Nero d’Avola Cabernet 2013 – Italy
Bodegas Piqueras Castillo de Almansa Reserva 2010 – Spain
Fuzion Wines Fuzion Shiraz Malbec 2013 – Argentina
Fuzion Wines Fuzion Organico Malbec Cabernet 2013 – Argentina
Distell Inception 2011 – South Africa
Rosewood Estates Lock, Stock & Barrel 2012 – Ontario, Canada
Southbrook Vineyards Connect Red 2012 – Ontario, Canada
Cellier des Dauphins Cellier des Dauphins Rouge 2012 – France
Palatine Hills Estate Gamay Noir Rose 2013– Ontario, Canada
Chivite Chivite Gran Feudo Rosado 2013 – Spain
Konzelmann Estate Sparkling Riesling NV – Ontario, Canada
Konzelmann Estate Sparkling Rose NV – Ontario, Canada
Pelee Island Winery Secco 2012 – Ontario, Canada
Freixenet Cordon Negro Brut Cava NV – Spain
Henkell Cavas Hill NV – Spain
Segura Viudas Segura Viudas Cava NV – Spain

Now how is that for a shopping list!!

Cheers!
Debbie & the Savvy Team

 

 

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