Posts Tagged ‘wine and food events’

Corks & Forks – Kingston’s International Wine Festival

Posted by Debbie

Wednesday, December 5th, 2018

Tickets for Corks & Forks are selling fast!
Click here to order yours>>



Kingston is gearing up to host its 1st annual Corks & Forks – Kingston’s International Wine Festival that will take place from Friday April 12 to Sunday April 14, 2019.

Corks & Forks will be an experience like no other in Ontario. This weekend long festival will attract wine enthusiasts of all kinds – novices to Sommeliers – to Kingston to learn about the world of wine from winemakers & wine industry notables.

The weekend festival is designed to provide ticketholders the opportunity to meet winemakers & winery owners from around the world as well as across Canada.  The city’s hotel and restaurant community has immediately embraced the plans for this inaugural wine festival in Kingston.

“The wine world is about to notice that there is a rapidly growing wine and food community in Kingston,” said Debbie Trenholm, Festival organizer, Sommelier and Founder of Savvy Company. “We’re taking all that is appealing about wine and food and adding a healthy dose of creativity to offer an extraordinary annual event that will have a wide appeal.”

“We’re excited to work with Savvy Company to showcase Kingston’s culinary culture and hospitality industry,” said Megan Knott, Executive Director, Tourism Kingston.  “I can’t wait for the wine world to discover Kingston.”


Putting Kingston on the wine world map

Designed for the wine enthusiast as well as the restaurant and hospitality industry, Corks & Forks will offer seminars, panel tastings, master classes and innovative culinary experiences while showcasing winemakers and winery owners from around the world.

“There is an incredible food and wine scene in Kingston. Corks & Forks is a perfect way to showcase the culinary talent locally, regionally and introduce a global scale too,” said Donna Gillespie, Chief Executive Officer, Kingston Economic Development Corporation. “This festival promises to be both educational and entertaining, appealing to the connoisseur as well as the curious.”


2 Evening Festival Pass for 2 – ONLY $99!



Festival schedule at a glance…

The weekend will be jam packed with wine & food events, panel tastings and seminars, punctuated with the signature “Discover the Wine World”  on Friday and Saturday evenings.

The Vintner’s Brunch will be the grand finale event that will treat ticketholders to a meal like no other – every dish will be eloquently paired with a wine showcased at the event.  There will even be a People’s Choice Award for the top voted food & wine pairing.

Each year, Corks & Forks will have a lineup of activities to attract new event goers as well as creating a community of repeat visitors to Kingston.

Where will the events take place?

Everywhere throughout the city! Residence Inn by Marriott Waterfront will be the hub for the festival with satellite events at Delta Hotel Kingston Waterfront, AquaTerra, Bayview Farm Restaurant, Chez Piggy & other restaurants…stay tuned!


The Wine World is excited by this news…

“An International Wine Festival for Kingston! Bring it on. Kingstonians deserve to be able to sample the wines of the world on their own doorstep – like Vancouver, Toronto and Ottawa. I look forward to leading a wine tasting during the festival” – Tony Aspler, renown Canadian wine writer. 

“Kingston will benefit hugely from this annual festival. It will help put the city on the map for innovative and exciting educational experiences focusing not only on local and Canadian wines, but also showcasing great producers from across the globe.” – Peter Rod, Program Coordinator & Professor, Food & Wine Science Programs, Niagara College

“It is such great news that Debbie & Savvy Company’s team is making a wine festival in Kingston happen.  I look forward to attending!” – Harry Hertscheg, Executive Director, Vancouver International Wine Festival

“Establishing a new wine event of this calibre in an up-and-coming market is what wineries from around the world are looking for.  Canada is the 4th largest export market for the New Zealand wine industry & having the opportunity to directly reach consumers along with hospitality staff through educational experiences is appealing for all international wineries who participate in Corks & Forks. – Jim Robertson, Global Wine Ambassador – New Zealand & Australian Brands, Pernod Ricard



Recruiting wineries from around the world!

Wineries from every corner of the world – including all regions in Canada – are invited to Kingston to participate in Corks & Forks.

Contact Debbie Trenholm – Festival organizer for the winery participation package on 613-SAVVYCO (728-8926) or

Interested in sponsoring?

Corks & Forks is an ideal opportunity for businesses of all sizes to get involved at the ground floor of this new annual initiative that will be a GREAT addition to Kingston.

To explore how you can become a supportive sponsor, contact Debbie Trenholm – Festival organizer on 613-SAVVYCO (728-8926) or


Be ready to be WOWed!

The dedicated team at Savvy Company is constantly designing & developing every detail of the Corks & Forks events.  To keep in touch with the latest news about this festival, email our festival team on

Follow us on social media too:
Instagram @corksandforkswinefestival
Twitter @savvycompany


See you in Kingston!


Special thanks to Neon Lilth Photography & Vancouver International Wine Festival for the photos in this post.




BC Wines & Pinots: What a combo at the 2009 Playhouse Winefest

Posted by Susan

Tuesday, February 10th, 2009

Have I got you thinking about joining us at the Vancouver Playhouse International Wine Festival?  The Festival website now provides comprehensive information about all of the week long events planned from March 23 to 29, 2009.  Here are my ‘insider tips’ of some of the great opportunities available to all who participate – there will be over 180 wineries from 15 different countries pouring more than 1,600 wines at 61 unique events – heaven for any wine enthusiast!

This year, the Festival is an opportunity to showcase for the British Columiba wine industry to showcase it’s “coming of age”, showcasing over 150 grape wineries, several fruit wineries and thousands of acres planted to the vine.  The wineries of BC are driven to express the unique character of their terroir (winespeak for the microclimate, the soils, the vineyard aspect and the ‘je ne sais quoi’ of BC wines).  From Vancouver Island to the Fraser Valley to the Okanagan – from north to south – you’ll find wineries and wines that suit your palate.  Unfortunately, if you live in eastern Canada, you won’t see very many BC wines on your local wine store shelf as many of the wineries are relatively small.  Over 70% of their wines are snapped up by appreciative connoisseurs in BC and Alberta.  All the more reason to join the wine lovers heading join the Savvy Sommeliers in Vancouver.

Did you see the movie, Sideways?  Did you wish you were there, sampling all those wonderful Pinot Noir wines?  Well, here’s your chance.  The featured varietal at the 2009 Playhouse Festival is Pinot.

To quote the Festival organizers, Pinot is “believed to be derived from the characteristic pinecone shape of the grape bunches, the name Pinot encompasses a cluster of different varietals. Led by Pinot Noir, Pinot Gris and Pinot Blanc – the Big Three, as it were – each grape asserts completely different characteristics and can be produced in a variety of styles. Pinot Noir can range from restrained and earthy to full and fruity, with every incarnation in between. Pinot Gris’ name even changes when the style changes. Pinot Grigio is used to describe the dry, grassy, refreshing style of Pinot Gris created by the Italians. Pinot Gris is generally fuller bodied when developed in cooler climates like Alsace, Oregon and British Columbia, where it can take on completely different flavours and reach amazing depths of complexity. And don’t forget about Pinot Blanc, which also produces fresh, exciting wines in a wide variety of styles. BC Pinot Blanc is reminiscent of summer fruit, pinched from the roadside fruit stand.”

If you come to the Festival, there are many opportunities to taste many BC wines and to sample Pinot from around the world.  For instance, on Monday or Tuesday, you could attend a winery dinner.  Consider tasting Burrowing Owl wines at the Glowbal Grill & Satay Bar, or enjoying Cuisine de Terroir at DB Bistro Moderne, paired with premium wines from Mission Hill Family Estate.

Consider a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity on Thursday, when you can attend the Osoyoos Larose Component & Vertical Tasting.  I will be there!  Last fall, I had a private visit with Pascal Madevon, the French-born winemaker of Osoyoos-Larose, who asserted that he spends 80% of his time in the vineyards.  An engaging and articulate individual, Pascal talked about his passion for the vines, and his great expectations of his Okanagan wines.  I think you’ll agree this is a great opportunity to try the individual elements of this classic blend of Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Petit Verdot and Malbec.

The Pinot-Rama wine seminar on Thursday, led by Vancouver’s own David Scholefield, features an entertaining, educational tour of the world of Pinot, with a tasting of great pinots from around the world.  Friday and Saturday, join the thousands of people attending the International Festival Tasting, where over 180 wineries from 15 countries will be serving more than 700 wines.  Don’t worry, our Savvy Tasting Trails can help you find a path through the insanity.

Saturday, a wide range of lunch tastings are available, including:Our Land, Our Best (featuring BC wines), New Zealand’s Perfect Pairings, and Argentina’s Culinary Tango! 

You can also attend a wine seminar, Icons of British Columbia, which will feature benchmark examples of red and white BC wines.  Finally, if you sign up early, you might get a ticket to Sunday’s event-defining Vintner’s Brunch, where local chefs prepare delicacies artfully paired with a featured wine.  Or, if you prefer a Sunday evening event, consider the Great Estates of the Okanagan dinner, to be held at the Blue Water Café.

Excited?  Delighted?  Thrilled with the opportunity?  Don’t hesitate to contact Savvy Company for assistance with the planning of your trip to the Vancouver Playhouse International Wine Festival.  Tickets are selling fast.  Get ready to pack your bags – I will be providing you more insider tips on my blog about the Vancouver Playhouse Wine Festival!


A Savvy Makeover

Posted by Debbie

Thursday, November 6th, 2008

The Savvy Grapes has been inviting people to experience and learn about the world of wine for the past five years. I am excited to announce we are broadening our scope of activities under a new name— Savvy Company.

The change marks a natural progression in our growth as a business and gives us the opportunity to expand beyond wine.

Together, the Savvy team of accredited sommeliers—myself, Gina, Susan, Wayne and Patti—will continue to deliver the ever-popular Savvy Selections wine-of-the-month club, host winemakers’ dinners and sommelier-led wine tastings as well as private and corporate events. And we will be branching out into new areas as well: wine education with Savvy U and wine tourism through Savvy Tours.

We’ve captured the flavour of our new offering with a fresh look that reflects our passion and zest for discovery. Despite all that’s changed, what remains constant is our desire to share our expertise and experience—creating opportunities for you to learn, explore and, most of all, enjoy good company. We think the name Savvy Company embodies this spirit.

Get at taste of Savvy Company online at, which we’ve filled to the brim with wine information, special offers and other discoveries.

I trust you’ll find lots to stimulate your senses in what Savvy Company has to offer, and hope you are as excited as we are about all that lies ahead.


Debbie & the Savvy Team

Debbie Trenholm
Accredited sommelier & president