Saturday, September 25, 2010

Spanish Sipping In 2011 At Vancouver Playhouse Wine Festival

“Every vintage at the Wine Festival offers a fresh journey of discovery,” says Festival Executive Director Harry Hertscheg.

“Whether it’s wines from across Spain, Fortified examples from around the globe or selections from unfamiliar wine regions, each Festival attendee gets their own unique tasting experience while trying new wines and connecting directly with their producers.”

Spanish Winemaker, Miguel Torres

Wines from Spain and a Global Focus on Fortified Wine will bring plenty of varietals
to the 33rd annual event September 24th, 2010, Vancouver, BC - The Vancouver Playhouse International Wine Festival will mark its 33rd year with Wines from Spain and a Global Focus on Fortified Wine. The Festival, which runs from March 28th to April 3rd, 2011, will bring 176 participating wineries to the Vancouver Convention Centre and top Vancouver restaurants and hotels for a total of seven days of tastings, seminars, and wine focused events. A full list of participating wineries is now available online

“The great quality, value and versatility of Spanish wines continues to win fans around the world and to elicit high praise from the international wine and food media,” says Pilar Randolph, Director of Wines from Spain, “we are thrilled to have the opportunity to shine the spotlight on these wines at Canada's premier wine festival this coming spring.”

Alvaro Palacios, Winemaker, Priorat Region, Spain

With a total of 33 participating Spanish wineries, visitors to the 2011 Festival will have the opportunity to sip wines from indigenous varietals such as Albariño, Cariñena, Garnacha, Godello, Macabeo, Mencía, Monastrell, Palomino, Pedro Ximénez, Tempranillo, Verdejo and Viura, as well as Spanish versions of more international grapes such as Chardonnay, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Shiraz. All of this will be complemented by events that will highlight not only the Wines from Spain but also the delicious food, diverse culture and rich history of the country.

A number of Spain’s most notable and impressive principals will be on hand at this year’s Festival, including Miguel A. Torres, President and Managing Director of Miguel Torres Winery. Named European Winery of the Year by Wine Enthusiast in 2006, Miguel A. Torres is the fourth generation of Torres to preside over this acclaimed winery in the Penedès region. Decanter magazine named Miguel A. Torres Man of the Year in 2002.

Also attending will be Alvaro Palacios of Alvaro Palacios Winery. Palacios founded his namesake winery at the young age of 25 and is often credited for resurrecting the region of Priorat. His L’Ermita is widely regarded as one of the most important Spanish wines in a generation.

 Other notable names scheduled to attend this year’s Festival include:·       Alex Giesen, Director and Owner, Giesen Wine Estate – New Zealand·       Ann Sperling, Winemaker, Sperling Vineyards – Canada (BC)·       Aurelio Montes Sr., Winemaker, Montes – Chile· Christophe Hedges, Winemaker, Hedges Family Estates and Snoqualmie Vineyards. – USA (WASH)·
Craig McDonald, General Manager, Wine Gretzky Estate Winery - Canada (ON)· Fernando
Alvear, President and CEO, Bodegas Alvear – Spain· Felipe González-Gordon, President, González Byass – Spain· Javier Hidalgo, Proprietor, Bodegas Hidalgo – Spain· Joel Peterson, Founder, Ravenswood – USA (CA)  ·       Louis Moreau, Proprietor and Winemaker, Domaine Louis Moreau – France·       Marc Kent, Winemaker and Co-owner, Boekenhoutskloof – South Africa·       Nik Weis, Owner, St. Urbans-Hof – Germany·       Riccardo Tedeschi, Owner and Winemaker, Tedeschi – Italy·       Rupert Symington, Joint Executive Director, Symington Graham's Port - Portugal·       Stuart Blackwell, Senior Winemaker, St Hallett – Australia·    Susana Balbo, Winemaker, Dominio del Plata – Argentina·Telmo Rodriguez, Proprietor, Telmo Rodríguez Wines - Spain·       Udi Kadim, CEO, Galil Mountain Winery and Yarden – Israel

The Vancouver Playhouse International Wine Festival will open on Monday, March 28th, 2011 and will feature 176 wineries participating in 63 events to a projected 25,000 attendees. Early tickets to the Festival will be on sale November 30. For more information visit the newly revamped

About the Playhouse Wine Festival

The Vancouver Playhouse International Wine Festival, Canada’s premier wine show, runs from March 28th to April 3rd, 2011. The Playhouse Wine Festival is one of the biggest and oldest wine festival events in the  world. In 2011, the theme region will be Spain and the global focus Fortified Wine. The Festival features a week of special events including the Bacchanalia Gala Dinner + Auction, wine seminars, wine minglers, winery dinners, and lunches and brunches at fine restaurants and hotels. The Playhouse Wine Festival is produced by the Vancouver Playhouse International Wine Society, which has three mandates: provide an informative, educational and entertaining wine experience for public and trade; be a premier marketing opportunity for the wine industry and Festival partners; and raise funds for the Playhouse Theatre Company. Since its inception in 1979, the Festival has raised over $7.2 million to enable Western Canada’s leading theatre company to mount 223 productions and develop extensive community outreach and educational programs.The Shore Club generously presents the Vancouver Playhouse International Wine Festival.

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FrankenFish? Or Salmon?

By Mary Clare Jalonick, The Associated Press

WASHINGTON - Fish or frankenfish? A U.S. company wants to market a genetically engineered version of Atlantic salmon, and regulators are weighing the request. If approval is given, it would be the first time the government allowed such modified animals to join the foods that go onto American dinner tables.

Ron Stotish, chief executive of AquaBounty, said at Monday's first of two days of hearings that his company's fish product is safe and environmentally sustainable.

Food and Drug Administration officials have largely agreed with him, saying that the salmon, which grows twice as fast as conventional ones," is as safe to eat as the traditional variety. But they have not yet decided whether to approve the request.

Critics call the modified salmon a "frankenfish" that could cause allergies in humans and the eventual decimation of the wild salmon population. An FDA advisory committee is reviewing the science of the genetically engineered fish this week and hearing such criticisms as the agency ponders approval.

Whether the public will have an appetite for it is another matter. Genetic engineering is already widely used for crops, but the government until now has not considered allowing the consumption of modified animals. Although the potential benefits — and profits — are huge, many people have qualms about manipulating the genetic code of other living creatures.

Part of the hearing is focusing on labeling of the fish. It is possible that if the modified salmon is approved, consumers would not even know they were eating it. Current FDA regulations require modified foods to be labeled as such only if the food is substantially different from the conventional version, and the agency has said that the modified salmon is essentially the same as the Atlantic salmon.

If approved, the fish could be in grocery stores in two years, the company estimates. Read Entire Article HERE...

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Autumn Is Here And...The Wine Is Served

Winemaker Dinner at Sage & Vines


Join Poplar Grove's Executive Winemaker Ian Sutherland and Chef Aaron Flynn for dinner at Penticton's Sage & Vines Bistro on October 6th and 7th. Winemaker dinners start at 6pm.

For reservations and information please call Sage & Vines Bistro (250) 492-7243.


Foxtrot is a Popular Groove at Hastings House


On Friday, September 24 at 7pm, Hastings House on Salt Spring Island is proud to present two of the top BC winemakers at a special Autumn dinner celebrating some of the best wines in Canada. Naramata Bench winemakers Gustav Allander from Foxtrot Vineyards and Ian Sutherland from Poplar Grove Winery will be in attendance to present their award winning wines. Both the 2007 Foxtrot Pinot Noir and the 2007 Poplar Grove Syrah were awarded Leiutenant Govenor's Awards of Excellence this summer.

The line up for the dinner includes from Poplar Grove, the 2008 Pinot Gris, 2007 Syrah and 2006 Cabernet Franc. From Foxtrot Vineyards, the 2009 Chardonnay and the 2007 Pinot Noir. A five course meal featuring seasonal local produce, Salt Spring Lamb, Poplar Grove, Moonstruck and Saltspring Cheeses with wine pairings, gratuities and taxes included for an advance ticket price of $150.00 per person.

Don't miss this opportunity to meet the winemakers and share in savouring their success, paired with Chef Marcel Kauer's regionally inspired cuisine. Tickets available online at or by phone 250-537-2362.


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Sunday, September 12, 2010

Joel Salatin, Clean Food Farmer, Speaks At Brambles Market, Comox Valley

DATE: Sunday, Sept. 26, 2010
Joel Salatin, founder of Clean Food Farm Polyface Inc. speaks at Brambles Market In Comox Valley.
One of America’s most dynamic and innovative small farmers will address the Comox Valley on Sunday, Sept.26. Promoting food production that is environmentally, emotionally and economically enhancing for both producer and consumer, Joel Salatin is a third generation clean food farmer. His presentations about the family’s 550-acre Virginia farm often receive standing ovations.

Author of six books, magazine columnist, and wordsmith, Salatin describes his diverse farm enterprises with ear-catching phrases: salad bar beef, pastured poultry, pigaerator pork, forage-based rabbits, and feathernet eggs. What he calls relationship marketing to 3,000 families and 50 restaurant cheerleader patrons gives his farm, Polyface Inc., retail dollars for everything produced.

Although his message is a decidedly positive one, it draws clear distinctions between food produced in inhumane, factory farms and food produced in pasture-based, animal-friendly farms. His presentations carry several themes: let animals do the work, value adding through marketing, diversity and multiple-use, reverencing the pigness of a pig, and animals eating their salad bar. Woven throughout his talk is a strong consumer thrust for responsible food buying: one bite at a time, each of us creates the landscapes our grandchildren will inherit.

A truly innovative farmer, he has received numerous conservation awards. Featured in Smithsonian Magazine, National Geographic, and Gourmet, the farm attracts visitors from around the world to view its animal-friendly, pasture-based, environmentally-sound, nutrient-dense, entrepreneurial production and marketing models. His mother, Lucille, wife Teresa, daughter Rachel, son Daniel, daughter-in-law Sheri, and grandchildren Travis, Andrew, and Lauryn, work fulltime together on the family farm.
Brambles Market in Courtenay is pleased to offer two events featuring Joel Salatin. Both will be on Sunday, Sept.26 at the Florence Filberg center in Downtown Courtenay. Join them for a small group Q&A with Joel from 2-4. $40 ticket includes snacks and beverages and an opportunity to discuss issues in a round-table format. Tickets for this event are limited. The evening will feature a talk by Joel on some of his favourite issues, followed by a Q&A session. Tickets for this event are $25.

For more information about this event, please contact Angeline or This is a non-profit, community education event.


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