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2017 Limited Editions from Vineco - Passport Series

Oct 1, 2017

This year will feature 4 amazing wines from North America and across Europe!

This year will feature 4 amazing wines from North America and across Europe!

More information (including release dates and prices), as well as order forms, can be found in-store or downloaded from the link below:
MORE INFORMATION AND ORDER FORMS

 

Grenache – Rhone Valley, France
December
 – Red – $210
Sweetness: Dry  –  Body: Medium-Full  -  Alcohol: 13.5%
Commercial Equivalent: Chateau Pesquie le Paradou - Grenache ($18.49)

This French varietal has a distinctive combination of fruit and spice in the aroma making for a lively wine. The medium bodied red boasts flavours of red fruit, with hints of anise and tobacco. Fine tannins leave the palate balanced on the finish.

Grenache is a brilliant wine to match with many types of cuisine. Try with grilled, stewed and braised game meats as well as hearty stews. A roasted lamb shoulder with rosemary would be a wonderful pairing.

 

Viognier / Roussanne / Marsanne – Northern Rhone & Savoie
January  –  White  –  $200
Sweetness: Off-Dry  –  Body: Medium  -  Alcohol: 12.5%
Commercial Equivalent: Le Vieux Pin Ava – Viognier/Roussanne/Marsanne ($37.49)

This enchanting white Rhone blend marries three varietals, Viognier, Roussanne and Marsanne into one tantalizing off-dry wine. Peach, pear and honeysuckle in the bouquet make way for hints of spice, pear, tangerine and fresh rose petal on the palate. Crisp and balanced, the finish allows one to fully enjoy the floral and fruit flavours.

The combination of varietals in this wine makes it quite versatile. Sip it alongside tuna sashimi and California rolls as well as grilled or baked haddock fillets. Grilled pork, veal and chicken are also natural matches.

 

Aglianico / Cabernet / Merlot – Campania | Tuscany | Veneto, Italy
February  -  Red  -  $210

Sweetness: Dry  –  Body: Full  -  Alcohol: 14%
Commercial Equivalent: Ridgepoint Wines – Cabernet Merlot Aglianico ($30)

Aglianico, a full-bodied Italian varietal, adds personality to classic Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot in a bold crimson blend. With rustic earthy flavours including spicy pepper, leather and tobacco to ripe plum and black fruits, this blend’s fine tannins provide a pleasing and not too astringent finish

 

Pair this blend with intensely flavoured foods. Grilled red meats are a delicious match, as are braised game meats. Roasted mushrooms are a wonderful accompaniment with their earthy flavour. For cheese, sample with Pecorino.

 

Two Roads Red – Dry Creek Valley, California
February  -  Red  -  $220
Sweetness: Dry  –  Body: Full  -  Alcohol: 14.5%
Commercial Equivalent: Bogle Vineyards Essential Red ($27.88)

A real powerhouse, this blend has a bold taste and tannic backbone. The addition of Petit Syrah softens the jammy notes that are characteristic of Zinfandel and the Cabernet Sauvignon lends texture. Dark ripe berry aromas blend with smoke and spice elements that lead into flavours of black cherry, vanilla, and black pepper with a lasting finish.

The tannins in this wine pair well with richer, more fatty foods – think barbequed meats like densely marbled marinated steaks or braised short ribs. A creamy mushroom stroganoff would also be a beautiful match. When pairing with cheese, consider bold flavours like Parmesan, Peau Rouge and Aged Cheddars.

2017 Limited Editions from Winexpert

Oct 1, 2017

This year will feature two whites, one dry and the other with a hint of sweetness, as well as 3 reds ranging from soft and easy drinking to big, bold and heavy - something for everyone!

This year will feature two whites, one dry and the other with a hint of sweetness, as well as 3 reds ranging from soft and easy drinking to big, bold and heavy - something for everyone!

More information (including release dates and prices), as well as order forms, can be found in-store or downloaded from the link below:
MORE INFORMATION AND ORDER FORMS

 

Chardonnay / Chennin Blanc – Rawsonville, South Africa
January  –  White  –  $200
Sweetness: Dry  -  Body: Light-Medium  –  Oak: Light-Medium  –  Alcohol: 13%
Commercial Equivalent: Inception - Irresistable White ($12.49)
Carrying distinct cultivar characteristics, tropical fruit aromas marry with baked apple citrus zest and juicy peach. On the palate, the buttery complexity of CHARDONNAY is complemented by CHENIN BLANC’S tart acidity to make a beautifully balanced wine. Delicious to sip on its own or to enjoy with food, this is a crowd-pleasing and unique addition to any cellar. Enjoy with a variety of seafood dishes like grilled shellfish or salmon fish cakes.

Video Link

Recipe Card JPEG / PDF

Recipe Video: Artichoke and Spinach Chicken Pot Pie

 

Petit Ruby Cabernet – Riverland, Australia
January  –  Red  –  $210
Sweetness: Dry  –  Body: Medium-Full  –  Oak: Medium  –  Alcohol: 13.5%
Commercial Equivalent: Revolution Red - California Red ($11.49)
A true gem, PETIT RUBY CABERNET is a blend of Petit Verdot and Ruby Cabernet. The Ruby Cabernet takes the best qualities of its parents, Cabernet Sauvignon and Carignan, creating a structured, robust wine with soft tannins, while the Petit Verdot brings intriguing flavours of dark berries and vanilla. Fruit flavours of currant, juicy plum and dark berries complemented by notes of spicy ground black pepper with hints of herb and vanilla, make this medium-full bodied wine a delight to enjoy with grilled meats.

Video Link

Recipe Card JPEG / PDF

Recipe Video: Ruby Rigatoni Bolognese

 

Hawke’s Bay Merlot – Hawke’s Bay, New Zealand
February  –  Red  –  $210
Sweetness: Dry  –  Body: Medium  –  Oak: Medium   –  Alcohol: 13%
Commercial Equivalent: Oyster Bay - Hawke’s Bay Merlot ($19.99)
Ripe fruit with spice and soft tannins take precedence in this MERLOT. The lingering finish brings dark oaky spice, as well as hints of mocha and licorice. Treat yourself and enjoy with slow-cooked beef and lamb dishes. Roasted, slightly caramelized tomatoes on crostini drizzled with balsamic reduction is a simple starter that is impeccable with this wine. Looking for a cheese to pair? Try Gouda or smoked cheddar.

Video Link

Recipe Card JPEG / PDF

Recipe Video: Balsamic Labe with Burst Tomatoes

 

Milagro Blanco – La Mancha, Spain
March  –  White  –  $200
Sweetness: Off-Dry  -  Body: Medium  –  Oak: None   -  Alcohol: 13%
Commercial Equivalent: Bear Flag Soft White - California White ($11.79)
MILAGRO BLANCO carries notes of passion fruit and white flower on the nose, and is supported by juicy melon, peach, fresh lime and grass with a hint of honey on the palate. The fruity and floral character of this white wine pairs exquisitely with moderately spiced Szechuan, Thai and Vietnamese dishes.

Video Link

Recipe Card JPEG / PDF

Recipe Video: Spicy Chicken Budda Bowls

 

Negroamaro (with grape skins)Apulia, Italy
April  –  Red  –  $220
Sweetness: Dry  –  Body: Full  –  Oak: Medium-Heavy  -  Alcohol: 14.5%
Commercial Equivalent: Luccarelli - Puglia Negroamoro ($13.99)
NEGROAMARO is richly jewel-hued, full bodied and a classic varietal in Apulia. Mild hints of wood and spice on the nose play with fruity notes for a complex aroma. On the palate, ripe berry is complemented by ground baking spice and silky tannins with a long finish. This wine couples well with many cuisines, but Italian, of course, is a flawless pairing.

Video Link

Recipe Card JPEG / PDF

Recipe Video: Rib Eye with Grilled Caponata Salad

Wedding Wine at Urban Vintner

Feb 2, 2017

Your special celebration deserves the personalized touch of  hand-crafted wine to make it as unique as the occasion. Whether your wedding is a small back yard gathering, a rustic camping trip or a full on traditional banquet bash we’ve got you covered.

Weddings

Your special celebration deserves the personalized touch of  hand-crafted wine to make it as unique as the occasion. Whether your wedding is a small back yard gathering, a rustic camping trip or a full on traditional banquet bash we’ve got you covered.

 Making your own custom wine is perfect for:

• Receptions • Rehearsal Dinners
• Bridal Showers • Bachelorette/Bachelor Parties
• Gift Openings • Take-Home Table Gifts For Your Guests

 


Start your wedding wine as early as possible to give your batch time to age to perfection. We generally recommend at least 2 months, and wine can be started up to a year in advance for best aging.

*Minimum 5 weeks ahead of the big day*

The process is quick and easy: simply start your wine and come back to bottle. We’ll take special care of everything in between so you can remain worry-free.

Weddings are costly so making your own wine is a great way to actually save money. You will receive top quality at a fraction of the price of commercially produced wine. The best part is our prices do NOT inflate when the word “wedding” is mentioned.

Bottling the wine can be an enjoyable experience in itself. A great way to involve your wedding party, family and friends; you can make your bottling appointment a fun and memorable event!


In a hurry, or not sure what to make?

Choose our Best Selling red and white wines from last year and save $25 per batch

Just choose your price-point and enjoy!
Each batch makes 30 bottles and includes EVERYTHING (taxes, ingredients, bottles, standard labels, shrink wrap toppers)

Economical ($150) – Light-bodied, easy drinking wines made from a blend of juice and concentrate made over 4 weeks
[Pinot Gris and Cabernet Sauvignon]

Select ($200) – Medium/Full-bodied wines made from 100% grape juice made over 6 weeks
[Italian Pinot Grigio and Chilean Malbec]

Premium ($250) – Medium and Full bodied wines made from 100% grape juice and fermented with the addition of crushed grapes and made over the course of 8 weeks
[Washington Yakima Valley Pinot Gris and Argentina Malbec]


If you are thinking about making your wine for your special event here are some quick things to think about before you get started!

  • Find out if your chosen venue will allow you to bring in your own wine. 
    You will be required to get a licence from the LCLB called a "Special Occasion Licence". 
    It is inexpensive and quick to get online: https://solo.bcldb.com/
  • We recommend 1 bottle of wine per couple. For a table of 8-10 guests that means 4-5 bottles. This works out to be about 2.5 glasses of wine per person. Not everyone at your event will drink this much but some will drink more!
  • When choosing your wine we recommend picking wines that go well with most dishes so they will complement any menu. You will never go wrong with the traditional Pinot Grigio and Merlot or Malbec but we can make some other suggestions as well. Our full list of wines is available on our Pricelist (note that prices do not include bottles).
  • Consider making the same wine you served at your event a party favour for your guests. You can bottle wine in small 375ml bottles to double the yield you get from one batch. That’s 60 375ml bottles vs. 30 750ml bottles. 

 Stop into the store now, or call for more information to get your wine started as soon as possible.
Be sure it is ready in time for all of this years events!


Custom labels are available online at: http://www.myweddingwine.ca/custom-online-labels/
or through out partner Cambridge Press in Surrey

You can also choose from our standard labels, available in-store:

          

 

Limited Edition Wines have been Announced!

Sep 30, 2016

If you aren't familiar with the Limited Edition program, it is a chance for us to showcase some unique, top-quality wines, albeit for a short period of time. These wines are often from a special region, made up of a different blend from the usual offering, or use a higher quality juice, giving a product that is above and beyond our every-day line-up. Because of the limited amount of juice available, all batches must be pre-ordered so that we can guarantee your allotment.

If you aren't familiar with the Limited Edition program, it is a chance for us to showcase some unique, top-quality wines, albeit for a short period of time. These wines are often from a special region, made up of a different blend from the usual offering, or use a higher quality juice, giving a product that is above and beyond our every-day line-up. Because of the limited amount of juice available, all batches must be pre-ordered so that we can guarantee your allotment.

If you would like to have an idea of what to expect with these wines, check out their commercial equivalents and see what you like before you order!

All pre-orders must be placed by October/November (dates for each wine vary), then the juice is received in-store between December - April according to the schedule on the order form. Batches generally take 8-weeks to make, then are ready for bottling as usual.

Below you will find downloadable information brochures that detail all Limited Edition wines being offered this year, as well as an order form. 

Get your pre-order in now to guarantee your wine. Once they sell out, they won’t be back for at least another year… 

Please note, a deposit of $50 per batch will be required to secure your order.
[Cheques can be made payable to “Urban Vintner”]

Downloadable Items

Order Form

Printable Wine Descriptions

 

Click bottle images for more information

Winexpert – Limited Edition 2016 - Nov 30th

 

Vermentino – Tuscany, Italy (Video)
January  –  White  –  $200
Sweetness: Dry  -  Body: Light-Medium  –  Oak: None  –  Alcohol: 12.5%
Commercial Equivalent:  Lunae Bosoni - Colli de Luni Vermentino 2014/15 ($28)

Expressively refreshing, this Italian gem has flavours reminiscent of white peach, green apple, fresh lime and even a bit of dried tarragon on the finish. On the palate, it has a quenching acidity that makes your mouth water, but a delicate body that allows this wine to be sip-worth on its own. This wine also pairs beautifully alongside regional Italian cuisine like pasta tossed in olive oil with shellfish or simply with grilled vegetables

 

Cabernet Franc – Yakima Valley, Washington (Video)
January  –  Red  –  $210
Sweetness: Dry  –  Body: Medium  –  Oak: Medium  –  Alcohol: 13%
Commercial Equivalent: Sandhill – Cabernet Franc 2012 ($20)

Typically used in blends, this wine is fantastic on its own, treading the line between spice and fruit. Flavours of ripe raspberry and red currant blend with black pepper and fresh mint giving a solid backbone of tannin to provide mouth-feel and structure. Because of the firm body and rich flavor profile, this wine pairs well with heavier meats, stews and mushroom-based dishes.

 

Milagro – Valencia, Spain (Video)
February  –  Red  –  $210
Sweetness: Dry  –  Body: Medium-Full  –  Oak: Medium-Heavy   –  Alcohol: 14%
Commercial Equivalent: Senorio de los Baldios - Ribera del Duero Crianza 2009 ($24)

Blending everything that Spain has to offer, this wine is comprised of the region’s great red varieties; Tempranillo, Garnacha and Bobal, mixed with the better known Cabernet Sauvignon and Syrah. This fusion of grapes gives a wine that has a range of black and red fruit characteristics, cherry cola, anise and white pepper with a powerful yet supple mouth-feel.

 

Blanc de Noir – San Joaquin Valley, California (Video)
March  –  White  –  $200
Sweetness: Off-Dry  -  Body: Light-Medium  –  Oak: None   -  Alcohol: 13%
Commercial Equivalent: The Unreserved – Really Good White ($12)

A white wine from black grapes!
Grown in the “food basket of the world”, Pinot Noir grapes are pressed and immediately removed from the skins to produce a delicate wine with all the complexities of it’s better known red counterpart. This wine has notes of crabapple and strawberry on the nose, but a light body that pairs well with eggs benedict for your next Sunday brunch, or poached lobster if you are looking to splurge.

 

Grenache Cabernet (with grape skins)Riverland, Australia (Video)
April  –  Red  –  $220
Sweetness: Dry  –  Body: Full  –  Oak: Heavy  -  Alcohol: 14.5%
Commercial Equivalent: Yalumba – The Strapper GSM - Barossa Valley 2012/13 ($27)

A powerful conclusion to the Limited Edition season, this blended red combines the big and bold flavours of Cabernet Sauvignon (cassis, black olive and a hint of cigar) with the soft and jammy profile of Grenache, which adds red licorice, black cherry and a warm cinnamon spice to the mix. Enjoy this wine with protein-rich dishes like grilled steak or wild mushroom risotto. Even without a meal, have a few big slices of aged cheddar to compliment the flavor and tannin of this age-worthy wine.

 

Vineco – Passport Series 2017 - Nov 18th

 

Syrah – Languedoc, France
December
 – Red – $210
Sweetness: Dry  –  Body: Medium-Full  -  Alcohol: 13.5%
Commercial Equivalent: Pays D'oc Shiraz - Fat Bastard ($16)

Signature peppery bouquet, with raspberry and earthy notes; this classic varietal from Southern France is complex and harmonious with soft tannis. Flavours of blackberry and black cherry are accented with spicy black pepper and oak, hints of mint, herbs, mocha and a faint licorice finish

Pairs great with homemade burgers, heavy casseroles or even dark chocolate.

 

Riesling – Claire Valley, Australia
January  –  White  –  $200
Sweetness: Off-Dry  –  Body: Medium  -  Alcohol: 12%
Commercial Equivalent: Gray Monk - Riesling 2014 ($15)

Citrus with underlying floral notes make for a fresh and vibrant aroma. Juicy lemon-lime flavours fill the palate, accented by orange blossom and apple notes, mineral tones, and a backbone of crisp, energetic acidity. The subtle sweetness really makes the citrus sing in this succulent & refreshing white.

The slight sweetness and acidity of this wine make it an easy pairing for any spicy dishes or creamy cheeses.

 

Nero D’Avola – Sicily, Italy
January  -  Red  -  $210
Sweetness: Dry  –  Body: Full  -  Alcohol: 14%
Commercial Equivalent: Sicilia Nero D'avola – Cusumano ($19)

A lesser known Italian red wine grape, Nero D’Avola has long been a prized varietal in its native Sicily. In the last decade it has been gaining favour in the rest of the world as a serious red, joining the ranks of the big Cabernet Sauvignon and Shiraz. Nero D’Avola offers aromas of ripe black fruit with notes of vanilla and smoke, with abundant flavours of ripe black cherry & plum, spicy accents, velvety tannins, and a long finish.

In no place is the Santa Trinitá Mediterranea – Mediterranean Holy Trinity - of wine, olive oil and bread more evident than in Sicily, so think “Traditional Italian” when pairing this wine.

 

Cabernet Sauvignon Rosé – Sacramento County, California
February  -  Rosé  -  $210
Sweetness: Dry  –  Body: Medium  -  Alcohol: 13%
Commercial Equivalent: Cabernet Sauvignon Rosé - Torres Las Mulas 2015 ($17)

Fresh Strawberry on the nose, with watermelon and cranberry accents. This fragrant rosé carries juicy strawberry flavours and tart red fruit notes on the palate. Balanced and refreshing, with crisp acidity and a subtle minerality

Enjoy with practically anything off the grill or serve on its own, lightly chilled

 


Kookaburra Red (with grape skins)Riverland Region, Australia
March  -  Red  -  $220
Sweetness: Dry  –  Body: Full  -  Alcohol: 14.5%
Commercial Equivalent: G.S.M. - Yalumba The Strapper Barossa 2012/13 ($27.50)

A bold, charismatic blend of Grenache, Shiraz, and Mataro loaded with raspberry, blackberry, spice and a subtle finish. Grenache brings ripe, jammy fruit flavours and hints of cinnamon spice. Shriaz provides a punch of blackberry, and plum flavours with elements of black pepper, while Mataro brings savory, earthy notes, spicy elements and texture.

Drink alongside meaty pasta or earthy dishes like stews with red meat and root vegetables.

 

RJ Spagnols – RQ 2017 - Oct 29th

 

L’âge de l’Élégance (with grape skins)
Cabernet Sauvignon – France
December  -  Red  -  $220
Sweetness: Dry  –  Body: Full  -  Oak: Medium
Commercial Equivalent: Inniskillin Cabernet Sauvignon ($18)

Born of “accidental” breeding in 17th century France, L’âge de l’ Élégance has inherited its flawless balance of subtlety and daring from its wildly rich parentage.

Complex and concentrated with spice notes, red fruit and vanilla on the nose. This is a rich, full bodied wine with structured tannins and a long finish.

Food Pairings: Braised Lamb, Short Ribs, Aged Gouda, Chocolate Cake

 

L’âge de la Grace
Chardonnay
– France
January  –  White  –  $200
Sweetness: Dry  -  Body: Medium  -  Oak: None
Commercial Equivalent: William Fevre Chablis Champs Royaux 2014 ($34)

Centuries old, cultivated by French monks, and named for the village of Chardonnay, L’âge de la Grace is a wine that is both simple and regal.

Densely textured with a steely minerality and creamy mouthfeel. This is an unoaked Chardonnay with notes of citrus, honey and melon on the palate, finishing with crisp green apples.

Food Pairings: Chicken in Cream Sauce, Pasta Primavera, Brie

 

L’âge du Luxe (with grape skins)
Merlot – France
February  -  Red  -  $220
Sweetness: Dry  -  Body: Medium  -  Oak: Medium
Commercial Equivalent: Pays D'oc Merlot - Fat Bastard ($16)

Named after the French bird Merlau, this late 17th century wine is the epitome of L’âge du Luxe, known for being luxuriously ripe and soft.

Ruby red colour with aromas of juicy blueberries and cherries on the nose. This luxurious wine features ripe cherries, blueberries, a touch of spice, and soft tannins on the palate.

Food Pairings: Roast Pork, Herbed Chicken, Mushroom Tart, Camembert

 

L’âge de la Vaillance
Sauvignon Blanc
– France
March  -  White  -  $200
Sweetness: Dry  –  Body: Light  -  Oak: None
Commercial Equivalent: Chateau Grand Renom Blanc – Bordeaux ($20)

Named from the French word “sauvage”, meaning “wild”, this valiant vine once grew wild in France. L’âge de la Vaillance is refreshingly crisp and dry.

Pale lemon colour with pronounced aromas of grapefruit, grass and gooseberries. This classic wine is dry yet invigorating, with flavours of citrus and grassy notes on the palate.

Food Pairings: Grilled Fish or Seafood, Risotto, Vichyssoise, Goat cheese

Is this a solution to not drinking alone?

Jul 19, 2016

Thanks to a new product on the market, you no longer have to worry about drinking alone - now your cat can join you!

Thanks to a new product on the market, you no longer have to worry about drinking alone - now your cat can join you!

A company in Denver, Colorado, has launched a wine specifically formulated for cats — no alcohol, of course — so you and your favorite feline can curl up with a glass of vino anytime you feel like it.

Made with all-natural organically grown catnip, fresh beets and natural preservatives, Apollo Peak all-natural cat wine is the brainchild (brainkitten?) of founder and CEO Brandon Zavala, who tells PEOPLE the idea started out as a joke.

“I've usually been known to my close friends as the Cat Guy,” he says in an email. “I slapped a Pinot Meow label on several real bottles of wine and took to an annual trip as gifts. After hearing how great the idea was, I thought to myself, 'why isn't there a wine for cats?!' The rest is history.”

There are currently 2 varieties available: Pinot Meow and Moscato.

Retailing for $4.95 USD for a 1.6oz serving, the price is more than a little steep.
I did the quick math, and that works out to $100 (C$) per "human" bottle (750ml)!

Now, my girlfriend's cat, Maximus, is great, but I think I will stick to the occasional new toy or special wet food as a treat, and keep the wine budget for myself.

Pope Francis: A Wedding Without Wine Is 'an Embarrassment'

Jul 8, 2016

In a previous post I showed that Vatican City came out on top when it came to wine consumption (per capita), but the Holy See is making the news again, with the latest statements from Pope Francis.

In a previous post I showed that Vatican City came out on top when it came to wine consumption (per capita), but the Holy See is making the news again, with the latest statements from Pope Francis.

"... wine expresses the abundance of the banquet and the joy of the feast.”

“Imagine finishing the wedding feast drinking tea, - It would be an embarrassment!"

“How is it possible to celebrate the wedding and have a party if you lack what the prophets indicated was a typical element of the messianic banquet?”

I may not be Catholic, but these are sentiments I can get behind!

Urban Vintner has been  a supplier of wine for over a dozen weddings in 2016, with 2017 bookings already rolling in. With the updating of liquor laws to allow Craft Wine to be served at licensed events, custom wine (and wine bottles) have become a hot commodity.

I posted all the details of making wine for a wedding (or any event) in a previous post (LINK), but am always more than happy to discuss any and all of your wine needs, no matter the occasion.

World Wine Consumption

Jun 21, 2016

Many Canadians like to enjoy a nice glass of wine after a long working day, with annual consumption per person standing at 14.75 litres. Consumption rates are far higher elsewhere, however, especially in Europe. Research from the Wine Institute has revealed that 14 of the globe’s top 15 nations for wine consumption are in Europe, along with Uruguay.

Vatican City is at the very top of the wine-drinking league with an average resident consuming an impressive 54.26 litres a year. Although it may seem surprising that the Holy See grabs top spot, it does have a uniform and unusual demographic. Its residents are older and tend to eat together in large groups while the consumption of Communion wine is standard practice for a large proportion of them. Andorra, another small European nation, is in second place with 46.26 litres consumed per capita. France places fifth, with residents drinking 42.5 litres of wine each year.

Many Canadians like to enjoy a nice glass of wine after a long working day, with annual consumption per person standing at 14.75 litres. Consumption rates are far higher elsewhere, however, especially in Europe. Research from the Wine Institute has revealed that 14 of the globe’s top 15 nations for wine consumption are in Europe, along with Uruguay.

Vatican City is at the very top of the wine-drinking league with an average resident consuming an impressive 54.26 litres a year. Although it may seem surprising that the Holy See grabs top spot, it does have a uniform and unusual demographic. Its residents are older and tend to eat together in large groups while the consumption of Communion wine is standard practice for a large proportion of them. Andorra, another small European nation, is in second place with 46.26 litres consumed per capita. France places fifth, with residents drinking 42.5 litres of wine each year.

At about 20 bottles each per year, Canada ranks 12th in total wine drinking (506 million litres) and accounts for 2.05% of the global wine consumption. This is saying quite a lot when you realize that Canada only produces 0.24% of the world\s wine (a figure that has shot up almost 25% since 2011).

By these numbers, if you excluded those under the legal drinking age, each person in Canada drinks about one full batch (30 bottles of wine) each year.

The Facts of Life (in the wine industry)

May 31, 2016

Some good, and bad wine news out of France...

Some good, and bad wine news out of France...

Earlier this week an unexpected storm in Chablis, Beaujolais and Cognac dropped 6-inches of hail on local vineyards, stripping the vines of their fruit and ravaging the plants. Some vineyards were devastated with 100% loss, with the storm resulting in a 6-10% loss across the whole region. After already suffering the results of a late frost and previous storms this year, local producers are going to be hard-pressed to salvage a profitable harvest.

hail in chablis, burgundy

On the other side of the coin, this week marks the opening of La Cité du Vin (City of Wine, the world's first wine-themed amusement park. This 10-storey marvel is home to 20 themed areas and exhibits, expert-led wine tours and a boat ride that shows what it was like to be a sea merchant, selling wine around the world. If you didn't have a reason to visit France and support the local wine economy, you do now!

french-wine-theme-park-005

La Cité du Vin - designed to look like wine swirling in a glass

 

Ain't nothing like the real thing

May 27, 2016

Recently a start-up in San Francisco has made claims that they can "turn water into wine in 15 minutes", creating a synthetic wine without grapes - simply by combining synthetic flavour and aroma compounds with ethanol and water.

Recently a start-up in San Francisco has made claims that they can "turn water into wine in 15 minutes", creating a synthetic wine without grapes - simply by combining synthetic flavour and aroma compounds with ethanol and water.

New Scientist dove into this topic to see if it was truly possible, and turned up a surprising story (LINK).

This new "wine" may claim to mimic fine vintages, but it has a long way to go before it attempts to knock traditional wine from it's long held position in society.

When you choose to make wine with Urban Vintner, we stand behind out satisfaction guarantee and use only natural products in its production. Our Selection and Eclipse branded wines use 100% pure grape juice sourced from around the world to make the most authentic wines for each varietal and region.

Summer Sangria, And So Much More!

May 12, 2016

The summer weather is here, and the question at the tip of every tongue is, "What are we going to drink?"

The summer weather is here, and the question at the tip of every tongue is, "What are we going to drink?"

Lucky for you, I have a few suggestions!

We are all familiar with both Red and White Sangria (recipes below), but Spain has so much more to offer when it comes to wine-based refreshments. Two of the most popular drinks are mostly unknown outside of Spain, but I'm here today to let you in on the secrets they have been keeping.

The first, and most popular, is a drink I became very familiar with when I was lucky enough to travel around Spain during my stint living in Europe (2006-2008). Kalimotxo (also spelled Calimocho and pronounced 'Cali-moat-cho'), is a 50/50 mix of cheap red wine and cola. The cheaper the wine, the better - the sweetness of the cola balances out the harshness of the wine, almost as if they were made to be paired together. This mixture is poured over ice, and if you're really fancy, garnished with a slice of orange/lemon/lime. 

My first encounter with this drink was from a Spanish roommate in university, but I didn't really believe it was popular until I experienced it first-hand.

The second of these Spanish mixes is Tinto de Verano (literally "red [wine] of summer"), and is strikingly similar to the recipe above, but with a slight twist. This thirst quencher uses a combination of red wine and Sprite or 7-Up with a slice of lemon as garnish. I find this blend a bit more palatable, and always hits the spot on a hot day.

Whatever you choose to drink this summer, Urban Vintner has a perfect wine for it.

All these recipes pair perfectly with our Spanish Tempranillo - just $125 for a batch of 30 bottles if you mention this post when you order.


White Sangria (mix and serve over ice)

  • 1 Bottle of white wine (Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay, Riesling, Gewurztraminer, Viognier, or Pinot Gris)
  • 3 oranges (sliced) or may substitute 1 cup of orange juice
  • 1 lemon (sliced)
  • 1 lime (sliced)
  • 2 oz. brandy (optional)
  • 1/2 liter of ginger ale or club soda (ginger ale for those with a sweeter tooth!)
  • 2/3 cup white sugar (to taste)

Red Sangria (mix and serve over ice)

  • 1 bottle dry Spanish red wine
  • 1/2 apple, cored, skin on, chopped into small pieces
  • 1/2 orange, rind on, sliced into small pieces, large seeds removed (plus more for garnish)
  • Any and all berries or other fruit you have on hand (optional)
  • 3/4 cup orange juice, plus more to taste
  • 1/3 cup brandy, plus more to taste
  • 3-4 Tbsp brown sugar (to taste)
  • Ice to chill (1 cup)


Front and center at the Running of the Bulls in Pamplona with my kalimotxo