Cellar Door Wi n e and p ossi b i l i t ie s by Banville & Jone s Wine Co.
amo Argentina Issue 10 October 2011 â€“ January 2012
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Features 26 A Tale of Two Terroirs: Malbec, from Prince to Pauper and Back Again Andrea Eby weaves the storied tale of Malbecs’s fortunes in Bordeaux, its fall to relative obscurity, and its revitalization half a world away in the arid terroirs of Argentina.
35 The Heights of Innovation: Laura Catena Sylvia Jansen has a lively discussion with the First Lady of the Argentine wine industry. Laura Cantena, of Bodega Catena Zapata, discusses Argentina’s high-altitude vines and her decision to join her family’s legacy of wine innovation.
43 A Day without Wine? Mike Muirhead takes a day out of his arduous Sommelier duties to explore Argentina’s majestic Andes; but, can he go a day without wine in this glorious wine country? You’ll have to read to find out!
Cover: The sun sets on the Bodega Catena Zapata in Mendoza, Argentina (photo courtesy of Bodega Catena Zapata).
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barristers, solicitors and tradeMark agents
10 A Message from Tina Jones 12 Ask a Sommelier 12
16 Banville & Jones and Company
20 Product Review 23 Behind the Label: Argentina 31 Garyâ€™s Corner Beyond Malbec
40 Gluggy Argentine Malbec: Most Likely to Succeed
48 Green Cork Fair Trade: Quality Catches Up with Ethics
50 Banville & Jones Wine Institute 52 Banville & Jones Events 53 Christmas Baskets 55 Test Kitchen Chef Fraser MacLeod of 529 Wellington and the art of steak
59 Sidebar Sylvia Jansen talks the talk
60 Culinary Partners 61 Shopping List 62 Top Picks
Cellar Door Publisher and Marketing Director Megan Kozminski email@example.com Editorial Director Lisa Muirhead firstname.lastname@example.org Graphic Design Aubrey Amante, CR3ATIVE email@example.com Sales Associate Flavia Fernandez Fabio
W I N E , TA N G O & A D V E N T U R E I N
Argentina WINE TASTING TANGO LESSONS SPA TREATMENTS MENDOZA TOURS ARGENTINE CUISINE AND MORE...!
We are working on the next series in our Banville & Jones wine & food tours. Next up: Argentina! If you are interested in knowing more about this one-of-a-kind tour please email or call us. And in addition we can help you with other wine and culinary tours to regions such as Australia, South America, South Africa, Tuscany or anywhere else in Europe. Let us help plan your wine adventures abroad! Check out our website for important travel tips, to research tours, villas, cruises, insurance and more—even to book travel. www.rivereasttravel.com For more information, please call or send us an email! River East Travel & Cruise Centre 204.338.4677 • 800.653.1177 firstname.lastname@example.org
Contributors Tina Jones, Todd Antonation, Michelle Campeau, Andrea Eby, Flavia Fernandez Fabio, Jennifer Hiebert, Gary Hewitt, Brooklyn Hurst, Sylvia Jansen, Sarah Kenyon, Jill Kwiatkoski, Pauline Lomax, Fraser MacLeod, Ian McCausland, Saralyn Mehta, Mike Muirhead, Karen Nissen, Rob Stansel, Rick Watkins Published for Banville & Jones Wine Co. by Poise Publications Inc. 101-478 River Ave Suite 707 Winnipeg, MB R3L 0B3
www.poisepublications.com For advertising information, please contact email@example.com Banville & Jones Wine Co. is a fine wine boutique in Winnipeg, Manitoba that specializes in promoting wine education and lifestyle. Opened by sisters Tina Jones and Lia Banville in 1999, it is located in a threestorey Tuscan-inspired facility that houses fine wine and accessories, an educational facility, and a private function room. Banville & Jones Wine Co. 1616 St Mary’s Rd. Winnipeg, MB R2M 3W7 ph. 204-948-9463
Tour group maximum is 20 people - reserve your place now!
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a message from tina jones Before I visited Argentina, I confess that I did not know quite what to expect. But in a beautiful restaurant in elegant Mendoza, when the Argentine Malbec poured out, and our steak came to the table, spilling over the edges of its stylish wood serving board, I knew I was in a unique and special place. The towns and cities of Argentina have an exciting air about them; an authentic feel that recalls their European links and celebrates their own culture with flair. The wine culture is particularly exciting: the quality is high, the passion for it is intense, and the excitement is real. I found Mendoza especially captivating, with its vibrant streets, cafés, and fine restaurants—each seemed better than the last one we had visited! The city has an amazing network of aqueducts, inherited from the indigenous peoples of Argentina. The flowing water creates a lush, green city. Strolling the streets, seeing the water running in aqueducts below the sidewalks, and looking up to the white peaks of the Andes in the distance was an experience I can barely explain in words. But I can easily say that Mendoza is one of my top five choices in the world for a return visit! I invite you to tour this issue of The Cellar Door. Mike Muirhead and Gary Hewitt take us on a day trip up the Andes; Andrea Eby explores some of Argentina’s signature wine styles; and Sylvia Jansen speaks with renowned Argentine winemaker, Laura Catena. These are just a few of the experiences in store for you—please explore every page! I also invite you to be part of another Banville & Jones first! CornerVine is a new online feature that allows you to see our inventory of wines, track your own purchases in a private platform, and share your comments with the friends you select! As you explore Argentina, please continue to explore with CornerVine at http://banvilleandjones.cornervine.com!
DONNA LAURA | CHIANTI | D.O.C.G.
I WAS MADE FOR PIZZA! Alteo is a modern expression of the traditional Sangiovese grape from the heart of Tuscany. Handcrafted by Lia Banville and her team of winemakers at Donna Laura, enjoy this vibrant Chianti with any Italian dish, especially pizza!
ALTEO IS EXCLUSIVELY AVAILABLE AT THESE WINNIPEG PRIVATE WINE STORES:
Banville & Jones 1616 St Mary’s Road 204.948.9463 banvilleandjones.com
DeLuca’s Fine Wines 942 Portage Avenue 783-9463 delucafinewines.com
Fentons Wine Merchants #106 The Forks Market (204)956-4613 www.mts.net/~fentons1/wine
Kenaston Wine Market 1855A Grant Ave. 488-9463 kenastonwine.com
La Boutique del Vino 1360 Taylor Avenue 204.982.8466 laboutique.ca
ask a sommelier I recently opened a bottle I had been aging for a few years, and although it tasted fine, I was left wondering whether I should have aged it even longer. How do you gauge the perfect drinking window? —Alden Polanski Dear Alden, There is no one-size-fits-all formula for determining a wine’s “perfect drinking window,” but here are some things to keep in mind. First, make sure the wine is designed for aging. The vast majority of wines on the market are ready to be enjoyed when they are released to the market, and drink well over the following 6 months to 2 years; wines designed to age longer than that are in the small minority. Second, assuming your bottle is age worthy, look for guidelines referring to your particular bottle. What does the producer recommend? (Check their website.) What do the wine experts recommend? (Ask us!) And what is the general rule for wines of similar ilk? (For example, expensive Barolo can usually age for a decade or two). When it actually comes to tasting a bottle, pay particular attention to the structure of the wine. The key to age worthiness in red wines is the intensity and quality of mouth-drying tannins; in whites, mouth-watering acidity is really key (but remember that the wine must be of quality in the first instance). As well, the fruit of a young wine, red or white, ought to be vibrant and obvious. If the tannins are still in-your-face and chewy (and the fruit is still strong), then you know the wine could have been aged longer. If the tannins are soft and less pronounced (and the fruit quality shows more dried fruit, or other aromas), these are signs that the wine is closer to the “window.” When deciding when to taste, keep your personal priorities in mind. As a wine ages, its fruit will tend to decrease, and the other tastes and aromas will tend to increase. So if you’re into big and fruity, you might
want to question the logic of aging wines in the first place. Ultimately, we can assess a wine’s ageability based on structure, acidity, balance, and the track record of previous vintages; but each person’s preference should also be taken into account. And remember the rule (if you can afford it): always buy at least two or three bottles of something you intend to age to better your chances of catching that vintage at its pinnacle. —Brooklyn Hurst Why do fruit flies like Picconero more than Terlan Pinot Grigio? We had fruit flies ALL OVER our red wine last night—but not the white wine! —Tina Jones Dear Tina, There might be several reasons why fruit flies would be more attracted to the Picconero, a beautiful Tuscan Merlot-based wine, than to the Terlan Pinot Grigio, a stylish white from the Alto Adige in Italy. The relative volatility is one: some aromatic compounds in wine are the same as those in ripe (and overripe) fruit. These include esters and aldehydes that may well be present in higher concentrations in the Picconero than in the Terlan Pinot Grigio. These compounds are highly attractive to insects in general and fruit flies in particular. Moreover, warmer liquids are more volatile than colder liquids—they release their aromatic compounds at faster rates. You would likely have served your Pinot Grigio colder, which would have made the Picconero a far more attractive place for their favourite activities of eating and laying eggs. It is not pleasant to
think that fruit flies are homesteading and having children in our wine, but you asked! —Gary Hewitt and Sylvia Jansen How do I choose the right wine to use for cooking? —Aidan Douglas Dear Aidan, Cooking with wine is different than “cooking wine.” Anything labelled “cooking wine” will have salt added as a preservative and contain food colouring. This is not the type of wine to use. The best wines for cooking are high in acid, but low in tannin and oak, with a good alcohol level. The alcohol helps dissolve fat and is cooked off, leaving just the flavour behind. Dominant flavours in the wine should parallel those in the food. For example, I would use an earthy Pinot Noir with a mushroom dish and a crisp Sauvignon Blanc with a lemon chicken. Sangiovese is a good red to use for its acidity, especially in tomato sauces; Pinot Noir is good because it is less tannic. Highly tannic wines like Cabernet Sauvignon can leave the finished dish tasting a little harsh. Sauvignon Blanc and Muscadet are good white varieties to cook with because of their high acidity; oaked Chardonnay can be nice in a smoked fish dish, while unoaked Chardonnays are nice in a seafood cream sauce. Too much wine can overpower the food, too little is a wasted effort and a waste of wine. Final advice: if you wouldn’t drink the wine, don’t pour it into your food! —Karen Nissen If you have a question for our Sommeliers, visit us at www.banvilleandjones.com/cellar.aspx
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Friends of Banville & Jones (clockwise from top left): Gary Hewitt pours for an eager crowd; Tina Jones, Louis Tolaini, Mabel and John Garcia; Paul Martens of Blend Imports, Anne & Alan Katz and Nick Gebers of Post House Wines, South Africa; Ron Joseph, Tina and Mike Jones; Stephanie Forsythe and Debbie Scarborough; Jackie Stephen and Cheryl Mazur; Alan & Treena Isaacson; Fausto Pereira and Lorna Winterburn; Arlene and Gerry Hochman.
(Clockwise from top left): The ladies of B & J enjoy the tastes of South Africa at a garden wine tasting hosted by Shirley and Paul Martens of Blend Imports; AVE winemaker Mariano Vignoni at the vineyard in Argentina; Charlie’s Angels: Lisa Tinley; Ida Albo; Tina Jones; Charlie and Dayna Spiring; Tina Jones and Bertrand Steip of Krug wines; Doug Stephen and Tina Jones; Gary Hewitt with Mauricio Boullaude, Gerardo Michelini, and Juan Pablo Michelini of Zorzal Vineyards & Winery in the high-altitude Tupungato subregion of Mendoza; Sebastián Zuccardi, Mike Muirhead and José Alberto Zuccardi of Familia Zuccardi in Mendoza, Argentina.
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product review AVE wines AVE is a unique Argentine wine project that blends the traditional Tuscan style of Italian winemaker Alberto Antonini with New World grape varieties and the unique terroir of Mendoza, Argentina. Owners Mario Pardini and Iacopo Di Bugni bring their passion for wine, their original homeland in Tuscany, and their adopted home of Argentina together to create wines that are as impressive on the palate as they are easy on the pocketbook. AVE’s Premium Torrentes was the hit of the summer at Banville & Jones—a great value and eminently drinkable. A bottle of the Gran Reserva or Premium Malbec are welcome at any table, and for something a little different, try the Premium Malbec Rosé! Price: $15.99–$29.99
Eisch 10 Carat Duck Decanter Continuing a family tradition of glassmaking since 1689, Eisch has created a stunning lead-free 10-carat crystal vase with No Drip Effeckt technology. This duck decanter will be a classy addition to your dinner table, and is designed to protect your linens from red wine spills, drips, and drizzles. Price: $299.99
Rabbit Swish Aerator Let it breathe! If you’re not sure if you want to decant that entire bottle of wine, use the Rabbit Swish to aerate your wine by the glass. The fine mesh will filter out the sediment while the aerator lets in just the right amount of oxygen to open up the aroma and soften the flavours of your best wines. Price: $19.99
The Wine Journal The Wine Journal is more than simply a place to jot down the odd tasting note. It includes a list of grape varieties; a glossary of wine terms; an aroma wheel, to translate your taste experience into words; and wine label removers, to fully record the experience of each exceptional bottle. Price: $44.99
Bothwell Muenster Cheese Bothwell is celebrating its 75th anniversary of cheesemaking in Manitoba. Founded in 1936 in New Bothwell, Manitoba, the company is one of Manitoba’s most highly awarded culinary ambassadors to the world. It marks this anniversary year with the release of a very special Muenster cheese. Bothwell’s Muenster is mild and smooth, with an eye-catching orange rind. It is perfect as an appetizer or melted over your favourite dish.
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behind the label: argentina By Gary Hewitt, Sommelier (ISG,CMS), CSW
Zorzal 2009 Chardonnay Tupungato Mendoza, Argentina $15.99
Pulenta 2009 La Flor Malbec Mendoza, Argentina $14.99
Zorzal Wines, Mendoza Zorzal Wines, named for an industrious mountain songbird, is a collaboration of Argentine owner-operators and Calgary-based Canadian investors with an avowed “passion for wine and fun.” Zorzal’s brand new gravityflow winery is the highest in the high-altitude Uco Valley, south of the city of Mendoza and enticingly close to the Andes Mountains. Although new estate vineyards have yet to come into production, Zorzal’s young winemaker Juan Pablo Michelini, with guidance from his consultant brother, Matias, has crafted superb wines from locally purchased high-altitude grapes. Zorzal is well regarded for a series of Malbecs, including the 2008 Climax, winner of the trophy for best Malbec in Argentina over US$50. Zorzal also produces fresh, lively Rosé, Sauvignon Blanc and Chardonnay. Their ripe, refreshing Chardonnay, with only a kiss of fine oak, was the wine that first caught our attention and inspired us to bring Zorzal home to Manitoba. Bodega Pulenta Estate, Mendoza With their first child in tow, Angelo Pulenta and Palma Spinsati arrived in Argentina from Italy in 1902, looking for “the America.” Today, after two generations of hard work, grandsons Eduardo and Hugo run a modern family winery in the Agrelo subregion of Mendoza. The winery’s architectural restraint echoes sincere environmental respect and foreshadows the elegant, tautly structured wines that are vivid expressions of a range of notable French grape varieties.
Pulenta 2008 I Malbec Alto Agrelo Mendoza, Argentina $22.99
Noemia 2008 A Lisa Patagonia, Argentina $42.99
Despite the French heritage of the grapes, La Flor Malbec, aged 6 months in French oak barrels, is reminiscent of a lively Tuscan red with bright fruit and a juicy finish, making it a perfect food partner. At the next level, the I Malbec not only ages but also ferments in French oak barrels. The result is a mouth-filling wine with firm tannins framing intense, lively fruit and offering excellent cellaring potential. This pair of impeccably made wines built on pure Malbec flavours provides an excellent example of a winemaker’s touch creating different styles. Bodega Noemia, Patagonia Bodega Noemia, in the southern region of Rio Negro, is a pioneering project. After a colourful life, including a stint in Copenhagen’s Freetown Christiania, the free-spirited pair of Countess Noemi Cinzano of the Argiano estate in Montalcino and her Dutch husband, winemaker Hans Vinding-Diers, now make Patagonia their home. Hans turned a stint as a consultant for the local Humberto Canale winery (from 1998 to 2002) into an opportunity to discover some of Argentina’s historical old-vine vineyards. Now, he loves to show off the vitality of his young biodynamic vineyards (“touch the vines, feel their life!”) at their wonderful remote new winery. Noemia wines are entirely hand-made from harvest to fermentation and finishing: there are no pumps in the winery and wines are gravity-filled into bottles without filtration. The 2008 A Lisa is an intense, silky blend of mostly Malbec with a little Merlot and soupçon of Petit Verdot.
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a tale of two terroirs: Malbec, from prince to pauper and back again By Andrea Eby, Sommelier (ISG), CSW
A Malbec vineyard in Mendoza, Argentina (photo by Mike Muirhead) Once upon a time in a land far, far away, there lived a princely grape variety of great fame and renown. It was adored for the deep colour, robust tannins, and complexity that it contributed to red wines. At one time, some of the world’s finest wines depended on this variety to achieve their full potential. Dynasties were created and fortunes were decided based on its fame and flavour. What is the name of this mythical grape? Would you believe Malbec? Many people know of Malbec’s fame in Argentina but few are aware of its torrid and tumultuous past. The Prince of Bordeaux To learn about Malbec’s rise and fall, we must travel to Bordeaux, France (the land, far far away) and back in time to approximately 1855. The top Bordeaux châteaux had recently been classified (from First Growth through Fifth Growth) in preparation for the upcoming Paris World Fair. The classifications were based on the market value of a château’s wines and a high ranking guaranteed an owner entry into the upper echelons of the wine
world. Of the hundreds of estates in Bordeaux, only 52 were deemed worthy of this recognition and only four were singled out for the most prestigious First Growth classification. Malbec was an integral component of these iconic wines. With only one change in 150 years, the classification has remained largely static; however, the wines have not. There was a time when over 60 per cent of Bordeaux vineyards included Malbec vines. Now Malbec is a rare interloper in Bordeaux blends. Here’s what happened.
Photos: Dusk at Valle de Uco Lodge; Malbec grapes forming clusters (photos by Mike Muirhead)
The Higher You Climb, the Harder You Fall Every fairy tale needs a villain. Meet phylloxera. This opportunistic insect hitched a ride across the Atlantic on the roots of American grapevines. Botanical collections were all the rage at the time and travellers were quick to bring curiosities from the New World back to Europe. Little did they know the chaos they were about to unleash. Over the course of millions of years, North American grapevines had developed a resistance to the destructive effects of the phylloxera louse; the same could not be said of European grape varieties. Vines across France began to die from a “mysterious” disease and Malbec was hit particularly hard. By the time a solution was discovered, the French wine industry was in shambles. Producers who could afford to replant their vineyards (using European vines grafted onto resistant American rootstock) chose not to replant Malbec due to its severe susceptibility to the disease. Acreage plummeted across Bordeaux, and Malbec found itself playing a distant second fiddle to hardier varieties such as Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot. Any hope Malbec had of making a comeback in Bordeaux was dashed by the infamous frost of 1956. Combined with its susceptibility to phylloxera, its difficult reputation in the vineyard was enough to convince most growers that enough was enough. For all intents and purposes, Malbec was abandoned in Bordeaux. Today, there remain only a few small areas in France known for producing Malbec-based wines. Most notably, the appellation of Cahors has based its reputation on this
finicky grape variety. Referred to as Côt or Auxerrois, (only two of the over 1,000 synonyms that exist as a testament to its once widespread fame), the wines often possess a rustic charm and benefit from mid-term aging. Outside of Cahors, Malbec plays a small role in the Loire Valley and the Languedoc. With such limited production within France, many Malbec fans may never have tasted a French example. Instead, lovers of this wonderful grape are much more likely to look toward Argentina to satisfy their cravings. The Prince Regains His Throne Argentina is blessed with a culture deeply rooted in wine and a passion for the vine. With a large percentage of its population originating from France, Italy, and Spain, it would seem inevitable that a wine industry would develop. In fact, the Argentine government so admired the viticultural prowess of the French that it funded scientific vine collection expeditions to France. Vine cuttings (including Malbec) were selected from some of France’s most prestigious vineyards and carried back to Argentina. At the time, no one could imagine just how valuable these cuttings would become, as their French parent vines were to soon fall victim to the evil phylloxera. Malbec eventually came to be planted throughout Argentina; however, the high-yielding Criolla grape dominated in terms of acreage. When the industry shifted its focus from bulk to boutique in the late twentieth century, precious old plots of pre-phylloxera Malbec vines were rediscovered and the re-ascent to glory began.
Malbec’s success in Argentina is largely due to the particular small-berried clone found throughout the country. Thought to be a heritage clone of Malbec that has since become extinct in its native France, Argentine Malbec is a true viticultural treasure. Keys to its fame include the dry, arid landscape so suited to this rot- and mildew-prone variety. Perennially struggling to achieve full ripeness in its native France, Malbec thrives in the high-altitude, sun-drenched slopes of the Andes foothills. In this unique terroir, the historic clone produces wines with characteristic deep colour and dark fruit, but without the firm tannins synonymous with its French counterpart. This lush, fruit-forward expression of the grape has propelled Malbec to the forefront of the North American market. Despite the trials and tribulations that Malbec has been forced to endure, this noble grape variety is once again at the top of its game. From the fabled vineyards of Bordeaux to the brink of extinction, Malbec has once again joined the royal family as the Prince of Argentina. No grape is guaranteed a fairy tale ending but all indicators suggest that Argentine Malbec will live happily ever after.
Invite the Prince for dinner Banville & Jones’s wine experts have travelled to the furthest reaches to find the best Argentine Malbecs for your table. LUJAN DE COYO Melipal 2009 Ikella Malbec Mendoza, Argentina $13.99 Renacer 2009 Punto Final Malbec Mendoza, Argentina $15.99 Catena 2009 Malbec Mendoza, Argentina $21.99 UCO VALLEY Zorzal 2010 Malbec Gualtallary, Mendoza, Argentina $16.99 Mariflor 2009 Malbec Valle de Uco, Mendoza, Argentina $32.99 Tikal 2008 Amorio Malbec Mendoza, Argentina $33.99 PATAGONIA-RIO NEGRO Bodega Del Fin Del Mundo 2008 Reserva Malbec Patagonia, Argentina $17.99 Noemia 2008 A Lisa Malbec Patagonia, Argentina $42.99 SALTA Yacochuya 2004 Malbec Cafayate Salta, Argentina $98.99
8/30/2011 4:40:22 PM
The Malbecs of Argentina Map courtesy of Wines of Argentina
Salta Salta is known for its high-altitude vineyards, and is famous for aromatic Torrontes and deep, intensely coloured reds. Malbecs from this area have plenty of intense, almost carnal fruit aromas. The use of oak is optional, as the juices have enough personality on their own.
Uco Valley This region’s optimal soils, cool average temperatures, and middle-altitude vineyards (from 3,500 to 5,000 ft) produce stunning Malbecs, Cabernet Sauvignons, Chardonnays, and Merlots. Uco’s Malbecs display a dominant mineral component with spice aromas and restrained fruit. Elegance and structure are the calling cards of Uco Valley wines.
Eastern Mendoza As we move away from the Andes, the vineyards produce wines that tend to be perfumed, lighter, and fruitier with round tannins and warm alcohol. The less extreme temperatures produce young, easy-todrink Malbecs.
Patagonia: Río Negra & Neuquén The stubborn vines in the Patagonia region grow throughout a desert oasis, facing cooler temperatures and fierce winds. These low temperatures are reflected in Patagonian Malbecs, through a fresh, well-balanced acidity. These wines can also be deep and big, but this is where vineyard agronomists and enologists must work closely to get it just right.
Maipú & Lujàn de Cayo Wines from Argentina’s oldest established region tend to have firmer tannins, with more overall structure, loads of classic black fruit, and central-palate depth. Malbecs from this area can express very different styles and personalities, from young and easy-to-drink fruity wines to complex, structured big reds.
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gary’s corner By Gary Hewitt, Sommelier (ISG, CMS), CWE
“Missionaries, migrants, and market reforms” are the three Ms needed for a New World wine region to achieve global presence, according to Mike Veseth in his new book Wine Wars. Argentina certainly fits the mould. Missionaries (along with conquistadors) first brought vines to South America from Spain. Migrants with winemaking know-how and a thirst for wine came in waves from Italy, Spain, and France. Market reforms overturned protectionist policy and generous subsidies that had created a dull domestic market full of “cheap, strong, sweet wines” and ultimately created the conditions for a wine crisis in the 1970s and 80s. More than one third of all vineyards were grubbed up, as Argentine winemakers were forced to face global competition. The subsequent rise of Argentina’s modern industry from the ashes of the fallen has been breathtaking in speed and scale. A drive through the sprawling Mendoza wine region reveals dozens of modern wineries, many designed by the same architects, most of similar scale, and all built within the last 20 years. Much was made possible by foreign investors, many from the same countries as the original immigrants, who pumped fortunes into their projects. The payoff has been huge, and the monolithic success of Argentine Malbec on a global scale is undeniable. On a recent trip to Argentina with my fellow Sommelier Mike Muirhead, we sought to go beyond Malbec to discover a greater diversity of wines. After all, the waves of immigrants brought a treasure trove of vine varieties, many of which have now been grown for generations by Argentine winemakers. Where are these wines now? Early in our trip, while far south of Mendoza in the Rio Negro region
at Bodega Chacra, we discovered superb wines made from ungrafted Pinot Noir vines dating back to 1932 and 1955! Apparently, Pinot Noir once covered thousands of hectares for the production of domestic sparkling wine, but marketing logistics and the wine crisis resulted in massive grubbing up and neglect. Resurrection of these almost feral vines is the pet project of Piero Incisa della Rocchetta, perhaps better known for the production of his family wine, Sassicaia. Back in Mendoza, we were tantalized by excellent examples of Bordeaux varietals, including Petit Verdot and Cabernet Franc (at Pulenta and Melipal vineyards) and a dried-grape Amarone-style blend anagrammatically called Enamore (by Renancer). However, a real revelation came on the second-to-last day of the trip from an unexpected source: Zuccardi, a winery known in Canada for the sweetish über-selling brand Fuzion. Zuccardi proved to be a winemaking campus with four complete but separate wineries, research facilities, and a fully equipped pilot plant for small-scale experimentation. Here, we tasted tank samples of obscure grape varieties sourced from around the world being evaluated for compatibility with the Mendoza terroir. Promising varieties move on to limited-production runs under the Innovacion label (Banville & Jones has ordered Innovacion Arinarnoa!). Next, we tasted a remarkable range of Zuccardi wines, including Bonarda, Sangiovese, and Tempranillo—at last, the immigrants’ grapes! To finish, a full range of traditional method sparkling wines drove home the message that diversity in Argentina is alive and well. In many ways, the Argentine producers playing the global market represent a young industry capable
of reliable, well-made wines. In the near future, expect continued dependence on Malbec, but with a refinement of styles and clarification of regional differences. However, I suggest being an early adapter, as the “other” Argentine wines seek their way out into the wide world. Argentina’s long-term success depends on diversity: history, geography, and modern talent can surely make it happen.
Torrontes Argentina’s signature white grape variety, Torrontes, has a story similar to that of Malbec: European grape variety leaves home, travels across the Atlantic, and finds a more exciting life in the New World. Although planted widely throughout Argentina, the most refined wines come from the extreme high-altitude region of Salta. Generally, Torrontes gives dry, fresh, unoaked wines with intense floral and grapefruit to peachlike aromas that falsely suggest sweetness. Ideal for sipping or as an aperitif, Torrontes pairs well with fruity salads, cheeses, and Asian cuisine. Drink these wines in their exuberant youth.
I recommend: AVE 2009 Premium Torrontes Cafayate Salta, Argentina $15.99 Telteca 2009 UMA Torrontes Mendoza, Argentina $9.99 Michel Torino 2009 Don David Reserve Torrontes Cafayate Salta, Argentina $13.99
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Laura Catena is part of the family of winemakers of Bodega Catena Zapata in Mendoza. She has helped elevate her family name to one synonymous with great wine, and has initiated the project that has created the expressive Luca wines. From her home in San Francisco, she spoke with Sylvia Jansen for The Cellar Door. Sylvia Jansen: You are such a fascinating person! You are a respected physician, a revered winemaker, and a passionate advocate and ambassador for your home country. Can you tell us about the path that brought you to these impressive, and varied, accomplishments? Laura Catena: I did not start out thinking that I would work in the family business at all. In Argentina, the business of winemaking is a man’s world. When I was a kid, the people working in the winery were my father and my grandfather. Both my grandmothers were teachers, and my mother has a degree in economics, so everybody went to school—but it was the men doing the business. I spent a lot of time with my father and my grandfather in the vineyards, and my father is the most non-sexist person I have ever known. In our family, there was no doubt that my brother and I would have the same opportunities. I never intended to go into the family business; when I was in college, I studied biology because I was fascinated by evolution. I did a lot of volunteer work, so medicine seemed like the perfect profession for me: I love being a doctor and helping people. I started sharing the love of wine with my father when he would visit me at college. We used to go to restaurants, and he would order the best wine on the list, and we would drink it together! Once I was in medical school I started going to wine tastings. I would have gone to your store once a week if I had been going to school and living in Manitoba! You and I would have become great friends.
Laura Catena (photo courtesy of Bodega Catena Zapata)
the heights of innovation:
An interview by Sylvia Jansen, Sommelier (ISG, CMS), CSW
I got interested in wine as something I would share with my father. He would come and ask me about my research. I was doing my thesis on Alzheimer’s at Harvard in my undergrad. He would tell me about his research in highaltitude vineyards, and we would drink wine. Still, I had no intention of going and working with him. Little by little, I would do an event here and there. It really changed when I had my first child, Luca. All of a sudden, family tradition becomes even stronger. All of a sudden you say, “I am following my father’s legacy, and now I have a legacy as well.” What we were doing in Argentina was so cutting edge. When we released the first $20 Malbec, most people had not even heard of Malbec, let alone a Malbec/Cabernet blend that was $100. There were no South American wines at those prices. I realized that we were breaking new ground. It was so revolutionary. When I first started working with my father, I was like an apprentice. It took a couple of years. I wanted to practice medicine, and I am still, but my core job is with the winery.
SJ So you are working at the winery and practicing medicine. At what point did you decide to take on writing your book, Vino Argentino: An Insider’s Guide to the Wines and Wine Country of Argentina? LC All my friends who had friends who were going to Argentina would ask, “What should we do?” At first, I would write a whole email to answer, then I set up a list of places to go to, then I set up a website! But I thought, I want to tell them more. They want to hear about the history, the food. They want a little technical information about the soils and the climate, but they also want to hear the stories. Tourism in Argentina is booming. In my travels, I realized there were some big misconceptions about Argentina. The first was that we were some sort of New World, new thing, because people were just starting to hear about it. Yet our industry dates back 400 years, starting with the Spanish. Then, since the nineteenth century and onwards, we have had 6 million Italian and other European immigrants to Argentina. My own great grandfather came from Italy in 1902. These people set up wineries in the tradition of the Old World.
The second misconception was about regionality. A lot of people assume that there’s no regional difference. But it is 2,000 miles from the north to the south where all the wine regions are, and there’s so much diversity of soil, climate, varietals. People talk about Malbec, but we have some regions where the better wines are red blends. La Rioja Argentina, for example, which most people have never heard of, is the third largest producer in Argentina. They plant Torrontes, the truly Argentine varietal, which is so aromatic! The third thing I wanted to talk about was the highaltitude story. People want a really good bottle of wine for the best price, so I had to explain why Argentina’s high-altitude region is different from any other region in the world. SJ Can you explain the influence of altitude on vines and wines? Why is it important for someone asking “Should I pay $25, or $125 for a high-altitude Catena wine?”
LC We are researching high altitude because the combination of cool Laura Catena's Vino Argentino climate and sunlight intensity allows the grapes to ripen slowly and accumulate tannins and flavours. If you have lots of sunlight in a very hot area, the plant shuts down and Argentina is the fifth largest wine producer in the world basically stops producing the good tannins. At high and we are the eighth largest wine consumer in the world. altitudes, the grapes are on the vine for several months. In So there is this rich, old tradition of wine drinking that Argentina, the length of time from veraison [when grapes people did not know about. At tastings I would ask begin to change colour] to harvest is second only to New people when they thought Argentina started producing Zealand, which has a much cooler climate than we do. wine. They would say, “Oh, the 1980s”! They had just So at a high altitude, the grapes have the capacity to grow heard about it, and you cannot blame them, because slowly, in lots of sunlight. We think this combination there were not that many Argentine wines. So one goal of cool climate, high altitude, and great sunlight is for my book was that I wanted people to understand the rich culture that was behind the wines of Argentina. very important.
The vineyards at Bodega Catena Zapata (photo by Jill Kwiatkoski) 36 http://banvilleandjones.cornervine.com
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Laura and her father, Nicolás Catena (photo courtesy of Bodega Catena Zapata) There is one other aspect to this: the mountains stop the rain from the Pacific side. In Mendoza, it is only green where there is irrigated land, and the rest of the place is desert and brush! That’s how dry it is. What is good about the dryness is that we don’t have pests. We do not have to apply pesticides. Viticulture is basically organic in Argentina. Some people get certified, some do not. It is something that costs extra money, but really, we farm everything sustainably.
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SJ Malbec has a rich history in Bordeaux, which is its spiritual home, with Cahors. A lot of people think the Argentines have just invented it, and that it is the hottest thing coming out of Argentina. Can you enlighten us on that, and on what to expect in the future? LC The first Malbec vine plantings were brought to Argentina in 1852. It was called l’Uva Francesa, the French grape. In the nineteenth century, anybody who wanted to plant a good vineyard in Argentina would plant Malbec. One of these people was my great grandfather, Nicola Catena. To me, the success of Malbec in Argentina has to do with the climate. Michel Rolland said once that if there was ever a varietal that defined terroir, it was Malbec in Mendoza, because its adaptability to Mendoza is perfect. Sunlight really enhances aromatics, but grapes do not like extreme heat, so this highaltitude region, with lots of sunlight, poor soils, and cool temperatures, is perfect for Malbec. To me, Malbec found its place. On the other hand, I also enjoy Malbecs from France, and I love the connections with other people who are also making a business from this historic grape. It has a great pedigree.
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SJ Should we expect more Malbec from Argentina in the future? LC Argentina is exporting a lot right now, but there are not a lot of new plantings going on. People are focused on quality, and making very profound wines. There is a focus on regionality, making different Malbecs from different regions. There are going to be new regions, like San Juan, La Rioja, and more regional definition. You are going to see some other varietals, red blends, and high-altitude Chardonnay, which is something unique and different. So I think you will see regionality, a lot of high-quality wines, but not a huge increase in volume. SJ Last winter I absolutely floored a tasting group by selecting the Luca Malbec in a wine tasting. Can you tell us what drew you to produce wines under the Luca label?
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LC I started really thinking about the Luca label in 1997 and 1998. I knew there were all these very special oldvine vineyards throughout Mendoza that had been held by families, some of them for over 100 years. I went to talk to my father about this project. I said, “Dad, I want to go find some really high-quality vineyards that belong to these growers and talk to them about making a really high-quality wine.” And my Dad, he analyzes an idea, you know—he’s an economist, he doesn’t use emotion to decide. He said, “Wow, that sounds like a really good idea! Most of us don’t think you can make a really good wine from growers, but you have convinced me that is not rational.” He likes to use that word, you know, “rational.” So he lent me the best viticulturalist we had at Catena, and we basically drove around Mendoza during the harvest season, and dropped in on the best vineyards. We started working with many vineyards in this way. During the year, we send our viticulturalists to participate in the pruning. Some of the growers basically let our team do everything from pruning to deciding irrigation regimes, and we always decide when the harvest is going to happen. This was a completely pioneering thing to do in the late 1990s. The first vintage was in 1999. One of the great side effects is that I have become really close to some of these growers! One family, the Rosas
family, every time I arrive, there are always ten children and three cousins, and they always make this big feast. My favourite part of the whole thing is that we drink wine from plastic cups! There is something about drinking really good wine from plastic cups, in a beautiful setting, looking at the mountains, and you are surrounded by this beautiful family, that somehow makes you realize that you don’t need luxury to enjoy great things!
Ask the Banville & Jones experts to guide you through our favourite Catena wines, or laura's personal label, luca: Alamos 2009 Chardonnay Mendoza, Argentina $13.99 Catena Zapata 2008 Malbec Mendoza, Argentina $21.99 Catena Alta 2008 Chardonnay Mendoza, Argentina $36.99
Catena Zapata 2006 Argentino Malbec Mendoza, Argentina $124.99 Luca 2008 Chardonnay Mendoza, Argentina $34.99 Luca 2009 Malbec Mendoza, Argentina $39.99
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gluggy By Saralyn Mehta, Sommelier (ISG), CSW Argentine Malbec:
most likely to succeed One of my philosophies is to never look back— looking forward to what may come is always a better bet. Sometimes you have to make exceptions to your rules, however, and one of those times is when old high school friends get together to catch up on each others’ lives. It’s funny how you become 16 again when the old crew gathers. As we sipped our wine (notably, it was no longer White Zinfandel), we debated ageold questions like, “Who was the hottest member of Duran Duran, and why didn’t one of us marry him?” More importantly, “What was bigger in high school, our hair or the shoulder pads in our brightly coloured blazers?” In an effort to answer these questions, we pulled out our senior yearbook. As we flipped the pages, the conversation turned from the cool guy who peaked in high school to the biggest nerd who invented some computer component and sold his company for millions. This got me to thinking how that cool guy was like Aussie Shiraz and the nerd just like Argentine Malbec. Seven years ago, when I began working at Banville & Jones, Shiraz firmly held the title of “Most Popular” and Malbec was the nerdy guy in the corner that few knew. It was plain from the amount of space it occupied on our shelves that the market loved Shiraz. Meanwhile, we had two lonely Argentine Malbecs who had to find a home on the shelves with the Chilean wines.
What a difference a few years can make! When Banville & Jones “graduated” to its current location 6 Golden a n i v a years ago, we expanded D Mehta, 1987 our Argentine section to Saralyn Rhonda Sacks, 10 spots on the shelves. and Today, Malbec is bursting to the forefront of the popularity contest. We have over 50 spots dedicated to Argentine wines, many of which are Malbec or Malbec blends. If I had to give Argentine Malbec a yearbook moniker (and I will because I am so far down the road with this analogy already), it would be “Most Likely to Succeed.” It is hard to resist its rich, bold flavour and reasonable price points. Good Malbec ranges from $11.99 (La Vuelta Malbec) to $16.99 (Zorzal Malbec). Even the higher-end Malbecs over-deliver at their price points. For $29.99, the AVE Gran Riserva may not be a wine for every day, but it is a must-have when you want to treat yourself. Popularity is a fickle thing. I am sure that Shiraz will rise to the top again. But once people get a taste for great wines at a great price, that is when wines show their staying power. You can count on the longevity of Argentine Malbecs in our market, and look forward to seeing their numbers continue to grow on our shelves.
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Potrerillos Dam, Mendoza (photo by Mike Muirhead)
A Day Without Wine? By Mike Muirhead, Sommelier (ISG, CMS), CSW As Banville & Jones Sommeliers visiting a country for the first time, we are there to do two things: first, find some darn good wine to bring back to our customers; second, find out what makes that region’s wines unique. Oddly enough, learning what is unique about that country in terms of people, climate, and landscape helps us find the best wines, and fine tunes our wine education. In Argentina, that thing that is uniquely Argentine is the Andes. In February, Gary Hewitt and I flew into Santiago, Chile en route to Mendoza, Argentina. That last leg is short—only 55 minutes in the air—but you cover a lot of altitude: 9,000 m to be exact. My first impression when looking out the airplane window was that Chile is green, and Argentina is brown. Argentina is in the rain shadow, and receives about 100 mm less rain than Santiago, Chile. Because of this, the Argentines have had to perfect sourcing their water from the Andes. Our first three days in Argentina were spent exploring wines in Patagonia. After much encouragement from local winemakers, we set our sights on Aconcagua National Park, home of the Aconcagua Mountain, which, at nearly 7,000 m, is the tallest mountain outside of the Himalayas. It is also one of the most easily accessible for both the regular tourist and the seasoned mountain climber. It is only 115 km from Mendoza, but
exploring our little corner of the Andes took us 10 hours from start to finish. Leaving Mendoza (elevation: 825 m), we took a beautiful drive through Lujan de Cuyo, and to National Route 7. This took us past some of the most prime vineyard land in Argentina, but we had to keep reminding ourselves: today is not about wine! Our first stop was the Potrerillos Dam. This dam is the lifeblood of Mendoza’s agricultural industry. At 12 km long and 3 km wide, it regulates water throughout the region, in order to make it available year-round. Without it, the seasons would be characterized by flash floods and major droughts, and agriculture would be almost impossible. Villa Potrerillos is also a great tourist destination, as it is a great place to stop for a hike, a canoe ride in the dam reservoir, or a bite to eat. Taking in the view from the dam, it intrigued me that the mountains don’t look at all like our Rockies. It is not in their form or size that they differ, but in their incredible colour. Our mountains are grey; the Andes are multicoloured: from green-blue copper bands that ribbon through the rock to bright spots of orange and yellow mineral deposits. Leaving aside the beautiful ski hills and breathtaking hiking trails, this Prairie boy could spend a month just staring up at the majesty of these mountains.
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(from the top): Mike Muirhead and guide Ariel at the Aconcagua lookout (photo by Gary Hewitt); the mutlicoloured striations of the Andes (photo by Mike Muirhead); the market at Puenta del Inca (photo by Gary Hewitt)
Throughout the journey, the scenery was breathtaking. We passed through Uspallata, a quaint little mountain town that was the base camp for the movie Seven Days in Tibet. Along the way, we noticed little shacks spotting the landscape about every 10 minutes. On closer inspection, we realized that we were driving along the tracks of the currently defunct Transandine Railway. Construction on the railway started in 1887 and was completed in 1910. It ran until 1980, when road traffic took over. The good news for train lovers and historians is that the Chilean and Argentine governments are planning on rehabilitating it, and it should be open again in 5–10 years. The little shacks we noticed were coal shacks from the early days, when trains only had enough coal to last about 10 km before they had to refuel. On our way to Aconcagua Provincial Park, we crossed part of the Inca Trail at Puenta del Inca (Bridge of the Incas), where the natural hot springs created a land bridge over the water. It is believed to have been an important stop along the Inca Trail, where Incas would revitalize in the natural hot springs. It was amazing that the Incas had developed this route centuries ago, connecting both sides of the Andes and running for thousands of kilometres on both sides of the mountains, all the way from Ecuador to Chile/Argentina. It is a beautiful site, and there is an outdoor market where you can see local artists work, and get some truly Argentine gifts. We travelled the last 5 km to our final destination, Aconcagua Provincial Park, at an elevation of 3,000 m. The air is thinner, the sky bluer, and the sun stronger. We were thankful we brought our hats and sunscreen. We trekked up a simple hiking trail with interpretative markers on the way to the lookout. It is about a 2 km walk, but worth every step when you reach the top. Once at the lookout, it is hard to find words for the vast scene in front of you. Glaciers on the mountain that look about 30 m thick are actually 300 m thick, and the snow gleaming off the peak is a complete contrast to the 30°C it is
(from the top:) Puenta del Inca on the Inca Trail; barbeque at the top of the world (photos by Mike Muirhead)
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Mendoza: A Foodie’s Paradise By Jill Kwiatkoski at the base. We spent 30 minutes in silence, just admiring its beauty and the surrounding ponds and mountains. Finally, after a day of exploration, it was time to eat (after wine, eating is the second best part of discovering new regions!). Our guide, Ariel, introduced us to a local barbeque restaurant, and we couldn’t have been more excited. We stopped in at Estancia del Elias and feasted on local delicacies of flame-roasted beef, chicken, and goat, washed down with cold local beer. Everyone in Argentina has an attachment to the Andes. Its landscape is in their blood; its resources feed their families; and its mountainscapes are their playground. Winemakers speak of their influence. Their presence is reflected on wine labels and their spirit is contained in the wines themselves—big, bold, and beautiful. If you go to Mendoza for wine, you must make sure you understand from where the wine flows. The heart of Argentina beats in the Andes. P.S., We did have wine that night—a gorgeous Malbec, with (yet another) amazing steak.
Mendoza is an incredible city, with the beautiful Plaza Independencia at its centre, and Parque San Martin to the west. The green spaces are stunning—but it is the food, oh the food, that makes this city a dream come true. If you want to eat like a king, but on a beggar’s salary, then Mendoza is the place for you! There are restaurants everywhere, and you can have an incredible three-course meal with cocktails and wine for about $40. Av Sarmiento is a lovely walking mall with boutiques and bistros. We had the most incredible meal of our trip at a restaurant called Azafran (the charcouterie board will blow your mind, if the wine cellar doesn’t do you in!). Sarmiento also has several restaurants that serve classic Argentine food. If you want to see the who’s who of Mendoza strutting their stuff, head to Av Villanueva Aristides. We had an incredible dinner (steak, of course!) at El Palenque, which specializes in classic Argentine food with a funky, modern twist. If you want to have a chic, trendy night, hit PH (Public House) Resto Bar. Feast on fusion and an endless cocktail list, and watch Argentina’s most beautiful people parade through. Finally, you cannot visit Argentina and not try their national spirit: Fernet. This bitter herbal spirit, paired with Coke, is the drink of choice among young Argentines—but beware: most bartenders fill your glass ¾ Fernet to ¼ Coke!
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Quality catches up with ethics Most consumers are familiar with Fair Trade products in the food industry. Fair Trade coffee has long had the highest profile, and is now available at every coffee shop in town. However, Fair Trade wine is the new kid on the block. For many, what makes a wine “Fair Trade” is a vague notion about working conditions and the environment. To understand Fair Trade and wine in the present, we need to delve into the darker side of the wine industry’s history. In many wine regions, large wine operations depend heavily on hired labour, up to 80 per cent of whom are seasonal workers. Many of the workers are given no access to health benefits or educational services. During the harvest, workers can be on their feet for 12 to 14 hours with no breaks for water or food. Many workers experience health problems due to exposure to pesticides, herbicides, and other chemicals used to make wine. As in so many industries, all wineries do not have a squeaky clean record when it comes to worker rights. Today’s wise consumer knows that, in order to feel good about the products they support, certain standards have to be set, met, and monitored. In 1988, the first Fair Trade product arrived on our shelves when a coffee from Mexico became the new standard for thinking ethically when buying food products. In 1997, the Fairtrade Labelling Organization (FLO), the first of its kind, was established. To earn an official stamp from the FLO, all food products must meet agreed environmental, labour, and developmental standards. Workers must be involved in the decision-making processes in order to give them access to the life skills they will need to succeed. At the winery, certification ensures that small farmers are able to cover their costs of production, allowing them to keep ownership of their farms. Large corporate wineries can try to undercut the selling price of small wineries in order to buy their vineyards or to force them into bankruptcy. Often, small producers cannot invest in new technology to improve their wine because they do not know how much they will be paid for their grapes or their bottled wine. Fair Trade growers are guaranteed a minimum price to cover the costs of sustainable farming, along with a premium to invest in social and economic initiatives in their community. Salaries must be equal to or higher than the regional average and above the minimum wage for the region. Labourers under the age of 15 years old are prohibited. Furthermore, members are allowed to
Vine workers and mountains (photo by Carlos Calise, courtesy of Wines of Argentina) decide how the Fair Trade premium is spent. Communities have used the premium to fund hospitals, provide free health insurance, and buy food and clothing for needy children. In terms of the quality of the grapes, Fair Trade wines are farmed without harmful chemicals or genetically modified organisms (GMOs). They are farmed using organic, sustainable farming methods. Predominantly, Fair Trade wine comes to North America from three countries: South Africa, Chile, and Argentina. In 2009, almost two million bottles of FLO-certified wine were imported to North America. Sales are expected to grow from their current $8 billion to $25 billion by 2020. As of January 2011, over 1,000 companies are certified by FLO International. Ten years ago, consumers bought Fair Trade wines because they were ethically made, not for the quality of the wine. You will be pleased to know that the quality of the wine has caught up to and, in some cases, even exceeded the ethical reasons for buying Fair Trade wines.
Eco-friendly tags on Banville & Jones Wine Co. store shelves indicate wines from around the globe that are produced under four categories: sustainably produced, organic, biodynamic, and carbon neutral.
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A healthy mouth means more than a regular visit to your dentist! Did you know that crooked, crowded or protruding teeth can lead to premature tooth decay, gum disease, and even misalignment of the jaw joints? The Invisalign Smile Survey found that a great smile has positive effects on your child’s self-esteem, as well as their health. 87% believed that a healthy smile is very important for self-esteem 75% believed that an attractive smile is important for succeeding in the workplace 71% believed that people with a nice smile make friends far more easily than those with crooked teeth Give your child’s health and happiness a head start! Dr Bruce McFarlane and his orthodontic team are committed to excellence, offering four options for setting your smile straight.
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Wine Institute To bring you comprehensive and up-to-date wine education, Banville & Jones Wine Institute instructors take rigorous, ongoing training that fuels their passion for wine. Meet the instructors of our prestigious and exciting wine education programs.
Gary Hewitt, Sommelier (ISG, CMS), CWE With a sip of a stunning Rheingau Riesling Spätlese more than 25 years ago, Gary’s fascination with wine began. Tasting a world of wines, reading voraciously, organizing tasting clubs and developing wine appreciation courses led to professional work in the wine industry. Added to this passion for wine is Gary’s scientific research and graduate study in food fermentations, and extensive wine travel and research. This combination means that Banville & Jones has one of the most qualified wine professionals in the country. Gary is the senior buyer for Banville & Jones, working to ensure that our wine collection keeps pace with the new styles as well as the world’s classics. He also leads our wine instruction team, and holds an accomplished set of wine credentials from Wine & Spirits Education Trust (he holds the coveted Diploma from the WSET®), International Sommelier Guild (ISG), the Court of Master Sommeliers and the Society of Wine Educators. He teaches courses in our ISG and WSET® programs. Gary has respect for all great winemaking, and still loves Riesling! Sylvia Jansen, Sommelier (ISG, CMS), CWE The transformation from wine enthusiast to enthusiastic wine professional seems like a smooth one from this side! With love for wine in the glass and for its rich history, Sylvia has opened books, boarded planes, written exams and talked to winemakers, especially in Europe and North America. With post-graduate work in English literature and several disparate fields, Sylvia has
added to her credentials with certification from the International Sommelier Guild (ISG), the Wine & Spirits Education Trust (holding the Advanced Certificate from the WSET®), the Court of Master Sommeliers and the Society of Wine Educators. She teaches courses in our ISG and WSET® programs, and also designs and delivers restaurant and training courses. Always ready for another celebration, she has a particular fondness for Champagne, but also loves great wine of all colours, sizes, and origins. Andrea Eby, Sommelier (ISG), CSW Banville & Jones would like to welcome and congratulate our newest ISG instructor! Always passionate about wine, and fascinated about its connection to culture, history and geography, Andrea found herself in a Banville & Jones wine class a few years ago. From that moment, her intense curiosity about the world of wine teased her away from teaching public school into the adventures of teaching wine. Andrea has gained certification as a Certified Specialist of Wine from the Society of Wine Educators, as well as the Sommelier Diploma from the International Sommelier Guild, and has recently joined our team of accredited instructors for the ISG. Andrea also directs our general wine appreciation programs and leads restaurant training courses, among many other assignments. She has tremendous admiration for well-made wine from around the world, and can occasionally be seen reaching for Barolo.
WINE APPRECIATION: BASICS PROGRAMS Wine Basics, Level 1
Beyond Basics, Level 2
January 12 & 19, 2012 (Thursdays) Cost: $79.00 per person
October 19 & 26, November 2 & 9 (Wednesdays) Cost: $159.00 per person
Register for Basics courses by calling Banville & Jones at 948-WINE (9463) or inquire at email@example.com. Gift cards are available for Banville & Jones Basics classes.
ISG CERTIFICATION ISG Wine Fundamentals Certificate, Level 1
ISG Wine Fundamentals Certificate, Level 2
ISG Sommelier Diploma Program
Duration: three hours, once a week, for eight weeks (non-consecutive) Starting: January 10, 2012 (Tuesdays) Starting: April 2, 2012 (Mondays) Cost: $600.00, includes GST
Duration: three hours, once a week, for 16 weeks (non-consecutive) Starting: September 2012 Cost: $1,000.00, includes GST
Duration: 23 classes, eight hours per class Starting: Next class dates TBA Current Cost: $3,250.00, includes GST
Register for ISG programs online at www.internationalsommelier.com.
WSET® CERTIFICATION Starting Fall 2011: We are delighted to team up with Red River College Continuing Studies and Distance Education to offer the WSET® programs at the beautiful new Red River Campus. Banville & Jones brings wine education to the heart of downtown Winnipeg.
WSET® Level 1: Foundation Certificate Duration: One 8-hour workshop from 8:30 am to 5:00 pm Class dates: October 15 (Saturday); January 21, 2012 (Saturday) Cost: $359.00 plus GST Foundation Workshops can also be presented on demand at B&J Wine Institute for a minimum of 10 persons: ideal for restaurant staff training or your next corporate team-building event.
WSET® Level 2: Intermediate Certificate: “looking behind the label” (no prerequisite) Duration: three hours, once a week, for eight weeks, 6:00 to 9:00 pm Class Dates: February 2 to March 22, 2012 Cost: $859.00 plus GST
Register for WSET® courses at Banville & Jones, 948-WINE (9463) or inquire at firstname.lastname@example.org. For full course descriptions, please visit www.banvilleandjones.com and follow the link to “Wine Education.” Or, visit www.rrc.mb.ca for additional details about course delivery on the downtown RRC campus. Use the search term “WSET” for class descriptions and scheduling. www.banvilleandjones.com 51
banville & jones
Events Schedule o ct o b e r 2 0 1 1 t h r o u g h m a r c h 2 0 1 2 Passport to Wine
Cooking and Wine Tasting Classes
Each Passport evening, Banville & Jones wine experts and local chefs take you on a journey to explore a different country’s wine and food culture. Attend three Passport events, and you will receive a complimentary Eisch Bordeaux wine glass.
The evening includes exclusive wine pairings, gourmet food tasting with recipes from Winnipeg’s finest chefs, and a Banville & Jones apron for you to take home. Cost: $89.99 per person, plus taxes
Cost: $69.99 per person, plus taxes
Thursday, October 27: French Classics with a Twist with Peasant Cookery
Wednesday, October 5: Veneto with Pizzeria Gusto
Thursday, November 10: Easy Apps with Ben Kramer
Saturday, October 15: Aussies vs. Kiwis with Craig Guenther
Thursday, February 9: Chef Darryl Crumb of Brooklynn’s Bistro
Friday, October 21: Argentina with Ben Kramer Sunday, October 30: New Orleans with Café Savour Friday, November 4: The Mediterranean with Amici Restaurant
Test Kitchen Encore: Argentina
Friday, January 6: Around the World with Amici Restaurant
Chef Fraser MacLeod of 529 Wellington serves up the perfect rib steak, with an Argentine flair. Perfect wine pairings provided by Banville & Jones’s wine experts. See Test Kitchen (p. 55) for the recipe and tasting notes.
Wednesday, January 18: Rustic Italian with Pizzeria Gusto
Cost: $89.99 per person, plus taxes
Sunday, January 22: Luxurious Comfort (France) with Bistro 7¼
Wednesday, January 25
Saturday, January 28: Crazy Tasting with Craig Guenther Thursday, February 2: California with Ben Kramer
Saturday, February 11: Southern Hemisphere with All Seasons Catering
Taste the luxury as our wine experts open the doors of our Specialties cabinets to explore some of Banville & Jones’s exclusive treasures.
Sunday, February 19: Rich and Hearty (France) with Peasant Cookery
Cost: $99.00 per person, plus taxes
Friday, March 2: Alto Adige to Sicily with Amici Restaurant
Thursday, November 3: Oh Porto!
Thursday, October 6: Brunello vs. Barolo
Saturday, March 10: Thai Tour with Craig Guenther
Saturday, January 7: Napa in the Cave
Wednesday, March 14: South Africa with Café Savour
Thursday, February 23: Spain
To reserve a space or book a private wine tasting event, call 948-WINE. • Tickets are non-refundable but are exchangeable 14 days prior to the event. • Events begin at 7:00 pm unless otherwise noted. • Check www.banvilleandjones.com for updated information on event themes and dates.
Wine & Cheese At Wine & Cheese, we pair some of our favourite wines with a selection of cheeses. Cost: $35.99 per person, plus taxes Friday, October 14 Friday, January 13
...Especially for you
n e e b u o ave y
y t h g nau ? e c i n or Banville & Jones has the ultimate in Christmas
gifts for everyone on your list—naughty or nice!
christmas Gifts Solo Red $20 Solo White $20 Father Daughter Duo $55 holiday Baskets Sweet Temptations $60 Savoury Sensations $60
From the luxurious for your oh-so-spoiled friends
Wine & Cheese $80
and family to the simple and elegant for your
Festive Feast $100
favourite clients, our team of wine experts will find what you need!
For the Love of Wine $120 Santa’s Wish List $150 Holiday Deluxe $200
Regular Store Hours Monday to Friday: 10 to 8 Saturday: 10 to 6 Sundays and Holidays: 12 to 6
Holiday Hours November Remembrance Day: 1 to 6 December Monday to Saturday: 10 to 9 Sunday: 12 to 6 December 24: 10 to 4
All Christmas gift prices include taxes. We are happy to deliver to single locations free of charge within city limits for purchases over $200. Please note that this does not apply to Holiday Cases.
Lap of Luxury $250 Holiday Cases A case of 12 bottles selected by our Sommeliers—perfect for your holiday entertaining. Holiday Whites $129 Holiday Reds $129 Holiday Wines of Distinction $169 (save up to $60!)
December 26: 12 to 5 December 31: 10 to 5 Closed: December 25 and January 1
948-9463 • banvilleandjones.com
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Banville & Jones Wine Co. is proud to feature these special wines from Argentina
BODEGA LA RURAL
Visit Banville & Jones Wine Co. on weekends throughout October for samples of Melipal and La Vuelta wines.
KITCHEN When our Sommeliers travelled through Argentina, the resounding review of the traditional cuisine was: so much amazing meat! Our Argentine Sommelier Flavia Fernandez Fabio sat down with 529 Wellington’s chef de cuisine Fraser MacLeod (Winnipeg’s foremost steak expert) to discuss what dish to bring to our readers, and they quickly agreed that a beautiful steak with simple side dishes best suits the Argentine appetite. Flavia is joined by Sommeliers Mike Muirhead and Gary Hewitt to bring you their expertise in pairing wines with this hearty meal. Visit www.banvilleandjones.com/cellarext.aspx where Fraser shares his expert advice on choosing the best cut of meat and grilling it to perfection over a hardwood fire.
THE MEAL Whole Boneless Rib Steak with Chimichurri Serves 20 1 boneless rib steak roast, 6 to 10 pounds Course salt 2 cups chimichurri, or more if desired 6 bay leaves Move the rack to the lower third of the oven and heat to 450°F. Pat the meat dry with paper towels. Sprinkle with course salt and coat the sides with chimichurri (reserve the rest for serving). Scatter the bay leaves over the meat. Place on a rack in a large roasting pan and roast for 20 minutes. Lower the heat to around 350°F and roast for approximately 10 minutes more per pound for rare (120°F). Transfer to a carving board and let rest for at least 10 minutes. Carve the beef and serve with the remaining chimichurri. Chimichurri Makes about 2 cups 1 cup water 1 tbsp coarse salt 1 head garlic, separated into cloves and peeled 1 cup packed fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves 1 cup fresh oregano leaves 2 tsp crushed red pepper flakes ¼ cup red wine vinegar ½ cup extra virgin olive oil
Photo by Ian McCausland To make the salmuera (brine), boil the water in a small saucepan. Add the salt and stir until it dissolves. Remove from heat and allow to cool. Mince the garlic, parsley, and oregano and mix with the red pepper flakes. Whisk in the red wine vinegar, then olive oil, and finally, salmuera. Transfer into a jar with a tight-fitting lid, and keep in the refrigerator for up to 3 weeks. Chimichurri is best prepared at least 1 day in advance, so the flavours have a chance to blend. Rescoldo Vegetable Plate Serves 8 ½ cup extra virgin olive oil, plus extra for the pan 2 tbsp fresh thyme leaves 2 tbsp fresh oregano leaves 2 tsp grated lemon zest 3 Rescoldo eggplants 6 red onions 3 Rescoldo bell peppers (red, yellow and/or green) 2 bunches of arugula, trimmed, washed, and dried 6 ounces Cuartiolo cheese (or substitute French Port Salut) sliced ½ inch thick ½ cup chopped Kalamata olives Pour 6 tablespoons of the olive oil into a small bowl and stir in the thyme, oregano, and lemon zest. Let stand for 1 hour. Heat chapa or large cast-iron griddle over high heat. Cut the eggplants and onions in half. Brush the cut sides with the remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil and place the cut side down on the griddle. Cook for 2 to 3 minutes, without turning, until well browned. Arrange the arugula on a platter. Top with the vegetables, browned side up. Wipe off the cooking surface. Brush with a little olive oil, and over medium-high heat, brown the cheese on one side only, 1–2 minutes. Use a wide spatula to transfer the cheese, browned side up, to the platter, placing it along side the vegetables. Drizzle with the herb and lemon oil, sprinkle with the chopped olives, and serve while the cheese is hot. Join us for Test Kitchen Encore to experience this incredible meal (see page 52 for details).
Photos by Ian McCausland 56 http://banvilleandjones.cornervine.com
test kitchen: the wines
Viña amalia 2009 dos fincas Cabernet Sauvignon Malbec Mendoza, Argentina $14.99
Renacer 2009 Enamore Mendoza, Argentina $33.99
Bodega Del Fin Del Mundo 2007 Special Blend Reserva Patagonia, Argentina $39.99
Mike: There is a spicy black pepper note on this wine that I didn’t read on the nose, but it goes beautifully with the chimichurri. The tannins melt away with this well-marbled rib steak. At this price point, this is a great pairing.
Mike: This is an Amarone-style blend that is unique to Argentina. The partially dried grapes give you a really rich, round, jammy wine that is also dry. There is a ton of mocha, pressed blueberries, strawberry jam, and chocolate. This pairs well with the rib steak, and really well with the vegetables.
Mike: This is a Cabernet-MalbecMerlot blend with a lot of complexity on the nose. I thought of 529 when we brought this wine in—it is a real steakhouse wine. The meat and this wine are a really stunning combination.
Flavia: This chimichurri reminds me of home—I feel like I’m there! The pepper in the wine reflects the spice of the chimichurri. The chimichurri isn’t oily so it doesn’t coat your palette. This is a very smooth wine that dances with the dish. Gary: The black current of the Cabernet is nicely rounded out by the softer Malbec. This a lot of wine, with really mild tannins. The red bell pepper brings out the ripeness in the Cabernet. The spiciness of the wine goes right into the spiciness of the steak, but it has enough fruit to stand on its own.
Flavia: You could fall in love with this wine. It is silky, but bigger than that—like velvet. It is so elegant, it’s like wine in a tuxedo. As soon as I tasted the wine I thought about the vegetables. It pairs quite provocatively with the smoky eggplant. Gary: The dark fruit flavours in this wine are really refined and have incredible depth. The oak isn’t pronounced, so it picks up on the chimichurri, but not as much on the smoky grill flavours.
Flavia: This winter, you don’t even need food to enjoy this big wine, but it helps! Even though it is big, the tannins give it a freshness. The spiciness of the chimichurri brings out a sweetness in the wine. Gary: I am getting rich cassis and fresh tobacco in the nose. This is a lovely, dense wine and the way the oak blends into the wine is seamless. This is a very intense, rich wine. It has an extra layer of complexity that pairs really well with each part of the meal.
We also tasted an incredible Argentine Chardonnay with this meal: Luca 2008 Chardonnay Uco Valley, Mendoza ($34.99). The oak in the Chardonnay brought out the grill flavours, adjusted well to the vinegar in the chimichurri, and just got better with the steak! For a more international experience, try: Bodega La Rural 2009 LaVuelta Merlot Mendoza, Argentina $10.99; Melipal 2008 Ikella Cabernet Sauvignon Mendoza, Argentina $13.99; Kilikanoon 2007 The Lackey Cabernet Sauvignon South Australia $17.99; Dominio Dostares 2007 Estay Tinto Castilla y León, Spain $18.99; Triguedina 2007 Petit Clos Cahors, Southwest France $18.99; Hewitson 2009 Baby Bush Mourvèdre Barossa Valley, Australia $28.99; Lange Twins 2009 Petite Sirah/Petit Verdot, California $29.99. www.banvilleandjones.com 57
“I love grapes, I love wine. The wine world is so complex that most people cannot imagine. In winemaking, there are many different traditions, different styles of wine, and different technologies. Wine has so many diverse aspects, and we are always discovering something new. Every detail is made up of many other little details, and all those details combine to make it possible to get closer to a wine that we dream to make.
This is what I love!” — DIEGO BONATO, WINEMAKER, TOLAINI ESTATES
Diego Bonato is the respected and passionate GM and Winemaker at Tolaini Estates in Tuscany. Diego brings great enthusiasm and expertise to every Tolaini vintage, creating award-winning wines for the world to enjoy. Diego was born into wine. His 6-hectare family vineyard in Colli Euganei, Veneto, has been tended by four generations of Bonato men. After completing his degree in enology, Diego travelled and learned the art of winemaking. He first worked at Tolaini as a cellar hand in 2006, and after travelling and working the Australian wine harvest, he returned to Tuscany in 2008. Available exclusively at Banville & Jones Wine Co.
Diego has an incredible team of four winemakers, bringing with them international experience and education from the Old and New Worlds. He also has the privilege of working with some of the biggest names in winemaking, including world-renowned winemaker Michel Rolland and famous Italian viticulturist Andrea Paoletti. His passion
banvilleandjones.com • 204.948.9463
for wine, food, family, and knowledge fuel his quest to create the perfect bottle of wine.
sidebar Words fail me By Sylvia Jansen, Sommelier (ISG, CMS), CSW Rich. Full. Sexy. Cigar box. Fig paste. Barnyard. Shiso leaf. Taut. Focused, but unctuous. Full bodied, yet lean. Brawny, yet elegant. Scored 94. And so it goes. Even the best wine descriptions can be frustratingly inadequate, deeply personal or otherwise hard for others to understand. Linguists tell us that wine descriptors are heavy in what they call “value language.” For example, we might describe a quality Argentine Malbec as “full, rich, toasty, and warm,” but if our own tastes run to light whites we might say the Malbec is “heavy, overripe, woody, and alcoholic.” Clearly, beauty is in the eye of the beholder. Wine’s aroma profile is the most problematic to assess and describe. Many aromas in wine are the same as in fruits and other substances, so we put our noses into a glass and might smell varied fruits and spices, or even dirt or gravel. The human nose takes these cues and transfers them to those centres of the brain that process memory and emotion. The information bypasses the language centre, and shouts out information about feelings and our own unique personal history. Sipping the wine adds new information about taste and structure: acidity, tannins, sweetness, and bitterness. The finish (after swallowing) is often lost in the swirl of information.
To make sense of this attack on personal experience and emotion, wine lovers and professionals draw on the tools of poetry and art (metaphor and personification); or the language of the lover (emotionality); or even try to distill those away with a scoring system of numbers, stars, or glasses (giving the appearance of objectivity). This lack of standard vocabulary has led some experts to try to find a better way. Some systems, such as the Aroma Wheel, designed by Ann C. Noble of University of California Davis, separate general aroma characters (such as fruit or spice) into specific characters (such as blueberries or black pepper). Formal wine education takes the approach a step further, and teaches students to assess everything from the visual to the finish and quality level of wines in a systematic way. Let me explain with five different tasting notes for the same iconic Catena Malbec blend from a great vintage: Personification: Rich, sexy, hedonistic, and forward, without being brash or unctuous. It attacks the palate with an assertive, muscular character, while still maintaining dignity and elegance. You will fall in love with this wine, and want it to be your companion for any special dinner.
Technical: Clear, healthy with high intensity on visual, aroma, and palate; developing aromas of Manitoba blueberry compote, Burgundian farmer-made cassis, freshly grated nutmeg, shiso leaf, humidor, and small roaster espresso with a dab of milk foam; dry, with balanced acidity and full, but not grainy, tannins. Full bodied, between 13.9 per cent and 14.0 per cent alcohol, with a fortythree second finish, indicative of exceptional quality. Metaphor: Taut and focused, but at the same time sculpted into a thing of beauty. A wall of flavour, pushing forward blueberry and cassis notes, cream and cappuccino in a massive but polished and balanced frame. Powerful and robust, stretching the finish line on and on. Number: 94! Can you believe it? They were ROBBED not to get 99 or 100. I mean, just taste it—is that 99 or what? Well, 94 is more justified than 90, or even worse, 89. Still, they should have given it 99. Emotion: Oh, my. This is unbelievable. Excuse me: I am just having a moment with this wine. Do you mind leaving us alone? Or, we can resort to the simple, but eminently efficient, one-word shorthand: delicious. Here’s to never being at a loss for words.
culinary partners Amici Restaurant
Bistro 1800 at Hilton Suites
Executive Chef Patrick Shrupka and his team serve up contemporary Northern Italian cuisine at this elegant Winnipeg dining destination. For over 20 years, Amici has maintained its reputation for culinary excellence: pairing consistently delicious meals with selections from an impressive wine list. 326 Broadway 204.943.4997
Bistro 7 ¼
Chef Louise Briskie-de Beer and partner Faiz de Beer love to share the fruits of their travels by bringing global cuisine with Manitoba flare to your palate. Café Savour’s atmosphere is as unique and delightful as the food, perfect for an intimate, formal dinner for two or a group of friends out to enjoy a casual evening of relaxing laughter. Open Thursday, Friday, and Saturday starting at 5:30 for dinner, or aftertheatre starting at 9:00 for appetizers and desserts. 956 St Mary's Rd 204.254.4681
Peasant Cookery Chef partner Tristan Foucault has reinvented the menu on the corner of King and Bannatyne. Peasant Cookery goes back to the land with uniquely prepared Old World dishes and top-notch service. This is real food, freshly harvested, and the seasonal ingredients speak for themselves. Literally everything is made from scratch by Tristan and his team. 100-283 Bannatyne Avenue 204.989.7700
Step’N Out Sur le Boulevard Step’N Out is the most uniquely intimate restaurant “sur le boulevard” in St. Boniface. The rich décor, personalized hand-written menu board, innovative cuisine and wine list are inspiring and romantic, making loyal patrons out of most every visitor for 14 years. Step’N Out is the ideal destination for your next lunch date, or that perfect night out. 157 Provencher Boulevard 204.956.7837
Terrace Fifty-Five Food and Wine Terrace Fifty-Five mirrors the natural beauty of Assiniboine Park. Whether an evening out, a leisurely lunch or a special event, this restaurant has the venue to match the occasion. With an original menu that is representative of our culture and region, Chef Resch maintains a strong commitment to sustainable and renewable resources. Enjoy Canadian fish, produce, bison, lamb, and grains, beautifully paired with a unique wine list. Unit B - 55 Pavilion Cr 204.938.7275
Wasabi Sabi Winnipeg’s premier sushi destination: Wasabi Sabi. For a bite of lunch on-the-go, or a long, lingering meal at the chef’s table, the Wasabi Group offers unforgettable sushi, appetizers, entrées, drink specials, and desserts. Visit Wasabi Sabi for Happy Hour, Monday to Saturday, 3 pm–6 pm and choose from tuna nachos, spicy mango prawns, tuna goma ae, pizza sushi, assorted tempura or ginger crème brûlée, just to name a few. 3-1360 Taylor Ave 204.415.7878
529 Wellington 529 Wellington serves only Canadian Prime beef and fresh seafood, with impeccable service in an elegantly restored 1912 mansion on the banks of the Assiniboine River. Celebrating its 10th Anniversary, 529 has quickly become a world renowned icon in the restaurant industry. An exquisite menu and extensive wine cellar make for truly memorable food and wine experiences at 529. Just ask Brad Pitt or Jennifer Lopez! 529 Wellington Crescent 204.487.8325
Café Dario Café Savour Cherry Hill Estate Elkhorn Resort Earl’s Restaurant and Bar Horfrost Hy’s Steakhouse Joey Kenaston Joey Polo Park Joey’s Only Seafood Maple Tree Restaurant and Steakhouse Olive Garden Italian Restaurant Pizzeria Gusto Prairie Ink Café Rembrandt’s Bistro Sabai Thai Segovia Santa Lucia Spuntino Café St. Charles Country Club Sukhothai The Current at Inn at the Forks The Victoria Inn Tony Roma’s Urban Prairie Cuisine Village Green Restaurant
shopping list Alamos 2009 Chardonnay Mendoza, Argentina $13.99....................................... 38 AVE 2008 Gran Riserva Malbec Mendoza, Argentina $29.99.......................... 20 AVE 2009 Premium Malbec Mendoza, Argentina $16.99....................................... 20 AVE 2009 Premium Malbec Rosé Mendoza, Argentina $15.99.............................. 20 AVE 2009 Premium Torrontes Cafayate Salta, Argentina $15.99......................... 20, 31 Benziger Family Winery 2007 Cabernet Sauvignon Sonoma County, California $35.99.......................................... 62 Bodega Del Fin Del Mundo 2008 Reserva Malbec Patagonia, Argentina $17.99...................................... 28 Bodega Del Fin Del Mundo 2007 Special Blend Reserva Patagonia, Argentina $39.99...................................... 57 Bothwell Muenster cheese $5.99................................ 21 Brothers in Arms 2005 No. 6 Shiraz/Cabernet McLaren Vale, South Australia $29.99....................... 62 Catena 2008 Malbec Mendoza, Argentina $21.99....................................... 28 Catena Alta 2008 Chardonnay Mendoza, Argentina $36.99....................................... 38 Catena Zapata 2006 Argentino Malbec Mendoza, Argentina $124.99........................ 38 Dominio Dostares 2007 Estay Tinto Castilla y León, Spain $18.99..................................... 57 Eisch 10 Carat Duck Decanter $299.99..................... 20 Father Daughter Duo $55.00..................................... 53 Festive Feast Christmas Basket $100......................... 53 For the Love of Wine Christmas Basket $120............................................... 53 Hacienda Albae 2009 Esencia Syrah/Merlot, Spain $12.99........................................ 62 Hewitson 2009 Baby Bush Mourvèdre Barossa Valley, Australia $28.99................................ 57 Holiday Deluxe Christmas Basket $200.................... 53 Holiday Reds Christmas Case $129........................... 53 Holiday Whites Christmas Case $129........................ 53 Holiday Wines of Distinction Christmas Case $169 ............................. 53 Kilikanoon 2007 The Lackey Cabernet Sauvignon South Australia $17.99.............. 57 Lange Twins 2009 Petite Sirah/ Petit Verdot, California $29.99.................................. 57 Lap of Luxury Christmas Basket $250....................... 53 Luca 2009 Malbec Mendoza, Argentina $39.99....................................... 38
Luca 2008 Chardonnay Mendoza, Argentina $34.99................................. 38, 62 Mariflor 2009 Malbec Valle de Uco, Mendoza, Argentina $32.99................. 27 Melipal 2009 Ikella Malbec Mendoza, Argentina $13.99................................. 28, 57 Michel Torino 2009 Don David Reserve Torrontes Cafayate Salta, Argentina $13.99............................... 31 Bodega La Rural 2009 LaVuelta Merlot, Mendoza, Argentina $10.99.......................... 57 Noemia 2008 A Lisa Patagonia, Argentina $42.99................................ 23, 27 Pulenta 2008 I Malbec Alto Agrelo Mendoza, Argentina $22.99....................................... 23 Pulenta 2009 La Flor Malbec Mendoza, Argentina $14.99....................................... 23 Rabbit Swish Aerator $19.99..................................... 21 Remo Farina 2008 Ripasso Valpolicella Classico Superiore, Italy $18.99.............. 62 Renacer 2009 Enamore, Mendoza Argentina $33.99........................................ 57 Renacer 2009 Punto Final Malbec Mendoza, Argentina $15.99.......................... 28 Santa’s Wish List Christmas Basket $150................... 53 Savoury Sensations Christmas Basket $60.................. 53 Solo Red $20.00......................................................... 53 Solo White $20.00...................................................... 53 Sweet Temptations Christmas Basket $60.................. 53 Tamber Bey 2008 Deux Chevaux Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley, California, 59.99........62 Telteca 2009 UMA Torrontes Mendoza, Argentina $9.99......................................... 31 The Wine Journal $44.99........................................... 21 Tikal 2008 Amorio Malbec Mendoza, Argentina $33.99....................................... 28 Triguedina 2007 Petit Clos Cahors, Southwest France $18.99.............................. 57 Viña Amalia 2009 Dos Fincas Cabernet Sauvignon/Malbec Mendoza, Argentina $14.99....................................... 57 Wine & Cheese Christmas Basket $80...................... 53 Yacochuya 2004 Malbec Cafayate Salta, Argentina $98.99....................................................... 28 Zorzal 2009 Chardonnay Tupungato Mendoza, Argentina $15.99...................................... 23 Zorzal 2010 Malbec Gualtallary, Mendoza, Argentina $16.99....................................... 27 Zuccardi 2010 Innovacion Arinaroa Mendoza, Argentina $15.99....................................... 31
Due to the nature of the wine industry, any prices and vintages listed in this publication, as well as availability of product, are subject to change and cannot be guaranteed by Banville & Jones Wine Co. www.banvilleandjones.com 61
Tamber Bey 2008 Deux Chevaux Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon, Napa Valley, USA $59.99
Benziger Family Winery 2007 Cabernet Sauvignon, Sonoma County, USA $35.99
Hacienda Albae 2009 Esencia Syrah/Merlot, Spain $12.99
We took a long time to find it, but it will finally be here at the end of October: our newest favourite Napa Cab! The Tamber Bey Cabernet is the wine I have been searching for for a year. Big, rich, opulent, and an amazing value from Napa Valley. Drink it with your next prime rib roast, or just to show off your great taste to friends!
If delicious could be poured into a wine glass, I would pour the Benziger 2007 Cabernet Sauvignon. This full-bodied wine is filled with rich, dark fruit. Its soft, graceful tannins show a well-crafted organic wine. This holiday season, if you dare to be delicious, impress your guests and pour away!
WOW! The Esencia, made of 70 per cent Shiraz and 30 per cent Merlot, is bold and bursting with flavour. This winemaker's new approach produces a fruit-concentrated, colour-rich, sweet-smelling gem not typical of Spain. Only 3 months of oak aging imparts the right touch of vanilla and cocoa, while creating lush, smooth tannins. Esencia is essential for everyone's wine rack.
Flavia Fernandez Fabio
Luca 2008 Chardonnay Mendoza, Argentina $34.99
Remo Farina 2008 Ripasso Valpolicella Classico Superiore, Italy $18.99
Brothers in Arms 2005 No. 6 McLaren Vale, South Australia $29.99
You may not expect this, but winter is a great time for a full-bodied Chardonnay as a companion to your favourite stew or a nice piece of red meat. Luca Chardonnay has the perfect amount of oak, adding complexity without smothering the fruit. This rich, sensual white has plenty of pineapple, and is like golden silk on the palate. It is the perfect wine to transition from “cooking time” to “eating time.”
This Ripasso goes well with a hearty ragout or a board of well-aged cheeses and crusty bread. Immerse yourself in the aromas of plum and cherry jam with notes of pepper and leather. Corvina, Rondinella, and Molinara grapes are first fermented in stainless steel, then a second fermentation (ripasso) is made on the Amarone's grape skins, giving the wine its deep ruby red colour, luscious body, and rich aromas. A great wine at a great price!
With all of the wonderful wines to choose from, we sometimes forget the great standbys. I recently revisited Brothers in Arms, and its distinct character has stood the test of time. After those first couple of sips, the dark, deep fruits linger. This wine is great on its own, or works equally well with a steak dinner. Go ahead and try (or retry!) the Brothers. You won't forget it again!
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The 2011 ML-Class. © 2011 Mercedes-Benz Canada Inc. ML 63 AMG shown.
Mercedes-Benz Winnipeg, 2554 Portage Avenue at Moray, Winnipeg, R3J 0N8, (204) 667-2467, www.mbwinnipeg.ca
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The Cellar Door: Issue 10. Amo Argentina. October 11 - January 2012