A Wine Lover’s Diary, part 900: Access Education Guatemala

Front row (l to r): Cathy Martin, Deborah Aspler, Helen Hatzis (President), Steven Campbell; back row (l to r): Bernard Stramwasser, Garrett Herman, Tony Aspler. Not present: Liz Gallery, Geddy Lee, Hans Gerhardt, Doris Miculan Bradley.

Thursday, October 26th: A fund-raiser for Access Education Guatemala (which Grapes for Humanity Canada had helped to fund for 13 years). Deborah and I were being honoured and our hosts Adrienne Rosen and Myra White (the founders of Access Education) sent a limo to take us to Lula Lounge in Toronto – complete with a bottle of Veuve Clicquot Champagne on ice! At the fundraiser, there was a two-way link with one of the schools GFH helped build and a video. Deborah and I were presented with a plaque to mark the occasion. At the dinner we drank Pierres Blanches Chardonnay (from the Pays d’Oc) and Bodegas Bilbainas Viña Pomal Crianza 2019 from Rioja. We were not successful with our bids in the silent auction, unfortunately, but it was a memorable evening.

Other wines tasted this week:

Sacred Hill Chardonnay 2022 (Hawke’s Bay, New Zealand; $21.95, Vintages #17563)
Bright, white old in colour; toasted hazelnut and yellow apple bouquet with oak spice; medium-bodied, dry, ripe peach and apple flavours balanced with fresh acidity and well-integrated oak. (91)

Santa Ema 60/40 Cabernet Sauvignon Carmenère 2021 (Maipo Valley, Chile; $19.95, Vintages #34606, to be released Dec. 16th)
Opaque purple black in colour; smoky, cedary, blackberry nose; medium to full-bodied, dry, richly extracted black fruit flavour with notes of dark chocolate; rich and full on the palate, well balanced. (90)

Mt. Veeder Winery Cabernet Sauvignon 2021 (Napa Valley)
Dense purple in colour; cedary, blackcurrant and black plum bouquet with oak spice and a note of vanilla; full-bodied, fleshy and richly extracted with blackcurrant and licorice flavours; voluptuous on the palate, lovely mouth-feel, firmly structured with ripe tannins, and great length. A gorgeous wine! (93)

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