A Wine Lover’s Diary, part 773: Okanagan’s Bartier Bros.

In 2009, brothers Michael and Don Bartier formed the company Bartier Bros. to work two vineyards in the southern Okanagan, and in 2015 they opened their own winery, where they now produce 3,000 cases a year.  They kindly sent me the following wines to taste: Continue reading

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A Wine Lover’s Diary, part 772: Nature versus Nurture

A photo of a computer screen showing a Zoom meeting between Ed and Tony

Ed Madronich and I taste wines the Zoom way

Flat Rock Cellars Pinot Experiment

Ed Madronich, proprietor of Flat Rock Cellars, invited me to a Zoom tasting of the winery’s 2019 Pinot Noirs. He had sent over a bottle of each of the Estate Pinot Noir, Gravity Pinot Noir and Nature Pinot Noir (made with natural yeast) and the same wine, treated in exactly the same way in terms of fermentation and barrel-ageing, made with cultured yeast, labelled Nurture. The experiment by winemaker David Sheppard was to determine the effect of the different yeasts on the bouquet and flavour of the wine as well as its colour. Continue reading

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A Wine Lover’s Diary, part 771: Winemaker’s Cut

Winemaker’s Cut wines

I received six wines from an Okanagan Valley winery called Winemaker’s Cut.

Here’s an explanation of their name, taken from their website: “Like a director’s cut, an edited version of a film that represents the director’s unique point of view, Winemaker’s CUT is influenced by the winemaker and their unique styling/blending of an Okanagan wine. The grapes that shape CUT wines are hand-harvested at Deadman Lake Vineyard just south of Oliver, BC. With utmost respect to nature, while honoring traditional winemaking methods, sustainable farming, and a zero pesticides policy with low sulphur use, CUT wines develop naturally and express characteristics indicative of this unique Okanagan vineyard.” Continue reading

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Bidding Has Begun on the Grapes for Humanity “Save Hospitality” Fine Wine Charity Auction

The online Grapes for Humanity – Save Hospitality Fine Wine Auction catalogue is now LIVE and now ready for bidding. Browse through 300+ available lots including historic vintage wines, large format bottles, dinner packages, barrels made by 30+ of Ontario’s leading winemakers, vacation packages, two signed guitars by RUSH band members Geddy Lee (a Grapes for Humanity board member) and Alex Lifeson, and much, much more.

This auction is not just for collectors. Many of the lots are very reasonably priced, and have been built to appeal to a wide spectrum of palates, styles, and budgets, so enjoy exploring!

Bidding starts Monday, September 28,
and ends on Wednesday, October 7.

Proceeds will directly benefit Ontario Hospitality front line workers through the Toronto Restaurant Workers Relief Fund, the Bartenders Benevolent Fund, and independent Ontario restaurants through SaveHospitality.ca.


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The Grapes for Humanity “Save Hospitality” Fine Wine Charity Auction

Over 300 lots of exceptional wines, winery tours, autographed bottles

guitars donated by Rock and Roll Hall of Famers

Geddy Lee and Alex Lifeson of Rush


Monday September 28th to Wednesday October 7th, 2020
Online through 
Waddington’s Auctioneers & Appraisers

Grapes for Humanity invites you to Save the Date for our “Save Hospitality Fundraiser” virtual fine wine auction, September 28th to October 7th, 2020, presented by Waddington’s Auctioneers and Appraisers.  This special auction features not only some of the world’s finest and rarest wines, but also many lots of exceptional ready-to-drink wines from the finest wine regions.

“After years of enjoying their service, it’s our turn to serve them,” said Geddy Lee. “The Chefs, Sommeliers, Waitstaff, Delivery personnel, Farmers, Fisherman, Bakers and more whose livelihood has evaporated virtually overnight. Right now we must throw a lifeline to those who need us. I reached out to some fellow wine lovers and asked them to raid their wine cellars to help us raise funds to support staff and independent restaurant owners to weather this storm.”

At the top we have multiple vintages of first growth Bordeaux and Grand Cru Burgundy; four vintages of the world’s rarest port, Quinto do Noval Nacional; 18 vintages of Australia’s most famous wine, Penfold’s Grange; Pinot Noirs from the only two great growths of New Zealand, Ata Rangi and Felton Road; and 25 lots of the inaugural Cuvee of the Heart Pinot Noir and Chardonnay blended by Thomas Bachelder, Canada’s leading winemaker, from contributions of 30+ Ontario winemakers! The Ferragamo lot features a 3 litre of their best wine, Il Borro, plus a tour, tasting, dinner and three-night stay at their Relais et Chateaux resort in the heart of Tuscany. We have rare verticals from historic Ontario wineries such as Cave Springs and Henry of Pelham.

For buyers seeking immediate enjoyment, we have Malbec from the historic Patagonian producer Humberto Canale, Sancerre from the 500-year-old Joseph Mellot winery in the Loire, powerful rich wines from Bodega Numanthia in Toro, Spain, some of British Columbia’s finest, plus award-winning wines from Pond View Estates here in Ontario and mixed lots from exceptional wineries.

Whether you are looking for something to savour with tonight’s dinner or some wine to treasure and hold for future enjoyment, this auction has it all and more. But don’t take our word for it – peruse the Auction Catalogue.

Proceeds will directly benefit Ontario Hospitality front-line workers through the Toronto Restaurant Workers Relief Fund; the Bartender’s Benevolent Fund; and independent Ontario restaurants through savehospitality.ca.  To find out more about Grapes for Humanity, visit grapesforhumanity.com.

Vintage wines, collectable rarities, memorabilia, and once-in-a-lifetime wine experiences for the emerging collector as well as the aficionado, this rare opportunity offers exceptional wine from multiple producers, varying vintages, and unique experiences.

Bid once, bid often and prepare to delight in your purchase for a good cause.

For more information, please CLICK HERE

To donate funds click DONATE

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