The Duffy Lake Road—an easy, warm weather route from Whistler to Fort Berens and  the interior—sports no shortage of stunning scenery

Every time I taste a wine from Fort Berens I’m impressed. While it may well be the wine itself that makes its mark (their 2012 was a pop-out BC Lieutenant Governor’s Award winner), it’s also the overall story that grabs me. I’ve been watching the growth of BC’s “borderline” regions with interest. I don’t fault […]


Bordeaux 2012: a sneak peek with MW Barbare Philip

There’s no denying the mystique of Bordeaux. It’s entrenched in wine lore. Many will say: “And rightly so.” After all, Bordeaux is still regarded as the world’s leading wine producing region, by which all others are judged. And just about every New World wine region (from Okanagan to Napa, Stellenbosch, Maipo or wherever), has its own […]

{ 1 comment }

Top Drop Home

This week sees the return of Top Drop Vancouver (Sept 10-11), a “wine and more” festival that focuses very much on smaller wineries and other craft producers. Last year’s debut was rightly well received—likely because the selection of wineries did indeed appeal to a more curious taster, as well as to sommeliers looking to tweak […]


Judgement of BC Chardonnay flight sm  Tim Pawsey photo

I’m still sifting through the results (***See below for the full list)  from this past week’s Judgment  of BC tasting, led by D.J. Kearney, with Steven Spurrier, Consultant Editor to Decanter Magazine, organised by Wines of British Columbia.  It was one of the best tastings in which I’ve participated. That’s not to say that it wasn’t challenging. When […]


Steven Spurrier Comes to BC

It’s a very Canadian trait that we rarely confer praise on our own until validity is confirmed from the outside. But the fact that British wine expert Steven Spurrier is taking time to visit the Okanagan and Vancouver does mark another major milestone in the still young history of the industry. I’m reminded of the first time […]

Read more August 22, 2015 Wine

Four Good Reasons to Dive into Supermarine

Supermarine crispy octopus chips sm

A Chat with James Iranzad… After I wrote my piece on Supermarine (1685 Yew St., Vancouver, 604-739-4677) for the Courier, I thought it would be interesting to find out what’s behind James Iranzad and Josh Pape’s latest.  By the time our conversation was over, I was keen to get back. Here’s why. 1. It’s a breath […]

Read more August 20, 2015 Dining

Cheese Maven Alice Spurrell Retires

Alice Spurrell (rt.) hands over the reins of Les Amis du Fromage to daughter Allison (l.)  Tim Pawsey photo

I’ve always figured it’s my role to bring attention where it’s due. That can be challenging from an in-box cluttered with way too much inconsequential stuff. But this week an announcement popped up from Les Amis du Fromage. And the news is significant: Les Amis’ co-founder and matriach (she’ll kill me for that!) Alice Spurrell […]

Read more August 11, 2015 Dining

Red Racer + Dix Redux = Good Brews News

Red Racer Restaurant has landed—with a few taps to go along...

  The Big Brews News of the month is that Central City Brewing’s much anticipated Red Racer Restaurant has landed in downtown Vancouver, in the old Dix BBQ & Brewery spot. (871 Beatty St.) And, no surprise, there’s a whole raft of Red Racer brews on tap. It’s never been entirely clear to me why Dix […]

Read more July 30, 2015 Beer

5 Reasons to Watch Maverick Estate Winery

Maverick enjoys impressive views of the South Okanagan

For a couple of years now I’ve been watching the progress of Maverick Estate Winery. The wines made by South African born Bertus Albertyn impressed me right out of the gate—even before I knew that Bertus was (briefly) the winemaker at Don Triggs’ Culmina project, before moving on to Burrowing Owl. Since I last visited […]

Read more July 25, 2015 Wine

SoCIAL Lite: A Sin-free (and Tasteful) Cooler

SoCIAL Lite: taking a solid shot at the lucrative cooler business

I’ve never been a cooler fan. I can’t really say why, except that I don’t like sweet drinks. It wasn’t always like that. When I was a kid, my parents used to take us kids to the pub after church. (Nice balance of priorities…) We’d sit in the car outside with bottles of CherryAde (non […]

Read more July 21, 2015 Beer