Mad About Malbec in Mendoza The Wine Ladies TV Fabre Montmayou Empanadas

The Ice House Winery

The Wine Ladies TV Luxurious Liquid Gold, Canada’s Iconic Icewine. The Ice House Winery.

The Ice House Winery, Dome Productions, The Wine Ladies TV

Luxurious Liquid Gold. Canada’s Icewine. The Wine Ladies speak with Co owners Jamie Macfarlane and Karen King of The Ice House Winery in Niagara-on-the-Lake.

Luxurious Liquid Gold. Canada’s Icewine.

The Wine Ladies speak with Co owners Jamie Macfarlane and Karen King of The Ice House Winery in Niagara-on-the-Lake. Jamie also known as “The Wine Wizard” reveals why Canada’s Icewines are the best in the world. While Karen a “Sensory Specialist” shares pairing secrets other than sweets that go beautifully with this amazing wine. The Wine Ladies also make and enjoy The Ice House Winery world renowned N’Icewine Slushies.

The Ice House

The Wine Ladies TV goes on a shopping expedition to Oak Ridge Food Markets.

Our goal, to find unpredictable and healthy food pairings with Canada’s iconic wine, Icewine. What shall we find to pair with the Ice House Winery Icewines?

Shannon Clark and Danielle Greco from 4TheLuvOfFood

While at the market they meet Shannon Clark and Danielle Greco from 4TheLuvOfFood who share with them some really good news! Cheese and wine, fat burning, yes, it is true! They say eat what you want and lose body fat without dieting! Get healthy and transform your body.

Cheese and wine, fat burning? Yes, its true say founders Shannon and Danielle of 4 the Luv of Food !

They say eat what you want and lose body fat without dieting! Get healthy and transform your body!The Wine Ladies TV goes on a shopping expedition at Oak Ridge Food Markets for unpredictable, and healthy food pairings with Canada’s iconic wine, Icewine. What shall we find to pair with the Ice House Winery Icewines?

Cheese is good, even Roquefort and Parmigiano if enjoyed with wine, paté is delish too! It’s about food combining and making balanced choices for optimal health and well being. We are in 100%, pass me a chunk of that homemade brittle please… it too is healthy! We love these gals!

About 4TheLuvofFood

Stop the dieting, end the guilt and transform your body in just 12-weeks!
No matter what your health goals are, we understand that you have questions and that trying to find answers can be confusing and overwhelming. Maybe you’re a single woman who wants to learn how to choose healthy options when you’re on that second date. Or maybe you’re a multitasking mom who requires more balanced nutrition than just eating your son’s leftover banana. You want answers and we’re here to give it to you.
This is where the dieting stops and your transformation begins. Forget short-term fixes, we believe in a balanced approach that will last a lifetime. This is your opportunity to eat what you love but in the right combination to lose body fat without dieting!
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Ask The Wine Ladies… Is Icewine made the same as Sauternes?

Stunning Santiago with the Andes as a backdrop. Breathtaking!

MontGras Colchagua,The Wine Ladies Adventure in Chile.

MontGras Colchagua, Cabernet and Carmnere.

MontGras Colchagua, Cabernet and Carmnere.

Crazy for Cabernet in Chile…. and Carmenere too!

Stunning Santiago with the Andes as a backdrop. Breathtaking!

A moment in time, frozen in our minds for ever was the vision of the spectacular Andes mountains as we approached the captial city of Santiago, Chile. Breathtaking in a  rainblow of colours, we inhaled the magnificence of the largest mountain range in the world. Chile, at last, we’d so  been looking forward to this day! On the world wide stage of wine, Chile has an enviable position!

Stunning Santiago with the Andes as a backdrop. Breathtaking!

Welcome to Chile! It may be long and skinny in size and shape. However, it’s awfully big and fat when it comes to fabuous wines and food! As a wine producing country Chile has been dealt a winning hand thanks in large part to its natural barriers. The Atacama Desert in the north, the  magnificent Andes Mountains in the east, Patagonian icefields to the south and of course the Pacific Ocean to the west. These geogrpahic barriers serve Chile well, protecting the vineyards from pests and disease, while also facilitating organic and even biodynamic viticulture.

Chile, in fact was never affected by the root eating louse Phylloxera.

Phylloxera decimated the winegrowing regions in the mid 1800’s. As a result grafting was never necessary and the great majority of Chile’s vines are planted on their original rootstocks. Unlike the majority of grapevines in the “old world” planted on the hearty North American rootstocks, their saviour! Many maintain Chilian vines are at a huge advantage with vines better able to express their character and their terroir.

Wine Map courtesy Wines of Chile

Wine Map courtesy Wines of Chile

On our all too short recent visit to Chile we had the opportunity to experience three of the fourteen wine regions.

The regions including the Maipo Valley, “numero uno” for Cabernet Sauvignon. Leyda, the newest cool climate region producing premium white wines knocking it out of the ball park. The Colchagua Valley, one of Chile’s best-known regions particularly applauded for its Carmenere, Syrah and Cabernet Sauvignon.

Here we share the time we spent with Mont Gras Properties, a company founded in 1992 by  brothers Hernán and Eduardo Gras as well as Cristian Hartwig, who has since moved on to other avenues.  Mont Gras Properties’ mission was to create world-class wines that reflected Chile’s best terroirs. Today, “mission accomplished” with Mont Gras enjoying tremendous success with their line-up of wines including a variety of Mont Gras Colchagua, their ultra-premium “Ninquen” reds from Chile’s first mountain vineyard  also located in Colchagua, Amaral from Leyda and last but not least INTRIGA Maipo 1865.

MontGras properties.

MontGras properties.

Our introductory evening totally rocked… Hernan and Juan Pablo Quijada, Export Manager, “personality extraordinaire” took us to “La Mar”, one of the best, most happening, colourful and amazing restaurants in town. The music played, the apps arrived, the wines flowed, but not before a couple of Pisco Sours arrived! Pisco is a  traditional drink of Chile, made from specific grapes, fermented and distilled into a potent aguardiente. The Pisco Sour cocktail is delish, but imbiber beware…. it has a way of catching up with you, with its seductive sweeetness and flavour!

Our 1st night in Santiago, Chile included a delicious dinner at La Mar. Hernán Gras and Juan Pablo Quijada of MontGras show us the sites.

Our 1st night in Santiago, Chile included a delicious dinner at La Mar. Hernán Gras and Juan Pablo Quijada of MontGras show us the sites.

From the sea…. or ocean we enjoy an assortment of ceviche, dressed in varying treatments, amazingly delicious! Main courses include scallops, sea bass, conger and more. We enjoy a bottle of  Mont Gras’  Quatro, made from  selected handpicked grapes, a blend of Cab Sauv, Carmenere, Syrah and Malbec, aged for approximately eleven months in French and American oak, the bouquet is seductive with black currant, spices hints of leather and vanilla, with a long finish, delicious.

Available at the LCBO the MontGras Quatro 2011,$14.95

Available at the LCBO the MontGras Quatro 2011,$14.95

Alas…bid buona noche, tomorrow a full day in planned.

The “work” is now about to begin! At the tasting table, overlooking the stunning vineyards of Mont Gras Cabernet Sauvignon, head winemaker Santiago Margozzini is at the helm…before too long we are totally engrossed in passsionate and enlightening conversation and tasting.

MontGras winemaker Santiago Margozzini led us through an informative and entertaining wine tasting.

MontGras winemaker Santiago Margozzini led us through an informative and entertaining wine tasting.

Crazy for Cabernet in Chile & Cabernet too! MontGas Winemaker Santiago Margozzini The Wine Ladies TV

Crazy for Cabernet in Chile & Cabernet too! MontGas Winemaker Santiago Margozzini The Wine Ladies TV

Santiago, passionate and articulate starts with the Amaral Sauvignon Blanc 2012… Susanne loves Sauvignon Blanc!  From one of the newest cool climate regions “Leyda”  delish, crisp, aromatic with grapefruit and touch of mango, captivating mouth watering acidity, nice clean finish. Leyda is a sub region of San Antonio located southwest of Santiago  in a small valley between the Coastal Mountain Range and the Pacific Ocean with the climate proving excellent for Sauvignon Blanc.

Available at the LCBO Amaral Sauvignon Blanc 2011, $14.45 

Available at the LCBO Amaral Sauvignon Blanc 2011, $14.45

On to the reds and on to Carmenere.

Carmenere, the grape that is quickly becoming the natural associated grape with Chile! A grape with plantings in Chile that was thought originally to be merlot, brought over from France. With leaves that look almost identical it suffered an identity crisis! Until an ampelographer  (wine grape scientist) discovered differently. Lead winemaker Santiago explains here how it was discovered and how it has come to be a true appreciated grape in its own right, especially here in Chile.

Carmenere has so become a major player that it too now has its own wine glass specifically designed by Riedel. This glass allows the best enjoyment  and appreciation of its unique properties!  With a more tapered shape engineered to capture and concentrate the aromatics of this ever popular, late ripening grape. The grape that exudes spice, black fruit, ripe fruit, soft tannins.

Done right, Carmenere can seduce the most discerning of palates whether on its own or blended with a king… Cabernet Sauvignon!

Both wines available at the LCBO. MontGras Carménère Reserva, $12.00  and MontGras Cabernet Sauvignon,$12.00

Both wines available at the LCBO. MontGras Carménère Reserva, $12.00  and MontGras Cabernet Sauvignon,$12.00

From the mountain vineyard our final wine, the flagship Ninquen 2009, 60% Syrah, 40% Cab Sauv, aged for 24 months in 90% French and 10% American oak. Ditch the spitoons, it’s a wrap, bring the carafe! Layered and complex with touches of leather, lots of alluring ripe black fruit, spice and a long lasting finish.

We are enrolled into Santiago's winemaking college!

We are enrolled into Santiago’s winemaking college!

Crazy for Cabernet in Chile & Cabernet too! MontGas Wine making school The Wine Ladies TV

Crazy for Cabernet in Chile & Cabernet too! MontGas Wine making school The Wine Ladies TV

So you think being a winemaker is an easy gig? Think again, as we are ushered down to the cellar where we are faced with creating our own wine! From the blend, selecting varying proportions of Cab Sauv, Carmenere and Merlot, to bottling, corking, labelling and picking a name! Loads of fun, it’s back to chemistry 101, with test tubes, measuring apparatus, calculater and nose and taste buds! We are put to the task!

"Susanne’s

Pinch me! Seriously! Horseback riding in the vineyards in Chile! Really???

Nothing like riding on horseback through the Ninquén vineyards, simply magical!

Nothing like riding on horseback through the Ninquén vineyards, simply magical!

Crazy for Cabernet in Chile & Carmenere too! Ninquen Mountain Vineyard, Chile The Wine Ladies TV

Crazy for Cabernet in Chile & Carmenere too! Ninquen Mountain Vineyard, Chile The Wine Ladies TV

Next on the agenda….it is time for us to ascend the first mountain vineyard in Chile “Ninquén“.  We mount our horses, and are off, a breathtaking trek up the mountain, through the stunning vineyards, the Andes dutifully our compass and our inspiration. We learn that the berries are purposefully kept small, keeping the yields low, resulting in the highest concentrated and best quality grapes possible.  This is Ninquen, the mountain vineyard. “Everyone thought we were crazy, planting up here on the mountain on a wild, rugged landscape with challenges to the grape such as poor shallow soils” explains Juan Paul…

Available at the LCBO the Antu Syrah 2010 $16.95

Available at the LCBO the Antu Syrah 2010 $16.95

Planted with Syrah, Cabernet Sauvignon and Carmenere, the ultra premium reds that these vineyards produce are now iconic and have set a stage for further vineyards climbing “to the top”. Once atop we inhale the air, the Andes, the vineyards while we sip on the Antu Ninquen Syrah 2011… so rich, with notes of black and white pepper and hints of leather and with ripe black fruit. We’ve developed quite the appetite! A scrumptious lunch awaits  us “city slickers”! Note, Susanne’s be-jewelled dress, perfect for horseback?

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Final stop… INTRIGA, located in the Maipo Valley originally dating back to 1865 as Vina Linderos was taken over by MontGras Properites in 2005. The Maipo Valley  is known for their Cabernet Sauvignon and INTRIGA is a vineyard producing some of the finest under the direction of winemaker Cristian Correa.  We have the privilege to share with Cristian his latest two vintages as well as a barrel sample of the 2012.

INTRIGA is a vineyard producing some of the finest under the direction of winemaker Cristian Correa

INTRIGA is a vineyard producing some of the finest under the direction of winemaker Cristian Correa.

Today, over 140 years after its establishment, Intriga remains with the same mission and concept: Produce premium quality wines with great care of the fruit and the environment.

We’d like to extend a big thank you to everyone at MontGras for welcoming us and sharing their enthusiasm and passion for their wines, the incredible wine regions, the cuisine and the joie de vivre that surrounds it all in your beautiful country Chile! It was truly a magical visit and we departed “Crazy for Cab in Chile and Carmenere too”!

Meet head winemaker Santiago Margozzini of MontGras. On this week’s audio podcast.

Mad About Malbec in Mendoza The Wine Ladies TV Fabre Montmayou Wine Art 2013

Mad About Malbec in Mendoza The Wine Ladies TV Fabre Montmayou Wine Art 2013!

Fabre Montmayou, Mendoza, Argentina, Sorting Grapes,Harvest

Mad About Malbec in Mendoza The Wine Ladies TV Fabre Montmayou Vineyard!!

Horseback riding in the vineyard, Bodegas Salentein, Argentina, The Wine Ladies TV.

Horseback Riding, Bodegas Salentein, Argentina, The Wine Ladies TV, March 2013.

Ed Madronich, Flat Rock Cellars

Flat Rock Cellars, The Wine Ladies speak with Ed Madronich.

While attending the 2012 Niagara Wine Festival we visited Flat Rock Cellars in Jordan, Ontario. Enjoyed a couple of glasses of wine with Ed Madronich, Proprietor. The topic of Ontario wines and how they have evolved over the 30 past years was discussed. Do you think Ontario wines are expensive? Ed shared his views. What do you think? http://flatrockcellars.com

About Flat Rock Cellars

We are here at Flat Rock for two reasons. First, we’re here to make great wine. Second, we’re here to offer you a truly personal wine experience. Everything we do comes from these two basic principles. We start in the vineyard with low yields, progressive viticulture practices and hand picking and sorting the grapes. We continue inside the winery with a sexy gravity-flow design and the latest in wine making equipment from around the world. But that’s just the tip of it. You see, it’s no fun for us if you aren’t enjoying yourself. So you’ll find an infectious sense of fun and lack of pretension at Flat Rock. We love what we do and we want to share that sense of wonder about the mysteries of the vine. From the tasting bar to our wine education programs — it’s all about getting you involved.

Founded in 1999 on a spectacular piece of the Niagara Escarpment known as the Jordan Bench.

Flat Rock is perched on a gently rolling slope studded with vines. The winery building is a quirky, glass encased, hexagonal masterpiece that’s distinctive and fun. From here you can enjoy our crowning glory, the breathtaking views of the Peninsula and across Lake Ontario to Toronto. Look closely at our logo and you’ll see the image of a woman holding a basket of grapes. To us, she is the embodiment of winemaking. Our predominant colour is red because it is not only the colour of wine, but also of passion; and we are nothing if not passionate about winemaking! The rocks that are the geological foundation of the winery and are found throughout the property are the roots of our Flat Rock Cellars name.

Happy Canada Day! Local wine with Flat Rock Cellars, Cameron’s Brewing Company and Peapod Cuisine.

Award winning wining and dining at Pago Pago, Westin Resort and Casino, Aruba

Aruba has become an incredibly desirable destination with so much to offer and to celebrate including an annual Wine, Food and Art Festival, held at The Westin Resort and Casino, Aruba www.thewestin.com/Aruba right up our alley!

Our home away from home is the Westin Resort and Casino, well known for their culinary program, with Pago Pago http://www.westinaruba.com/ArubaRestaurantsPagoPago one of their restaurants being awarded the Wine Spectator Award of Excellence.

Here we meet Executive Chef Matt Boland, responsible for all the restaurants and eateries at the Westin Resort and Casino. We quickly are taken with the enthusiasm Matt has for his craft, his mandate here and the island of Aruba captured here in our interview.

Georgia chats with Chef Bolland in The Westin Resort and Casino Art Gallery.

 Pago Pago, where we will dine this week is the recipient of the Wine Spectator Award of Excellence, which we will soon appreciate, and be dazzled with; a steady stream of creative and delectable recipes paired with a selection of wines from Napa Valley, France and Chile will grace our table.

Susanne enjoys the signature Coconut Jumbo Shrimp dish, while Georgia savours the surf and turf, accompanied by a Portobello mushroom and chocolate sauce lightly drizzled on succulent filet mignon. Two of the wines we particularly enjoyed was a Simi Sauvignon Blanc, from Sonoma County, truly delish, with fresh and seductive aromas of lemon and lime zest with mineral notes and a lengthy finish, as well as the Silverado Cabernet Sauvignon, layered, complex, rich with ripe fruit, amazing with the filet and sauce. Magnifique!

And incredible selection of deserts that topped off the evening just right! Wow what a night.

Aruba a paradise of sandy white beaches, sparkling turqoise waters, amazing food and wine!

Beachy Keen Swimwear rocks Aruba. We love you!

Aruba, a little slice of paradise! Long stretches of white sandy beaches call for strolling in style in sunny Aruba, an island paradise! The beach is where’s it’s at on this glorious island.

We just spent an incredible week here where most of everything can be enjoyed on the beach… just where we wanted to be, whether swimming in the Caribbean Sea, enjoying water sports, strolling the glorious beach or sun bathing under the palapas. You can even dine on the beach with white linen tablecloths and lightly lit lanterns.

As you can see, there was little required in the way of wardrobe for our week away, save an incredible array of bathing suits, that took us elegantly and comfortably through the day and into the evenings. All of The Wine Ladies wardrobes provided by Beachy Keen  Swimwear & Accessories of Oakville.www.beachykeenswimwear.com

Many of our friends and fans on facebook and twitter have commented on our swimsuits and cover ups, so we thought we’d take a moment to share and to thank Val, the proprietor of Beachy Keen for her keen eye on finding just the right suit, no matter your shape or your size!

Aruba beckons… although small in size, just 30 km long and 8 km wide, this stunning Caribbean island is big on beauty, with long stretches of white sandy beaches, sensuous sparkling turquoise waters and gentle trade winds that caress and cool the skin while enjoying the rays of the tropical sun. We are returning to this incredible island, after many, many years, as our father’s identical twin started the very first hotel here, called the Manchebo Beach Hotel.  Aruba has become an incredibly desirable destination with so much to offer and to celebrate including an annual Wine, Food and Art Festival, held at The Westin Resort and Casino, Arubawww.thewestin.com/Aruba right up our alley!

Watch The Wine Ladies TV and our adventures in Aruba here.

Georgia pensive in polka dots!

Georgia’s swimsuit by Jantzen and available at Beachy Keen in Oakville.

Susanne in turquoise rocks in swimwear by Be Creative

Susanne’s swimsuit by Be Creative and available at Beachy Keen in Oakville.

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