Category Archives: California

Live from the Victoria International Wine Festival



Rod and Ryan explore the Victoria International Wine Festival at the Parkside Hotel. This event is in it’ 4th year and the organisers hope to return for a 5th year, so if it sounds like fun (and it was!) there will be another chance to attend.

This episode features tips on how to taste at a wine festival, reviews of a few of the wines Rod and Ryan sampled (we hardly made a dent in what was offered), and of course a “Pick of the Week.” Out of the wines Rod and Ryan tried, they unanimously picked The Seven Terraces Sauvignon Blanc from the Marlborough region of New Zealand. Fresh grapefruit, grassy aromas, bright and lively with tremendous balance. It sells for $17.49 OR buy it in a box! The price, matched with the taste experience, make it the pick of the week.


The problem with California Wines. Plus, Tempranillo and Blue Grouse



0:00 – 24:50: This show’s mission is to find great wine for affordable prices, usually under $20. But the California section of the liquor store is proving to be a challenge for co-host Ryan. The under $20 range is filled with big brands from huge producers that — while safe and consistent — aren’t knocking our socks off. The Dork tries to help.

24:50 – 36:27: A listener question about the Radio Boca Garnacha in the 3-litre box (recommended in the wedding episode) gets us into the Radio Boca Tempranillo. And THAT gets us into the tempranillo varietal in general, and the Rioja and La Mancha wine regions of Spain. We specifically mention this Spanish blend from La Mancha, found at private stores: “Cal Y Canto” Tempranillo-Merlot-Syrah

36:27 – 40:33: The Dork is blown away by two white blends from Vancouver Island’s Blue Grouse winery in the Cowichan Valley. Under their “Quill” label, look for the “White” and “Off-Dry White” blends.

40:33 – 47:46: PICK OF THE WEEK! It’s the 90-point Porca de Murca red blend from the Douro region of Portugal. We found it for $13.99.


What’s the deal with wine points? Plus, weather woes and B.C. gin



0:00 – 9:25: More weather woes. A cold wet spring persists for many parts of the world (Vancouver Island as well), what does that mean for wine producers?

9:25 – 20:05: And the best gin is from… B.C.? Long Table Cucumber Gin, made in Vancouver, has just won a best gin award in the United Kingdom.

20:05 – 36:24: “Pick of the Week!” Paxis Red Blend from Portugal. A 90 point wine that should go on sale for $13 or $14 at private liquor stores. This gets us into a discussion on the point system used to rate wines.

36:24 – 43:08: A California pinot noir that made Ryan go “meh.”