Tuesday, January 31. 2017
One of the brighter aspects of this generally dreary time of year is the growing number of great festive events. One of my favourites is Taste of Nova Scotia’s Sip n’ Shuck which took place last Friday evening, January 27th in the Baronet Room of the Delta Halifax Hotel. The event is now presented jointly with the Aquaculture Association of Nova Scotia and the Delta Halifax Hotel.
This was the 10th anniversary of this great showcase for Nova Scotia sea food and matching local beverages. Initially, pairings were exclusively with local wines. Over the years, the range of delights on offer has expanded dramatically. This year, fine wines from eight local wineries shared pride of place with local beers, ciders and spirits. Oysters, mussels, salmon cakes, scallops Ceviche, quahogs in pastry and a variety of hot and cold smoked fish were prepared in imaginative ways including terrific oyster shooters made with local vodka. I am already looking forward to next year’s event!
February and early March is the season for the Savour Food & Wine Festival. Next up is “Decadence” which offers rich artisanal cheeses and chocolates paired with fine wines. It takes place on February 9th from 7-9:30pm at the Prince George Hotel. Tickets are $55 + HST. On February 24th is the Rare & Fine Wine event which takes place in the Compass Room at Casino Nova Scotia. This not to be missed show features 40 highly rated wines not previously available in Nova Scotia. General admission tickets are $119.00 + HST.
New this year is the Craft Beer Cottage Party to be held at the Halifax Seaport Market on Saturday, February 25th from 7-9:30pm. This is an opportunity to sample beers from local and nearby craft breweries while relaxing and being entertained by a live band. There will be picnic tables and beer-friendly food available for purchase from selected local restaurants and bars. Tickets are priced at $60.00 + HST include unlimited beer samples.
The grand finale is, of course, the Savour Food & Wine Show which will take place at the World Trade and Convention Centre on March 9th from 7:9:30pm. On hand will be numerous restaurants from around the Province vying with one another to offer samples of their finest cuisine. Among the 70 odd participants will be wineries, breweries and wine & spirits agencies providing a vast array of wines, beers and spirits to wash down the best of Nova Scotia foods. This gala event is always a splendid culmination of the Savour festival. Tickets are $85.00 + HST.
For further information and tickets to any of the events please visit:firstname.lastname@example.org or call: 902 429-5343.
Bouchard Père et Fils 2015, Macon-Lugny AC Saint Pierre, France 13.5% $23.99 NSLC General List. Opens with Burgundian style ripe apple with a whiff of hazelnut and light floral scent. Generous ripe apple flavours are delivered in an appetizing, leesy/creamy texture with deftly balanced acidity. Shows greater ripeness than the previous vintage and is the better for it. ***
Luca Ferraris Martin Agricola 2015, Barbera d’Asti DOCG, Italy 14.5% $20.49. NSLC (Limited Quantities). Opens with generous dark cherry, plum and spicy scents which pave the way for good varietal bitter dark cherry flavours supported by dry but approachable tannins and appetizing acidity. Classic, food-friendly Barbera. ****
La Mura Natura 2014, Sicilia Organic Rosso IGT. 13.5% $13.99. Cristall Wine Merchants, Sunnyside Mall, Bedford. Made from indigenous, organically grown Nero d’Avola grapes, this easy-to-like medium weight red shows fleshy and spicy ripe red fruit scents with raspberry and blackberry kicking in on the palate. Balanced acidity and just enough tannic grip round out the picture. ***
Nobilo Sauvignon Blanc Regional Collection 2015, Marlborough, New Zealand 12.5% $18.99 NSLC (Limited Quantities). Lively aromatics reveal gooseberry, asparagus and grassy freshness. Tart gooseberry, mineral and brisk acidity leave the palate refreshed and satisfied. ***
L. Huyge Family Brewery Delirium Tremens Extra Strong Beer 8.7%, Belgium. $6.00 (330ml Bottle) Cristall Wine Merchants, Sunnyside Mall. Shows soft creamy and persistent head, hazy blond colour with soft aromas of fruit spice and agreeable yeastiness. Robust, but very smooth dried citrus fruit flavour seems mild in alcohol until it suddenly creeps up on you. Finishes with the merest touch of bitterness. ****
Benediktiner Original Bavarian Style Lager Beer. Lich, Bavaria. 5% $3.29 (500ml Can).NSLC Fruity malt aroma with yeasty and lightly hoppy scents give way to similarly fruity and malty flavours with pleasant gentle hoppy bitterness in the mouth. Will appeal to most palates. ***
Beau’s All-Natural Brewing Company, Vankleek Hill, Ontario. Beau’s Lug Tread Lagered Ale 5.2% $5.49 (600ml Bottle) NSLC. Opens with a bitter nutty aroma and flavours nicely balanced between light fruitiness and savoury malt. Texture is pleasantly creamy with mild hoppy bitterness on the finish. Easy drinking lighter brew. ***
Side Launch Brewing Company, Collingwood, Mountain Lager 4.7% $3.60 (473ml Can) NSLC. This unfiltered German style Lager from an Ontario brewery, is hazy blond in colour, with creamed corn, nutty malt and lightly hoppy aromas. Opens with a touch of fruity sweetness on the light bodied palate, together with balanced malt and agreeable hoppy bitterness. ***
*Acceptable ordinary quality
**Good quality, everyday standard
** Very good quality in its price range
**** Exceptional quality, top 15% - 20%
**** The finest possible, top 5% - 10%