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Lorena Smalley


Each month, Alison Philips, co-owner of Aligra Wine & Spirits, and her team will provide us with some tasty suggestions!  Many of you will remember Alison as one of our, our Friends of WSAC partners and the wonderful host of our wine tasting events here at our centre that were held in 2020.


Grey Owl Black Current  Canada

Tasting Notes: Black currents: an under rated fruit that pairs SO well with turkey dinner. Instead of cranberries, try your hand at this mead with accompanying black current chutney recipe to spice up your thanksgiving. Grey Owl Black Current is a lovely blend of black currents and summer honey to make a wonderful semi-sweet Melomel. Recipe: 300g blackcurrants, 1 fresh red chilli, 1 red onion, 1 tart apple, 4 tablespoons white balsamic vinegar or apple cider vinegar, 2 oranges, juiced, 200g light brown soft sugar, 1 teaspoon salt, 1 teaspoon yellow mustard seeds, 1 dried chilli (optional). 1. Wash and dry the blackcurrants. Cut the chilli in half and remove the seeds. Mince the chilli and onion. Peel, core and coarsely grate the apple. 2. Place all ingredients in a heavy pot and bring to the boil. Reduce the heat to a simmer and cook in the open pot till the liquid has evaporated and the chutney has thickened, about 1 hour. Stir once in a while to make sure it does not stick to the bottom of the pot. 3. Pour the piping hot chutney into sterilised jars and put the lids on immediately.


Rombauer Chardonnay  California USA

Tasting Notes: Yes! It’s perfectly fine to drink whites after Labour Day! But with the change of seasons and temperatures, choose a white with some oomph! Viogniers, Chardonnays are perfect choices for fall foods when we tend to roast more meats and enjoy a variety of hearty harvest vegetables. One of my all time favourites is this Rombauer Chardonnay. It’s buttery richness, luscious spiced apple tart and baked pear flavours fill your mouth with joy. Ground nutmeg lingers into the broad, plush finish with powerful toasty notes.


Kaesler Stonehorse GSM 2015 14.5% abv  Barossa Valley, Australia

Tasting Notes: The recipe for the 2015 vintage: Grenache 59%, Shiraz 35%, Mourvedre 6%. Depending on the vagaries of climate year to year, the percentages will fluctuate. Kasler Vineyards have been around for a while; the grapes for this excellent value wine come from vines at least 40 years old. Eye: deep brick red, orange/auburn tones. Nose: plums, pomegranate reduction, violets, red bell pepper. Palate: nice entry, full body with blackberry, blueberry, black currants, brambly notes. Medium grained integrated tannins. Very approachable right now (as befits a wine almost 7 years old). Drink now, will probably be good for another two years in good cellaring conditions. Pair with red meats, hard cheeses, burgers, pasta with red sauces.

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