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This calendar takes us through to September. Please remember that it can change. Our email list receives a reminder so please feel free to drop your email address off at the store.

All tastings are 3pm to 6pm unless noted.

  • June 27 Friday – “Wines of Gabriel Meffre” hosted by Greg Pollard of Diamond Wines
  • July 4 Friday – Hosted by Annette Goliath of Grady Wines
  • July 5 SaturdayMeet the Cidery – Seacider hosted by Sara Park of Seacider on Vancouver Island

Steamship Days July 11-13

  • July 11 Friday – Hosted by Liza McCauley, Delf Group
  • July 12 Saturday – Meet the Brewery, Howe Sound Brewing

 

  • July 18 Friday – “The Italian Job” racy Italian wines at a steal for value. Hosted by Burrows Luongo importers
  • August 1 Friday – Hosted by Thea Cuevas, Constellation Brands

August 8-9 Fri-Sat – BIBWC  Annual BC Wine Festival

  • August 8 Friday – BC wine sampling hosted by Paul Rickett
  • August 9 Saturday – Meet the Winery, Tim Martiniuk, GM of Stoneboat. Community Sponsor – BIAC

 

  • August 15 Friday – Hosted by  Select Wines
  • August 22 Friday – Hosted by Selwyn Rawstron, Empson (think NZ P. Noir and Sauvignon Blanc)
  • Sept 12 Friday – Meet the Winery, Sandra Oldfield, CEO Tinhorn Creek 20th Anniversary tasting

 

  • September 18 Thursday. Bowen Children’s Centre Fundraiser 1st Annual Wine Fair, Lodge at Old Dorm. Tickets available via BCC and BIBWC. We aim to have over 60 wines for tasting at this event.

We have an action-packed tasting schedule in the works for the next few months and expect to add more as we go along. This year I have invited the wineries, importers and distributors to come in and open some their wines that we carry for tasting. The name attached to the date is the agency. We’ll generally decide on the specific products to be tasted nearer the time.

We will send email alerts to our mailing lists too and post notices of upcoming events on Twitter and Facebook. If you are not on either our beer or wine mailing list please drop your name and email address in at the store or email me at pdrickett@hotmail.com so we can add you.

Dates and presenters are subject to confirmation nearer time

Tastings (3pm to 6:30pm in-store unless noted)

• March 14 Friday – Constellation -(4 BC VQA wines)
• March 15 Saturday – Central City Brewing (Red Racer beer and Betty’s coolers)
• March 28 Friday – Authentic (Cono Sur wines)
• April 17 Thursday – Delf (Easter weekend) – (import wines)
• April 25 Friday – Renaissance (import wines)
• May 2 Friday – International Cellars (imported wines)
• May 9 Friday – Liberty (imported wines plus at least one BC wine)
• May 24 Saturday – Averill Creek, Meet the owner, Andy Johnson #BCwine
• June 6 Friday – Appellation (likely mainly BC wines)
• TBD June Saturday – Central City Brewing (Red Racer Summer Edition)
• June 20 Friday – Select (import wines)
• June 21 Saturday – Seacider (Cider from Victoria)
• July 4 Friday – Grady (import wines)
• July 11 Friday – Delf (import wines)
• August 1 Friday – Constellation (import and BC wines)

We have commitments from 2 more agencies to come in plus a couple of BC wineries (including a return date with Tinhorn Creek’s Sandra Oldfield). In addition working on setting up a Mead tasting with the Tugwell Creek rep.

We have a hugely expanded selection of beer in the new store. Here’s a ‘tip o’ the iceberg’ view of what’s in and coming down the pipe.
Arrived and in stock (single bottle format unless stated)
  • Fullers Vintage Ale 2011 (UK) – 4 left (may be able to get more). Cellarable: Reviews
  • North Coast Old Rasputin Russian Imperial Stout (CA) – great customer feedback on this. 4B packs
  • Dead Frog Citra IPA (BC) – reputedly the best of their single bottle beers
  • Rogue Mogul Madness winter ale (OR) – I tried this last weekend, excellent
  • Hopwork Abominable Winter Ale (OR)
  • Boundary Bay IPA (WA) – restocked again
  • Wychwood Brewery Bah Humbug Christmas Ale (UK)
  • Wychwood Hobgoblin Ruby Ale (UK)
  • North Coast Pranqster Belgian Golden Ale (CA). 4B packs
  • Lagunitas Sucks Holiday Ale (CA). 6B packs
  • Mill Street Organic lager (ON). 6B packs
  • Mill Street Coffee Porter (ON). 6B packs
  • BC Craft Beer mixed packs (BC) – 12C packs with selection of beers from different breweries. 12B packs no longer available
  • Red Racer White Ale (BC) – 6C packs
  • Raftman ale (PQ) – brewed from whiskey malt!
Arrived Friday 16/12
  • Rogue Mocha Porter – restock
  • Deshutes Inversion IPA – restock
  • Boundary Bay Cabin Fever winter ale *NEW*
  • Anderson Valley Boont ESB – restock
Inbound (ETA 23/12)
Rogue Yellow Snow IPA
UK Micro Beer (actual news!)
Here is what we have been allocated. Optimistic delivery date is 30/12, may slip back a week. Let me know how much to allocate to you. We are getting one case (12 bottles) of each except for ‘Death or Glory’ which we will receive 2 cases. All single bottles.
Moor Revival bitter (660ml)
Thornbridge Jaipur IPA (500ml)
Hawkshead Organic stout (500ml) *one case of 8 bottles only*
Durham Magus golden ale (500ml) 
Durham St. Cuthbert strong ale (500ml)
Tring Death or Glory barley wine (330ml)

Good craft beer is brewed in abundance these days, and not just in BC. One of the areas we have radically expanded in the new store is beer selection. Here’s a list of what we have to whet your appetite. Products are generally 650ml single bottles unless specified.

Bear Republic Brewing (Healdsburg, CA)

Hop Rod Rye (4 bottle pack)

Boundary Bay Brewing (Bellingham, WA)

Boundary Bay IPA, Scotch Ale

Cannery Brewing (Penticton, BC)

Apricot Wheat, Anarchist Amber, Blackberry Porter, Cannery Collection (6 can sampler pack)

Central City Brewing (Surrey, BC)

Red Racer IPA, Red Racer ESB (both 6 can packs)

Coopers Brewery (Australia)

Pale Ale, Sparkling Ale

Deschutes Brewery (Portland, OR)

Mirror Pond Pale (6 pack bottles)

Driftwood Brewery (Victoria, BC) 

White Bark Wheat, Farmhand, Fat Tug IPA, Driftwood Ale, Crooked Coast Amber

Green Flash Brewing (San Diego, CA)

West Coast IPA

Howe Sound Brewing (Squamish, BC)

Devils Elbow IPA, Baldwin & Coopers Bitter, Diamond Head Oatmeal Stout, King Heffy Wheat, Rail Ale Brown (all 1L bottles), plus Howe Sound Lager (6 can packs)

Lighthouse Brewing (Victoria, BC)

Riptide Pale Ale

Mt. Begbie Brewing (Revelstoke, BC)

Nasty Habit IPA, Attilla the Honey

Nelson Brewing (Nelson, BC) *Certified Organic*

After Dark Mild, Blackheart Stout, Paddywhack IPA, Wild Honey, Organic Ale

North Coast Brewing (Fort Bragg, CA)

Red Seal Ale (6 bottle packs)

Phillips Brewing (Victoria, BC)

Amnesiac Double IPA (650ml), Hop Circle IPA, Blue Buck (6 pack bottles)

R&B Brewing (Vancouver, BC)

East Side Bitter, Raven Cream Ale, Hoppelganger IPA

Steam Whistle Brewing (Toronto, ON)

Pilsner (6 & 12 pack bottles)

Tin Whistle Brewing (Penticton, BC)

Peach Cream Ale

Tree Brewing (Kelowna, BC)

Hophead IPA, Cutthroat Pale

Plus other imports from

Czechvar, Zywiec, Ayinger, Boddingtons, Sam Adams, Anchor Steam, Guinness, Fullers, Becks, Bards, Pilsner Urquell, Grolsch, Victoria, Holsten, Tuborg, DAB, Brooklyn, Sapporo, Asahi, Corona, Red Stripe, Pacifico, Heineken, Stella Artois, Negra Modelo, Warsteiner, Big Rock (formats vary but generally 6/12 packs of bottles or cans)

It’s time to celebrate. We’ve been open in the new premises since June 8 and worked out the kinks (we hope!) so time to raise a glass to welcome you to our new store. On Canada Day (July , 2011), we cordially invite you to drop in and be our guest at a wine and cheese tasting between 1-5pm. 

The new store is light, airy and spacious and we”ve had fantastic feedback on it from customers so far. If you have not been in please take the opportunity to take a peek at Bowen’s new retail experience.

Our featured winery for the tasting  is the Neck of the Woods. This is an local winery based in Langley, BC. Their wines are made from grapes grown in the Fraser Valley and the Okanagan. On deck will be their Blanc de Noir sparkling which has just won a Silver medal at the 2011 NW Wine Summit – Pacific Rim Wine Competition and a selection of their red wines.

There will be a selection of cheeses to taste alongside the wines and, of course, Canada Day cookies.

At 5pm we will draw the winners for the Grand Prize Granville Island Experience competition (see here for details)  plus some other surprise prizes.

We will be opening at at 10am on Friday, and everyday for July & August, with regular close at 11pm.

On behalf of Scott, Paul, David, Cordell and Maureen we look forward to seeing you on Friday.

To celebrate our new location, please join us on Saturday June 11 between 1pm and 5:30pm to sample sparkling wine from BC, Spain and Italy.

With our expanded store opening we will have:

  • Much larger selection of beers, ciders and coolers including Budweiser 8 pack cans on special at LDB price (while stocks last), upgraded selection of BC craft beers and ciders
  • New wines from BC and around the world plus wine specials at $9.47, $19.47 and $29.47
  • Expanded spirits section with all the necessaries for the “Cocktail Cabinet”

Lots of events being scheduled too in over the summer including:

  • Wine and Indian Food with Qui Café
  • Sherry tasting
  • Port & Chocolate with Cocoa West
  • Riedel glassware – taste the difference between Riedel and other glassware
  • BC wine fest (August in conjunction with BowFeast)
  • Unusual Grapes #3
  • Howe Sound Brewing beer tasting
  • … and more

Hope we’ll see all our regulars and lots of new friends too.

In preparation for the new store opening I’ve been adding a bunch of new products in all categories. Here’s a brief summary and there are lots more to come after we get into our new digs.

Wine

Opera Prima – ultra cheap and surprisingly good Spanish sparkling wine. Great for Mimosas, Buck’s Fizz etc.

Lavit Rosado – agents unearthed a cache of this no-longer-available-in-BC Spanish sparkling rosé. One of my very long-time favourites (see the Desert Island video). Back for a very short time.

Cantavida Riesling –  super value Chilean dry riesling

Doma Chardonnay & Merlot – 2 big bargains from Chile

Backyard Vineyards Zweigelt & Riesling – good red from the local Fraser Valley. Riesling is very fruity.

Dirty Laundry Hush (rosé), Pinot Gris and Gewurztraminer – New 2010 vintage. Hush is fabulous this year, 50% cab. Franc, deep pink and solid dark red fruit taste.

Cedar Creek Rosé – first time for a rosé from this significant BC winery. Think strawberries…

8th Generation – Sauvignon Blanc, Pinot Gris and Merlot. The sparkling chardonnay has sold out completely.

Lake Breeze Pinot Blanc – simply the best PB in BC

Stoneboat Pinotage & Chorus – back for the summer season again

Cassini Maximus – BC produces some great Bordeaux style blends. This one has extra heft too.

Fairview Bear – Big Cabernet Sauvignon from BC, will reward cellaring. Coming soon: Two Hoots, Cab Franc and Sauvignon Blanc too

Blandy`s Madeira – the brown wine of the Azores

& a new selection of draft Sake

Spirits:

Pyrat rum 750ml

Courvoisier VS cognac 375ml

Remy Martin VSOP cognac 750ml

Van Gogh Duble Espresso vodka 750ml

Red Breast pot-still Irish whisky 750ml

Bell’s Scotch whisky 750ml

Dewar’s White Label Scotch whisky 750ml

Jack Daniel’s bourbon 375ml

For the Cocktail Cabinet

Akvavit

Kirsch

Alizé Blue and Red

Créme de Cassis

Galliano

Coolers

El Jimador pre-mixed Margaritas

Beer

Ayinger Dunkel – German dark lager

Cooper’s Australian pale ale

Cider

Sea Cider – Victoria, BC’s great cider maker. Kings & Spies and Pippins are back in stock

Update 23/11/10: BC breathalysers are being recalibrated to o.o6. The law about 0.05 is unchanged so blow 0.06+ and you will be subject to new penalties. What happens between 0.05 and 0.06 is unclear but very much depends on the discretion of the police officer. I have checked with local RCMP and even they have no clear guidelines on this situation.

****

Now the new drinking driving 0.05 rules are here, it is even more important to know about alcohol consumption and blood alcohol count (BAC). Exceeding the new lower level has serious consequences if you are caught and here on Bowen our local RCMP detachment seems to have become extra zealous.

First, this link will open the Official BC BAC chart. With this you, in theory, can calculate whether your consumption will take you over the 0.05 limit and how long before you’ll be back under it. However, there is a HIDDEN TRAP if you rely on this solely.

Note that the chart is based on standard drinks. For the record a standard drink is reckoned as either a) 12oz beer or b) 1.5oz of spirits or c) 5 oz of wine (roughly equivalent to one fifth of a standard 750ml bottle). However, for the purposes of setting standard drink sizes the servings make an assumption about alcohol levels in each serving. For beer that is 5%, spirits 40% and wine 12%.

The hidden problem is that your actual drink at standard serving size may contain considerably more or less alcohol than given in these charts. In some cases this may mean you are consuming more alcohol than you think.

Consider the following:

Most spirits and beer servings contain exactly the alcohol prescribed in the standard servings. Some beers especially IPAs and specialty imports can have more alcohol though. For instance Quebec’s Fin du Monde has 9% so one glass of that is nearly the equivalent of 2 beers.

Wine, however is a different matter altogether. Looking around our store I’d estimate the average bottle of wine runs to about 13%, no big deal – but variations can be significant. Those big Australian Shiraz can often come in at 15% or above, so one glass is the equivalent of 1.25 standard servings in alcohol content. If you are a 125lb female just one glass of this wine will push you to 0.05%. A 175lb male drinking two of these would be well advised to not drive for 2 hours from the time of the first drink.

So what can you do?

1. Ask the server what the ABV (alcohol by volume) on the bottle is and factor that in to your calculations. The ABV is displayed on every bottle. If you are a bar or restaurant you should be considering adding ABV information to your drinks lists.

2. Try wines that have less alcohol. For instance the very popular Dr. Loosen Riesling has only 8.5% ABV (most Rieslings run between 8 and 11%). That’s just about 1/3 less than the standard measure so not only is it reasonably safe to have one glass – at any weight – and drive straight away, for most it will allow you to have a couple and not run the risk of blowing over o.o5 (but check your weight against the BAC chart first). Another suggestion is one of our best selling white wines, the Gazela Vinho Verde that has only 9% ABV.

Nowadays you really have to be very scrupulous about not only how much you drink but what you drink. There is precious little margin of error at 0.05 and the Holiday Season roadchecks are coming up fast so there’ll be even more chances to lose your car and license. Your best choice at any time is simply not to drink and drive. Take Transit, a cab or nominate a DD from your party.

If you are in our store please ask us to recommend good lower alcohol wines for your party or event.

  • Sea Cider: Kings & Spies, Pippins now in 750ml bottles
  • Whistler Brewing: Weissbeer 6 bottle packs & Summer 12 bottle mixer packs
  • Bowen Island Brewing 8 can sampler packs
  • Mythos lager from Greece

We are open 11am to 11pm every day in December except:

Christmas Eve (Dev 24) OPEN EARLY at 9:00am, CLOSE EARLY 9:00Pm

Christmas Day (Dec 25) Closed

New Year’s Day (Jan 1) OPEN LATE 1:00pm, CLOSE NORMAL 11:00PM

We are open for the normal 11am to 11pm time on both Boxing Day (Dec 26)  and New Year’s Eve (Dec 31)

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Deals

Save 10% on any case of wine (12 bottles) either mixed or special order.

Look out for the red and green dots on price tags. Save 10% on green and 20% on red

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