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The #1 selling wine on Bowen Island is Italy’s Villa Teresa organic Prosecco. Please join us on Friday Nov 29 between 4pm and 6:30pm for a free tasting with Liza McAuley from Delf Group. Delf are the importing agents for the wine.

In addition to the Prosecco, we will also be pouring their Pinot Grigio, Merlot, and the very popular Rose frizzante.

Special offer: Buy 6 bottles of Prosecco and receive a complimentary 375mL bottle – great opportunity to stock up for the Holiday Season and get a stocking stuffer.

Bowen Children’s Centre (BCC) is holding a wine tasting at Artisan Eats cafe Thursday May 3, 2012 from 7-9pm.

The event features a guided tasting by BC`s 8th Generation winery. A flight of 7 wines from their selection will be served along with cheeses provided by Artisan Eats.

8th Generation are one my favourite BC wineries so this is an event well worth attending. You will also be able to order the wines at winery price at the event and pick them up from us later.

We’re finally ready to move! We’ll be closed from 7pm Sunday June 5 through Tuesday June 7. Doors open at new store 11am June 8.

It’s easy to find us – just look right from old store and we’re opposite next to Qui Café and under the Ruddy Potato, facing onto Dorman Road. Parking is available outside or feel free to use the pub car park opposite.

First event is Saturday June 11, “Bubbles on Bowen” (see next post)


Malbec is the HOT varietal in red wine. Taste Malbecs from Argentina, Australia and Chile.

Last year’s Malbec tasting was a blind tasting of two Argentinian and one French, we all had a great time and the Argentinian’s came out on top – so let’s see if Australia or Chile can take the crown this year.

If you follow me on twitter you’ll know that I’ve been having fun voting for Riesling in the great #marcmad wine vote-off. Riesling emerged as the winner of the white wine category and is in the final today against Pinot Noir. To celebrate (and to compensate you for the volume of tweets) I’ll open a bottle of Riesling for tasting Friday 8th April between 3 and 6pm and all Rieslings are 10% off all day.

I was on twitter a couple of weeks ago talking to Jayson Bryant from New Zealand (twitter: @jayson_bryant) about wine when it struck me that the selection of white wine from NZ  relative to Australian white wine on our shelves had changed rather dramatically over the 3 years I have been in the store.

Today, our selection ratio of NZ to Australian wine is less than 1:2. 3 years ago it would have been more like 1:5. I thought that we on Bowen might not be representative of the general Vancouver market so decided to check things out in downtown Vancouver.

Much to my surprise, our ratio is not markedly different to most stores. The 5 private wine stores I visited had ratios varying from 1:1 to 1:2 and then I visited the big BCLDB flagship store on Bute and Alberni. Their selection was very much closer to 1:1 and, checking the BCLDB website, the actual listings in BC for NZ white to Australian whites is 54 to 73 or very nearly 1:1!

This is a dramatic shift in market balance from years ago when the Australian powerhouse dominated the two countries white wine sales in BC. How has this come about?

Firstly, although there have been an increase in NZ wine selection, the primary reason the ratio is closing is that there has been a marked reduction in Australian whites in the market here. This is reflective of the shift away from all those heavily-oaked Aussie chardonnays so popular in the late ’90s and early ’00s. Secondly, here in BC, New Zealand was the theme country for the Vancouver Playhouse International Wine Festival (VPIWF) this year so NZ received lots of local exposure for their increasingly diverse selection of both red and white wines.

Both countries still make great wines but the trend is very much in favour of NZ at the moment. While NZ is hugely strong with their Sauvignon Blancs, I was really impressed with the Pinot Gris, Gewurztraminers and Rieslings I tasted at VPIWF plus NZ Pinot Noirs are coming on in leaps and bounds with Syrahs not far behind.

There are potentially lessons for the BC wine industry here too. Although our industry is younger than NZ’s, the total population of NZ is the same as BC’s and their domestic wine consumption is almost the same per capita as here. NZ is growing now on the strength of its export prowess not so much on its local support. Perhaps it is time that the BC wine industry focuses more on exporting than on local marketing – after all, we should have huge advantages in being next door to the USA whereas NZ is 20ookm away from its nearest large market and major competitor – Australia.

On Bowen, we have already increased our NZ selection in both reds and whites and more to come in our new store (opening January 2011) I think the white ratio will drop much closer to 1:1 then. Maybe we’ll even start to see the selection ratio on the reds starting to shift too.

Is wine the result of winemaking magic or can you taste what it will be like from the grapes that go into it. Well wonder no more.

Tonight (Wednesday 20 October) and tomorrow (Thursday 21 October) we have grapes from Tinhorn Creek just harvested. These are the grapes that are going into next year`s wine.

Come down and try Syrah, Cabernet Franc, Merlot and Chardonnay grapes. It`s a fun thing to do.


P.S. if we have enough we`ll carry this over to Friday 22nd too

Second in Unusual Grapes tasting series will feature three wines from Greece (two whites and a red). Drop by and try something that is NOT Retsina!

From July 30 through September 3 we’ll be opening one hour earlier every day – Hours will be 10am to 11pm

We’ll be opening three Sauvignon Blancs for tasting on Saturday. One each from Chile, France and BC. Look forward to seeing you.

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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

July 2020
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