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12 Bubbles that Won’t Break the Bank

By |December 18th, 2016|

'Tis the season … for Champagne, Cava, Sekt, Prosecco, Crémant and more. You name it—around this time of year, if it bubbles and pops we love to drink it. First, the good news about sparkling wine. Bubbles are no longer just for celebrations and glorified cork-popping. Sparkling wine has come of age as a food [...]

Britagne: The ‘Champagne’ of British Bubble

By |November 14th, 2015|

Cava, Proseccco, Spumante, Sekt, Cap Classique.  There’s no end of monikers for effervescent efforts that mimic Champagne—even if in Canada we’ve yet to come up with our own handle beyond, truly riveting, ‘Methode Traditionelle.’  The fact is: Champagne and sparkling wine sales are booming just about everywhere. That’s good news for consumers, who are benefiting [...]

8 Tasting Tips (and more) for the Vancouver International Wine Festival

By |February 20th, 2014|

Next week’s Vancouver International Wine Festival will be one of the most well attended  in the festival’s 36 years. How come it’s so popular? There are a couple of key reasons: Arguably North America’s most important combined consumer and trade wine gathering, it’s a great opportunity for wineries to meet their customers face to face—in [...]

Vancouver International Wine Festival 2014 #VIWF – Headed for a Sell-Out

By |January 13th, 2014|

In recent years, the array of food and wine events have become a big draw for VIWF (David Niddrie photo) The Vancouver International Wine Festival is already on the horizon (Feb 24th to March 2nd).  Hard to believe! This is by way of a heads-up that tickets are going fast! As of now, a [...]

Toasting the New Year in The Right (Riedel) Glass

By |January 4th, 2014|

Waterford's pretty but ... Does the right glass really matter? You bet it does! Because we have a such a busy holiday season and Christmas, over the years, a restful, decidedly lazy New Year’s Day has become our tradition. Often we move little more than from the couch to the fridge—to extract more [...]

10 Fizzy Faves for the Holidays: Hired Belly’s Best Bubbles

By |December 14th, 2013|

Champagne flutes await at Cornucopia Bubbles forever!    © Tim Pawsey photo  Over here at HB's swank, granite and glass adorned, soaring corporate HQ, we’ve been busy popping a few corks, drafting our list of go-to holiday bubbles. Sparkling wines (and Champagne for some a few  most occasions) are a must-have this time of year. [...]

The Champagne Charlie Chronicles: Riding the Rails Around North America

By |September 23rd, 2013|

Everyone says it looks like we're getting married here but Richard Carras (left), who helped put it all together, is just showing us where to sign on the contract! The best laid plans ... My good intentions to document a few memories of In the Footsteps of Champagne Charlie have been derailed by [...]

In the Footsteps of Champagne Charlie: 20 Years On

By |September 1st, 2013|

In the Footsteps ... the night before The Night They Invented Champagne! A slightly younger Tim & Heather toast the next 100 days on the roof of Hotel Vancouver - Jack Wong photo Hard to believe, but exactly 20 years ago today, on September 1, 1993, my wife, Heather, and I embarked on “In [...]

Be Careful Opening that Bubble—Even More So with a Sabre!

By |December 28th, 2012|

Sumac Ridge founder Harry McWatters sabers a bottle of Steller's Jay with a ski, pre 2010 Winter Games (Updated Dec 14, 2013) Last year the New York Times ran an interesting piece that explored the history of the Champagne cork. It wound up with a quick lesson on how to sabre. The only [...]

No Champagne Discounts Please: We’re Canadian!

By |December 7th, 2012|

Champagne Flutes, Tim Pawsey photo© It’s a question guaranteed to pop up at this time of year. Where can I buy Champagne, (as in true, French Champagne) for a song? The short answer is “You can’t.”  At least not here in BC. Want to buy Big C Champagne at sparkling wine prices? Your [...]

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