Wine Show 2013 Recap

Busy times at NLC these days! With another successful wine event under our belts, we are now looking forward to some of our upcoming events. In this piece I will recap some of the highlights of our most recent Wine Show, as well as touch upon some of NLC’s future shows. I will conclude with a short write-up of the soon to be released Beaujolais Nouveau – tis the season!

On Saturday October 26th, 2013 NLC’s 18th consecutive fall wine event came to a close. As long as I have been with NLC, we have had a pretty standard format when it came to Wine Fest: auction on the Tuesday night, Special Selections on the Wednesday evening, regular consumer tastings on Thursday night, Friday night and Saturday afternoon, followed by the gala dinner on Saturday evening. This year we mixed it up a little and changed the event name from Wine Fest to Wine Show. The gala dinner was slightly downsized in terms of the number of attendees, and was actually held the week before the show this year. The Shallaway organized auction was postponed due to factors beyond our control. The formally called “Special Selections” night, normally held on the Wednesday of wine show, was rebranded this year as the NLC Premium Wine Booth, and had great success at the Thursday night show. It was during the Friday and Saturday tasting events where the most changes were evident.  On these two days we offered two shows each: an afternoon event from 1-4pm, and an evening event from 7-10pm. This was the first time we ever offered a Friday afternoon session.

In terms of some of the highlights, the overall “wine of the show” was Canapi Pinot Grigio. This wine which came from the Dialog Wines booth is from Sicily, Italy. At $14.48 a bottle I foresee great things for this wine. I have recently been informed that Pinot Grigio has just taken over as the world’s second most popular white varietal, after perennial favourite, Chardonnay. In terms of the top economy product (wines $13.99 or under), Bell Wines and Spirits had the top seller, coming out of Australia - the Deakin Estate Artisans Blend at $13.98 – a wine featuring both Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot. In the Super Premium category (wines ranging in price from $30 - $49.99), a Californian Pinot Noir came out on top – with Wine Visions/Atlantic Spirits and Wine’s  Belle Glos Dairyman’s Vineyard Russian River Pinot Noir. Take it from the horse’s mouth – this was a very well-run show that everyone involved with should have be proud to be a part of! I am really looking forward to future events!

Speaking of future NLC events, we have quite a few on the immediate horizon. Later this month on November 28th, NLC will host its Whiskies of the World show – a recent addition to NLC’s event portfolio that just gets bigger, and better, every year that we partake. Then in January, on the heels of last February’s Wines of Bordeaux (possibly the best wine show that I have attended, anywhere…. ever!) we are going to do a similarly themed event. SAVE THE DATE:  Friday January 17th, 2014 promises to be another world-class experience, with no less than 40 people from Bordeaux making the trek here for the one night event. I have personally already let some of my mainland counterparts know about this Bordeaux tasting on January 17th, 2014, and have no doubt that this will sell out very quick! As a teaser, there also appears to be another wine show coming down the pipes for April – a Taste of Italy. One of NLC’s inaugural “Taste of…” events was an Italian show back in early 2011, and if that is any indication, this one will be one to remember!

It being November, I am compelled as a Sommelier to mention the upcoming release of Beaujolais Nouveau – widely viewed as the most popular of the Vin de Primeurs (French wines permitted by AOC regulations to be sold in the same year that they are harvested). As many of you already know, this product is released worldwide every year on the 3rd Thursday in November. This year NLC has brought in four Beaujolais Nouveau wines: 

 Sku  Product Name      Price
 1804  Mommessin Beaujolais Nouveau 2013  $19.99
 9741  Beaujolais Nouveau Hommage aux Acadiens 2013  $18.99 
 10776  Duboeuf Beaujolais Nouveau 2013  $19.99
 14417  Laboure-Roi Beaujolais-Villages Nouveau 2013  $19.99

Worldwide demand means that NLC only gets a certain allotment of Beaujolais Nouveau wines. Due to this fact, there will only be five stores that will receive this year’s offerings – Howley Estates, Kelsey Drive, Merrymeeting Road, Stavanger Drive and Humber Gardens (located in Corner Brook). We apologize about not being able to get these products into more stores, but as I alluded to earlier we were only allocated a small amount. These red wines are quite unique in that many people actually enjoy them slightly chilled, and the rule of thumb is that the longer you wait to open them up, the less  desirable aromas and flavours are left (i.e. drink up now!). A typical tasting note for Beaujolais Nouveau might look something like this:                                                   

Generally, Beaujolais Nouveau is purplish/pink in color, reflecting that of its youth. There are notes of banana, strawberry, cherry, fig and even bubble gum bursting out of the glass.  This is a very balanced wine, with low acidity and soft, nearly non-existent tannin. 

There you have it folks – an up-to-date account of what’s happening in the world of alcohol sales in Newfoundland and Labrador! If anyone has any questions for me then I can be reached at andrew.facey@nlliquor.com or in my office at 724-1706. Thank you and have a great month!

Cheers,
Andrew Facey
Senior Product Knowledge Consultant