Vancouver, September 28
This year’s tour began in Vancouver when DJ Kearney, International Sommelier Guild Instructor, who visited Chile in 2007, led a VIP Tutored Tasting of 12 wines for 26 selected members of the wine trade and media. The wine list included Sauvignon Blancs from Matetic, Quintay, and Santa Rita; Carignan from Santa Carolina and Terra Andina; Pinot Noirs from Agustinos, Cono Sur, Morandé; Syrah/Shiraz from Matetic and Errazuriz; and ultra premium red blends from Caliterra and Carmen.
The event continued with the much awaited Vancouver Trade Tasting at the Sutton Place Hotel, during which 30 wineries presented up to 5 wines each to more than 250 qualified trade and media were in attendance.
As a special benefit to the attendees, the names of all the qualified buyers for an on- or off-premise establishment located in Western Canada and wine writers were put into a pool and three lucky winners were drawn to participate in the next Western Canada FAM trip to Chile in April 2010. The lucky winners were Kurtis Kolt (Salt Tasting Room), Igal Amsallem (Ambiance Vins), and Tyler Dawson (Liberty Wine Merchants).
The evening concluded with the first Consumer Tasting & Winemaker’s Dinner, in which some 340 guests tasted the wines in Sutton Place and were then transported to one of the 14 participated restaurants for a specially prepared wine-pairing dinner. The proceeds from this event benefited Grapes for Humanity and the BC Hospitality Foundation. Over $4000 was raised.
Montreal, September 30
The Montreal event was host to 27 wineries who poured up to 8 of their finest wines each for nearly 1000 guests (half trade & media, half consumer) in the Entrepôt Dominion.
Toronto, October 7-8
Ontario was abuzz and Chile was in the air-and glass-this season as Toronto kicked off its busy round of Fall Tour activities with a Preview Tasting in the Distillery Historic District Fermenting Cellar on September 7. A small group of winewriters and sommeliers in invited to the Crush Wine Bar to taste the wines from 25 Chilean wineries that would later be offered during the official tasting in October.
The official celebration began on the afternoon of October 7 with an educational Winemaker Seminar offered to approximately 50 members of the trade and media. Master Sommelier John Szabo led the discussions of Chile’s diverse winegrowing areas with 6 winemakers from the Undurraga, Louis Felipe Edwards, Santa Carolina, Montes, Carmen, and Emiliana wineries.
October 7 was also the day of the annual Chilean Wine Festival Trade Tasting in Toronto. Thirty-one wineries participated in the event and served wines to approximately 275 members of the trade. Later in the evening the doors were opened to the public for the Consumer Tasting and another 475 guests enjoyed the wines, live culinary demonstrations by Chilean chef Christopher Carpentier, and the opportunity to win a trip for two to Chile. Proceeds benefited Second Harvest, which provides fresh food for those in need. The event was even filmed for an upcoming episode of Toronto Living.
The event continued on October 8 with a Winemaker’s Dinner at the Crush Wine Bar, during which 80 guests were able to interact with winemakers from the Undurraga, LFE, Santa Carolina, Montes, Carmen, Estampa, and Emiliana wineries.