The Vancouver International Wine Festival is just around the corner! VIWF is the best way to learn about new wines and how to pair them. I love going to festivals and events like these so that I get a nice, wide array of different wines and spirits that you would normally not be able to sample at your local liquor store.

Besides the Tasting Room, there are plenty of different events and wine-themed dinners you can attend during the 8 day festival. This year, they’re featuring Portugal and Spain, but you’ll be able to find wines from over 16 different countries.

In attending the festival, you’ll be supporting Bard on the Beach Shakespeare Festival – another great local fest coming up!

There was a recent preview event and I wanted to share my favourites to look out for during the VIWF!

1. Quails’ Gate Winery Chenin Blanc 2016
One of my favourite wineries in the Okanagan Valley, Quails’ Gate’s Chenin Blanc is a nice, light white wine with a great dry finish.

2. Juvé & Camps Reserva de la Familia Brut Nature Cava 2014
This Spanish sparkling wine is perfect for the summer – it’s dry but slightly fruity.

3. Parés Baltà/ Gratavinum Cava Blanca Cusine, Penedès 2010
Another great sparkling wine, this one has hints of nuts and honey, with a slight taste of fruit to it.

4. Herdade das Servas Sem Barrica Unaoked Red 2015
When it comes to red wine, I tend to prefer the unoaked variety. This one is intense – it’s spicy with a peppery feel to it but also sweet with stone fruit flavours.

5. Global Wines Cabriz Reserva Encruzado Dao White 2016
This white wine is well balanced, with fruity notes but with a nice tart acidity.

6. Bodega Garzón Single Vineyard Tannat 2015
This wonderful red has a sweetness similar to cherries but also a slightly dark chocolate taste to it. It’s full bodied and has a nice, long aftertaste.

7. La Crema Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir 2016
This pinot noir is perfect for enjoying with dinner – particularly lamb or beef.

8. CVNE Compañia Vinícola del Norte de España Cune Gran Reserva 2010
This wine is best enjoyed after letting it breathe for a little bit and paired with a nice, meaty dinner.

9. Casa del Giglio Tempranijo Rosso Lazio IGT 2014
This red is intense – lovely wafts of berries but heavy on the taste. I’d pair this with dinner for sure!

10. Companhia Arícola do Sanguinhal Sottal Vinho Leve 2016
This Portuguese white wine is a nice, sweet wine that’s perfect for the summer or with a light pasta or fish plate!

The Vancouver International Wine Festival is celebrating it’s 40th year, there are going to be over 1450 wines to check out and over 51 events throughout the festival. The festival runs from February 24 to March 4 in multiple venues throughout the city.

For more information on the Vancouver International Wines Festival, be sure to check out their website here: