I was extremely excited to check out this one particular seminar that focused more on France’s esteemed family owned and operated wineries. I tend to stick to local wines, but I really want to expand my palate to European wines. The Family Spirit seminar highlights the prestigious wine regions: Champagne, Bordeaux, Rhône, Languedoc and Burgundy. I’ve always wanted to try some wine from these regions but it’s difficult to figure out what might pique my interest when I’m standing at the local wine store and humming and hawwing over a bottle.

family spirit vancouver international wine festival 2020 -172004

This is why I think coming to the Vancouver International Wine Fest has so much value – I get to try a so many different types and take my own notes and find new favourites.

family spirit vancouver international wine festival 2020 -172004

This seminar was moderated by Anthony Gismondi and the panelists featured many of the wineries wine makers. We tried 10 different wines, both red and white.

Here were my thoughts on the wine:

Champagne Tattinger – known for being the very first Champagne de domaine. We sampled the Folies de la Marquetterie NV – 45% Chardonnay, 55% Pinot noir, it’s a single vineyard wine a bit of a niche. The flavour is mature and Pinot noir driven. Definitely one to enjoy with a nice dinner.

Up next was Maison Joseph Drouhin’s Beaune 1er Cru Clos des Mouches Rouge 2017. It’s 100% Pinot noir from Burgundy and has great potential for aging. This is a beautiful wine, very delicious – juicy and not too sweet or dry. It was such a treat to have.

Maison Sichel’s Chateau Angludet Margaux 2016 was our next sample. 55% Cabernet Sauvignon and 10% Petit Verdot. I found this wine to be dry, smokey but juicy at the same time. Quite enjoyable.

Paul Jabulet Aîné’s Hermitage La Chapelle 2017 – is a 100% Syrah. I found this one full bodied, very rich and had nice spicey notes with pit fruits in flavour.

Gérard Bertrand’s Clos d’Ora 2016 is a blend of Shiraz, Syrah, Grenache, Mouvedre and Carignan. This particular wine is full bodied, quite dry and smokey.

Maison Sichel’s Abeille de Feuzal 2016 is a lovely wine blend of 50% Semillion and 50% Sauvignon Blanc. It’s bright and lively flavours are great for summer drinking.

Maison Joseph Drouhin’s Meursault 2017 is another enjoyable wine. It’s got this fresh, sweetness to it that has a floral and spice aroma. It would be perfect for summer drinking as well!

Gérard Bertrand’s Cigalus Blanc 2018 is a mix of Chardonnay, Viognier and Sauvignon Blanc. It’s a full bodied wine that has tastes of vanilla and sweet fruits. It was quite enjoyable.

Paul Jaboulet Aîné’s Crozes Hermitage Domaine Mule Blanche 2017, a well balanced white that’s on the drier side. I got some citrus notes along with some sweet, stone fruit flavours.

Finally, our last one was from Champagne Taittinger: Comtest de Champagne Brut 2007. I would say this is probably one of the best Champagnes I’ve ever experienced. It’s beautifully dense and creamy with hints of citrust fruits, green tea and a little bit nutty. Very beautiful and quite a treat!

For more information on this seminar and the Vancouver International Wine Festival, check out the website here: https://vanwinefest.ca/event/the-family-spirit/