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Passports to taste nation’s championship wines

Bill Roberts was among the Rotarians pouring wine for visitors to the All Canadian Wine Championship Passport to Canada fundraiser for the PECM hospital foundation's Life Saver campaign for medical equipment.

Bill Roberts was among the Rotarians pouring wine for visitors to the All Canadian Wine Championship Passport to Canada fundraiser for the PECM hospital foundation’s Life Saver campaign for medical equipment.

More than 700 of the nation’s best wines were poured at the Crystal Palace Saturday, in a fund-raiser for the Prince Edward County Memorial Hospital.

The All Canadian Wine Championships ‘Passport to Canada’ tasting event featured wines from the championships, held in the County in May. The championships saw 1356 entries from 237 producers – including 18 County wines in the three-day competition.

Bev Carnahan, owner and director of the All Canadian Wine Championships, with a bronze winning bottle of 'Flirty' by Waupoos Estates  Winery and a bottle of 2013 Pinot Noir from Huff Estates winery.

Bev Carnahan, owner and director of the All Canadian Wine Championships, with a bronze winning bottle of ‘Flirty’ by Waupoos Estates Winery and a bottle of 2013 Pinot Noir from Huff Estates winery.

Bev Carnahan, owner and director of the All Canadian Wine Championships since 2002, and her husband John, are both sommelliers, and moved here from Windsor two years ago. At Windsor, the wine tasting event raised much needed funds for the Windsor regional hospital for seven years.

“Wine is our life,” she says, adding John is a product consultant with vintage products at the Trenton LCBO. “It is something I do as a passion. I want to promote Canadian wineries. I love all wines and there is a growing awareness of Canadian wines, but on the flip side of that, we have a long way to go to make people aware. Some people are stuck in the 70s when many made junk wine.

“We wanted to pair with a charity or foundation. It seemed natural because we had such success in Windsor with their hospital. We thought we would do the same here and we know the struggles this local hospital has. It’s always a battle to get support.”

Passports to taste 15 pours from the selection of wines were purchased by more than 100 people attending the event. Net proceeds will benefit the hospital foundation’s $350,000 Life Saver Campaign for medical equipment.

“This is a great venue. I’ve never seen so many wines in one place,” said Hazel Lloyst, director of development for the PECMHF. “I would like to see a few hundred more people, but it’s a great start. It is the first year for this event here, so it is a building year. Partnering with Rotary has been incredible. A lot of the Rotarians have their Smart Serve certificate and they need that to pour here. We are also delighted to be ending the day with the barbecue and music from the County’s Instant Rivalry.”

Jennifer Sills prepares to pour for guests.

Jennifer Sills prepares to pour for guests.

Guests support the silent auction of baskets of wine.

Guests support the silent auction of baskets of wine.

Monica Alyea, of the foundation, and Richard Byers, of Rotary, cheer the partnership of the two groups in support of the hospital.

Monica Alyea, of the foundation, and Richard Byers, of Rotary, cheer the partnership of the two groups in support of the hospital.

Peter Bradford demonstrates the "toasting" of wine barrels to prepare them.

County Cooper Peter Bradford demonstrates the “toasting” of a wine barrel with fire prior to wine use. There are eight levels of “toast” depending on the wine maker’s style and the type of wine going into the barrel. -Briar Boyce photo

Caleb and Megan Hutton 'Instant Rivalry' performed for the festival guests. Briar Boyce photo

Caleb and Megan Hutton ‘Instant Rivalry’ performed for the festival guests. Briar Boyce photo

 

 

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  1. Doug Sloane says:

    Great opportunity to taste wines from BC that we are unable to obtain in Ontario.
    Very well organized. Congratulations to all. Bring on next year.
    President of the County branch of the Amateur Winemakers of Ontario.

  2. Paul Wallace says:

    We feel bad that we missed this inaugural great event for a good cause. We will watch for it next year and make sure to put it on our calendar.

  3. Hildagard says:

    Why so few people??? How much was raised for the hospital? It would have been nice to have mentioned the amount in the article!

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