A Word From Bill – October 2015

Harvest time is upon us and will again create a demand for fuller bodied and fortified wines. Frankly, from the standpoint of wines that I like, it’s my favourite time of year! Speaking of an active time of year, this is it for the wine community. After a September that had us enjoying Greek wines in Gay Cook’s fabulous gardens (yes, the rain held off for us this year) and a great olive oil tasting, we’re into October which brings us a very unique Ontario Pinot Noir event and then at the end of the month there is the Ottawa Food and Wine Festival.

We have a core group of volunteers for the event, but can still use more. If you have not reached out to us and have time during the weekend of Friday, October 30, 2015, to Sunday, November 1, 2015, please email us at bill.ellis@sommelierguild.com or wine@sommelierguild.com and let us know. This year we have an expanded role at the show so it will offer new opportunities to enjoy working with and liaising with the wine community.

I’d like to thank those of you that helped out at the Ottawa Wine Challenge. It was a long day and gave us an opportunity to see what judging for a wine competition entails. There’s more to judging than just tasting!

After the challenge, we ran a little competition of our own: “You Be the Judge”. I had the pleasure of moderating a panel discussion with well-known and respected wine judges and writers Tony Aspler, Rod Phillips and Zolton Szabo, who took us through a tasting of wines entered in the competition. They all shared their thoughts about flights of white and red wines and showed us how a wine is rated, consensus is achieved and ultimately what medals they would award. It was a well-attended and unique event.

I have one final note for you regarding one of our signature events. We gave the Guild Gala a rest last year, but due to popular demand we are considering running it again early in the new year. Details will be coming to you in an upcoming newsletter. We look forward to seeing you at an upcoming event!


Bill Ellis, President