La Grande Degustation de Montreal
wine, spirit and beer producers exhibit in montreal
Over the past three days, I have had the pleasure to discover, taste and appreciate a myriad of spirits, wines, beers and specialty foods at the second edition of La Grande Dégustation de Montréal. Considered as “the wine event” of the year in Quebec, The event (which took place at the Palais des Congres of Montreal), provided a unique occasion to discover the finest products that world producers had to offer through one-on-one encounters in a decidedly attendee-friendly environment.
The event par excellence for all types of epicureans and everyone with a thirst for discovery, from November 8 to 10 , La Grande Dégustation de Montréal brought together over 210 worldwide producers, and thousands of hoteliers, restaurateurs and general visitors who came to meet them in person, sample their products and stock up!
Each year, La Grande Dégustation de Montréal showcases a country or region, a product of worldly interest, and a spirit from the world of beer and spirits. In 2012, Portugal was chosen as the country of honor. Cabernet Sauvignon and rhums of the world were also honored during this second edition.
Some of my favorite drink discoveries include:
- Cupcake Vineyard Red Velvet: A delectably sweet, Californian blended red wine that features top aromas of chocolate, deep rich blackberries, red fruits that follow through the palate to a creamy mocha finish ! 16.20 $ at the SAQ
- Sparkling 9.5 Cold Wine Brut: This Italian delight goes marvelously with entree finger food and shrimp cocktails ! Full, harmonious and dry taste with peach and pineapple scent and floral bouquet. 18.15 $ at SAQ
- Sortilège Prestige and Sortilège Maple Cream: Exceptional taste! This Liqueur and its maple cream counterpart uses superior Canadian whiskey that is aged for 7 years in white pine barrels. The mixture is flavored with first run Quebec maple syrup. Price from 40$ to 50 $ at SAQ
- Vernissage 2011 Syrah Cabernet Sauvignon: This red wine is ideal for parties as it is smartly packaged in a bright, shiny, black luggage in 3 Liters format. The wine itself is very fruity and has blackberry and white pepper flavors which fill out the mid palate.
- Fontanafredda Barolo 2004, Piedmont: This garnet red wine marvellously accompanies pastas, red meats and spicy seafood. The wine is dry and presents hints of prunes, dried cherries and raisins with an oak finish. 52.55$ at SAQ
The event was a date with quality and diversity as specialty foods were also on offer to the public. Premiere Moison was a grand sponsor and handed out bags of baguettes to presenters while also selling their delicious, feature apple bread at their stand. Some personal favorites include:
- Corfias fine Chocolates: These artisanal chocolates from Boucheville Quebec come in a variety of flavors and packages. I personally love their blackcurrant pearls, bouquets and card messages that can be customized for weddings or business gifts as well as their delicious praline, milk chocolate truffles. Available in store or online at : www.corfias.com
- Trois Petits Cochons : Their product line of sausages , ham, terrines and pates have gained a solid reputation as being delicious while remaining gluten free and low in salt and fat . Personal favorites include the Blueberry Wapitis “Elk” pate and the four peppers terrine. Available in store at 4175 Avenue Berard Saint-Hyacinthe or online at www.3-PC.ca
- Terra Coffee: The Company has been handcrafting premium quality coffee in Montreal using acclaimed small batch roasting techniques with 100% Arabica beans. They offer 5 taste profiles: floral, fruity, rich / caramelized, woody / spicy and smoky / sharp to make selection easier. My personal favorite is their Cuba Caracolillo that has a high intense aroma with dark chocolate notes. Available at www.terracaf.ca
- Ariel Tea: They offer exclusive single - origin, unique blends and fragrant herbal teas that come in biodegradable pyramid shaped tea bags that allows the tea leaves to fully expand and release full and unparalleled flavors. I loved their Vanilla and Pear tea that blends the sweet aroma of Bartlett pear with Chinese white tea. Available at www.thesariel.ca