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June Package Bonus Perk

For all those WineCollective members who ordered memberships or gifts, we are stoked to include 2 sample Wine Wipes courtesy of WineWipes.ca. Perfect for stashing in your pocket or purse, Wine Wipes are small, disposable towelettes designed to discreetly remove red wine stains from teeth or lips. Wine Wipes are available at various locations in Calgary and are available for order on-line at Wine Wipes.ca

We hope you enjoy your complimentary Wine Wipes and hope you are looking forward to a great contest kicking off with tomorrow's wine delivery. Stay tuned for details.


WineCamp Delayed

Yay WineCamp: June 18th.. Ah crap.

Sadly this isn't going to happen people. At least not on this date. We have run into many more snags than we had anticipated (who would have thought drinking wine as a group could be so much trouble?). Sadly this means we might just have to meet a little less formally till we figure out a date that will work. Currently we are shooting for a date in August.

Stay tuned as we are still hard at work getting things organized!

PS. Expect tickets to run around $25. Oh, and keep you eyes on WineCampCalgary.com as well.


2008 Bordeaux Futures

Buying wine futures is an interesting proposition, in the sense that futures are purchased around 2 years ahead of when the wine will be delivered to the public. Futures are a gamble; not unlike the stock market in the sense that buyers hope they are able to get top vintages at fractions of the price once the wine is delivered for consumption. Who buys these futures? Collectors, investors and lovers of fine wine. With the benchmark 2000 and 2005 vintages in Bordeaux, the prices of futures had skyrocketed to a point of inaccessibility for most.

An example – 2005 Clerc Milon was initially offered at a futures price of $64.00 per bottle. Today, I spotted this specific vintage for around $130.00 at a local shop. Since the global economic crisis hit, the price of wine has declined with the exciting 2008 vintage finally returning futures prices back to reality.

WineCollective is pleased to be working with Cork Fine Wine, Spirits and Ales around their 2008 Bordeaux futures offering and would like to extend this to our readers and members. If you are interested in learning more, please email us at thecellar@winecollective.ca

Ciao and have a great weekend!

Image Courtesy of Mescon via Flickr


Making Sense of Italian Wine

http://www.amazon.ca/Matt-Kramers-Making-Sense-Italian/dp/0762422300

Matt Kramer is one of those wine writers who has long since checked pretense and snobbery at the door. This is evident in his monthly column in WineSpectator as well as in his written work. I borrowed his latest book Making Sense of Italian Wine and I must admit he invokes great passion all while deciphering the wines of Italy. Do you want to know what constitutes a “Super Tuscan” or do you want to understand the differences between Barolo and Brunello? Is Sassicaia worth the dollars it commands? This book has some great answers to questions like these.

I highly recommend checking it out especially if you have a penchant for or are interested in learning more about vino Italiano!

Ciao!


To Your Health – Prevention in a Glass

In 1991, Morley Safer covered the French Paradox which describes how the French maintain relatively high fat diets but seemingly enjoy lower occurrences of heart disease. At the time, researchers were looking at the differences in fats from milk and that of cheese which is known as a staple of the French diet. Along with this, the consumption of red wine was also considered to be a factor in describing this paradox. Seventeen years later, researchers have been learning and discovering just what about wine may be contributing to this anomaly. Their efforts have been focused around a substance found in wine called reservatrol. The worlds pharmaceutical companies are actively researching and developing drugs based off reservatrol for obesity, cardiovascular function along with cancer prevention. Reservatrol has also been seen to have positive preventative characteristics for neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer's.



So, raise a glass and toast to your health.We hardly needed another excuse to drink wine!


Time Flies!

Time flies doesn't it? As does all that weird snow we've been getting…

The May packages are almost ready to go! For those who signed up early, we hope that you have enjoyed your first months package. If you haven't already, be sure to log into the WineCollective website to post your ratings and comments for the wines you have received (look in the top navigation for “My Wines“). Your feedback helps us determine future selections and it earns you userpoints (mmm, points).

One thing to note, we have had to make some adjustments to our billing mechanism (as some of you may have already noticed). You will now be seeing invoices from our retail partner, Cork Fine Wine Spirits and Ales. Why? Legalities… You shouldn't notice any other changes in the process, but if you have any concerns please feel free to drop us a line.

Lastly, if you find yourself asking or see a friend jealous of all your wine, there is still time to select a package for next month’s delivery. The WineCollective cut-off for signing up is always at the end of the month, so act quickly because time is running out for May.

Thanks for your support and should you have any feedback, we'd love to hear from you.


Rocky Mountain Food and Wine Festival – Banff

Where does the time go? Already, we are into festival season with the Rocky Mountain Food and Wine Festival happening this weekend in Banff. There are a few tickets still remaining for entrance into the Grand Tasting Hall on Saturday. Tickets range between $20 and $25 dollars and sampling coupons are 0.50 cents each. As if the Grand Tasting Hall wasn't enough, there are several dinners and events on Friday and Saturday night to complete your weekend of bacchanalia. More information is available on the Rocky Mountain Food and Wine Festival website.

image courtesy of John Vetterli

For those of you who are going, have a great time and be safe by choosing a designated driver or using alternate transport. For those who aren't, the Calgary stop of the festival happens on the weekend of October 15th and Edmonton the weekend of Nov 4th.


Where'd we go? We're back!

Today marked the day that we decided the speed of the site was far too compromising to the overall user experience to let it continue any more. So here we are, new server, more cache, less time waiting around!

Hopefully you all enjoy the new found speed here, and sorry for the few hours of maintenance that occured because of it.

..Oh and if you (members) haven't already checked out the new “My Wines” section, you can now discuss and rate your wines with everyone. FUN!


The WineCollective Launch Contest

Riedel Vitus Syrah Glass

As part of the WineCollective launch, we said we were going to be giving away something special to the user who earned the most user points in the month of March. To jog your memory, WineCollective user points are earned by referring your friends and contributing to the WineCollective site. It was a close race but a winner has been determined.

And now the drum roll please. The winning member is mgsaruwatari!

Your prize will be available for pickup during our launch party on April 19th (Details here). If you can't make it to the party…we'll ship your prize out with your next order. What did mgsaruwatari win? I won't go into details but I will say that it rhymes with Biedel!!

Thanks go out to everyone who entered and earned on this contest. Those points you earned will remain with your account and will be redeemable in the future for great offers, products and events. Keep your eyes peeled on future contest announcements, as we love giving things to our members for free.

*Remember you can earn points by inviting your friends, commenting on your wines or even this blog post. 🙂


Oh oh! Wine costs more today.

That's right, if you live in Alberta the price of buying wine has gone up around $1. The Alberta government intends to increase it's income from liquor sales by around $180 million dollars.

It will now cost people $3 more to buy a carton of cigarettes. A price of a 12-pack of beer went up $1.30. The price of wine and spirits also increased, 75 cents and $2.89 respectively, for a 750 ml bottle.

CBC.ca

Happy Easter & Passover!


WineAccess – Canada's Wine Magazine

The people over at WineAccess, were kind enough to do a feature on the WineCollective!


“How they go about this, though, makes the Collective different from other wine clubs. The idea started when Bryksa was writing wine reviews for Reading For New Times magazine and the magazine was constantly asked where they could find each week's wines. After taking that concept and doing some market research, the Wine Collective was started, delivering wine to the door of members. After all, how could it get any easier to find these wines than to have them show up in your mailbox?”

Wine Delivered To Your Door by Mary Beth Tucker – WineAccess.

Fun!


Who likes parties?

With the wine almost here, and the first batch of deliveries primed to get out the door; we are thrilled to be letting you know that WineCollective is throwing its kick off party. Here are the details, mark your calendar:

When: Sunday April 19th, 2009
Time: 1 – 5 pm
Who can come: You, your family, friends, even your arch nemesis's if you are trying to patch things up.
Where:
Cork Fine Wine, Spirits and Ales
Beacon Hill Shopping Centre
11668 Sarcee Tr NW
Calgary, AB
Contact: 403.648.9094







Map to Cork

*Download the iCal event, and automatically add this to your calendar.

If you are a member, or still on the fence, come down and tip a glass with Adrian and David. Bring your taste buds 😉 …meaning your gustatory repertoire as well as your good friends, get it? We sincerely hope you can join us so we can put some names to faces and get to know you. There will be some wine, nibbles, conversation and chances to win some great prizes.

Take care and we hope to see you in the flesh on April 19th.