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The Grape Nut returns… all multimedia-like

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Hi! It’s great to be back blogging for the Winnipeg Free Press. Now that the strike is all settled, I look forward to bringing you all the latest in wine-related goings-on, etc. in new and exciting ways.

Fellow Freep columnist Gordon Sinclair Jr. brought to light the addition of another wine festival set to debut next year, organized by the Independent Specialty Wine Stores of Manitoba. I’m looking forward to learning more about this new festival, as well as the new look sure to be found at the Winnipeg Wine Festival. More on this as info becomes available…

So what was I up to while the strike was happening? Well, I couldn’t just stop tasting wine - the fact that I have a couple of other freelance gigs helped, but I still felt like I wanted to do more. So, following in the footsteps of Wine Library TV’s camera-friendly Gary Vaynerchuk, I started a wine video blog. I present to you… GrapeNutTV. Following the link will take you to my Vimeo page featuring the three videos I made while I was away from the blog. The questions I tackle were from viewers who left comments on my Facebook page, where I originally posted them. Yeah… I’m all multimedia-like.

Apologies in advance for the poor sound quality, mumbling and bumbling, awkward camera presence, etc. Once I can figure out how to post/embed the videos directly to this blog, I’ll do so. In the meantime… enjoy?

November means Beaujolais Nouveau is nearly upon us - every year (on the third Thursday of November), producers release their very-fresh, juicy and light red, typically the first wine from the 2008 vintage to hit the shelves that’s from north of the equator. Look for it on the 20th - it’s worth trying, although the hype surrounding Beaujolais Nouveau’s release has more to with tradition than earth-shattering wine.

As for me, I’ll have to look for it south of the equator, as I’m heading to Chile in two weeks to wander the streets of Santiago and the surrounding hillsides, exploring vineyards hither and yon. Pisco sours and empanadas will surely be enjoyed.
OK, time to go eat my daughter’s Hallowe’en candy and watch football. Go Bombers!

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About Ben MacPhee-Sigurdson

When he wasn't bashing on a drum kit in local punk rock bands, Ben spent the mid '90s hucking cases of wine around to pay for two English degrees. Now he's the Winnipeg Free Press wine columnist and blogger.

The extent of Ben's wine experience in the mid-90s was memories of accidentally leaving a bottle of White Zinfandel in the freezer overnight, and the ensuing mess he was left with. Between 1996 and 2005 Ben absorbed all he could about wine while working at wine shops to pay for school. Meanwhile, he was churning out papers for his BA and MA in English (from the Universities of Winnipeg and Manitoba, respectively).

Ben became the Winnipeg Free Press' weekly wine columnist in 2005, and two years later joined Wine Access magazine as a contributor, a member of their national tasting panel and a judge at the Canadian Wine Awards and International Value Wine Awards until the magazine closed up shop in 2013.

In 2013 Ben joined the Winnipeg Free Press as a copy/web editor.

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