The Hill Times is the weekly heartbeat of Ottawa's Parliament Hill featuring the insider goings on of federal politics in Canada. Once a year they publish their 'Power & Influence' issue featuring Canada's biggest movers and shakers in the political and financial world. This year Cabinet Minister Michelle Rempel was asked to give an interview about wine for the yearly publication. Michelle is unique on The Hill in a number of ways (including being the youngest female Cabinet Minister ever) but also because she's a certified sommelier, earning her WSET Diploma back in Calgary before her life in politics. Coupled with the fact that her Cabinet post is Minister of State for Western Economic Diversification, she has become one of the most astute proponents of our domestic wine business and was at the forefront of Bill C-311 attempting to open Provincial borders to domestic wine trade.
Michelle and I have gotten to know each other really well through a variety of wine events, tastings, dinners and even started the Society tastings for Capital Wine together. Sharing a similar philosophy in wine, and having two different market/legislative positions in the industry, Michelle asked if I could help out and bring some top wines from our favourite Canadian producers for a tasting we'd do along with the interview. We decided to theme the tasting "The Best of Canada: More Than Just Ice Wine", and it turned out to be quite a fun afternoon. The reporter was Asha Hinorangi, a great young journalist for The Hill Times who just happens to be working on her own sommelier certification through Algonquin College. She was the perfect person to conduct an interview on Canadian wine for a political publication.
The tasting included wines from: Hinterland Wine Co, Joie Farm Winery, Clos du Soleil, Thomas Bachelder, Tawse Winery, Painted Rock Winery, and Antolino Brongo. Take a peek at the article and let me know what you think. For a pdf of the full article click here or find the issue on newsstands now.