Tag Archives: wine

Look Who Turned 5! FoodShare’s – A Recipe For Change

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Look who turned 5!

A Recipe For Change Event

February 27th,2014

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Last year I was very fortunate to be invited to attend ‘Recipe for Change‘ and felt extremely honoured to be invited to return again this year. This annual event, held at the St. Lawrence Market north building , is a community filled celebration of food with a distinct purpose that supports Food Literacy education & FoodShare’s innovative and timely work in schools.

A staunch supporter of Food Literacy is Sang Kim of the newly opened Wind Up Bird Cafe who got a chance to promote his restaurant’s contribution to #RecipeforChange this year on Breakfast Television the morning of the event. See the interview here.(via @BTtoronto) Below is the dish and its creator Chef Yumiko Kobayashi.

Chef Yumiko

Chef Yumiko Kobayashi

Tofu-Avocado Gratin and Sweet Potatoe Mille-Feuille from Wind Up Bird Cafe (Vegetarian)

Tofu-Avocado Gratin and Sweet Potatoe Mille-Feuille from Wind Up Bird Cafe (Vegetarian)

The Recipe for Change Initiative

Foodshare believes the following:”How children eat when they’re young lays the foundation for life-long patterns, but integrated good food education is not the norm in Ontario schools. Students are not regularly provided the tools to make healthy decisions to sustain themselves, nor are they taught how to garden, cook a healthy meal, compost or understand where their food comes from on an ongoing basis.”

“Childhood obesity and diabetes are global pandemics and, in Ontario, major health risks. Barring electives, and a few sporadic science or health lessons, healthy eating, hands-on Food Literacy skills and physical activity are not as regularly integrated into the school day as they should be.” – taken from “Why Recipe for Change”

This year brought together some of Toronto’s all-star chefs for a night of culinary delights with complimenting beverage selections from local vendors:

The amazing Recipe for Change Chefs

The Recipe for Change VQA Wines, Breweries, Coffee,Tea and other Beverages

Crema Coffee Co

Crema Coffee in the making

Maple Bacon Crema

Maple Bacon Crema

Frida Restaurant and Bar, Chef Jose Hadad – Tacos de Pescado en Salsa Verde, pan fried and then finished in Salsa Verde Haddock and garnished with Sour Cream, Coriander and Onion

My Little Dumplings, Chef Bashir – Mushroom Bao
(Vegetarian)

Annona at the Park Hyatt, Chef Joan Monfaredi – Pulled Buschbeck Braised Lamb Slider with Spicy Mustard Glaze, Crunch Slaw Sesame Tooney

Lisa Marie/Fidel Gastro, Chef Matt Basile – Agrentinian Lamb Meatball

Urban Acorn/The Depanneur, Chef Daniel Holloway & Marie Fitrion – Haitian Goat Griot & Banana Peze

Accra and Banana Peze

Urban Acorn/The Depanneur, Chef Daniel Holloway & Marie Fitrion – Haitian Accra & Banana Peze (Vegetarian)

SOMA Hot Chocolate

SOMA Chocolate from Chocolatemakers , David Castellan & Cynthia Leung – Hot Chocolate Mix Spiced with Ginger, Madagascar Vanilla, Orange Peel, Chili and Soma Blend Spices

Reuben Caraway Rye Gnocchi

The Beverly Hotel, Chef Eric Wood – Reuben Caraway Rye Gnocchi, Pastrami Lambs Tongue, Dill Pickled Mushrooms with Red Cabbage and Apple Mostarda, Fresh Tarragon and Gruyere Snow

Sweet Potato Gnocchi with Wild Boar Ragu

Le Select Bistro, Chef Albert Ponzo – Sweet Potato Gnocchi with Wild Boar Ragu

Foggy Sunburst Morning Earl Grey Mocktail

The Love of Tea, Carol Mark – Foggy Sunburst Morning Earl Grey Mocktail with infusions of Bergamot and Citrus

Citrus Financier with Chestnut Mousse and Coffee Nougatine

The Tempered Chef, Chef Bertrand Alepee – Citrus Financier with Chestnut Mousse and Coffee Nougatine

Whole Wheat Scones with Goat Cheese and The Chef's House Preserves

Whole Wheat Scones with Goat Cheese and The Chef’s House Preserves

Whole Wheat Scones with Goat Cheese and The Chef's House Preserves

Whole Wheat Scones with Goat Cheese and The Chef’s House Preserves

Whole Wheat Scones with Goat Cheese and The Chef's House Preserves

George Brown Chef School, Chef John Higgins – Whole Wheat Scones with Goat Cheese and The Chef’s House Preserves

Moroccan Inspired Cauliflower Soup with Crispy Chick Peas

Good Earth Food & Wine Co., Chef Therese De Grace – Moroccan Inspired Cauliflower Soup with Crispy Chick Peas, Pickled Vegetable Micro Salad and Tahini Drizzle (Vegan)

Ice Wine Jelly Appetizers

Bernadin, Chef Emerie Brine – Ice Wine Jelly Bite-Size Appetizers

Mini Raw Pumpkin Tarts on Pecan Salted Date Crust

Cruda Cafe, Chef Claudia Gaviria – Mini Raw Pumpkin Tarts on Pecan Salted Date Crust
(Raw Vegan)

Mini Raw Cashew French Herbed Fermented Cheese with Sweet Potato Crackers

Cruda Cafe, Chef Claudia Gaviria – Mini Raw Cashew French Herbed Fermented Cheese with Sweet Potato Crackers (Vegan)

Mixed Ceviche (Seafood)

T.O. Ceviche Bar, Chef Alvaro Valencia – Mixed Ceviche (Seafood)

Ham Hock Terrine with Home-Made Branston Pickle and Quail's Egg

Table 17/Ascari Enoteca, Chef John Sinopoli – Ham Hock Terrine with Home-Made Branston Pickle and Quail’s Egg

Atlantic Salt Cod Fritters with Cilantro and Watercress Pesto

Culinary Students of Bendale Business & Technical Institute/Eastdale Collegiate Institute – Atlantic Salt Cod Fritters with Cilantro and Watercress Pesto from Bendale Gardens

Apple Fruitcake with Caramel Yogurt

Culinary Students of Bendale Business & Technical Institute/Eastdale Collegiate Institute – Apple Fruitcake with Caramel Yogurt

Arroz Caldo

Lamesa Filipino Kitchen, Chef Rudy Boquila – Arroz Caldo (Meat and Vegetarian options)

Duck Tamales

Valdez, Chef Steve Gonzalez – Duck Tamales

Walter's Caesars with Tromba Tequila

Walter Caesar – Caesars and Virgin Caesars

Shucked Oysters

Hooked, Kristin & Dan Donovan – Fresh Shucked Oysters – Shan Daph, Pictou County, Nova Scotia, Cooke’s Cove, Ellerslie, PEI

Gulab Jamun with Masala Chai

416 Snack Bar, Chef Mark Ota – Gulab Jamun with Masala Chai (Vegetarian)

The collection of Chefs will ensure that there is great, amazing food for all guests so that even vegetarians, vegans, and those with other food considerations are accommodated.

The tasty evening at #RecipeforChange is composed of small plates allowing each chef to present their own creative vision, surprising us with their combining of foods and flavours.

Having chefs were on hand to personally prepare, plate, and serve their food, be available to discuss their inspiration with us gave us the rare chance to get up close and personal as a guest with some of the city’s prominent culinary minds  – a rare treat for many and for me a chance to say hello to many of my culinary friends and personal chef inspirations.

Culinary Students of Bendale Business & Technical Institute/Eastdale Collegiate Institute

Culinary Students of Bendale Business & Technical Institute/Eastdale Collegiate Institute

Lamesa Filipino Kitchen, Chef Rudy Boquila

Lamesa Filipino Kitchen, Chef Rudy Boquila

Valdez, Chef Steve Gonzalez

Valdez, Chef Steve Gonzalez

My Little Dumplings, Chef Bashir Munye and Crew

My Little Dumplings, Chef Bashir Munye and Crew

Hooked, Kristin & Dan Donovan

Hooked, Kristin & Dan Donovan

Grilled Tofu and Edamame Salad

FRANK at the AGO, Chef Jeff Duek – Grilled Tofu and Edamame Salad, Pipian Sauce, Coriander Spouts in a Palm Leaf Boat (Vegan)

Crema Coffee Co

Two of my favourite guys! Crema Coffee Co. – Amazing Maple Bacon never tasted so good.

Chicken Chilaquiles Mexico City Style

Santo Pecado, Chef Paola Solorzano – Chicken Chilaquiles Mexico City Style

Frida’s Chef Jose Hadad

Chopped Canada Season 1 Episode 7 Winner Brianne Nash with Tania Daviduke of The Culinary Adventure Company

Everything that Foodshare Toronto does is centered on the power of food to connect, to inspire and to ultimately transform. Their work is so impactful because of this important and sometimes neglected act of sharing. The power of caring and sharing truly does work and their work clearly shows that every little bit counts.

The Recipe for Change Super-Supportive Sponsors

Supporting FoodShare is easy, and you can be part of its impacts and help it grow and grow. Easy ways to show your support can be found here.

I truly love the opportunity to mingle and chat with the chefs, the beverage partners and many of my writing colleagues, dear foodie friends and general public who are in awe of each culinary expedition from table to table. There are also all the amazing things that FoodShare has been able to do and will do for Food Literacy and creating a healthier future for our future generations.

The opportunity to taste bites from over 30 Chefs, 20 VQA wines, 6 local beers, and so much more, the event was an amazing value for attendees and a wonderful opportunity to support FoodShare’s work to create a healthy future.

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Toronto – Fresh Canteen – Garam Masala Seared Duck Breast Out of A Box

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Fresh Canteen – Garam Masala Seared Duck Breast Out of A Box

Fresh Canteen

A short while ago, I was pleased to be invited to join a handful of other blogger and food media guests for a hands-on experience with Fresh Canteen’s new ready-to-cook meal-in-a-box service. This awesome new food delivery service in town is really doing some exciting things. They offer up to the consumer a new version of food prep, giving you an assortment of recipes to choose from each week, and sending you all the ingredients you need to make the dish of your choice. Easey peasey – no shopping required (except selecting on their website) and creative editing allowed!

Refreshing Herbal Iced Tea

Fresh Canteen Flyers

Bloggers and Writers St. Lawrence Market

Table Set Up

We had our taste buds tantalized by some amazing appetizers from their recipe box such as their Asparagus Gruyere Tart & Lamb Kofta With Cucumber Yogurt .

Asparagus Gruyere Tart

 This service that caters to people who want to cook fresh, delicious dinners in their own kitchens but are often just too busy to shop or perhaps intimidated to shop for all the ingredients they need. They are very committed to using local food producers, focusing on fresh, seasonal ingredients whenever possible and that has a great appeal as I like to support local as much as I can.

 

#FreshCanteen

Working in teams, (my team consisted of @the awesome duo of @gavmartell & @DailyBreadBlog and myself @TraveliciousDee) and under the guidance of the Fresh Canteen team, we worked our way through the easy-to-follow step by step recipe for –  DUCK!  The dish to be made was Seared Duck Breast with Garam Masala and Sautéed Grapes (no intimidation at all).  While it has been something I have rarely prepared myself, I do so love duck, I love Garam Masala, (yes I could stand and just sniff for a while) and fresh crisp grapes – mmmmhhhmmm. I think we all were impressed by the results of our efforts especially given that our fry pan had its temperamental moments with its heat source.

Duck Breast in a Box

pulling out the goods

Finished Duck dish

Each week you have a choice from a great selection of recipes online you can choose from by Friday and then on Tuesday you will receive an insulated box filled with all of the ingredients that you will need to make that dish. Each recipe is portioned out for two (or you can order a double enough for four) but easily the recipes that I have made would easily feed at least three or two with enough leftovers for someone to take to lunch the next day at approximately $12-$15 per serving (includes delivery to your front door) it’s a pretty amazing deal with no tip required (but better ask the chef at hand on that). The included recipe card shows its difficulty rating, estimated time and the step-by-step instructions which guide you through the cooking processes and there is also basic nutrition information – calories, carbohydrates, fat & protein info.

Fresh-Canteen-Menu

This is such a great idea for those friends who eat out or do take away at least 3 to 4 nights a week because of their busy schedule and when they get home from work the last thing they are going to do is go shopping. It’s also a great option for a weeknight dinner party or intro cooking lesson for your friends – you just come home from work, open the box, and create some kitchen magic with some amazing food and voilà. Having 4 brothers I know this would have been a great way to teach them some cool fancy meals to impress a girlfriend or partner, not break the bank and know that at least on few nights they were eating well.

The food is packed in an insulated bag with some reusable freezer packs and will stay cold all day in case you aren’t home when the box comes. If you pop the whole thing in the fridge, it will stay fresh for a couple of days too so you don’t even have to make it that night. Also, each recipe comes with a plastic covered recipe sheet with super detailed instructions and photos – kind of like DIY cooking for those not friendly with shopping and following a regular cookbook so even those who aren’t 100% confident in the kitchen are going to be able to finesse a meal and feel like a “TOP CHEF” in the kitchen. Most recipes can be made within 35-45 minutes with minimal prep of washing and chopping. Three new recipes are offered each week, and each recipe is available for 2 weeks. The minimum order is $60 with Fresh Canteen (so it’s 2 recipes serving 2 people = 4 servings total) and the maximum order is $180 (4 recipes serving 4 people = 16 servings total)

Right now delivery is only available in the downtown Toronto are but a great idea is to get it delivered to your office downtown and take it home at the end of the day(packaged in an insulated bag with freezer packs so you are safe to have a full day at work). Expansion of their delivery area is sure to follow the more people find out about the quality, value and ease of this great service.

At the end of the night our well-fed bodies left with some great goodies like our wonderful long red Fresh Canteen aprons, signature shopping bag, our box of our next meal and a lovely knife chef knife from Nella Cucina.

Take Home Package

What I got to come home with for our #recipe challenge was their Mock Butter Chicken of which I made a few additions and a substitution to the original recipe. I was very happy to open the box 2 days later and find that all of the ingredients were still super fresh and enticing.

Still keeping it with an Indian theme I chose to add in peaches to my Chicken instead of the recipe included ingredient of raisins (never been a big fan of raisins in my cooked food but understand their place in the original recipe), toasted coconut to the most amazing light and fluffy rice (think nutty pilaf) and the addition of pan toasted black mustard seed to the great crisp cucumber and radish salad dressing.

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So here is my mashup redux recipe from Fresh Canteen’s Mock Butter Chicken

Dee’s Peachy Chicken Remix

Recipe Ready

Ingredients:

2 Chicken Breasts

1.5 Tbsp Vegetable Oil (I prefer EVOO)

1 Tbsp chopped Garlic

1.5 Tbsp chopped Ginger

1 heaping Tbsp Tomato Paste

1.5 Tsp Cumin Seeds

1.5 Tsp Ground Coriander

1 Tsp Turmeric

1.5 Tsp Garam Masala

½ tsp Chili Flakes (I like mine hot so I did ¾ tsp)

1/5 tsp Brown Sugar

½ tsp Salt (this is always to taste but you do need some with all of these spices)

3 tbsp Plain Yogurt (I find if you are doing dairy free – plain coconut yogurt works)

½ Medium Onion chopped

½ tbsp Butter (optional – I use Coconut Oil)

1 small Japanese style cucumber

2-3 large radishes

2 tbsp Red Wine Vinegar

1-2 tsp Olive Oil

1 cup Basmati Rice

1-2 Naan Bread

1.5 tbsp toasted unsweetened coconut flakes

1  tbsp toasted Brown Mustard seeds

1 medium peach diced small

What you need to cook:

1 small saucepan

1 frying pan

Instructions:

Prepare ingredients and read through the recipe noting what needs to be washed, chopped and sliced.

ingredients mustard seed

Chop the onion, garlic, ginger and cilantro. (I use my Cuisinart chopper for the 1st three ingredients and it creates a great chunky paste which is very traditional for Indian starters for recipes.

Cut chicken breasts into bite size pieces. Slice cucumbers and radishes into similar size pieces.

Bring 2 cups of water to a boil and add ½ tsp of salt (sea or Himalayan preferred). Add rice, reduce the heat to minimum, cover and simmer for 15 minutes. When done, fluff with a fork and add in toasted coconut. (Coconut can be toasted in fry pan quickly over medium heat to a golden brown and leaves pleasant oil behind to sauté your onions etc. in)

Coconut Rice

In the fry pan head up your 1-2 tsp of Olive Oil on medium heat and add in the mustard seeds. When you hear the first popping of the seeds immediately take off of the heat and allow the oil to cool. This is the base of your dressing. In a small bowl, add the sliced cucumbers and radishes. Whisk together the Olive Oil, Mustard Seeds, 1.5 tsp of Red Wine Vinegar and add Salt & Pepper to taste. Set this aside.

mustard seed

cucumber radish salad

Heat the remaining oil on medium-high heat until shimmering (or if using a wooden cooking utensil it should start to bubble where it touches the pan). Add your chopped ginger, garlic and onion. Cook until the onions are slightly golden in colour. Add your peaches at about a 2 minute mark and cook for about 4 minutes.

onion garlic ginger

peaches in the mix

Remove the pan from the head and add in the cumin seeds, coriander, tomato paste, garam masala, brown sugar, chili flakes and turmeric. Return to the heat and cook stirring constantly for another 2-4 minutes to infuse the spice mix into the onion, garlic, ginger “paste” and releases the fragrances and flavours of the east.

spice mix

Add the chicken, stirring to coat all the chicken with the spice mixture. Add 1/3 cup of water and the 3 tbsp of yogurt. Cook until chicken is done approx.7-9 minutes. If your sauce is too thick add a bit of water while cooking and you can finish with a tbsp of Butter or Coconut Oil to put an extra shine on the sauce (totally optional)

Chicken Dish Cooking

Chicken Dish Cooking

Sprinkle with chopped Coriander and serve with the Toasted Coconut Rice. Enjoy with your Cool Crisp Cucumber and Radish Salad and your Naan Bread which can be heated and sprinkled with your Chopped Coriander as well on the side.

Finished products

Enjoy!

pot of chicken

As long as you get your order in by end of day Friday, you’ll get boxes Tuesday. They currently have a serious PROMO going on! Use code “FALL30” at checkout for $30 dollars off your first Fresh Canteen order of two recipes.

I know the next time I am trying to plan ahead I will have Fresh Canteen  bookmarked and on speed dial for easy access to order my next food experience to share! I’m excited to see how Fresh Canteen grows and develops as a local start-up and to see the recipes experiences they choose to create for your shopping and cooking pleasure!

 

A Night of Fun, Flavour and Flour with the Urban Italian Sauce Maker

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A couple of weeks ago the talented duo of Sizzling Communications invited myself and a wonderful collection of writers, bloggers, chefs and more to a new product launch for Louise Prete Foods – Michael Malleau’s new Sugo Pomodoro e Bailico. From stockbroker to a food and catering entrepreneur, Michael is truly the Urban Italian Sauce Maker working out of his industrial culinary loft creating modern twists on old world tastes.

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The stage was set  for Michael’s bespoke experience – “Cafe Roma for One Night Only”and off in the corner…a proper Vespa sat looking like it was ready for one of us to speed off on it but we were in a space that had an amazing panoramic vista of downtown Toronto at night.

toronto by night

Jars and jars of sauce teased us all evening! We all hoped we would be taking at least one home with us after tasting some amazing goodies throughout the evening showcasing just what we could do with the sauce.

jars of sauce

The diverse uses for the sauce were showcased in some tasty temptations such as Nonna’s Homemade MeatBalls, Individual Lasagna’s layered with fresh pasta,grilled eggplant, zucchini and sweet red peppers, Slow Roasted Tomato Brushette and Mini Whole Wheat Pizza Margheritas.

Nonnas Meatballs

Lasagna

tasty treats

Pizza prep

Although I missed out on some of the tasty treats, I did get to share some spotlight time with fellow blogger and foodie Alexa Clark. We had been chosen to be the pasta makers for the night!

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An honour for sure but also a fast trip down memory lane for myself as I remembered days as a child when my own grandmother and I used her new hand-cranked pasta machine. Sometimes mistaken as having Italian heritage, my Ukrainian grandmother (my Baba) used that lovely machine only once to make pasta and many times to make perogy dough and verhuny. That said its been many years since I have attempted anything but ravioli by hand.

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This was a fun time and my old skills prevailed as I mastered the dough and made some glorious noodles to be shared with Michael and that glorious sauce.

pasta making

To compliment the tasty nibbles of the evening –  Niagara,Ontario based 13th Street Winery was there to showcase some complimentary wines. We had the chance to taste both their Red Palette and White Palette wine blends and I definitely favoured the reds of course! On its own or with the amazing food served I would definitely feel comfortable taking a bottle of either to a dinner party or gifting to a friend or colleague.

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An amazing evening of Feast and Festa put on by Michael and his crew!

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Some wonderful biscotti and bags of treats went home with us all to further tantilize our tastebuds some more!

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Louise Prete Foods offers their Sugo Pomodoro e Basilico pasta sauce at many retail stores. They also offer prepared meals, catering, and delivery! So you can get your Louise Prete fix without leaving the comfort of your home!

http://www.louiseprete.com/shop.html

Check out a great feature on CBC featuring Michael Malleau and other start-up entrepreneurs Self-Employment on CBC

13th Street Winery // Logo

13th Street Winery

Many fabulous locations carry the wines of the 13th Street Winery and here is the link for Toronto and many more!

Book your private group tasting at the 13th Street Winery. Call 905-984-8463 or Email Ruth Peters at events@13thstreetwinery.com

Wines of South Africa Invite You to Win

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You can travel in South Africa for months’ on end and still not see all the magnificent and amazing corners of the country. The South African wine region is one of the very popular tourist destinations because it is simply breathtakingly beautiful. ( and hey…it certainly isn’t hard to handle on the palette either!)

Several of the major wine routes, including Constantia, Durbanville, Darling, Stellenbosch, Helderberg, Paarl, Franschhoek, Wellington and Walker Bay, are within an 60 minutes or less driving distance from dazzling Cape Town. Some others, like Breedekloof, Worcester, Robertson, the Little Karoo, Tulbagh, the Swartland, Olifants River and the Northern Cape will take you on a slightly longer journey through constantly changing and splendorous landscapes.

If you have had a chance to go to an LCBO this month (sorry thats our Ontario liquor stores. Canada Residents only) you might have strolled past the section for South Africa. If you did, I trust that you picked up a bottle of vino marked with a promotional tag to “Win a Magical Trip for 2 to South Africa” with Goway.com and South African Airways! You don’t have to make a purchase but the wine makers of South Africa would really appreciate you sampling something new or going with an old favourite!

“Did you know…

the Cape Floral Kingdom is a World Heritage Site and most South African vineyards are located in this region?”

“Did you know…

South Africa ranks 7th in the world in terms of volume as a wine producing country?”

http://www.lcbo.ca/products/sections/southafricanwines/index.shtml?inbound=homepage

Enjoy a podcast of  WINES OF SOUTH AFRICA RUNNING TIME: 26 MINUTES

http://podcast.lcbo.com/lcbo/learn/podcasts/discover/videos/06_wines_of_south_africa.html

Find all the full contest details and rules here: http://www.wosa.co.za/canada

Wines of South Africa (WOSA) is a fully inclusive body, representing all South African producers of wine who export their products. WOSA, which was established in its current form in 1999, has over 500 exporters on its database, comprising all the major South African wine exporters. It is constituted as a not-for-profit company (sec21) and is totally independent of any producer or wholesaling company. It is also independent of any government department, although it is recognised by government as an Export Council.

ALL THINGS WINE: Seven Sisters of South Africa

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Seven Sisters Wine was featured at the South African Consulate of Canada’s Black History Month event at the TD Center in Toronto that I attended this past month. As I am soon to be off to their homeland I thought to share with you a little insight on this wonderful story of the Seven Sisters and how the Wine company came to be.

Seven Sisters Wine represents Women in the Wine Industry, Indigenous South African Ownership and Black Economic Empowerment. Their wine has become synonymous with sisterhood and celebration, and is an absolute hit amongst women in a restaurant/celebration environment.

Here is their full story: Seven Sisters YouTube  its definitely inspiring!

They can also be found on Facebook – Seven Sisters Wine

Contact Here in Ontario Region for Private Sales :
Matthew Guignard
This is G Inc.
519-819-4697
mguignard@gmail.com