Written By Treve Ring Libations / Wine Festivals Apr 1, 2011 Vancouver Playhouse 2011: Day 4 SHARE VIA: Facebook Twitter PinterestDay 4, and the will is still strong, though the flesh is feeling a little weak. I realized I didn’t get out in the fresh air from 9am-7pm on Day 4. Perhaps a few circles around the block would be healthy (my tongue and liver might be happy), but it’s hard to tear yourself away from such special tastings. Playhouse is a giant playground for wine geeks like me. After the 100+ wines I tried today, fresh air and feet up was called for.But that was the evening. The day started in a much more exciting way. All week I’ve been writing about the wondrous diversity of Spanish wines, and the first seminar of the day really exemplified that. Tour of Terruño lined up senior presenters from 12 leading Spanish wineries to talk about what makes their wines unique. Terruño is Spanish for terroir – the culmination of site, soil, climate, water, air – the exclusive qualities of a site that is expressed through the wine. Moderated by Wines From Spain AmbassadorRoger Randolph, the seminar saw these leading wine professionals each passionately sharing their particular region, grape and wine. I was blown away by the Cavas Parés Baltà Gratavinum 2πR 2007, an artisanal and handcrafted, small production red blend from the ancient region of Priorato. Textured stone, sand, cereal and minerality, dark, dusty fruit, complex and lengthy, structured and slatey, this tasted like the mythical and sculptured terroir from which it was picked. Fantastic.Immediately following that was the 8th Annual Awards Lunch, a major trade event at the festival each year. Over Spanish wines and foods, the results were announced:SPIRITED INDUSTRY PROFESSIONAL (SIP) AWARD – JURGEN GOTHE, Georgia Straight wine critic & wine radio personality for CBC and The Peak FMSOMMELIER OF THE YEAR AWARD – OWEN KNOWLTON, West RestaurantWINE PROFESSIONAL CHALLENGE – JAY WHITELEY, Hawksworth RestaurantFETZER GREAT BEGINNINGS WINE & APPETIZER CHALLENGE – CHEF JEFF KANG, Diva at the Met Executive Sous ChefQUADY DESSERT COMPETITION – LISA IP – Four Seasons HotelWINE LIST AWARDS – Celebrating the best food and wine pairings in the business. The only two restaurants to win the highest honour, Platinum, were Blue Water Café + raw bar, and West Restaurant.After another afternoon spent traipsing and tasting through Trade (see day 3 for reference), I sat down at one of the most anticipated seminars of the Festival: The Fladgate Partnership Vintage Port Tasting. Huge kudos to the Festival organizers for putting together this master class tasting of vintage ports. As moderator Anthony Gismondi aptly noted, “This is a real master class, with actual masters.” He was referring to Adrian Bridge, CEO of The Fladgate Partnership, and David Guimaraens, Winemaker for the group. The Fladgate Partnership is a group of three of the top Port houses – Croft(founded 1588), Taylor Fladgate (1692) and Fonseca (1822). Each house has its own identity, and tasting through the vertical (different vintages of the same house) and horizontal (same vintages, different houses) in front of us, the individualities were clear. Overall Croft was fruit forward, intense and dominant. Taylor was refined and structured, leaner and firmer. And Fonesca was Rubenesque, round and full. All delicious in their own right, and wonderful to taste these houses in various stages of maturation (1977, 1985, 1991, 1994, 2007). Three of the wines present were awarded perfect 100 point scores by major critics (the Fonseca 1977 and 1994, and Taylor Fladgate 1994). Listening to the gentlemen speak about upholding the centuries-old traditions and perpetuating the house styles and reputations was fascinating.Perfect 100 point iconic wines? The perfect way to end Day 4. A very special day of experts, and wines – and yet another example of the prestige and calibre of the Vancouver Playhouse International Wine Festival. PlayhouseSpainwine festival SHARE VIA: Facebook Twitter Pinterest Written By: Treve Ring Treve Ring is a wine writer, editor, judge, consultant and certified sommelier, and has been with EAT Magazine for over a decade.\r\n\r\nIn addition to her work with EAT, she is a Wine Critic and National Judge for ... Read More You may also like Events / Food News / Places April 28, 2021 CITY EATS May|June 2021 At press time, restaurants, pubs, bars and food courts remain closed for indoor dining. One silver lining is that the weather is warming up and more ... 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