Champagne Beau Joie announces a new partnership with fashion brand Marchesa

Champagne Beau Joie states this week that the partnership includes the release of 1,000 limited-edition “couture bottles”. The bottles, which are the first in the ‘Marchesa for Beau Joie’ series, will be hand-beaded and embroidered. They carry a price of US $599 per bottle.

The series will also include several new products that will be available through luxury retailers, hotels and high-end resorts, as well as through their website.

The bottles will be designed by Georgina Chapman, the creative director and co-founder of Marchesa, in collaboration with Brandis Deitelbaum, the founder of Beau Joie.

“Georgina and I were asking each other why there isn’t a Champagne brand that’s an extension of a fashion house, something for everyday occasions or served at special events. It’s such a natural fit, fashion and Champagne, yet nobody else has done this,” said Deitelbaum. “We both agreed there was a tremendous opportunity here for such a product, and so we decided to create it.”

Champagne Beau Joie website:

http://www.beaujoiechampagne.com/

Glenfiddich Announces Canadian Artists in Residence Program for 2020

Glenfiddich celebrates 15 years of supporting Canadian art with the launch of its annual “Glenfiddich Artist in Residence Program” This program awards one artist a three-month residency in Dufftown, Scotland.

The award includes three-months income, travel costs, all-inclusive accommodations, materials and the opportunity to collaborate with globally celebrated artists.

“The Glenfiddich Artist in Residency program is dedicated to supporting and showcasing the extraordinary talent of Canadian artists on a global scale,” comments Rupy Singh, Senior National Brand Manager for Glenfiddich in Canada. “We are delighted to continue our support of the Canadian art community for the fifteenth year.”

Taking place for a consecutive three-months between May 1 and October 2020, the award provides the selected artist a monthly income of approximately $2,400 CAD per month, travel costs (with a set maximum), a materials allowance of approximately $9,850 CAD and a small, Scottish farmhouse and studio space on the Glenfiddich Distillery grounds in Scotland.

The selected artist is encouraged to use their time to create work that is directly influenced by the distillery and its surrounding environment, whether that be through the family history of Glenfiddich, the people and processes at the distillery, or some of the materials involved in the whisky distilling process, including copper, steam, water, malt, or barrels. The prize is valued at $20,000 CAD.

“The Glenfiddich Artist in Residence program encourages Canadian artists of all mediums to apply, and has historically hosted painters, sculptors, filmmakers, illustrators, animators, photographers, and performance artists,” comments Beth Havers, National Brand Ambassador for Glenfiddich in Canada.

Open to artists who live and work in Canada, the five-part application process requires artists to outline how they would like to use their residency, what kind of work they envision creating, and how they will draw inspiration from the distillery environment.

Applicants are to outline the exploratory prospects of their work, whether that includes the accumulation of family heritage, the community of craftsmen who have been employed at the distillery for decades, the materials employed by craftsmen, or the artist’s wider personal development that will come over the inspiring three-month residency.

Criteria for submission includes a short project proposal, a current CV, a short artist statement, 5 to 15 images (or a three-minute video highlighting their artistic practice), a required questionnaire supplied by Glenfiddich, and applicants must be of legal drinking age in their province of residence.

Completed applications must be received by midnight eastern standard time on January 31, 2020.

Candidates will be selected by a jury of eight prominent artists in the Canadian art community and the winner will be notified on February 28, 2020.

For more information about the program, please visit:

https://www.glenfiddich.com/ca/explore/artists-in-residence-canada/

The South African wine industry commits to sustainability

South African wines are known globally for many things: wide range of styles; diversity of climate and geography; unique varietals; transition between the old and the new world.  But not many people know the Cape Winelands are located in the Cape Floral Kingdom, a world heritage site, one of six plant kingdoms in the world, with more than 9500 plant species. This piece of natural significance, located on the most southern point of the African continent, in the area surrounding Cape Town is where 70% of the plant species found cannot be found anywhere else on earth.

With this unique biodiversity, preserving the natural heritage of the land has become a focus for the South African wine producers. With the boom in the export market, the area being planted to vines in South Africa in on the increase.  Farmers are identifying what is unique and rare on their farms and finding ways to preserve the natural fynbos and renosterveld (translated as rhino fields); local names for the indigenous vegetation, and to minimize further loss of the threatened natural habitat as their plantings increase.

The South African wine industry supports conservation, and special biodiversity guidelines have been written. A program in sustainable farming was initiated called the Integrated production of Wine (IPW).  It became compulsory for farmers in 1998 and it concentrates on every stage in the wine production process.  Environmental impact studies, soil preparation, use of recyclable packaging, as well as botanical audits to preserve endangered or sensitive species, and using indigenous plants as cover crops.  Farmers also are required to set aside undeveloped land on their farms to preserve the natural ecosystems.

South African wine bodies are working together to drive the industry’s commitment to sustainable, eco-friendly production of wine.  The Wine and Spirit board seal on the bottle guarantees this and has a unique seal number which can be verified online (www.sawis.co.za)

Consumers can now know that South African wine is the real deal when it comes to sustainability and not just a form of green rubber stamping to appease wine drinkers.  With that in mind, it is worth exploring the wonderful treasures that this little slice of Africa has to offer.  A recent tasting revealed some delightful wines, all found in the main section of the LCBO, hence, they are easy drinking value wines, and all on promotion for the month of January:

Vinologist Sauvignon Blanc $12.95 (currently $10.95) https://www.vinologist.co.za

  • Fresh, zingy, passionfruit and grapefruit notes

Fleur du Cap Chardonnay $12.95 (currently $10.95) https://www.fleurducap.co.za/wines/

  • Lovely lemon tones, no real sign of oakiness, just the softness and complexity of oak barrels

The Grinder Pinotage  $14.00  (currently selling for $12.00) https://www.grapegrinder.com/grinder-pinotage

  • A great expression of the South African Pinotage grape, loads of blackberry and plum fruit and coffee toastiness from the oak

Porcupine Ridge Syrah $15.95 (currently $12.95) https://www.boekenhoutskloof.co.za/porcupine-ridge/

  • A great value Syrah with notes of black pepper and black cherry

Jenny Ratcliffe-Wright
Cape Wine Master

French Super Chef Alain Ducasse Reduces Wine Prices to Discourage “Dry January”

Internationally famed French Chef Alain Ducasse declares war on the “Dry January” trend.  At the beginning of January, Chef Ducasse was “horrified” to see New York diners drinking iced tea at lunch and not wine. Shortly thereafter he launched an initiative to entice patrons of his restaurants to drink wine during the first month of the year, not less.

“I’ve noted that trend, but I don’t want to see or hear of it, I am opposed to it,” states Chef Ducasse and he further adds that he wants to “rid consumers of their inhibitions” with regards to drinking wine.

In November, the French government abandoned a campaign urging people to give up alcohol in January after the wine industry pushed president Emmanuel Macron to drop it.

“Dry January” began in the UK in 2013 and has since been adopted around the world. Last year one in five Americans participated in the initiative, giving up alcohol for the first month of the year.

Alain Ducasse has runs restaurants all over the world, including the three Michelin star Alain Ducasse at The Dorchester in London and Alain Ducasse au Plaza Athenée in Paris.

What are your thoughts on this ?

Provence Wine Council approves a €21 three-year strategic marketing plan for export markets

At its AGM last month, the Provence wine council (CIVP) approved a three-year action plan costing €7 million a year, which includes drives in no fewer than 15 export markets. From 2019-2024, Provence’s producers have established a clear agenda to support premiumization of their wines; increase the share of exports from 37% to 45%; and diversify shipment destinations, particularly towards the Asia/Pacific region (more specifically to China and Japan).

“Our actions in France and abroad are aimed at constantly increasing the reputation and image of our appellations across the globe. A levy increase is never taken lightly. This bold decision is a sign that producer companies are aware of the challenges to be met and the collective resources that need to be deployed”, states Jean-Jacques Bréban, chairman of the Provence wine council.

https://www.vinsdeprovence.com/en/civp