Wine Recap: April 2018

wine recap

Welcome to April’s Wine Recap! Last month was a pretty chill month. In general, we didn’t really drink too much wine. It is however nice to switch things up every once in a while. We did try mostly new stuff but some older things that I’ve never talked about (since this segment is really new).

Barefoot Bubbly Pink Moscato

Barefoot Sparkling Moscato

Producer: E. & J. Gallo Winery
Alcohol Content: 8%
Location: California, USA
Taste Tag: Fruity and Sweet

The first wine is of course kicked off on April’s Battle of Ingredients night. My friend brought the lovely Pink Moscato by Barefoot. I’ve had Barefoot wines before and I believe I might have covered the Barefoot Moscato in the kick off post for this segment, but I can’t remember. Its a pretty decent one so not surprising that this sparkling wine also was very light and fruity. For those who like their wines light and very easy to swallow and more sweet, this one is a great choice.

Columbia Crest Chardonnay 2015

columbia crest

Producer: Columbia Crest Winery
Alcohol Content: 13.5%
Location: Washington, USA
Taste Tag: Aromatic and Mellow

My first recommendation for Wine Recap comes from John Rieber. You can find his awesome site HERE.

Columbia Crest Winery actually doesn’t have a lot of wines sold here in Quebec. There are four according to the SAQ site and three of them are red wines. I have developed an intolerance to red wine where I won’t die (because its not an allergy, I guess) but I will be incredibly uncomfortable. So white wines are my go-to. Here, we have the chardonnay, which I believe was what John had recommended to me. I can’t say that we’re particularly into this taste. There is a particular smoothness to how it goes down however, it still sits a little on the drier side of the spectrum that what we’d generally prefer. So for the taste tag description, I’d agree with the aromatic but not too sure about the mellow.

Domaine Le Grand Saint Charles Vidal 2016

Domaine le Grand Saint-Charles

Producer: Domaine Le Grand Saint-Charles
Alcohol Content: 13%
Location: Quebec, Canada
Taste Tag: Fruity and Vibrant

In my memory, I’ve only every drank the Vidal variety once or twice before. Its definitely usually not my first choice of white wine mostly because the taste usually is a little too sour for my liking. However, Domaine Le Grand Saint-Charles was a Quebec winery that we had tasted at Festival des Vendanges a few years ago and loved their Le Brise Glace cider. I talked about it in this recap post HERE. So we took a chance on this one. Unsurprisingly, it wasn’t one that I liked. Maybe one day I’ll find a Vidal that I like but still a little too sour for my taste. Regardless, I am happy to see that they have gotten their products into the SAQ and I’m going to try to see if I can find their ciders as it seems they are also available now.

Domaine Lafrance Darragon dit Lafrance

Domaine Lafrance Daragon dit Lafrance

Producer: Domaine Lafrance
Alcohol Content: 6.5%
Location: Quebec, Canada
Taste Tag: Fruity and Sweet

One of my favorite sparkling ciders definitely goes to this one from Les Vergers Lafrance/Domaine Lafrance called Darragon dit Lafrance. When I first picked up this one a few months ago, it was totally by chance. I thought the bottle looked cool and for those who don’t know, Amos Daragon is a popular French Canadaian book series so its why it caught my eye, not that it had anything related to it (or at least I don’t think so). Sparkling Ciders are usually pretty easy to drink and they vary from fruitiness and sweetness. This one has this lovely balance of smoothness and sweetness and the perfect kick of alcohol that works so well together. I don’t know how to explain it but I personally find it absolutely awesome. Plus, I actually have to go to the farther SAQ outlet to find this one so its one I don’t drink as much which makes me appreciate it even more.

Mad Jack Hard Flavored Iced Tea

Madjack Iced Tea

Brewer: Molson
Alcohol Content: 5%
Location: Canada

MadJack Root Beer was something that my husband picked up last month. I can’t remember if he picked it up or his friends had brought it when they came to visit. I didn’t end up drinking it since its beer and I only taste it. My husband likes it a lot but I’m not such a huge fan. However, when we did grocery shopping a week or two ago, there was a tasting booth for some other flavors and well, being a tea lover, the Iced Tea variety popped out at me. Mad Jack Hard-Flavored Iced Tea is definitely quite delicious. It is a lovely choice especially at its price point for nice summer barbecues and gatherings.

It seems my monthly alcohol consumption is quite constant, sitting at a 5 items limit going into the third month.
To be fair, this one had a lot of great alcoholic selections and some ideas for future selections.
To be honest, I’m starting to want to give this a nice Quebec & VQA Ontario wine twists whenever I can, just because those are quite accessible and unique to where I usually would shop.

Feel free to suggest any wines or alcoholic beverages that you love or think I’ll like! 🙂

Netflix A-Z: The Wedding Guest (aka Barefoot) (2014)

I was in a dilemma as to whether to use this one for Netflix A-Z W selection. Fact is, Netflix calls it The Wedding Guest and everywhere else calls it Barefoot.  BUT, I really wanted to write about it and in a way, it was my selection so I’m sticking with the original plan! Scott Speedman brings back so many awesome memories and I haven’t seen him in anything in forever so I’m excited! 🙂

Lets check it out! 🙂

The Wedding Guest (2014)
(aka Barefoot)


 Director: Andrew Fleming

Cast: Scott Speedman, Evan Rachel Woods, J.K. Simmons, Treat Williams, Kate Burton, David Jensen

The “black sheep” son of a wealthy family meets a young psychiatric patient who’s been raised in isolation her entire life. He then takes the naive young woman home for his brother’s wedding.-IMDB

At this point of writing this review, I think its suffice to say that I’m in absolutely love with this movie.  Currently, I’ve seen it in parts and fully for more than five times. Also, if you were to see this or give it a chance, don’t watch the trailer.  If this movie doesn’t draw audience to it, its because of the trailer.

I have no idea why its ragged on in Rotten Tomatoes, well, probably because apparently its similar to some German movie called Barfuss that I haven’t seen or heard about before, so I have no comparison. It drives me crazy to see such a low rating like 14% and then I ask these lovely people (because I respect their opinion as well), what is the worst movie you have seen? Its more out of curiosity like its all out of comparison although this one is charming as heck if you like this sort of romantic drama/comedy.  Anyways, mini rant over!

Apparently these little indie flicks catch me a lot.  Maybe its because I just find it incredibly adorable and fun and a little dark all at the same time.  The pacing, the characters and the story are all so endearing and personal.  Its like a movie that is carefully split into 4 different parts from introducing our two main characters to the “wedding guest” portion and then to a road trip/escape story and in that process learning more about our two characters and the evolution of their relationship and what makes them actually so different and so perfect for each other at the same time.

Wedding Guest

Continuing on the tangent of the rant and the emphasis on the characters and their relationship, The Wedding Guest is successful because of its charming main characters.  Its also why I don’t think the emphasis of its similarities to another movie’s story makes that much of a difference in the whole spectrum of things.  I fully believe that romance is based on chemistry and when you strip it all apart, romance stories are similar and relatively predictable but rather to add charm to it is what makes it rise above the others.  With that said, The Wedding Guest does a fantastic job at this. Playing the black sheep of a wealthy family called Jay is Scott Speedman, I like him quite a bit and this makes me want to rewatch the TV series Felicity. Its been so long since I’ve seen him in anything.  I believe the last movie was Underworld.  Before we talk further about his character, I think we need to look at the female lead.

Wedding Guest

Opposite of him is the mental patient that follows him called Daisy, played by Evan Rachel Woods who I know from Across the Universe.  Daisy is the star of the show here because she is adorable and naive because this is the first time she is physically connecting with the outside world because she grew up locked up because of her mother. As her story unravels and we learn a little more from her opening up to Jay, we also understand why she ends up at the mental hospital and why no one quite understands her but her character has a huge room for growth and development and her emotions are exceptionally raw and fragile that its easy to connect with her and because of that connect with Jay.

While we can argue that Jay is portrayed as a rather selfish and unlikable guy, he also grows because he sees the world differently because of Daisy.  Daisy trusts and relies on him and believes in him.  Although it is because she doesn’t quite understand the world around him but at the same time, her intentions are simple and straightforward and absolutely genuine that it wakes up something in him and their connection strengthens unexpectedly but beautifully in the most bittersweet way.  For once, Jay is accountable for the choices he makes and it seems to be what it needs to make him conscience about making the right choices even if he doesn’t want to face the problems he wants to avoid.  And his life was a mess and one of the reasons why he decided to go home in the first place.

Wedding Guest

Although the first half of the movie hints towards just building these characters and giving us time to connect to them, its what makes one scene in the middle so powerful and everything that follows fall into place.  Sure, there are little plot holes about the reality of the situation but a movie is still a movie and the feeling The Wedding Guest manages to deliver is still lighthearted, cute but yet so worrying when you know the characters probably will have to separate from each other just because of each of their troubles being an escaped mental patient and a wanted man for violating probation.  We also are reminded of this because another acting powerhouse, J.K. Simmons is here acting as the psychiatrist trying to get Jay to bring back Daisy.  Yet, in all this, The Wedding Guest still manages to keep it happy and funny here and there and hold some meaning to the relationship being built here.

Overall, The Wedding Guest was a pleasant surprise and one that I love so much.  Its as indie as they get but the cast delivers a fantastic performance portraying their characters. The cast is great with Evan Rachel Woods shining above everyone as she captures the naive Daisy.  Its great to see Scott Speedman and just to show how much potential this movie has, J.K. Simmons is in here and I have never seen him in a bad movie to date.  There’s something special here wrapped in funny and awkward moments even if the story seems like its been used before, it doesn’t stop the fact that the patience in building these characters and their connection is rewarding in the end.

Have you seen The Wedding Guest (aka Barefoot)?