A SantaRitalicious evening

I recently attended another wonderful wine evening hosted by iYellow Wine Club. This evening was to celebrate the re-launch of the Chilean 120 Label of Santa Rita wines. The event took place at Thrush Holmes Empire, a small gallery on Queen St. West in Toronto, Ontario. Putting on my heels on the way out the door, I knew that I was in store for a fun night. iYellow Wine Club is the hippest social wine club that Toronto has to offer. The people behind the club are Angela Aiello and Paxton Allewell. These two have a great energy and enthusiasm for their event hosting, tours to wine country (which I've done!) and a devoted passion for wine. It's great because the snobbery that's sometimes associated with wine is absent. They turn wine into something that's approachable and fun. The members that come to the events are enthusiastic and friendly. It's a diverse club with people of all ages and different professions. But, they all have one thing in common - they love wine. I always find myself having interesting conversations throughout the night and making new friends (always easy to make friends over wine don't you think?). It's a free club to join and for all those singles out there, a great way to meet and mingle.

Check out the website for iYellow Wine Club:

There's also an online wine store that you can purchase from. I'd like to order 5 of everything please! =)

There were 4 wine stations throughout the gallery, each serving various wines from the Santa Rita winery. There were also 2 food stations (yummy!). One station was devoted to desserts and the other at the back of the gallery had delicious finger foods by Alex Tso (a chef at Chez Victor Restaurant & Bar | Hotel Le Germain, Toronto, Ontario). The dj's kept the music playing (thank you!) and the art work hanging in the gallery started some interesting conversations. It was a nice location for this type of event. We were even given Santa Rita winery loot bags at the end of the night (one of the items was a bottle opener - perfect since I broke mine).

"In honor of 120 patriots who helped lead Chile to independence in 1814. 120 wines are young, elegant and fruity—perfectly balanced with soft tannins and acidity. Their exceptional value makes the 120 range ideal for everyday enjoyment.
" - www.santaritawine.com

There were 8 wines to sample during the evening:

120 Sauvignon Blanc $10.45
120 Cabernet Sauvignon $10.45

Reserva Sauvignon Blanc $13.95
Reserva Chardonnay $13.95

Floresta Leyda Sauvignon Blanc $19.95

Premium lines of Santa Rita sampled:

Pehuen Carmenere $54.95
Triple C $49.95
Casa Real Cabernet Sauvignon $59.95

Chile is one of the most perfect countries to grow wine...err...grapes for wine. Located between the Andes and the Pacific Ocean, the climate is excellent for viticulture (growing of grapes). The winds off of the ocean cool down the region. There is a long ripening season to allow the grapes to reach proper maturity (this is important for developing the sugars and flavours). The melting snow from the Andes is used to irrigate the vineyards when there is lack of rain (but not too much because vines like a bit of stress - it makes for better quality wines). I think Chilean wines offer really nice wine with great value. To learn more about Chilean wine, watch one of the LCBO "Discover" podcasts. See the Links section of this blog.


The winemaker of Santa Rita wines is Carlos Gatica Llop (what a cool name!). He gave a short speech about his wines and about the 120 Label. I had an opportunity to speak with him towards the end of the evening. Maybe a trip to Chile for harvest? I always enjoy meeting the people behind the wines. It's a tough job so it's nice to thank them in person for the wonderful work that they do.


To sign up for your free membership for the iYellow Wine Club:

The membership offers you discounts, monthly news letters and of course, invitations to join in on the wine tours and events.

To see pictures (photos courtesy of Wendi Marchioni) of the SantaRitalicious evening:

Thank goodness the photos of me dancing up a storm on the mini-dancefloor didn't make the gallery! whew!