Deacon Dr. Fresh Wine Newsletter

A Wine Newsletter With An Edge - Definitely NOT your typical white bread, mofo, cracker, peckerwood, jank, peckercracker wine newsletter! If this info is too advanced for you, check out my other newsletter: Wine for Dix at

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Location: Toronto, Ontario, Canada

World's Lurchest Wine Writer - The Gangsta of the Grape - The Sultan of Shiraz - The Buccaneer of Burgundy - The Prince of Pinot Noir - Yellow Tail's Bane - Locus of the Ladies' Focus - Wielder of the trousered Hammer of Thor - I have arrived to rescue the wine world from overly-serious, rigid, deconstructionist, rooster juice peckerwoods who'd never dream of gettin' a tattoo or crackin' a smile. I am without a doubt, the smartest, funniest and toughest sumbitch in the entire wine industry. And I aint goin' away. All disputes will be settled bare-knuckled in the Octagon. You heard me. Oh, and by the way...Bite me crank!

Saturday, September 22, 2007

Little Penguins, the Szabos and Brazilian Wax!

Yo Ho Ho Ho Merry Christmas! You've only got 3 months left so get out there and get shopping! The effing snow's on the way!

Your Deacon is alive and well and the charming fellow in the picture was my beloved bodyguard and companion, 70 lbs. of fearless Bullterrier power: Lockjaw. He's been deceased for 10 years now, and sleeps in an urn under my bed, awaiting the resurrection and restitution of all things! What a wonderful dog he was. The perfect combination of friendly and violent, just like your humble Deacon. Imagine the pups he could have produced if he'd hooked up with Pinot the Wonder Dog, Tony Aspler's beloved Wheaton Terrier...


Greetings friends and hoze and the usual "Polish My Glans", etc., etc. to everyone else!

Lots has happened and I'm gonna bring you up to amphetamine speed on all of it!

First of all the Little Penguin...

A couple of weeks back, a very nice lady sent me a couple of bottles of South Eastern Australian Little Penguin. Now you gotta understand, your Deacon is a huge star and gets gallons of wine shipped to him all the time. In addition, I had tried some Little Penguin before and was not especially impressed as the one I sampled had no finish and was pretty limp in the mouth. It was a white, but beyond that was unmemorable. So I approached this bottle with some trepidation but noticed they'd sent me a 40% Riesling / 60% Chardonnay blend, something I'd never tried before. I was a bit irritated though, because it was a tiny half-size plastic bottle and your humble Deacon doesn't like it when suppliers scrimp on the quantity. In its favour though, it was a screw cap and to my amazement, upon further examination, I realized this pint sized bottle held a full bottle's worth of the good stuff! It was kind of like an optical illusion! It looked like a half bottle, but held 750 ml, which is a really good thing. We were having a couple of dynamite white pizzas from Magic Oven (Tandoori Chicken and White Magic) so we invited DJ Flames Fishboy over and cracked open the Little Penguin which turned out to be a surprisingly huge hit! Well it was so refreshingly good, we actually guzzled it. It was a really nice balance of clean citrusy stainless steel refreshment and round peachiness. It was perfect with the pizza, and the Deaconess guzzled hers so fast she had to go lie down. Fishboy loved it too, and you can buy it at your local LCBO for only $9.95 which includes the deposit on the tiny eco-friendly, recyclable plastic bottle. In fact it was so good, I now favour plastic over tetrapacks! Grab a few bottles for fall picnics or visits to friends' houses. They'll love you for it. More to come on the Penguin. I'll be writing up the Cab - Merlot soon, so stay tuned... Thanks to Foster's Wine Estates for the samples! Keep sending them and I'll keep reviewing them. You heard me.

Last week I had occasion to check out a Brazilian Wine Event at Harbour Castle, which is half a block from the Black Freighter's mooring next to Captain John's Seafood Restaurant. It was a gorgeous day, and I drank about a gallon of Kenyan coffee out on the deck in the sun while Adam and Pep practiced neck-cranks and bag-rips on a judo-mat that they'd spread out near the helicopter pad. Then once the caffeine kicked in, I wandered over to the event, still dressed in my purple velour housecoat. (Sometimes you gotta arrive in style and do the Hugh Hefner thing.) The usual suspects were there, including Tony Aspler, Dean Tudor, Beppi Crosariol, Sadie Darby and Michael Pinkus. We were all up in the 33rd floor for the special media preview, before they let the crackers and mofos from the general public in. I sat with Pinkus and as usual we were the bad boys of the class. The Brazilians were really nice, and I am not even going to mention the one young woman's exceptional breasts, or how Pinkus was able to brilliantly steer the topic to Brazilian waxing, no matter what was actually being discussed. That's why I hang out with him. The guy's frickin' hilarious! He told me quite seriously, how much he loves ribs. He'll even eat them with Riesling. In fact, he'll eat ribs with anything, which naturally led to the topic of Brazilian waxing again. And then, just as I was sipping a Mioranza Cabernet Sauvignon 2005 (about $15.00) and commenting on how much I liked it, I noticed a small plane flying at the window. It looked really Al Qaeda-ish and it wasn't inconceivable that Osama Bin Laden would attack such an august gathering and single handedly destroy the Brazilian and Canadian wine industries. Well Osama must have thought better though, because he landed at Toronto Island instead and emerged from the Cessna in the guise of a Canadian businessman. What a bastard, eh? We stopped worrying and started drinking in earnest; the wines getting support fire from the excellent authentic Brazilian foods of Caju Restaurant of 922 Queen West. My favourite wine of the day was a Don Laurindo Gran Reserva 2002 Cabernet Sauvignon. It was kind of chewy, like a more lurch and expensive Gray Fox. If I heard right, it goes for over a hundred bux a bottle, which leaves me out in the chill unless someone wants to donate a case or two to the Deacon for humanitarian reasons.

There's too much to write about here, but I will say this: Watch out for Brazil in the next few years. We tried some really nice wines and I fully expect them to rise up alongside of Argentina and Chile in the near future. It was a great event and really well organized. The only thing was, there was a stack of these cool Brazil wine shopping bags we were all looking at, but nobody would take them because we thought they were decorative. Too bad. The Deaconess would have liked one.

Which brings me to the Hungarian Mafia once again: John and Zoltan Szabo... Quite a while back, John sent me a beautiful full-colour book that he'd co-authored with Dinah Koo and Janice Poon, John providing the wine notes. The book's called The Cocktail Chef with the subtitle "Entertaining in Style". They aren't kidding either! This is a fantastic book for anyone who wants to serve their friends and family in a totally impressive manner. From tiny sandwiches and shrimp-stuffed eggs, to home-made marshmallows and picnics on your porch, this is a joy to read. I loved the info on making oyster shooters and how to get rid of fruit flies - the nasty little peckers! John Szabo's brilliant wine hints run throughout and I'm giving this lurch and practical book 5 frickin' starz! You heard me! 5 frickin' starz! It really is an all-in-one book for becoming the most popular host around. Order it online from Chapters/Indigo. It will make a great and inexpensive gift for a friend or family member. Then you can get them to make the recipes for you. Remember: Christmas is looming. Order it now...Your Deacon never lies and is always right.

A few days back, your humble Deacon and the Deaconess attended a Zoltan Szabo event at Halleluia Restaurant at 870 Eglinton West at Bathurst. What a blast we had! All inclusive wine and food event with all the lamb, beef, chicken, shishkababs, veggies and rice you can eat! This is a totally lurch Mediterranean style restaurant and Uzbekistani owner, Boris, was cookin' it all up personally. Zoltan was up and down like a crazy monkey, pouring wine and regaling the guests with fascinating stories of his recent travels to Shanghai. Now you've got to realize that I'm a Type A blood guy. That means I have the lowest stomach acid of any blood group, unlike the Deaconess who is Type O, the highest. I quickly got meat-gorged and had to leap up from the table and run away from the waitress to avoid being fed even more delicious New York steak, barbecued chicken or roast lamb. At one point I actually threatened her with my steak knife telling her that I'd kill her if she gave me any more food! Please check this place out! The food was truly wonderful and the service was great too. I know the Brazilians have those meat restaurants where they stuff you with animal protein for a couple of hours, but I think Boris and the Uzbekis would give those waxers a good shellacking! Thanks Zoltan for the invite! And thank you Boris for having us along. Check out their website by clicking here. Let's give these people some support! We need more Mediterranean foods, and in my case: more digestive enzymes too.

Well homeys and DIX, that's all for today. Buy the book and book the restaurant. You'll thank me. Just as I am thanking me.

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