Feel-good Friday: feeling good all week

 My Week started off with an invite to the annual California Wine Fair presented by Vancouver Arts Club.  Followed by dancing…and more drinking….and dancing (but no driving).

Couldn't decide between the lime or fruit punch Jarritos (Mexican soft drink which may have included a bit of Tequila) while my handsome date prefered to stick with refreshing Dos Equis XX beer.
Couldn’t decide between the lime or the fruit punch Jarritos at Joe Fortes (Mexican soft drink which may have included a little Tequila) while my handsome date standing behind me prefered to stick with a bottle of refreshing Dos Equis XX beer.    Photo: Claude Duke Photography

It is their signature spring fundraiser where all proceeds from ticket sales and auction packages go toward the development of new Canadian plays and staging world-class theatre created by local artists.  I’m already familiar with many of the wineries from having visited them on several occasions around the beautiful Napa and Sonoma wine regions. Some of the properties are really amazing.  One winery is a chateau that looks more like a castle and the Francis Ford Coppola estate winery is very Hollywood glamour.  They’re fun to visit and of course, sample some fine tasting wines.

From the Wine Fair
From the California Wine Fair....in Vancouver photo: d. king

The very next afternoon it was off to the Tequila Expo Media Event at Joe Fortes rooftop deck with some of the world’s finest and smoothest tasting tequilas, excellent food, great company & conversation.  This was my second time around and it was thoroughly enjoyable especially since the day was so lovely.

The actual event will take place Saturday, May 28th at the Hyatt Regency Hotel.

From the Rooftop at Joe Fortes. Photo: d. king
From the Rooftop at Joe Fortes.  Photo: d. king

The celebration of all things Agave is open to connoisseurs and those who enjoy tequila in general with exclusive offerings not yet available in BC.

We’re pleased to be the largest event of our kind in Canada”, says founding partner Manuel Otero, President of the Mexican Business Association of Canada. “As a dual citizen of Mexico and Canada, I couldn’t be prouder to be part of this event that celebrates the best of Mexico by introducing Vancouverites to an amazing range of unique Mexican flavours – both culinary and spirits based.” The full week of events runs from May 23 to May 28.  The Grand Tasting Event at the Hyatt features top Vancouver restaurants offering unique small bite food pairings created specifically to pair with Tequila and Mezcal.

Featured restaurants are The Edge Social Grille & Lounge, El Santo, Joe Fortes, La Mezcaleria, Las Margaritas, Mosaic Bar & Grille and Showcase Restaurant.

New this year! Ticket purchasers will be entered to win a fantastic trip for two to Puerto Vallarta. AeroMexico, the premier airline of Mexico, is generously providing direct flights from Vancouver. The winner’s stay will be hosted by Velas Vallarta and Casa velas. Tickets are now on sale through Tickets Tonight. Single tickets are $79, with a group rate available for only $69 each for groups of 6 or more.  All prices include service charges.

And, as if all that wasn’t enough.. the very next day I got to feeling even more light headed.

Hair by Safa - Enchanté Hair by Design. http://enchantehair.com
Hair by SafaEnchanté Hair by Design.

What am I up to this evening? A Tango 10-year Anniversary Celebration Milonga on the Drive.


SALUT!    Enjoy your weekend

The ART of FINE AGAVE – Vancouver International TEQUILA EXPO

Tequila may be a girls second best friend!tequila6tequila4

Take life with a grain of salt, a slice of lime and a shot of tequila!
Take life with a grain of salt, a slice of lime and a shot of tequila!

But with the finest of them you may omit the salt and the lime, and it will be completely genuine!  Let these spirits lift yours!

If the upcoming Fourth Annual Vancouver International Tequila Expo (VITE)
taking place on Saturday, May 30, 2015 at the Hyatt Regency Hotel is anything like the one my friends raved about last year, it will be a raging success.

Joe Fortes sponsored a recent VITE media event which I was lucky enough to attend.  While I’m no connoisseur, I can attest to sampling several exceptionally smooth & outstanding varieties from a host of participating dealers. Last October I spent some time in Oaxaca, Mexico so I became more familiar with Mexcal and was delighted to find some here too.tequila2

tequila1¡Viva tequila! 

It’s a celebration of all things agave – without the blue agave plant there would be no tequila.

The Hyatt Regency event will run from 7 to 10 pm and is presented by First Majestic and sponsored by Legacy Liquor Store, the BMW Store, Joe Fortes, Sysco Vancouver, Tourism Mexico and La Mezcaleria.  This year will feature 100% agave mezcals alongside the wide range of 100% agave tequilas, including exclusive offerings not yet available in BC.tequla7

The evening will feature unique samples of Mexican food pairings by restaurants including Joe Fortes, Sysco Vancouver, La Mezcaleria and Mosaic Bar & Grille.

The Peloton de La Muerte Cocktail Competition will be a returning feature of the show, where a selection of Vancouver’s expert bartenders will have the opportunity to showcase their own agave-based creations, in a friendly competition meant to show off their versatility of agave-based spirits.

Mexcal Selection

Legacy Liquor Store (purveyors of premium spirits) will be hosting an onsite-liquor store for the first time that will feature products available at the show.

Tickets are on sale until they run out through Tickets Tonight.  Single tickets are $69, with a group rate of 6 people+ available for a reduced price of $59.

Not just another pretty bottle!
Not just another pretty bottle. Much more depth!

INTERESTING FACTS you may not know about Tequila:

It’s one of the most misunderstood drinks, surrounded by years of myths and legends – just another reason to love it.

To Be Called Tequila, It Must Be Produced In Mexico.  Just as true champagne must hail from France, tequila has Denomination of Origin, meaning that it has to be produced in Mexico, mainly in the western Mexican state of Jalisco. The states of Guanajuato, Michoacan, Nayarit, and Tamaulipas are also acceptable.

Tequila Is Technically A Mezcal. 

But mezcal is not tequila. Got that? The main difference between the two is the plant. All tequila must be produced using blue agave, whereas a variety of agave plants can be used to make a single mexcal batch.

If you’re scared of the worm, don’t be!  They’re found in mezcal, not tequila.  The worm, or gusano, actually originated largely as a marketing ploy.  It is the larvae of a type of moth that lives on the agave plant.

The Machete Used To Chop Agave Leaves Is Called A “Coa”…and it has circular blades. The Men Who Use The Coa Are Called Jimadors.

Have a heart!tequila2 Only The Agave Heart Is Used To Make Tequila.

Tequila Does NOT Contain Psychedelic Properties.  Then how do you explain…nevermind!  In the mid-20th century, tequila sales spiked after California residents thought it was a psychadelic. Nope. They were just confusing mezcal with mescaline (the psychoactive alkaloid of peyote).

You Can Turn Tequila Into Diamonds.  You don’t say! Physicists at  the National Autonomous University of Mexico figured out a way to make artificial diamonds out of tequila. Sadly, the synthetic diamonds are too small to be turned into jewelry, but they can be used for an array of electronic and industrial purposes.

Serious Tequila Aficionados Generally Don’t Do Shots.  Instead,  they sip tequila from a special tequila glass or brandy snifter. That way, the agave flavours and aromas can be properly enjoyed.

A Bottle Of Tequila Can Last Unopened For Years. But really, does yours stay unopened for that long??

However, once you open a bottle, you have about one to two months before oxidation and evaporation lower the quality of the tequila and destroys the agave profile. So, you want to drink up within 3 to 6 months, at which point it becomes more like a bourbon.Tequila1

HEALTH FACTS (YES, that’s right).

Studies have shown that if consumed in moderation, tequila can cut the risk of dementia by 37%.

It also has a component that can help lower LDL levels, aka bad cholesterol.

Unlike other forms of alcohol, tequila is not a depressant.

As with most alcohol, tequila can reduce the risk of developing diabetes by 30-40%.

The blue agave plant has components that can help stimulate the immune system and fight obesity.

 Just make sure to enjoy it responsibly.

Photos: d. king

Source for facts: huffington post, Buzzfeed.com