link to the National Post
The (whole) unedited text:
1) How and why did you become a sommelier?
I lived 2+3 years in France in the 80’s and in the 90’s and developed a passion for wine.
2) How has your career as a wine aficionado prepared you for politics?
Its not the wine. Although good wine shows integrity and authenticity; its being an entrepreneur and creating and building my business and oenology school that works with Bordeaux, UBC and VINITALY. Its about value creation and being able to emerge in the knowledge based economy with an original idea. Meaningful jobs in the Twenty-first Century will come from knowledge and entrepreneurship. I want to press these ideas in my riding which is home to so much talent, financial success and creativity.
3) If you were in charge of the Parliamentary dining room wine list, and could choose only one white wine and one red one to offer patrons, what would they be, and why?
the white: a riesling: fresh crisp and is a very versatile table companion (food friendly)
Red: again I would go for versatility so, not to heavy. I am thinking of the small Beaujolais producers that make these delicious (and bang for the buck) quality wines the like of Foillard (Morgon!)
4) What wine do you think pairs best with the personality and substance of:
a) for Stephen Harper it would be: Chateau Latour: Depth, Ballast and it improves with ageing!
b) Tom Mulcair: it would be Ménage à Trois, no defined style, just designed to please a focus group, preferably unionized, a wine with no tanins, no structure, with sugar to mask the underlying bitterness and overall lack of quality.
c) Justin Trudeau: it would be: Beaujolais Nouveau! you know a wine which is best before a certain date and can’t age? Oh, wait, it is already past its best before date and turned to vinegar… Pleasant for a few months, but definitely not a wine I would advise anybody to stock for four years.
d) Elizabeth May: Organic of course. Well, I will be nice, even Biodynamic. I like those when they are well made…but it is not automatic you know some are pitiful and undrinkable.
Organic is virtuous but, you know, that at my school we do academic research? and one thing i have learned from probing consumers is that: sure they like organic but….they don’t want to pay more for it.
Gilles Duceppe: It would be a wine that taste like Kool-aid; a kind of Electric blue Nationalistic Kool Aid that would go well with caviar, especially « la gauche caviar » (Champagne Socialist) that lives on the Plateau Mon-Royal in Montreal. They would like us all to drink it with them but, sorry, for me, I find it unpalatable!
5) Which are better, BC wines, or Ontario wines?
Ah! this is a tough one (and I have friends in both places)… and work with UBC on the Wine Leaders Program for producers.
Let’s say that BC has the potential but perhaps is still in a younger more experimenting phase. They have some interesting rieslings and others.
But, when I think about how Ontario can finesse Cab-Franc and Pinot noir, I see more focus.
Bear in mind though that BC is in a state of flux and please ask me in a couple of years again.
In Vino Veritas!