Welcome to Second Ferment! Wine pairs well with life ... and food, travel, people, work and play. Grab a glass and join me as I explore the wine scene in Ottawa, Canada, and beyond. Love hearing from my readers, so please leave a comment or drop me a line. Cheers! - Bethany

Sunday, February 05, 2017

It's Been Too Long

Sometimes life throws you a curve ball. Sometimes it hits you with a one-two sucker punch to the gut. Or a bullet to the head.

Sunday, October 23, 2016


Be kind, everyone. Every person you meet is a human being, no matter where they come from, no matter what they look like on the outside.

Tuesday, August 16, 2016

The Hatch: It's ALL the things

A group of black swifts is not called a flock, it's called a frenzy. Swifts lay a single egg in their clutch, nest in inhospitable cliff outcroppings exposed to the elements, and only eat specific kinds of bugs. No wonder the silly things are endangered.

Such a quirky species seems a fitting mascot for West Kelowna's The Hatch winery. Where Mission Hill is the epitome of the traditional winery-slash-museum, The Hatch is cheeky, eccentric and homey. From the circular links on its website and funky labels envisioned by artist Paul Morstad, to the raucous frenzy of 'Hatchlings' working behind the tasting bar and in the cellar, The Hatch remains unapologetic in its irreverence.

Monday, August 15, 2016

Off the map: Naramata's Kanazawa Wines

Photo of sign courtesy of Richard Kanazawaa

Out on the Naramata Bench, in the elbow of a long curve in the road, a placard bearing a bright orange Japanese hanabishi ('diamond flower') stood propped up against two stakes, ready to be hung. This not-yet-completed signage on a rather unkempt rural plot gave the only hint that there might be wine somewhere in there.

If we hadn't been told about Kanazawa Wines, we never would have found it. It wasn't in the tour books, or listed on the Wine Route map ... or the local map, or even Google Maps. For all intents and purposes, it didn't exist.

Sometimes those are the best places to find.

Friday, August 05, 2016


Sometime shortly after my 39th birthday I decided I was going to make my 40th year something memorable. Enough of this whole "bucket list" BS, why wait for retirement or until you're on death's doormat? I want to do stuff NOW.

Tuesday, July 05, 2016

Drink Pink: Savvy Company Rosé Reports

Such hard work, having to try all these delicious Ontario rosés and then write about them, about what goes best with them ... *sigh*.

Read my latest Savvy Company reviews of great rosé wines here and here ... enjoy!

(PS ... While it may not have been featured in the Savvy reports, the pretty pink number in the picture at left is the elegant Marilys from Domaine Perrault, right here in the Ottawa Valley! Be sure to stop by if you're in Navan, Ontario this summer!)
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