My real life, my wine life and my Twitter life collided awesomely this weekend, as I was lucky enough to spend Saturday afternoon tasting and discussing various wines with fellow vino blogger Tyler Philp over meat, cheese and tapas at Vin Room, located just south of downtown Calgary. Tyler is the founder of North of 9 Fine Wine and its corresponding wine blog, an official Sommelier, and a prior PnP collaborator: he’s the other half of the Tasting In Stereo simul-review posting that appeared on both our sites back in August, something that will hopefully be a semi-recurring PnP/North of 9 joint feature. Outside of his vinous pursuits, Tyler is an Airbus pilot, and it was thanks to his day job that he had 24 hours or so to kill in YYC. Given the chance to put a face to a Twitter handle, I jumped at the opportunity to meet for lunch. But where to take a wine-obsessed visitor to my fine city?
I opted for Vin Room on 4th Street and 23rd Avenue SW, partly because I’d never been before and wanted to try it, and partly because they’re probably the best bet in the city for getting a wide range of wines by the glass. Even better, as we discovered, is that all the by-the-glass wines are also available in tasting-sized portions, which meant that instead of having 1 or 2 glasses over the course of lunch, I got to have 5 or 6 (without having to stumble home). This “small glasses” approach worked amazingly with the small plates that made up Vin Room’s food menu: you don’t normally expect to get to pair every dish of a tapas meal with a proper wine match, but believe me, it’s a treat.