The Sipster's Wine Podcast

Luke Whittall

Hello Sipsters! Welcome to the newest podcast about a new way to experience wine. There will be no simplified point scores or effusive tasting notes – only experiences with wine. Based on the popular book "The Sipster’s Pocket Guide to 50 Must-Try BC Wines", this podcast will feature conversations with people who experience wines in their own way – wine lovers, winemakers, winery owners, influencers, and wine collectors. Pop the cork on your podcast app and enjoy the wine experience! Hosted by author and wine industry sales and marketing professional and wine educator Luke Whittall.

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Episodes

Canadian Wine with Ann Sperling
Dec 23 2023
Canadian Wine with Ann Sperling
This week’s podcast features Ann Sperling, a legendary wine maker from BC who has been in Ontario now for many years. She has a long family history in BC and is the great-granddaughter of Giovanni Casorso, who is (if we need one) the real father of BC’s wine industry.  She spent her first years as a winemaker at André’s Wines in Port Moody in the 1980s before taking on winemaking at the early years of CedarCreek where her wines (specifically a Merlot) was considered so good at a fall Wine Festival awards that they created a platinum award just for the Merlot that year. She's consulted with Clos du Soleil in the Similkameen Valley and most recently headed Sperling Vineyards on her family’s property in Kelowna’s Mission Creek area. She consults with many wineries in Ontario and around the world. Together with her husband, Peter Gamble, collectively, they know more about wine than I can ever hope to know. Talking with Ann was really special because she was the first person that I interviewed in the winter of 2015 as I began the research for what became my first book, Valleys of Wine. Chatting with her at her historic home east of St. Catharine’s was a great honour and was a great way to end my podcast recordings on that trip.Please note – This is an information-rich conversation, with a lot of industry-talk on some complex themes. Ann is one of the most knowledgeable people in the country about wine and I was not going to let the opportunity pass without digging deep. If you hear anything that doesn’t make sense to you or if you want to know more about something, please email me at sipsterswinepodcast@gmail.com with your question and I will do my best to reply. Ann was also recovering from a bad cold when we spoke so there is a slight rasp to her voice that is not there normally.  Support the showContact me at sipsterswinepodcast@gmail.com!Purchase copies of "The Sipsters Pocket Guides" here!Support the Sipsters Podcast by subscribing!Read Sipster's ICONS (Because sometimes more IS more.)Find us online at Sipsterswinepodcast.ca. Thank you for listening!
That One Time in a Tesla
Aug 16 2023
That One Time in a Tesla
If it’s one thing I’ve learned from my years of producing a podcast, it’s that I can plan anything I want to, with as much detail and precision as I am capable of, but in the end the results are usually out of my control. I don’t have a journalism background and therefore, no training about how to maintain perspective or ask the tough questions or anything like that. Sometimes, I just have to go along for the ride and see where it takes me.  This is literally what happened with I met Jess Hopwood and spent the afternoon zooming around in her Tesla talking about wine touring. Jess owns and operates Farm to Glass Wine Tours, an extraordinary eco-conscious wine tour venture offering high-level private tours all through the Okanagan and Similkameen valleys. My original plan was to drive around, chat about wine touring, and maybe get a little of that Tesla road ambiance at the same time. Jess, whirlwind of enthusiasm that she is, had more ideas. In this podcast, we talk Tesla’s, EV’s, emissions, visit a winery, and then taste a wine back at Sipster’s HQ. It is a fantastic conversation and, like the tours that Jessie offers, an amazing experience. She also has a special offer for listeners of the Sipster’s Podcast. Listen for the special code to get 15% off any wine tour from Farm to Glass Wine Tours. She even made a special Sipster’s page on her website that has more of a backstory about how this podcast came to be. Ok, let’s get this show on the road. Support the showContact me at sipsterswinepodcast@gmail.com!Purchase copies of "The Sipsters Pocket Guides" here!Support the Sipsters Podcast by subscribing!Read Sipster's ICONS (Because sometimes more IS more.)Find us online at Sipsterswinepodcast.ca. Thank you for listening!
The Other One with Laura Milnes
Aug 9 2023
The Other One with Laura Milnes
*If you haven't yet, you should probably listen to Part 1 of this conversation first.*I first met Laura in early 2018, I believe through social media (although it was a bit of a blurry time in my life at that point so I might be wrong). In any case, we spent the afternoon chatting about wine and looking at the lake in the warm spring sun. Laura was not like other people that I had talked to about wine. Her questions to me where very different and I liked that immediately. We stayed in touch and I always thought back to that conversation and how great it would have been to capture it for a podcast. Problem was, I wasn’t doing a podcast at that time. However, within the year she created a vlog to accompany her blog, called Silk and Coupe and she invited me to be a guest on it. She interviewed me about my first book, which hadn’t even been released at that point) and we again went our separate ways. But we stayed in touch casually over the years and when I found out that she was going to be in the Okanagan visiting family, I jumped at the chance to finally get a podcast interview with her.  Her evolution as a wine personality is unique in that she has experience with all of the major wine producing regions in Canada. In this chat, we get into Dad Wines & Natty Bros, and how she learned to hold a wine glass properly. Of course, the infamous Titty Tees will make an appearance too. She’s outspoken, opinionated, very well spoken, and informed. Enjoy part 2 of my conversation with Laura Milnes.  Crushable Wine Club Support the showContact me at sipsterswinepodcast@gmail.com!Purchase copies of "The Sipsters Pocket Guides" here!Support the Sipsters Podcast by subscribing!Read Sipster's ICONS (Because sometimes more IS more.)Find us online at Sipsterswinepodcast.ca. Thank you for listening!
The One with Laura Milnes
Aug 2 2023
The One with Laura Milnes
I first met Laura in early 2018, I believe through social media (although it was a bit of a blurry time in my life at that point so I might be wrong). In any case, we spent the afternoon chatting about wine and looking at the lake in the warm spring sun. Laura was not like other people that I had talked to about wine. Her questions to me where very different and I liked that immediately. We stayed in touch and I always thought back to that conversation and how great it would have been to capture it for a podcast. Problem was, I wasn’t doing a podcast at that time.  However, within the year she created a vlog to accompany her blog, called Silk and Coupe and she invited me to be a guest on it. She interviewed me about my first book, which hadn’t even been released at that point) and we again went our separate ways. But we stayed in touch casually over the years and when I found out that she was going to be in the Okanagan visiting family, I jumped at the chance to finally get a podcast interview with her. Her evolution as a wine personality is unique in that she has experience with all of the major wine producing regions in Canada. In this chat, we get into Dad Wines & Natty Bros, and how she learned to hold a wine glass properly. Of course, the infamous Titty Tees will make an appearance too. She’s outspoken, opinionated, very well spoken, and informed. Enjoy part 1 of my conversation with Laura Milnes.  Crushable Wine Club Support the showContact me at sipsterswinepodcast@gmail.com!Purchase copies of "The Sipsters Pocket Guides" here!Support the Sipsters Podcast by subscribing!Read Sipster's ICONS (Because sometimes more IS more.)Find us online at Sipsterswinepodcast.ca. Thank you for listening!
John Schreiner's Memoirs Part 2
Jun 7 2023
John Schreiner's Memoirs Part 2
If you think you know something about BC Wine but you don't know who John Schreiner is, then you still have a lot to learn about wine in this province. Wine in BC (and Canada) has not always been as good as it is now. At least a generation of wine drinkers now does not remember when Canadian wine was the butt of jokes and probably shouldn't have been consumed by humans before 1994. John saw the potential and began writing about it in the 1970s, publishing his first book about BC wine in 1984. As he says, he was a friend of BC wine when BC wine had no friends. I first read one of John's books more than 20 years ago, met him for the first time soon after that, and he’s been an inspiration and a mentor to me for well over a decade. John and I can talk about wine a lot and we both seem to lose track of time. Our affinity for the wines, the industry, and the personalities of the people in that industry seems to drive both of us. It’s always such a joy to get to chat with John. He’s got a new book of memoirs out now called “Goodgrog: A Life in Wine and Journalism”. It is filled with stories of his vast experiences from growing up in small town Saskatchewan to travelling the world as a journalist. This provides the “terroir” from which Canada’s most prolific wine writer emerges as the author of 19 books about wine in BC and Canada. It’s a truly fascinating read to learn about someone who is more often out of the spotlight than in it. He knows so much about the wine industry in BC but that information only flows one way. Who is this guy? This book answers all of those questions.   It was a beautiful spring day on the back deck at his home in North Vancouver. We began the chat over a beautiful glass of Mirabel Chardonnay and chatting a little about one of his few non-wine books.Read John Schreiner's Wine Blog.  Support the showContact me at sipsterswinepodcast@gmail.com!Purchase copies of "The Sipsters Pocket Guides" here!Support the Sipsters Podcast by subscribing!Read Sipster's ICONS (Because sometimes more IS more.)Find us online at Sipsterswinepodcast.ca. Thank you for listening!
John Schreiner's Memoirs Part 1
May 31 2023
John Schreiner's Memoirs Part 1
If you think you know something about BC Wine but you don't know who John Schreiner is, then you still have a lot to learn about wine in this province. Wine in BC (and Canada) has not always been as good as it is now. At least a generation of wine drinkers now does not remember when Canadian wine was the butt of jokes and probably shouldn't have been consumed by humans before 1994. John saw the potential and began writing about it in the 1970s, publishing his first book about BC wine in 1984. As he says, he was a friend of BC wine when BC wine had no friends. I first read one of John's books more than 20 years ago, met him for the first time soon after that, and he’s been an inspiration and a mentor to me for well over a decade. John and I can talk about wine a lot and we both seem to lose track of time. Our affinity for the wines, the industry, and the personalities of the people in that industry seems to drive both of us. It’s always such a joy to get to chat with John. He’s got a new book of memoirs out now called “Goodgrog: A Life in Wine and Journalism”. It is filled with stories of his vast experiences from growing up in small town Saskatchewan to travelling the world as a journalist. This provides the “terroir” from which Canada’s most prolific wine writer emerges as the author of 19 books about wine in BC and Canada. It’s a truly fascinating read to learn about someone who is more often out of the spotlight than in it. He knows so much about the wine industry in BC but that information only flows one way. Who is this guy? This book answers all of those questions.   It was a beautiful spring day on the back deck at his home in North Vancouver. We began the chat over a beautiful glass of Mirabel Chardonnay and chatting a little about one of his few non-wine books.Read John Schreiner's Wine Blog.  Support the showContact me at sipsterswinepodcast@gmail.com!Purchase copies of "The Sipsters Pocket Guides" here!Support the Sipsters Podcast by subscribing!Read Sipster's ICONS (Because sometimes more IS more.)Find us online at Sipsterswinepodcast.ca. Thank you for listening!