$15 or less
WHAT: Vinissimo Sangiovese 2005 (red) Rating: NN
WHERE: Veneto, Italy
WHY: As you contemplate another camping season, remember to include more vino among your supplies thanks to backpack-friendly Tetra Paks. This one's not too bad. While it's a bit of a lightweight, it does have some likeable cherry character, and in the forest, where no one can see you drink, you won't be embarrassed by the cheesy graphics.
PRICE: 1,000 ml/$13.15
AVAILABILITY: At selected liquor stores (product #17244)
WHAT: Pierre Sparr Pinot Gris Reserve 2004 (white) Rating: NNNN
WHERE: Alsace, France
WHY: Starts off nice and peachy in the nose and carries through in the mouth with lots of appealing fruitiness. If you can be happy with a wine that's not bone dry, this one's especially swell due to some effective acidic zip to counterbalance the residual sugars. Very slurpable.
PRICE: 750 ml/$16.95
AVAILABILITY: At selected Vintages outlets (product #983395)
Sips and Nips
WHO: Sara d'Amato
WHAT: Professional sommelier
WHERE: Truffles at the Four Seasons Hotel
WHY: Sara is the reigning title holder (professional category) in the prestigious Wine Tasting Challenge run under the auspices of Brock University's wine program. To win, she had to identify seven wines by grape variety, country, region and vintage. Snap! Sara is one of a number of young Toronto women who are disproving the notion that the world of fine wine is the exclusive domain of grey-haired men in dark blue suits.