Jordan Cowe, CWE, Being Wineful and Updates on the Canadian Wine Front

Episode 121: Being Wineful and Canadian Wine With Jordan Cowe, CWE

From Jordan Winery’s Lisa Mattson last week to Canada’s Jordan Cowe, CWE this week …

We’re in the moment this week with Jordan Cowe, CWE. He teaches us about being wineful, updates us on Canadian wine, and extends an invitation for the 30-day Winefulness challenge. Full disclosure, Val is double barrel “bourbonful” while Steph gets “ginful” up in the pod. The factoid strays into “who’s umami” and “oleogustus for the rest of us” territory. All of this happens before lunch, so raise your breakfast cocktails to a wineful, educational, and fun-filled show. Namaste and Cheers ~


In Our Glasses:

Val: “Bourbon. It’s not even noon and I have bourbon in my glass. Some days it’s all I can do to keep it out of my coffee. BUT, this is a treat I’ve been eyeing for some time, and it’s Amador Whiskey Company’s Double Barrel. While bourbon CAN be made anywhere in America, 95% of it comes from Kentucky. And so does this. But wait, Val, you said Amador and we all know from listening to this show that Amador is in California! Yes, yes it is. So the bourbon itself is made in Kentucky, aged in the requisite American white oak charred barrels as all bourbons are. But then this bourbon is shipped to California where it sits in wine barrels from Napa Valley. This is one of those cool cross-over products we talked about with Suzanne Redmond of Cask Magazine in Episode 103 during our Whiskey Chat.”

“Bourbon. It’s not just for breakfast anymore.

“But if you do have it for breakfast, make their “Shotgun” cocktail. It has apricot jam, bourbon maple syrup & bitters, shaken and reminds me of a fruitier version of an old fashioned.”


Steph: “I have to confess, I almost whizzed-up my breakfast shake in the VitaMix with some booze … but I think my blood sugar was low so I didn’t have the wits about me to come up with something both creative and delicious.

“I am sipping on a local Colorado gin that my Justin brought home from Wilbur’s Total Beverage last week. I just busted it open and took the first pour out of our virgin bottle. It is the Old Town Distilling Organic Gin batch no. 17. Straight out of my mouth, alone, with no one to hear me, was “Oh my god.” Super clean and citrusy, this is a gin for enjoying on the rocks. – And so – I’m squeezing in a Shout-out to these distillers… Nice job!”


Main Discussion : Interview with Jordan Cowe, CWE

Jordan is a wine educator based in Niagara on the Lake, Canada, and Co-founder of BeWineful. Prior to starting BeWineful, Jordan was busy meditating, and working his way through the wine industry. Jordan entered the wine industry and began his meditation practice after the sudden onset of Panic Disorder and Agoraphobia made him re-evaluate his life and career. Starting out behind the tasting bar, he has since had the opportunity to work as a Training Manager for 180 staff, a Marketing Consultant, and most importantly to him as a Wine Educator in a variety of situations from consumers to professionals. Jordan became the world’s youngest Certified Wine Educator in 2015, winning the Banfi award for highest score on that year’s exam. He is now combining his love of Wine and Meditation and sharing his story and approach through BeWineful.

What does it mean to “be wineful?”

Jordan tells us it’s simply, “approaching wine more mindfully.” Over time Jordan realized that often wine was being taught in a more judgmental capacity, and believes that over time people can actually learn to hate it, more so the absolute details associated with it.

A meditative approach to wine means to “slow down and take in the experience. Observe it as if you’ve never seen the wine before. Focus in on the aromas, notice them, notice the chatter that may be trying to take over the experience.”

Anyone who’s taken a yoga or meditation class is familiar with this concept. By teaching people how to taste wine in a mindful way, you’re able to introduce taste sensations, notice how the wine feels in the mouth, as well as taste. A 15-minute mediation concludes each session with a glass of wine. And why not?

The business of being wineful

Yoga before bubbles. Steph in an early morning zen sesh before Women of the Vine and Spirits.

Jordan and his partner, Natalie, both suffer from agoraphobia (anxiety disorder). In sharing their experiences and how to be able to use wine to relax, Natalie suggested that teaching these skills may be beneficial in helping others. This past April the pair were ready to launch the business after much planning and preparing. They approached a winery for their first event the following month.

Not only are the skills they are teaching beneficial for those who want to learn about wine. It’s extremely useful for those in the industry as well. Remember, the business of wine isn’t all glitz and glamour. Wine professional also need to nurture themselves.

The 30-day challenge


The Be Wineful team now offers a 30-day winefulness challenge! This gives those who want to get into the habit of mediation a tug through and open door. There are daily reminders, motivations, and a set plan for each week with meditations, as well as new wines to try.

How can you get involved? Sign up on the website. There is no charge for learning how to recharge.

What’s new in Canadian wine, eh?

Jordan is an expert on Canadian wine, so he updated us on that too. As an educator, he’s naturally very supportive of the Canadian wine industry which is finally coming to terms with its identity. Being a relatively new region, established in 1975 with about four wineries, it has grown to over 700 wineries Canada wide!

California wines gained popularity because of free trade, but Canada had to find their roots as an “old world” region in a new wine world. The wines are generally more food-oriented, not the ripe, new world styles. Some regions are richer, but structurally intense wines are the hallmark of many of Canada’s styles. They are starting to find their wine voice, and although they are starting to conquer their own market and producing more to meet the demand domestically, as well as internationally, there is still export growth on the horizon.

What’s age got to do with it?

As far as we know, Jordan’s one of the youngest CWEs ever. First, he can drink two years younger than Americans, so there’s an advantage. He also shares how his love for wine helped him find some relief from his agoraphobia through his meditation and pursue a career in a wine industry he loved. He rocked the exam at 24 and presented on Canadian Wines at the 2016 Society of Wine Educators conference.

(This part of the interview is bonus content to be released later on Patreon)

Contact Jordan


Twitter: @jdcowe and @bewineful



Oleogustus for the rest of us?

Have you heard of the taste called oleogustus? Everyone grew up knowing about sweet, salty, bitter, and sour. Then umami came along as the 5th taste. Now, in more recent years, scientists have been studying oleogustus – the taste of fat.

Oleogustus, a Latin word, is the distinct taste of fat (or fatty acids), separate from fat’s texture. When combined with other flavors, it can taste delicious. However, on its own, not-so-much. In that case, it is similar to umami.

Who’s umami?

Umami is savory taste that corresponds to glutamate in food, as is monosodium glutamate, the naturally occurring amino acid found in dried mushrooms, tomatoes, soy sauce, parmesan cheese, etc. Umami was discovered by the Japanese and therefore given a Japanese name.

There is more geeky umami information you can dig into at

Research is still going on to prove that oleogustus is officially a primary taste. Furthermore, it is suggested there could be other tastes out there still unidentified.


W25 Happy Hour in Portland!

See you next week!

Wednesday August 9th 5-7pm at the Vault Martini!

There will be Happy Hour Drink Specials, Small Plates and the official Wine Two Five cocktail.


The W25 Book Club

Our first book is Bianca Bosker’s “Cork Dork: A Wine-Fueled Adventure Among the Obsessive Sommeliers, Big Bottle Hunters, and Rogue Scientists Who Taught Me to Live for Taste.”

This episode will release next week while we’re in Portland, so grab the book, check out our private facebook group, or leave a comment/question on speakpipe so we can get these into the discussion the following week (17 August)



Steph: I’m making a trip to New Zealand’s South Island, specifically Central Otago, in January 2018, and have New Zealand wine on my radar. It just so happened that I saw in my Twitter feed a post from the The Drinks Business (thanks to Joe Fattorini) called “10 Of The Best Twitter Wine Feeds To Follow” and one of them is @TwoPaddocks. Sam Neill, the actor and winemaker is the proprietor of Two Paddocks winery in Central Otago!

Please reach out to me if you have any recommendations or connections in Central Otago. Feel free to reach out on social media, email or leave a Speakpipe message. Thanks!

In addition to my shout-out earlier, and a thank you to Jordan for his interview, I’d like to send my appreciation to Celia Hay from the New Zealand School of Food & Wine. Val and I met her at the SWE conference (see how there’s a pattern here) and we had her on the podcast back in episode 73. Celia just connected me with Misha Wilkinson from Misha’s Vineyard in Central Otago. Thank you, Celia, and see you in Portland very, very soon!


Patreon Love:

Thank you to our Patreon supporters! We are sending out some serious Patreon Love this week to:

“TENacious Tasters”:

Jeff E from the We Like Drinking! podcast

Lynn from Savor the Harvest!

Tenacious taster Sebastian of Sassi Italy tours!


“It’s not five o’clock and we don’t care” listeners:

  • Meg in South Dakota!
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Please welcome our newest supporters:

  • Steve in Illinois!

A word from Steve:

“I’ve been listening to your podcast for about 5 months now and really enjoy your interviews and conversations. I’ve worked in IT for 35 years but have a passion for wine.  Getting ready to take the CSW this fall/winter and hope to attend the SWE conference in the Finger Lakes in 2018.”

Welcome, Steve – and we’re looking forward to “wine camp” in the Finger Lakes next year as well!


  • Janet & Chris Adams in Colorado!

(feature coming soon)


“Tastemaker” Listener:

  • David in Scotland

 “Winetastic” Listener:

  • Laura

You too can jump on the Patreon bandwagon – If you like what you hear, you like spending time with our W25 community, then it’s like buying Steph & Val a glass of wine, really.

Why become a Patreon supporter?

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Shop, Connect, and Play!

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