Warm Up This Winter

As we settle into winter, I find that my taste for certain foods and beverages changes with the drop in temperature. The last thing I feel like right now is a cold salad with a glass of Sauvignon Blanc.  I want warm, hearty meals that I can enjoy with bold and full red wines or  rich and full white wines.  I would even venture into the world of beer and experiment with some winter-appropriate, weighty Porters, Stouts and Bocks that just seem to be made with the cold weather in mind. Check out our extensive selection of wonderful local beers or try one of our unique imports like Anchor Porter, Samuel Smith Oatmeal Stout and Ayinger Celebrator Double Bock.

So, rather than cursing the inevitable, why don’t we welcome winter as a time to cozy up by a fire with a bowl of stew and a glass of spicy Shiraz and actually relax a little bit.  Here are some wines that I’ll be drinking to ward off the doldrums this time of year:

Shiraz

Specifically the New World style that packs a punch with intense aromas and flavours of dark fruit and spice.  The round full texture and sweet spicy quality of this grape and style makes it a perfect partner to a hearty chili after an afternoon skate on the Halifax Oval.

Zinfandel

Though they are enormously popular, I usually find Zins a little too juicy and sweet for my likening but I have to say that with the right food, this grape can really hit the spot.  You’d be amazed at how delicious Zinfandel can taste alongside a bowl of homemade Mac & Cheese when you ramp up the flavours with a mix of blue, sharp cheddar and Parmigiano. Yum!

GSM (Grenache/Syrah/Mourvedre)

These and similar blends such as Chateauneuf-du-Pape (if you want to splurge) or Languedoc reds (if you want to save) from France are sure to warm one up with their ripe fruit character, sweet and peppery spices and woodsy, animal notes.  If you don’t have the good fortune of enjoying this in a French Alpine chalet (I wish!) you can always prepare a pot of cassoulet and pretend that you are!

South African Reds

There is a “je ne c’est quoi” about certain South African red wines that makes me want to drink them in the winter with root vegetables and slowly roasted meats.  South African wines can be layered and complex, falling somewhere in the middle in terms of old world and new world wine styles.

Brunello

This quintessential expression of the Sangiovese grape is one of my favourites.  Nothing elevates a simple meal of pasta bolognese like this complex and layered wine.

Rich and creamy Chardonnay

Rich and full white wines that are ripe, round and creamy.  I love the texture of these wines with a thick fish chowder and slices of warm buttered bread.

See you soon,

-Alanna