3 Wines To Please Everyone At Your Holiday Table

Hosting the holidays this year? Holy Stress, amiright? Not only do you want to please your guests with delicious vittles, but you're also thinking about the music, the decor, the flow of the evening...

And then there are the beverages. 

Ideally, you would stock a crazy supply of beverages to please every person's personal palate, but that's tricky without spending loads of cash and ending up with lots of extra bottles you might not be crazy about once all of the guests have gone home.

Let's keep it simple, shall we? Here are three different wines that are friendly enough to appeal to a range of people, while also suiting the harvest vibes of a holiday meal. Don't knock yourself out. After all, the most important part of a holiday gathering is the warmth of good company, right?'

 

Domaine J. Laurens "La Rose No°7" | France**

This sparkling rosé of Chardonnay, Chenin Blanc and Pinot Noir is adorably pink AND a stellar companion to all things Thanksgiving Day. It's got a delicate mousse...

[RECIPE + PAIRING] Drunkin Punkin Soufflé + Crémant d'Alsace

Photo: Alfred Schrock

This past week in our 'Ask the Somm' session, I made one of my favorite Thanksgiving Day dessert recipes LIVE with our audience: Chef Mike Shannon's Drunkin Punkin Pie.  A dessert I make every year for our Tday feast -- it is that good!

Here's a link to the original recipe: PIE ME!

Yet, this year as I find myself recommending a lot of Vermouth + Fortifieds for the season, I thought...what if I sub'd out the 3 spirits in Chef Mike's recipe for equal parts Vermouth?  

So, I tried it...LIVE with our members during our Sunday session + LOVED it!  

While the pie will always be one of my faves, a few during the live session asked for the GF version of this delicious holiday treat.  Lucky for us, Chef Mike makes the same recipe in a soufflé style!

 

Here's the recipe! (Pair it to this bubbly for the perfect treat)

 

Drunkin’ Punkin’ Soufflés
Makes filling for 8 shuffles or one pie

3 large eggs, beaten
¾ cup light brown sugar
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
¼ teaspoon ground ginger
¼ teaspoon ground...

[RECIPE + PAIRING] Pumpkin Spice Rice Krispie Bars + Moscato

Photo: Bree Felten Leidel

EVERYTHING is Halloween right now! If you're just a little sick of the Snickers and Twizzlers and pumpkin-shaped Reeses, get a load of this adult Halloween treat below—created by my pal Corey Meier of Create Catering—that you can whip up in under 20 minutes. The best part about it? It pairs well with a fizzy little Moscato!

Trick or treat, friends!

PUMPKIN SPICE RICE KRISPIE BARS
*Pair to an off dry Moscato, like the 2017 Foris Sparkling Moscato*

Makes one 9×9 pan

For the Bars
• 2 Tbsp Butter
• 1 Bag Marshmallows
• 1Tbsp Instant Coffee Granules
• 5-6 Cups Rice Krispies

For the Pumpkin-White Chocolate Ganache
• 2 Tbsp Pumpkin Puree
• 1 Cup White Chocolate

For the Spice Mix - Make to your liking!
• Cinnamon to taste
• Ginger to taste
• Nutmeg to taste
• Ground Mace to taste

For the Dark Chocolate Drizzle
• 4 Tbsp Dark Chocolate Chips

Method
1. Melt the butter and marshmallows together in a heavy bottom pan over medium heat.
2. Once melted, add the coffee granules and stir to combine.
3. Fold in the...

Stranger Wines For Halloween

Photo: Netflix

October is the perfect time to binge watch (again) season three of Netflix’s Stranger Things. I mean, what could be more Halloween-adjacent than a little weird and retro romp through Demagorgon-infested Hawkins, Indiana? Exactly.

Season three of Stranger Things brings the advent of The Mall, that glorious beacon of the 1980s. It’s new, it’s flashy, it’s...strange! Everyone in Hawkins loves it and the Starcourt Mall is really the center of some of the juiciest, most climactic moments in the season.

In the final scenes of the season, the Stranger Things gang splits up into smaller groups to more effectively kick the Mind Flayer's butt. Each group gets a code name to communicate with the others over walkie talkie: The Griswold Family, The Scoops Troop, and Bald Eagle (of course!). So, in the spirit of trying new and strange things, I’m recommending a super off-the-beaten-path wine to pair with each of the Stranger Things factions that face the Mind Flayer in this spooky and totally rad...

[WINE SPOTLIGHT] Peterson Winery

Photo: boxerbrand.com

What gets winegrower Fred Peterson out of bed in the morning? “For me, the motivation is that every day is so different in the wine business,” he says. And it’s true. Fred Peterson and his son, winemaker Jamie, never set out to make the same wine twice at Peterson Winery in Dry Creek Valley of Sonoma County.

Fred and Jamie thrive on the fact that each day, each year, is a new adventure in the vineyard. They consider it their job to harness whatever is naturally occuring at any given time and put in a bottle for you to enjoy.

This gentle way of winemaking is what the Petersons call Zero Manipulation. This philosophy emphasizes traditional winemaking practices in order to maximize each wine’s naturally occurring flavors and textures. As their website states, “Fred and Jamie celebrate vintage differences and don’t tweak or homogenize the wine to obtain consistency of flavors, a common practice in mass-market wineries.”

Fred says that this delicate balance all starts in the vineyard,...

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