Taste or Treat: Wine Pairings for Your Halloween Party

Photo: Nika Benedictova via Unsplash

Do you ever miss trick-or-treating? I do! What other excuse do I have to house a bowl of fun-size Snickers?

Luckily, adulthood allows for some other delicious things. Like wine! And homemade snacks that give Snickers a run for its money. Throw your own adult-friendly Halloween party this Fall with these festive food and wine pairing ideas.

CHOCOLATE, PEANUT BUTTER
DRINK: El Maestro Sierra Pedro Ximenez Sherry
This spiced sherry is light on its feet and a perfect foil for nutty and milk chocolatey treats.

APPLE, PUMPKIN, BUTTER, CINNAMON
DRINK: Jim Barry 'Wintervale' Riesling
This Riesling is both rich in honeycomb flavor and lifted with citrus and florals that compliment all things pumpkin spice and baked apple.

DARK CHOCOLATE, RED VINES
DRINK: Rob Murray Vnyds 'Force of Nature' Zinfandel
Dark red and black fruit make this Zinfandel a friend to dark chocolate treats and classic licorice.

MARSHMALLOW, NOUGAT, SALTED CARAMEL
DRINK: Elderton 'E Series' Chardonnay 
A creamy, peachy Chardonnay...

[FRIDAY FAVES] Lights, Cheese, Action!

Photo: Annie Spratt via Unsplash

- Have you ever had Rush Creek Reserve? It's an insanely gooey and earthy cheese from Uplands Cheese in Wisconsin. They only make it in the Fall, and each small wheel is wrapped in spruce bark. It makes the PERFECT appetizer (or dinner for two?) and would be great with a bottle of Loosen Bros 'Dr. L' sparkling Riesling. Mmmm!

- Some over-the-top Christmas light displays to get you in the holiday mood.

- Claire Saffitz (formerly of Bon Appétit) just debuted her new YouTube channel. Let's get bakin'!

- Are you burning your candles wrong?

- We're getting excited about all of the scrumptious take-away Christmas dinners available through local restaurants!  I'm drooling over the package from Petit León. Short ribs, foie gras mousse, and apple pie? Yes, please.

- Ever wonder why Princess Diana had that very specific haircut? Me too. Here's why!

- Have you checked out our Gift Guide? Here are a few others we love: Cup of Jo, DESIGNLOVEFEST, Girls' Night In.

[RECAP] What We Learned At A Virtual Wine + Cheese Party

Photo: Leslee Miller

One joy in the time of Corona Virus? Virtual wine classes!

Sip Better's sommelier, Leslee Miller, has been putting her wine education chops to work from the comfort of her own home. Through her consulting business, Amusée, Leslee has begun hosting live themed wine classes via Zoom, and the latest one turned into one big wine and cheese pairing party! Wine lovers from around the country tuned in on Saturday April 18th to discuss how to create a killer cheese and meat spread (see that beauty up above?), which wines to pair with which snacks, and more. I was there too! And here are three of my takeaways:

VARIETY IS KEY
Make sure your cheese(and meat) board reflects the spice of life: variety! Choose at least one cow's milk cheese (like Gruyère), one goat's milk (such as fresh chèvre), and one sheep's milk cheese (like Manchego). Not only do these different milks offer many pairing combinations and flavor profiles to explore, they also ensure that most of your dining mates will find...

4 Unexpected Valentine's Day Dates

Photo: Leonardo Sanches via Unsplash

Every year it's a challenge: The perfect, non-cliche, not-too-sappy yet totally memorable Valentine's Day date. Phew! We got your back. Here's a quick list of unique date ideas led by some fantastic wines. Cheers to you and your sweetie!


PUZZLE IT OUT

Get analog! Because so many of us are glued to screens these days, something as simple as doing a puzzle seems suddenly kooky and new. So, do a puzzle with your boo this February 14th! There are some genuinely gorgeous puzzles out there (check out Galison for some options!) to spice things up, and puzzling offers a natural environment for alllllmost grazing the hand of your hot date as you reach for another piece. [eye flutter]
PAIR WITH: François Montand, Brut Méthode Traditionnelle Blanc de Blancs | A sneaky and sophisticated sparkling wine for thoughtful types


KICK IT AT KARAOKE 

Dress up in your favorite 80s metal gear and go crush it karaoke with a bangin' duet! Karaoke is like aerobics for the soul––guaranteed to make you sweat and...

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