With the weather finally cooling off, you may have noticed your wine-drinking tendencies have changed a bit. The Rosés and Pinot Gris you’ve been cultivating all summer are suddenly not as appealing as you’re seeking out something with a little more weight to it. For fall, we’re loving wines with a hint of spice that are easy to drink alone and with your favorite fall dishes. Whether you're cooking at home for your loved ones or out at a restaurant, considering these pairings!
1. Viognier + Spicy Thai
For fall, we're drinking fuller-bodied wines, our whites included. Instead of our typical glass of Sauvignon Blanc, we're reaching for Viognier and Viognier-blends such as this Shiraz-Viognier from Australia. Viognier's are typically dominated by tangerine, peach, mango, honeysuckle and rose aromas with low acidity, which means it pairs well spicy dishes. This particular wine-blend is very versatile when it comes to pairing with food: BBQ, Tapas and our preferred pairing, Thai.
96 Points 2010 Shiraz/Viognier $22
2. Chardonnay + Roast Chicken
Chardonnay isn't just your grandmother's favorite wine, with the right pairings it might just become yours, too. Yellow apple, starfruit, pineapple, butter and chalk are the most common aromas associated with Chardonnay wines, so we like it with oven roasted chicken and even our Thanksgiving turkey dinner. Make sure to serve it chilled and not with ice cubes like someone in our family does.
Levendi 2006 Red Hen Chardonnay $42
3. Malbec + Pizza
Malbec just happens to be one of our favorite year-round wines. Yeah, yeah, we realize it's full-bodied and a bit heavy for warmer months, but what can we say, we love all the spicy goodness that comes in a glass (or 5.5 for those of us drinking the entire bottle.) Malbec wines are definitely among the heavy-weights of the wine world, with red plum, blueberry, vanilla, sweet tobacco and cocoa aromas and medium-acitiy. If it's grown in a cooler climate, you're going to get more of the red plum aromas, while warmer you'll get the blueberries.
Malbec is one of those wines that people shy away from but the reality is, it's a very versatile wine. One of our favorite pairings just so happens to be BBQ Chicken Pizza.
Dream Catcher 2013 Malbec $16
4. Sparkling Wine + Pumpkin Pots de Créme
Let's be honest for a minute here. Chances are if you're somewhat new to wine, you think sparkling wine goes only with aphrodisiacs like oysters, strawberries or by itself on New Year's Eve to celebrate the forthcoming hangover. WRONG!
Sparkling wine, otherwise referred to as "bubbles" goes along with just about anything and we happen to love it with pumpkin pots de créme and other custard-like desserts. If you aren't a fan of custards, sparkling wine will also be a good pairing for your pumpkin pie or your favorite chocolate dessert.
Schramsberg 2007 Blanc De Noirs Sparkling Wine $38
5. Grenache + Lamb Chops
Grenache is one of those wines that if eaten with the wrong dish can light your palate on fire with overwhelming spices. Grenache is one of those Spanish wines we have been loving this past year and you'll typically find dried strawberry, grilled plum, ruby red grapefruit, leather and licorice aromas and fruit on the nose. For that reason, we love it with Rosemary Crusted Lamb Chops and other herb encrusted roasts. Even though it's a medium-bodied wine, some of the fruitier versions are great transition wines for wine drinker that prefer their wines white and sweet.
Firestarter 2013 Grenache/Shiraz $18
During the fall, do you tend to cook at home more often than you go out to eat at a restaurant? What are some of your favorite things to cook at home? Your must-visit restaurant with the best fall dish?
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