Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Holiday Wine pairing advice from a rising star wine maker

The holiday season is a great time to share great food and great wine with friends and family. Pairing the right wine can be a challenge. Amber Pratt is the winemaker at C.C. Jentsche Cellars, below are her recommandations to pair some of this award winning winery's great wines. 

Amber grew up on Vancouver Island and moved to the Okanagan in 2009 to pursue her passion for wine. Her knowledge, impeccable palate and love for rosé had her sought after by some of the Okanagan's best wineries. She came to C.C. Jentsch Cellars with an elite background of experience at Nk'Mip Cellars, Road 13, and Black Hills Estate Winery before accepting Chris' offer to craft his mature Golden Mile Bench fruit into award winning wines.

Have a great holiday season

Christmas dinner is often a big feast that presents us with spectacular opportunities to play with enlightening and delicious wine pairings. The most delightful food and wine pairings are those that are either complimentary or contrasting.
In complimentary pairings, you select a feature element of your dish, and match those flavours to one you might find in a wine.  I say an ‘element’ of the dish, because it’s unlikely to match an entire entrée with all its seasonings, sauces and sides perfectly to a wine…as a wine enjoyer, I have yet to find a ‘turkey-flavoured’ wine, and frankly, I don’t think I ever really want to!
Furthermore, when I think of a big traditional Christmas dinner, it’s the side dishes I get more excited about than the turkey or the ham.  Crispy herbed stuffing, sweet creamy yam casserole, and tartly mouth-watering Grand Marnier-laced cranberry sauce…mmm! Turkey? What turkey?
It’s exactly because they are so robustly flavourful that many favorite sides get paired with the somewhat more subtly flavored turkey.  This is the foundation of contrast pairing.  The salty, buttery stuffing enlivens each bite of turkey, and the cranberry sauce refreshes the palate, making my mouth water for just one more bite!
This holiday season I will have three bottles of wine at the table (to share, of course!):

2013 Viognier: 

This white wine shines as a refreshing counterpoint to anything salty and savory. Whether served with the cheese plate or the salty ham, our Viognier shines its golden light of juicy peach and fresh lemon flavours.  With a gloriously rich weight and mouthfeel, it stands up to such hearty fare. 

2013 The Dance:

If you serve rosé, you don’t even need cranberry sauce! The Dance is a basket of refreshing bright red fruits, with a slight herbal edge that complements both the rosemary-sage seasoning on your turkey, as well as all your favorite veggie side dishes.
Dry in style, our rosé is also a natural with appetizers of all types; my Nanny makes a French Canadian paté called ‘creton’ and this is a match made in heaven!

2013 The Chase:

Fruity, spicy and warming, this red blend complements all your herbs and spices, and has the subtle tannin and freshness to contrast the richness of glistening roast turkey, rosy ham, wine-braised roast beef or a rich vegetarian mushroom tart. 
When the leftovers are all put away and you’re sitting contentedly next to the tree, pour yourself another glass of this comforting red wine.

Happy Holidays and Bon Appetit!

            Amber Pratt, Winemaker, C.C. Jentsch Cellars

No comments:

Post a Comment