Who better to ask what to serve with your holiday feast than a group of some of our favourite B.C. winemakers?
From turkey wines to cheeseboard pairings, we’ve got you covered. Wow your friends and family by perfectly pairing B.C. wines from Christmas Eve snacks to New Year’s bubbles. Oh, and don’t forget, membership to a B.C. wine club makes a great gift for that hard-to-buy-for friend and an even better one for yourself.
Alex Thornley, Thorn & Burrow Wines
“The holidays are a great excuse to gather with some friends you might not get to see normally, crush some nice bottles, and eat some lovingly made food.
“I'll be enjoying 2021 Rigor & Whimsey’s Maybe It's Just an Illusion Pinot Blanc bubbles. This small-batch sipper from one of our good friends in Okanagan Falls is super-versatile and will pair with almost anything. It sings with ripe orchard fruits, subtle toasty notes and a gorgeously cutting citrus finish of freshness. Try saying that five times fast.
“Naturally (nepotism be dammed), our current release 2020 T&B Chardonnay will be on the menu too, it’s perfect for turkey, chicken, or any dairy-rich dish (cheesy cauliflower, anyone?). It has a silky texture with apple pie, crème brûlée and subtle burnt lemon on the nose. The palate follows with similar tones backed by aged caramel, nervy bright energy and fresh acid.”
Tyler Harlton, Ones+
“You can’t go wrong when the host pops chilled sparkling wine; effervescence lifts us out of the humdrum and rings the bell of celebration. The holiday season is when we open the doors, set out the food and drink, and welcome whoever’s in the neighbourhood to the table. Bubbles are friendly with foods on the pre-dinner platters: soft cheeses, crackers and pâté, devilled eggs, and oysters.
“I like to serve our two sparkling wines from Ones+. The 2021 Sparkling Rosé is modelled after Champagne, featuring pinot noir and chardonnay, and finished in a dry style. Our 2021 Sparkling Red has its eyes on Lambrusco, the bubbly Italian red that precedes the heavier reds served later in the evening. These bubbles let you participate in the evening without having to deal with the *effects of ethanol.
“We love the sparkling from Blue Mountain. Zest and bubbles wake up the palate and add a dash of citrus and salinity to the little bites. We also reach for Pamplemousse Jus, a Summerland winery featuring the young talents Jordan Kubek, James Langford-Smith and Tyler Knight. Their Gewürztraminer pet-nat is bursting with flavour and a great way to start the evening.”
*Ones+ is Canada’s only dealcoholized wine from B.C. wine, sugar-free, one percent alcohol
Michael Clark, Clos du Soleil
“During the holidays, I love to make the occasion memorable with special wine and food pairings that really bring out the best in both.
“A personal favourite combination (and a made-in-B.C.-pairing if there ever was one) is Clos du Soleil Capella with oysters on the half-shell. Capella is Clos du Soleil's flagship blend of Sauvignon Blanc and Sémillon. It is bone-dry, aromatic and concentrated, with a soft mouthfeel yet a salinity and minerality which perfectly complements the brininess of fresh oysters. This combination never disappoints.
“I always find that the richness of well-made chardonnay pairs beautifully with turkey, accentuating the richness of a roasted bird. A great example would be Meyer Family Old Main Road Chardonnay with brined and smoked turkey.
“Finally, a number of producers in British Columbia are producing top-notch syrah, and I think it is a variety which does very well here. I'd suggest Le Vieux Pin Syrah Cuvée Violette with beef Wellington for a special holiday treat.”
Severine Pinte, winemaker/viticulturist, Le Vieux Pin Winery/ Lastella Winery
“I would pick out our Fortissimo from Lastella to pair with some delicious seared duck breast, a light peppercorn sauce, and some grilled Brussels sprouts. I’d also choose the Riverstone Sauvignon Blanc to pair with the traditional oysters I would traditionally eat on Christmas Eve back in France!”
Will Hardman, Deep Roots Winery
“The Deep Roots family always looks to our Gamay come Christmastime. A juicy wine with medium tannin and lively acidity, the versatile Gamay is bold enough while maintaining its delicate nature to complement all the rich flavours that come with a roast turkey dinner.
“The production of great pinot noir in B.C. continues and one of my favourites comes from Three Sisters winery on the Naramata Bench. Medium-bodied with chocolate and red fruits, their pinot noir is great alongside a Christmas ham or some B.C. salmon.
“Lastly, one of my favourite bubbles is the PB&C from Bella. A traditional-method sparkling wine made of pinot blanc and chardonnay, alongside some charcuterie, this is a fun wine to kick off any New Year's Eve celebration.”