Romantic Wine Pairings

Find the right wine for your perfect evening


 

We’re no matchmakers, but we do know that romance and wine go hand in hand, especially this time of year. 

For many of us grown-ups, Valentine’s Day wouldn’t be the same without a date with our beloved and a beautiful bottle of vino. Maybe it’s the fact we so often share wine with people we hold close to our hearts. Or maybe it’s the fact wine is such a sensory, sensual thing. We savour it, not unlike those first heady days of love.

Even if romance isn’t on your list this February, why not fall in love with a new wine—or wine region—this year? 

With that in mind, here are five wonderful North American wines to try.

Stratus 2012 White, Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ont.

Only bottled in the best vintages, this lush white wine is a blend of Semillon and Sauvignon Blanc, plus a bit of Chardonnay. It has ripe, rich aromas of tropical fruits and flowers. A white that will age for a few years, it will pair beautifully now with roast chicken or a simply prepared pork loin. Serve chilled. About $38.

Benjamin Bridge 2008 Méthode Classique Brut, Gaspereau Valley, N.S.

This crush-worthy sparkler hails from a family-owned winery near Nova Scotia’s Bay of Fundy, a little over an hour from Halifax. Expect delicate bubbles and beautiful aromas of pear and peach, with just a hint of the sea. Made the same way as fine champagne, it will go with sushi or fresh oysters. Serve chilled. About $45.

Bella 2013 Sparkling Rosé Brut, Okanagan Valley, B.C.

Skip the paper hearts and pour pink bubbles instead. Former chef Jay Drysdale and his wife, Wendy Rose, own Bella, a winery that focuses solely on sparkling wines. Made from gamay grapes, this crisp rosé sparkler has floral and pomegranate notes. Pair with charcuterie or smoked salmon. Serve chilled. About $24.

Colby Red 2012, California

Daryl Groom made wine at Australia’s legendary Penfolds before following his heart to California. He and his family came up with this rich Cabernet Sauvignon-based red blend after their son, Colby, now a healthy 17-year-old, had heart surgery at age nine. In the past four years, Colby Red has raised more than half a million dollars for heart-focused charities. Pair with steak or pizza. About $13.

Caduceus Cellars, Merkin Vineyards 2012 Chupacabra, Jerome, Ariz. 

Created by winemaker-musician Maynard James Keenan, whose bands include Tool and A Perfect Circle, Caduceus Cellars uses grapes from both Arizona and New Mexico. The winery, however, is near Jerome, Ariz. This Syrah-based red blend has jammy purple fruit notes and will pair with lamb or roasted duck. About $30.

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