What's in your glass this holiday weekend?
When I think of Canada Day, I think of late night fetes the night before and a good ol' friends and family backyard barbecue the day of. If you are like me and usually the host of the outdoor soiree, you're busy making sure 'all the things' are just right. The foods served must be a blend of enough simplicity, but yet feature food dazzling surprises. (Ask me about my rack of lamb seasoning process!) When it comes to the wines, however, I generally let the holiday theme guide my selections, hence the Canada Day Backyard Wines list below.
Canada Day Backyard Wine List
White - Albariño
This is a light white wine from the Rias Baixas region in Spain. Its crisp acidity and subtle tannin give it a fantastic structural and textural feel.
With Albariño (Alvarinho in Portugal), you also get lively supportive notes such as grapefruit, peach, and melon.
Albariño is an easy drinking white wine, and when served with a chill on a hot day, it is a refreshing drink.
Albariño is common to find in our market, and often available for under $20.
LCBO Option: Castelo do Mar Albariño
Rosé - Syrah
While I support rosé wine made from all red grapes, there is something about a well made rosé from the Syrah variety.
Syrah is a red grape known for its red and black berries, great acidity, herb, and peppery notes. I think the bevy of flavours attributed to this grape is what makes any rosé made from it superb. No matter how lightly kissed the musts were by the skins, you are guaranteed a rosé with layers.
LCBO Option: Francis Coppola Sofia Rosé
Red - Grenache
I bet you thought I would have said Pinot Noir here, and normally I would have, but we're curating a list for a Canada Day backyard soiree, where I know I need crowd pleasing sipping wines that pair with conversation as well as food, and that is Grenache.
Grenache is responsible for making some of the most sought after wines in the world, from Priorat all the way to Châteauneuf-du-Pape. Lucky for us, it's also used in affordable red blends from the south of France, in the Languedoc-Roussillon area.
Grenache is a medium bodied red grape that can be served with a bit of a chill (15° Celsius), making it a delight on a hot summer's day. Expect crisp acidity, medium tannins, plush berries, chocolate, and fennel on the palate.
LCBO Option: M. Chapoutier Bila-Haut Occultum Lapidem
With that, I raise a glass to you all on this holiday long weekend, regardless of what wine you choose to dig into!