Festive Food And Wine Pairings For Every Celebration 2023

Festive Food And Wine Pairings For Every Celebration 2023

The Food: Salmon is the ideal meal or canape to prepare ahead of time for any gathering. Salmon’s richness and the Pétiyante’s acidity go along beautifully. Of course, we advise using the fantastic gin from Kangaroo Island Spirits to heal it. Try this salmon dish with cucumber and lime that is gin-cured.

The wine: Our bottle-fermented sparkling Chardonnay/Pinot Noirs made using the traditional method, Pétiyante is exquisitely balanced with fine, subtle acidity and a creamy texture that counterbalances the fruit flavours. Long, crisp, elegant finish with nashi pear and white peach undertones. Traditional Champagne-like brioche aromas on the nose and taste.

Did you know that the wine industry in Virginia is one of the most dynamic and cutting-edge in the world right now? Before I travelled to the gorgeous Charlottesville and experienced the Monticello Wine Trail, neither did I.

Thomas Jefferson imported the first vines to Virginia at the end of the 18th century. He had accurately recognised Charlottesville’s terroir as being perfect for grapes. Unfortunately, he had not determined which grapes would grow best in Charlottesville’s soil and climate, thus his efforts to launch the Virginia wine business were unsuccessful.

In Charlottesville, there was no wine industry during the following couple of centuries. When state rules started to shift in the 1970s, there was a new window of opportunity for wineries. There were six wineries in Virginia in 1979. In 2000, there were 50, and as of now, there are over 350. The Monticello Wine Trail, which is comprised of more than 40 wineries in Charlottesville, Virginia, is one of those.

Of course, Charlottesville is more than just wine. I’ll walk you through 15 outstanding Charlottesville wineries (in no particular order) before discussing some additional non-wine activities. Also covered will be where I ate, stayed, etc.

I want to go over the main grapes cultivated in Charlottesville before I get to the wineries.

The predominant white grape planted in Charlottesville is viognier. Both Chardonnay and the lesser-known Petit Manseng grape are grown in the area. Since Charlottesville may get quite warm, Northern Virginia tends to be where Chardonnay is cultivated more frequently.

The Petit Manseng vine produces wonderful dry white wines and lasts until pretty late in the growing season. I personally like Chardonnay, and when on the Monticello Wine Trail, I really enjoyed the Petit Manseng wines I tried. The two main varieties of white grape grown in Charlottesville are viognier and petit manseng.

Charlottesville’s red wines are all mixed, much like Bordeaux. Cabernet Franc is the primary red grape, however there is also some Cabernet Sauvignon. Also grown is Petit Verdot. In Bordeaux, this grape is typically blended, while in Virginia, it is grown as a single variety. It creates a wine that is deep purple, full-bodied, and has strong tannins that ages nicely. Virginia’s version of California’s Cabernet is called petit verdot.

Last but not least, Virginia boasts a distinctive native red grape known as the Norton, which is extremely divisive. It has a rich, fruity scent and dark fruit flavours. It is a deep purple grape.

Wine Competitions in Virginia

Virginia is quite serious about its wine competitions. All of the wineries I visited were proud to promote their rankings in the contests that were held all around the state. The Governor’s Cup is Virginia’s largest wine competition. Each year, the Monticello vineyards often take home more than half of the gold medals awarded in this state wine competition.

The Governor’s Case is created by the Governor’s Cup. The top 12 wines in Virginia are thereafter deemed to be these 12. Being a part of the Governor’s Case is an enormous honour.

The Monticello Cup is the regional equivalent of the Governor’s Cup. The Monticello Wine Trail membership and the presence of at least 85% fruit from the Monticello AVA in the wine are requirements for entry.

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