Ready to wine down and chill? Perhaps you’d like to hop over to Instagram where you can find wine art and photography at #WineDownAndChill. Follow me there then return here each Friday to find food, movie, wine and music recommendations that are paired in a theme. Read on for an easy, no-recipe-required fabulous dinner paired with an affordable wine, some music, and a viewing suggestion. We’re here to help you sit back, wine down and chill.
Cheers and thanks for a grape year
We’re only days away from watching the iconic New Year’s Eve ball drop in Times Square. Two new seven-foot numbers, a 2 and a 0 to mark the start of a new decade, were delivered via a flat-bed truck last week and are currently parked on the sidewalk for the perfect start-of-a-new-decade photo opp. It won’t be long before they’re hoisted up to the ball to light up Manhattan.
It’s also an ideal time to reflect back on 2019 and to say thank you, to the readers, for all your support. I’m also grateful to a number of wineries who have made my wine down and chill column a lot of fun. Thank you!
Looking back to look ahead
As a self-proclaimed science geek and recently teased by my little sister for being a “total nerd,” adding some data to today’s column seems like a sensible thing to do. Here are a few fun facts to digest this week’s wine down and chill column one byte at a time … this is the 44th column. Despite my personal penchant for Cabernet Sauvignon which was featured in six columns, miraculously, I somehow managed to feature 23 other wine varietals including dedicating four columns to Rosé. Rounding out the other favorites: Prosecco, Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc, and red blends were each featured three times. The “unexpected” varietals like Henry of Pelham’s Baco Noir (which generated quite the response and left people frantically trying to source it), Traminette, and Chenin-Blanc Viognier were well-received articles so we’ll do more of those next year.
Articles that generated an above-average response included box wines for the pool and cottage, canned wine for on-the-go consumers, a wine down and chill food, movie and beverage selection to celebrate Rosh Hashanah and our Asian sake selection. This suggests that our readers are cultured, multi-national, on-the-move and always seeking opportunities to meet up with friends. No surprises there!
The wine down and chill fan faves were “Pardon My French,” the “Expecto Patronum” nod to Harry Potter and “The Deconstructed Taco with Neo” in my homage to The Matrix and Keanu Reeves. I tried to select a personal favorite but came up short – too many choices!
Breaking form – not breaking bad
Fret not, we’ll return to our standard wine down and chill format next year … for now, we’re going to have a little fun selecting my Fave Five wines. They may – or may not be – your favorites. Tell us which one(s) you liked best!
One, Henry of Pelham Baco Noir, hands down, the runaway winner this year.
Two, Austin Hope Harvester Cabernet Sauvignon; how did you know a Cab Sauv would make the Top 5?!
Three, Pine Ridge Chenin Blanc-Viognier, a smooth and unexpected grape mash-up.
Four, Gérard Bertrand Cote des Roses Rosé, indeed, a wonderful way to rosé all day.
Five, Riondo Prosecco, because everyone should have bubbles every day, not just on New Year’s Eve.
You simply cannot go wrong! Pick any of these wines and relax. Wine down and chill, celebrate the end of a decade and the dawning of a new one. Stay home or go out and have fun on New Year’s Eve. Your choice – just don’t drink and drive.