Talk Dry, Drink Sweet

Posted by: samy September 21, 2011 No Comments

by Erin

The other day my sister brought along a friend to a trade tasting. Her friend, a self-described novice, but with a keen interest in knowing more, asked to join us, looking to glean a tip or two.

When we were introduced he immediately apologized for his “gauche” sweet wine preferences, and throughout the tasting continued to offer needless explanations as to why he preferred bottles that offered a notch or two more sugar than dry wines.

All the self deprecation was rather unnecessary; Courtney & I have long been proponents of drinking what you like, when you like, and as much as you like. Sure, our tastes may not always match yours, but really, who cares?

And more importantly, sweet wine is good. And obviously more than just Courtney’s friend enjoys it — otherwise no one would make it.

A fruity and low alcohol Moscato d’Asti with brunch is fabulous, and ending a meal with port and cheese is fine living indeed. Even off-dry table wines very much have a place, and are often the better choice for spicy meals.

I, myself, have a wine fridge with a number of bottles of yummy sweetness, ranging from off-dry table wines to ice wines – I even have an iced & sparkling cider kicking around from a recent trip to Quebec.

So if you’re hoping to make the most of your off-dry delight, here are a few ideas to enjoy the sweet life:

Flat Rock Cellars “Twisted”
VQA Niagara Peninsula 2009
LCBO Vintages $16.95
This is delicious. Easy drinking and uncomplicated, it’s perfect for sunny afternoon sipping. A blend of Riesling, Gewurztraminer & Chardonnay, this bottle just squeaks into the off-dry category. Flavours of honeyed apricot and peach, with a little lychee and white flower notes. Enjoy it with creamy goat’s cheese, spicy chicken curry with cilantro or firecracker shrimp.

Cave Spring Riesling Off-Dry
VQA Niagara Peninsula 2009
LCBO General List $14.95
This is a staple in the LCBO, and at under $15, you can’t go wrong. Flavours of ripe peach, apricot and mineral/wet stone with lemon-lime notes. Great acidity keeps things fresh and zippy. With Thanksgiving only a few weeks away, this would be a nice addition to your holiday table.

Inniskillin Vidal Icewine
VQA Niagara Peninsula 2007
LCBO Vintages $44.95
A true Canadian treat, icewine has become so popular all over the world, there’s even a black market of imitation Canadian icewine overseas. Look for flavours of peach, honey, orange blossom & lemon meringue. Pair it with foie gras, Stilton cheese, creme brulee or even key lime pie.

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