This holiday is celebrated every year on March 17th, honoring the Irish Patron Saint, St. Patrick. The celebrations are largely Irish culture themed and typically consist of wearing green, parades, all things Irish-from Leprechauns & Shamrocks, Corned Beef & Cabbage to the Color Green and Green Beer; and I mean Lots of Green Beer and even more so, Irish Whiskey -but for me- Just Wine– I let everyone else enjoy the green beer….
So I thought I would take a moment to talk about St Patrick’s traditions and what St. Patrick’s means to me. St. Paddy’s has almost always involved time spent with friends and family, in taverns, restaurants and even street parties
Now, it is hard to avoid the obvious on St Paddy’s Day-Green Beer and Whiskey which are the usual suspects; however, here are some alternate choices that I will be thinking of when pairing wines to traditional Irish Fare…
What do you get when you cross a bottle of wine with a four-leaf clover?
A rash of good luck-
…if you are planning on Smoked Salmon and Soda Bread - try 2014 Chalone Vineyard Estate Chenin Blanc…tangerine pith, lime, honeycomb, with tones of chalk and river rock minerality… amazing citrus backbone fuses beautifully with the Salmon posing cleansing and refreshing notes…
…having Colcannon (mashed potatoes with kale –mmm) as a side dish - try 2013 Foley Chardonnay, Rancho Santa Rosa, Sta. Rita Hills - …nuances of orange blossom, linden, and honeysuckle & soft oak notes linger on the with nutmeg, vanilla and toasted pecans rounds beautifully.
Boiled Bacon & Cabbage in mind? Amazing with 2014 Chalk Hill Estate Sauvignon Gris. …pink grapefruit, kaffir lime, gardenia blossoms, -with Meyer lemon, white pepper and fresh picked vanilla bean
…if you are in the mood for Cockle & Mussel Chowder, try it with a bottle of 2012 Chalone Vineyard Estate Chardonnay - …orchard tones of pear, apple and quince with lemon zest and brioche completes the frame, whilst the citrus expresses the complex minerality and precise acidity landscape-
2014 Two Sisters Pinot Noir, Sta. Rita Hills - …cocoa dusted cherries, candied raspberries alongside blueberries and cranberries rounding with espresso, tobacco and slight herbal notes …is outstanding with Corned Beef Cabbage Turnovers – flaky crust and corned beef –amazing!
2013 Chalk Hill Estate Pinot Noir - …dark and red fruits of black cherry, raspberry, pomegranate alongside rose petals and mocha …Irish Pasties are savory roast beef and potato filled pastries - balanced by the depth of the Pinot’s fruit.
2012 Kuleto Cabernet Sauvignon, Napa Valley - …elevated aromatics and densely flavored fresh blackberry, cracked black pepper, violets and fresh thyme dominate …has more than enough depth, fruit and body to elevate the cozy classic Shepherd’s Pie ; we should take more advantage of this combination.
2014 Guenoc Victorian Claret, North Coast … Black cherry jam, black currant, clove spice, Earl Gray tea, hints of baking spice & cocoa, leather and wet tobacco rounding the fine tannins… …loving me some Irish Lamb Stew-broad shoulders and fruit is mind-blowing with this filling dish…