CHRISTMAS AND WINE
The Christmas Season is coming fast upon us! There are only sixteen days before Christmas! Did you know that Christmas is short for Christ’s Mass which was a special Catholic Mass in the “dead of winter” celebrating the birth of Jesus? During this Mass, a special red wine is used in this celebration. We celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ in many ways this Christmas, including serving wines during our Christmas feast along with the raising of a glass of wine as a toast to friends, family, and our Lord. Wine is always a good thing to celebrate with and is meant to be shared! Pairing wines with foods is always a good thing. We know that local foods always pair best with local wines. Texas has more than its share of award-winning wines with thousands, of medals earned by Texas wines in the last two years! In the recent Houston Rodeo Uncorked wine judging, Texas wines earned 588 medals including 28 Double Gold Medals and 804Gold Medals. Texas wines are only getting better and better as each year passes.
We have a lot of different foods we feast on this time of the year. So, in preparation for the coming Christmas, I have selected some of the feast foods and recommended Texas wines to pair with these local foods:
• TURKEY –Becker Winery Viognier. Messina Hof Gewürztraminer. Saddlehorn Winery Blanc du Bois. Pleasant Hill Blanc du Bois (dry). Windy Winery Chardonnay. Llano Estacado Viviana.
• SUGAR-CURED HAM – Bernhardt Winery Schrock. Messina Hof Angel Riesling, Windy Winery Yellow Rose. Landon Winery Yellow Rose. West Sandy Creek Winery Dry Blanc du Bois.
• WILD GAME BIRDS – Becker Iconoclast Cabernet Sauvignon; Bernhardt Winery Merlot, Messina Hof Pinot Noir. Blue Epiphany Tannat. Messina Hof Gewürztraminer.
• SAUSAGE – Bernhardt Winery Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon. Blue Epiphany Escape Plan Red Blend, Messina Hof Cabernet Franc.
• Steak – Fall Creek Meritus, Llano Estacado Viviano, Becker Winery Merlot, William-Chris Winery Skelton Key. Blue Epiphany Vineyards Night Shift Red Blend.
• Venison – Messina Hof Pinot Noir, Chisholm Trail The Outlaw Barbera, McPherson Sangiovese.
• Chocolate Desserts – Bernhardt Winery PORT. Messina Hof Paulo Port, Windy Winery Tejas Port.
Whatever your choice of food, there are several choices of fine Texas wines to pair with that food. Remember, Texas foods always pair better with local wines from Texas.
If you are in the celebrating “frame of mind,” try celebrating with a Texas sparkling wine like Messina Hof Winery Messina Sparkling Almond, Texas, NV. This wine earned a Double Gold Medal at the Houston Rodeo Uncorked International Wine Competition several years ago. Another Gold Medal Winner is Landon Winery Sparkling White Wine. Either “sparkler” is a great wine to toast family and friends.
As you sip on your Christmas wines, remember that the week after Christmas is the last week of the year. I will provide some great examples of Texas Sparkling Wine for you to try and enjoy for New Year’s Eve. The first week in 2023 will be a contemplative week for me. It is a time for reflection for the upcoming year, making New Year Resolutions, and analyzing predictions for the year! Next week’s column will focus on celebratory wines for the New Year with the following week’s column being reflective on our Texas wine industry. Have a Blessed Christmas!