This piece was written for Daily Hive by DJ Kearney, Director of Wine at newdistrict.ca and our resident wine expert.
The giving season is here – the time for a whirlwind of parties, dinners, office gift exchanges, and overall (delicious) indulgence!
You’ll probably have many occasions to bestow a bottle of vino, and receive the added dividend of making yourself look like a savvy genius, with superb taste, sophistication, and high wine IQ.
Whether you are tasked with bringing a bottle to dinner, or you want to show off your wine pairing chops, or choose a fitting bottle to give, you might find some of these tips handy.
The make-you-look good gift of wine your secret weapon, and knowing the right ones is essential knowledge.
It’s well established that everyone loves the gift of a thoughtfully chosen gift of wine, and the right choice can say a lot about you too.
Giving sparkling wine will never let you down! It’s a party-in-a-bottle that instantly changes ups the mood and fun.
Widely made around the world, there is massive choice in style and price. Dubbed ‘poor man’s champagne’, Cava from Spain is made just like the real thing (but for a steal). For under $15, you can’t do better than Cristalino Brut from Jaume Serra… toasty, frothy and bone dry – it’s made from native Spanish grapes and shockingly scrumptious.
Show off your insider access with an all-Pinot Noir fizz from Luxembourg – it’s a fashion-forward rosé sparkler that smells of wild red berries, tastes like a fine brioche, and has a dreamy, pillowy mousse. You’ll score huge wine-geek points when you gift this rarity. Who’s worthy on your list? BFF, yoga teacher, dog walker, stylist, concierge?
And for pulling out all the stops, give the real deal from Champagne. Bypass the commonplace labels (like the yellow one!) and choose a sophisticated grower champagne, like the house of Gatinois.
From the very best vineyards and long-aged for deep complexity, this champagne is a toasty, sophisticated, and stunning value.
If a gift of white wine is needed (mother-in-law, assistant, dog groomer) try something a little unexpected like this svelte and deeply flavoured Poggio al Tesoro Solosole Vermentino from one of Italy’s great estates.
Apple and cream flavours, a dusting of spice, and a looooooong finish, it’ll delight the white wine lover.
Who needs a rich, glossy, top shelf red on your list? Dad, boss, valued colleague or client… a hefty bottle, explosive fruit, and a great backstory is what you want. Plumpjack Syrah is a Californian icon, with dense dark fruit, impossibly melty tannins, and a blueblood pedigree. It touches all the brain’s pleasure points and you can bask in the afterglow.
Sensible warning: make sure you’re well-acquainted enough with the individual in question before buying them booze, but generally, it’s the giving season and the gift of wine is pretty much as good as it gets!