As the weather warms and the months of wintry hibernation (finally) come to an end, we can’t help but fantasize about sipping our favourite libations in the sunshine.
The change in seasons means it’s time to rotate our home bar roster and make room for some new picks. Though we hardly need any excuse, with the Easter long weekend approaching and April being BC Wine Month, it’s the perfect time to discover new local blends and labels to savour throughout the spring and summer months.
Better yet, we’ve paired each of these local wines — all of which can be found at your local BC Liquor Stores location — with Easter classics so you can treat your tastebuds to a truly unparalleled Easter dinner. So, savour the season and support local with these sublime BC wines and pairings.
Black Sage Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon
Not only is this cabernet sauvignon a real crowd-pleaser, but it also pairs fabulously with lamb. Hailing from the Okanagan Valley’s Black Sage Vineyard, this wine is rich and ripe, bristling with flavours of black cherry, cassis, vanilla, mocha, and sage. It’s an opulent pick with sweet tannins and a nice long finish.
JoieFarm A Noble Blend
Take Easter ham up a notch with this aromatic white from the Okanagan Valley’s beautiful Naramata Bench. Fragrant whites — like riesling and gewürztraminer — are fresh and flavourful, making them the perfect match for the salty-sweetness of a traditional baked ham. JoieFarm’s A Noble Blend is a fusion of gewürztraminer, riesling, pinot auxerrois, and muscat, resulting in a lush and tropical meld with notes of lychee, guava, grapefruit, rose petal, and spice.
Tantalus Pinot Noir
Tantalus is known for its quality wines, and this bottle of pinot noir is no exception. It’s bright and fruity — an ideal pairing for a roast chicken or turkey — with a floral and earthy aroma of berries, forest, dusty cocoa, and baking spice. Since this medium-bodied blend will also age beautifully, we’d recommend keeping one on the table at Easter dinner and tucking another away for the next seven to 10 years.
Mission Hill Reserve Sauvignon Blanc
Fellow vegetarians, we also have you covered this Easter long weekend with a delicate sauvignon blanc that will bring out the best in your seasonal spring veggies, like asparagus, artichokes, peas, and fiddleheads. This fresh and herby wine from Mission Hill smells of passion fruit, grapefruit, and pineapple — complemented by gooseberry and lemongrass undertones.
Bartier Bros Rosé
Another match for fresh produce lovers is this silky rosé from Bartier Bros. All around, light rosés work well with just about any kind of salad and this one, in particular, has a smooth mouthfeel that’s harmonized by notes of summer berries, watermelon, citrus, and minerality.
Sandhill Pinot Gris
If you’re going meatless for Good Friday, try pairing Sandhill’s pinot gris with some delicious seafood, like scallops, salmon, prawns, or crab cakes. On the nose, it offers aromas of pear, melon, white peach, and white flowers, while on the palate, it’s medium-bodied with a relatively rich texture and refreshing acidity.
Quails’ Gate Chardonnay
If you plan on making fish pie this long weekend, you’ll want to uncork a bottle of something oaky, like Quails’ Gate’s Chardonnay. Breathe in its delightful aromas of ripe Okanagan tree fruits, brioche, and minerals — and balance out your meal with flavours of stone fruit and invigorating acidity.
Steller’s Jay Brut
Save a bottle of Stellar’s Jay Brut for Sunday brunch — from scrambled eggs with smoked salmon to eggs benedicts, this dry sparkling wine is egg-cellent. Made using the same traditional method employed to produce champagne, the effervescent blend has fragrances of citrus, apple, and biscuit with a full, creamy palate of mousse to follow.
If prime rib or steak is on your Easter menu, reach for a bottle of merlot. Nk’Mip’s Merlot offers high calibre sipping at an affordable price. The medium-to-full-bodied red serves up notes of dark chocolate, spice, black plum, black cherry, and blueberry with a touch of smokiness.
Inniskillin Okanagan Riesling Icewine
Since no dinner is really complete without dessert, consider serving this luscious icewine alongside a chocolatey final course. Scrumptious and lip-smacking, the Inniskillin Okanagan Riesling Icewine is bursting with aromas and flavours of honey, apricot, tangerine, and tropical fruit with a lemon candy and elderflower finish that lingers.
To discover these wonderful wines and more, you can visit your local BC Liquor Stores location. To find one near you, watch virtual events, or read the latest issue of TASTE magazine, you can check out BCLiquorStores.com.
For the latest updates on releases and tips on what to drink, you can also follow @BCLiquorStores on Instagram.
As always, please remember drinks are best enjoyed when they’re enjoyed responsibly.