No to Dry January

By / Wine + Drinks / January 11th, 2022 / 4

I don’t know about you but with Omicron in full swing, travel restrictions being reinforced in many countries and lockdown back in place (and even curfew where I live in Montréal), I need some joy in my life. And having a glass of wine with dinner certainly brings me pleasure at the end of a long gray day filled with bad news. There won’t be a dry January in my house!

Like everyone else, I enjoyed the bountiful of life a little more than usual during the holidays. But instead of going from one extreme to another, I will simply strive for a more balanced lifestyle. I will be on my yoga mat more regularly, go back to my daily salad for lunch and rather than sharing a bottle of wine at dinner during the weekdays with my better half, I will have ONE glass. 

I sincerely believe that a balanced lifestyle is what people should adopt as a new year’s resolution. It has longer-lasting benefits and you don’t risk eating the entire cake when the month of detox is over.

To ease you into the equilibrium mood, here are three wines to accompany your plates filled with vegetables.

Domaine des Hauts Baigneux Spontané Blanc vin biologique 2020, Vin de France $25

(Sémillon 34 %, Len de l’el 33 %, Mauzac 33 %)

It’s not because the holidays are over that you should not enjoy a glass of bubbles. There is nothing better to lift your spirits! With a proper closure, an open bottle of sparkling can last 4-5 days. Dry and light on its feet with bright notes of white flowers, lemon and red apple, Hauts Baigneux Spontané Blanc is a great partner with take-out sushi. 

Château Mourgues Du Grès Les Galets Dorés 2020, Costières de Nîmes France $18

(Grenache Blanc 60 %, Roussanne 20 %, Vermentino 20 %)

Last time I enjoyed this wine I was on a terrasse in Avignon. It was the perfect white to enjoy on a warm autumn day with my piece of grilled John Dory. While Mourgues Du Grès is a natural with grilled white fish, it is fantastic with many of the scented vegetarian recipes of Yotam Ottolenghi. The slightly oily texture and fresh acid combined with the notes of white flowers, lemon and dried herbs make this wine shine with Ottolenghi’s celeriac roasted whole with coriander seeds and olive oil.

*Getting Ottolenghi’s books should be on your resolution list! This recipe comes from his booked called Simple.

Fabien Jouves Haute Côt(E) de Fruit Malbec 2019, Cahors France $20

Leave any preconceived ideas you may have about Cahors behind. This is off the beaten track and atypical. It is neither too tannic, earthy nor rustic. This lovely Cahors is lush with generous juicy notes of cassis, black cherries, licorice and violets. The supple tannins and freshness of the wine makes it easy to drink on its own. A great match with Flemish rabbit or lamb tagine should you want to take a night off from vegetables. 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

After 20 years in Vancouver, Michelle came back to her homeland in Quebec. In addition of teaching the WSET and doing education for numerous wine associations, she has been the sommelier on the popular Quebec TV show ‘Curieux Bégin.’ She recently published her first book ‘Dis-moi qui tu es, je te dirai quoi boire’ at Cardinal editions and founded the international conference Tasting Climate Change. She also contributed as a wine specialist to ‘Le Secret des Vietnamiennes’, a cookbook published by the famous author Kim Thúy. Michelle judges wine competition internationally, speak at the conferences, writes for numerous publications. She is currently in stage 2 of the prestigious Master of Wine program.

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