New Year’s Eve. Bubbles, aromatic whites with first courses, some big reds to partner with that standing rib roast or venison chops. Or maybe it is an early quiet dinner before some serious revelry. No matter what, even if you are binging on Twin Peaks before it leaves Netflix Canada at midnight, just as the big bright ball touches down in New York City, wine will make the evening nicer, and good wine will do the job more memorably. We tasted plenty of bottles in 2014, some of which we remind you of now.
The Summerhill Cipes Gabriel, $25, is a standout sparkling wine from the Okanagan. Perfect to begin the evening, but save a bottle for midnight, too. The Bub, $24, from Haywire, both the blanc and rosé versions, are delightful as well. Pender Island is home to Sea Star Vineyards, and they have several offerings to enjoy, although the Siegerrebe, $18, hits all the right notes, braced with the needed acidity to make it a great food wine. And the Nk’Mip Dreamcatcher, $19, is a deeply charming white blend, sure to amaze the cynics in the room who doubt such quality exists at this price.
Barone Montalto offers a blend of cabernet sauvignon and nero d’avola, $14, which will turn heads, and at this price, you can have three or four bottles to keep the evening rolling along. The Tedeschi Corasco, $24, is a fabulous value, a concentrated, dark, delicious wine made from grapes indigenous to the Valpolicella region, but made a little differently, and offering dark berry fruit notes with hints of tobacco, chocolate, firm structure, amazing length. Finally, from the Dundee Hills of Oregon, a stellar pinot noir from the iconic Sokol Blosser, $36. Smooth, deep, almost unctuous bright berry flavours, but this well-balanced wine will reward some contemplation of its overall structure and its ability to pair with grilled salmon, making it a star at the table. And if you are watching Twin Peaks after all, get in line to ask David Lynch what the heck he was thinking, with that ending.