Winter Food And Wine Pairing Tips

Feel that chill? Winter is well and truly upon us and now is the perfect time to enjoy a warming glass of wine with some winter comfort food.

Third generation Managing Director of Taylors Wines in South Australia’s Clare Valley, Mitchell Taylor, shares his best winter wine and food pairing tips.

“The 2012 Taylors Estate Shiraz  and the 2012 Taylors Estate Chardonnay  are great winter wines; both pair well with a hearty winter dinner.

“Wine lovers will often reach for a bottle of full-bodied red in winter, forgetting about the gorgeous pairing of a silky chardonnay with a rich winter meal,” Mitchell said.

Pair: comfort foods like beef lasagne or spaghetti marinara with shiraz

The ripening conditions for the 2012 Taylors Estate Shiraz  vintage promoted slow, even ripening which provided intense varietal characteristics. It has a lively palate of juicy red berry fruits, plum and spice, along with more subtle chocolate and savoury notes. The wine is medium to full-bodied and has a well-balanced structure with great texture, good length and lashings of fruit on the finish.

Pair: spicy Spanish dishes like paella or chorizo tapas with chardonnay

The 2012 Taylors Estate Chardonnay is an ideal wine for winter – warming from the inside out. It is a light-straw colour with vibrant green tinges. The chardonnay is full of luscious flavours of white peach, citrus and tropical fruit with underlying toasted cashew and creamy nuances from extended lees stirring to deliver a mouth-filling and enjoyable wine.

Pair: homemade pizza with tempranillo

Taylors Tempranillo is a fantastic choice for a pizza party or lazy night in with a take away: it’s medium-bodied full of berry flavours, with subtle spice characters.

Pair: vegetable soup with cabernet merlot

A lovely silky merlot like Promised Land Cabernet Merlot, with soft, velvety tannins that compliment the best of winter produce – perfect for our quick and easy winter vegetable soup.

What’s your favourite winter wine?

Eat Healthy Winter Food – The Chinese Way

Embrace what the Chinese have known for thousands of years – what you eat flows into every part of your life. Professor Lun Wong is one of Australia?s foremost practicioners of traditional Chinese medicine. His book Foods for the Seasons teaches you how to eat well and stay healthy by following the basic principles of traditional Chinese medicine.?Damp, heat, wind, cold and dry are the environmental elements that cycle with the seasons and create our weather. These same elements can exist within the body at any time of year, however they are likely to be more extreme in the seasons they correspond to as the weather creates and promote the conditions in which imbalances thrive. What happens inside our bodies is influenced by the weather and the effects of the seasons, and also by our food intake, genetic make-up, body type, and emotional and mental wellbeing. So to have a balanced diet, we need to consider the effects of the environment.? From Foods for the Seasons by Professor Lun Wong and Kath Knapsey (Black Dog), pp 11.

Winter is the season of hibernation ? when energy moves inwards. A time when stillness and quiet seem to amplify what sound there is. Yin qi (female energy) is highlighted and yang qi (male energy) is subdued. Winter foods such as grains, dried or preserved foods, seeds and nuts have an inward-moving energy too. In winter, meals should be nutritious and warming. And it?s a time of gentle celebration where food and family connection is promoted. In winter, it?s appropriate to drink a small amount of spirits or wine to warm the system up, since they are hot-warm in nature, promote circulation, stimulate the appetite, relieve tiredness and keep out the cold.

In Australia because of our relatively temperate climate you might be tempted to pretend that winter doesn?t exist. But don?t let this opportunity pass you by. Respond to this season by rugging up and eating delicious stews and soups.

Enjoy the chance to revel in your own company and that of close friends and family with cosy gatherings and plenty of warming, comforting foods. Many cultures have the majority of their celebrations that involve food in winer, whereas because the northern hemisphere cultures have been transplanted here, most Australians feast in the warmer months. New traditions can be created ? cook up a warming feasting in winter and invite people you love over.? From Foods for the Seasons by Professor Lun Wong and Kath Knapsey (Black Dog), pp 113-114.

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Next week we feature some great warming winter recipes to share with your family and friends.

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