Easter Wines

Spring is officially here! Mother Nature may not have gotten the memo, but the calendar says so. And with spring, comes Easter! Regardless of whether or not you’re religious and celebrate Easter, it’s an excellent excuse to roast that leg of lamb you’ve been dreaming about. Last year, Jeff and I did just that and it was fantastic. But this year, I’m thinking Easter Brunch! Brunch is probably my favorite meal, but Jeff doesn’t like to go out for brunch, so what better reason than Easter to practice our Quiche skills. I mean, who doesn’t love a good Quiche? But let’s get down to business…

What are you going to drink with that Quiche? After all, without a mimosa, it’s just breakfast! My best friend hates orange juice. I mean absolutely despises it. And honestly, I’m not a huge fan either; I tend to buy Orange Mango Peach or Orange Pineapple Banana combinations instead; and these make excellent versions of mimosa’s. But we don’t need to stop at mimosa’s for a fantastic Easter brunch! Don’t worry, for those of you serving our favorite springtime animals for dinner, I’ve got some wine recommendations for you too!

Brunch-time cocktails

Pomegranate Mimosa

This isn't a Strawberries and Cream, but it is a strawberry gimlet, so at least you have something pretty to look at.

This isn’t one of these cocktails, but it is a strawberry gimlet, so at least you have a pretty visual.

  • 1 part POM juice
  • 3 parts Prosecco

Strawberry Cream

  • 1 part Vanilla Vodka
  • 1 part Strawberry Puree
  • 3 parts Prosecco

Blackberry Rosé Sangria

  • 2 cups blackberries
  • 1 bottle dry rosé wine
  • 9 ounces vodka, chilled
  • 6 ounces freshly squeezed lime juice
  • 5 ounces simple syrup
  • 12 thinly sliced lime wheels, for garnish

Muddle 1/2 the blackberries with simple syrup until juicy. Add wine, vodka and lime juice and stir to combine. Let sit for one hour. Strain into a pitcher and serve with lime slices and blackberries.

Wines for Baked Ham

Why do sweet wines pair wonderfully with ham? Because most baked hams are coated in honey or brown sugar, and while sweet foods make dry wine taste more acidic, sweet wines keep it balanced! So for your baked ham dinner, try Riesling, Pinot Blanc or another semi-sweet white. If red is more your style, go for something fruity and light, like a rosé, Beaujolais or Barbera d’Asti.

Charles Smith Kung Fu Girl Riesling, Columbia Valley, Washington ~$13 – Clean and fresh, with semi-sweet notes of peach, apricot and lychee. The palate is crisp and light with notes of citrus and tropical fruits. A smooth minerality offers balance on the bright finish.

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Pine Ridge Chenin Blanc Viognier, Napa Valley, California ~$15 – This semi-sweet white blend offers delicate aromas of pear, citrus and honeysuckle. Flavors of peach, sweet honey, and lychee are balanced by a crisp acidity and hints of fresh herbs. The finish is short but refreshing and pleasant.

Mulderbosch Cabernet Rosé, South Africa ~$13 – Fresh aromas of cherry, blackberry and currant lead to a crisp and light palate with fresh, juicy-fruit flavors. A bright acidity is balanced by notes of cherry and citrus fruits.

Vietti Barbera d’Asti Tre Vigne ~$20 – Ripe aromas of cherry, raspberry and vanilla lead to a medium-bodied and fresh palate. Hints of minerals and herbs are balanced by notes of ripe berries, cherries and soft tannins.

Wines for Roasted Lamb

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Lamb is a delicate meat that takes on a lot of flavor from the cooking method and sauces, so keep that in mind when pairing. If you’re going to roast a leg of lamb with loads of fresh herbs, go for a rich, herbal wine like a red from Provence. If you’re going to serve your lamb with a red wine sauce, be sure to serve the same wine you cooked with. Bold reds with soft tannins are a perfect match for lamb.

Aruma Malbec, Argentina ~$13- This Malbec has fresh aromas of blackberry, strawberry and raspberry. The palate is medium-bodied with notes of ripe berries, tobacco, cedar and chocolate. The firm, grippy tannins are balanced on the long elegant finish. Create a red wine sauce for your lamb chops with this Malbec for a perfect match.

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Mas Gourgionnier Les Baux de Provence, France ~$17 – Deep aromas of plum, black raspberries, white pepper and lavender lead to a rich, complex palate with notes of cherry and dark chocolate. The finish is smooth with lingering notes of lavender, thyme and rosemary. Roast your lamb with these herbs and you will note be disappointed!

Klinker Brick Zinfandel, Lodi, California ~$20 – Dark aromas of blackberry, cherry and plum lead to a rich, jammy palate. Notes of vanillin oak are balanced by hints of black pepper, mint and clove. The finish is long with fresh, juicy tannins. Mint jelly fan? Make sure to serve this alongside!

Qupe Syrah, Central Coast, California ~$20 – Fresh and spicy aromas lead to a rich, jammy palate. There is a soft, smokey element to the medium-bodied palate with balanced notes of blackberry and cherry. Spicy black pepper lingers on the long finish.

What are you doing for this holiday weekend? Spending time with family? Enjoying the (hopefully) spring weather? I’m ready to get outside and start making plans for our garden, so hopefully brunch will give us enough energy for that!

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