It’s February, the month of love. Everything is red and pink with hearts everywhere you look, and in keeping with this notion, the French Winophiles’ are writing on the topic “Romance is in the Air.” We are hosted this month by Wendy Klik of A Day in the Life on the Farm.
Ask any Italian or Irish grandmother and she will tell you food is love. There are many ways in this world to show and feel love. But what about romance? Romance is a little more defined isn’t it? We are not looking for romance from out Grandmothers, and sometimes food isn’t part of the romance plan – no one feels romantic after Thanksgiving dinner do they? While we may be able to define WHO we want romance from, what makes us feel romantic is an elusive and moving target.
A beautiful table surrounded by friends and family, holding delicious food, and beautiful wine, that is love. For romance, there has to be candles or flowers on the table, the food has to be light but exquisite – egg whites won’t do it.
This topic really got me thinking and I ended up relying on my archives for this post, looking back over the past year to find the bottles and the bites that conjured up romance. I’m also including ones that made me feel joyful and happy, and I’m including those too.
Dom Perignon|2010|12.5% ABV|$159.00 (Costco)
Perhaps nothing says romance more than Champagne and when my 30th wedding anniversary rolled around last June, I splurged on an iconic bottle that I had yet to try. Dom Perignon and chocolate covered strawberries dipped by your’s truly was pretty darn romantic. Even if it was so hot that my poor strawberries began sweating immediately. Hot is romantic too right?
I did not take notes for this wine because I was enjoying the miracle of 30 years of wedded bliss. It was however a beautiful Champagne. It had all of the toasty brioche notes that I love in a Champagne. It had fruit, minerality, and a beautiful mouth feel. Sometimes you just have to splurge on the history and the name and see what it’s all about.
I did however do a little research prior to opening the bottle and this bottle is special in that most Champagne houses did not declare 2010 a vintage year. A ton of rain over a two day period resulted in botrytis setting in on the vineyards before the grapes were mature. A combination of intense attention to each cluster in the vineyard and a miracle from Mother Nature, the grapes that were able to be picked actually had one of the highest brix levels of any harvest, resulting in a beautiful wine.
I know many have dismissed Dom Perignon as a mass producer, owned by the mega luxury brand LVMH, they now embrace gimmicky marketing campaigns. It seems the oldest Champagne houses all embrace this modern philosophy. C’est la vie.
Dom Perignon was a Benedictine Monk who for many years was credited with the invention of Champagne but it is not true. It is safe to say that Dom Perignon was an integral part of the process of creating modern day Champagne, enough so that his name is forever immortalized in this iconic Champagne label.
Fun fact, there was another group of Benedictine Monks that are credited with first sparkling wine in France, more than 100 years before Champagne, the monks at Abbey Saint-Hilaire in Limoux. This Blanquette de Limoux will set you back a mere $14 and is an excellent option for any day of the week. To me, nothing says romance like a good bargain!
A Few Other Options
Just in case you want to take it down a notch and are looking more for love than romance, these are few wines that always put a smile on my face.
Join us on Saturday morning, February 19th at 11:00 a.m. EST on Twitter by following the #winophiles. Also, check out the rest of the Winophiles thoughts on Romance and wine:>
- Susannah of Avvinare is “Falling In Love All Over Again, With Champagne”.
- Robin of Crushed Grape Chronicles shares “Finding the right wine for Romance…we chose a trip to the Loire”.
- Camilla of Culinary Adventures with Camilla is “Keeping It Spicy: Blackened Salmon + Domaine Lafage Cuvee Nicolas 2018”.
- Wendy of A Day in the Life on the Farm says “Love is in the Air and We are Spicing Things Up with a Cahors Wine paired with an American Steak”.
- Cathie of Side Hustle Wino tells us “Love is on the Table”.
- Terri of Our Good Life sings “Wild Thing, I Think I Love Le Pont Bandol and Wild Caught Orange Roughy”
- Nicole of Somm’s Table shares “A Girls’ Weekend, Grilled Branzino, and a Mag of Palmer & Co. Champagne “
- Gwendolyn of Wine Predator dishes up a twofer with “It’s Loveuary! Romance from France: Fun Fondue, Coq a Vin” and “Clink sustainably: Create climate conscious conversations with Bordeaux Wines and Stemple Creek Ranch Beef “