Wine and the holidays go hand in hand. When hosting, a great pairing can make a meal so much better. Wine makes the dish taste better, and great food makes wine taste amazing. This can be a daunting task if you think about it too hard; don’t be intimidated.
A good rule of thumb: What grows together goes together. Pick a wine that matches your cuisine. Pasta deserves an Italian red or white. Manchego cheese deserves a nice Rioja, and so on. Have red and white wine on hand, and keep everyone happy. (Have a backup bottle in case guests prefer one over the other.)
There are really fun grape varietals out there from around the globe that often get overlooked. Just a few minutes of research can land you an interesting verdejo instead of sauvignon blanc or a nice dolcetto in lieu of that same old pinot noir. Last, but not least, rosé goes with everything, so try to keep a bottle or two at home, and you’ll always be prepared.
Kevin Castellano is a lake area wine and liquor expert. wayzatawineandspirits.com