Valentine's Day Wines to Make Your Night Memorable
Wine and romance have always gone hand in hand. So this upcoming Valentine's Day, give Cupid a rest and arm yourself with a nice bottle of wine instead of a bow and arrow to seduce the heart of the person you love. But now, which wine should you get?
In the heart of a wine lover, wine also exerts a power of attraction far beyond the act of drinking the wine.
At this time of year, the vines lay like Sleeping Beauty; they are bare and naked.
In the wine cellar, there are a series of smells in the air, and you can see them. You can touch the stainless steel vats and feel a shiver. And in the barrel ageing room, the wood is soft and warm, proud of the wine it contains. This leads us to the final tasting room, where we linger to appreciate and enjoy the wines - the climax of the visit…
We must not forget the effects that wine can have on those who drink it, helping in the (re)conquest of love.
In addition to being a drink that coexists with food, it’s great for a more intimate invitation to dinner or supper at your house. The consumption of wine reduces the inhibitions of those who drink it, providing courage to speak or even perhaps propose something more serious …
Whether you’re planning a night out to a restaurant or a dinner for two at home, I suggest you choose a wine that is like the love you feel, maybe warm, red, round, soft, sweet, just like the heart.
At the top of the list are Port wines, especially the Vintage ones, also red wines, full-bodied and meaty. You can pair them with the classic Valentine's Day gift…yes, that one! A box of dark chocolates.
If the relationship is more recent, something explosive, sassy and vibrant, then without a doubt, sparkling wine. And since the color of love is red (or is it pink?!), why not choose a rosé sparkling wine? Paired with smoked salmon and cream cheese and you’ve got yourself a winning combination.
For mature relationships, search your cell phone gallery for that image of the wine you both drank on that very special occasion … remember? Well, I can’t help you there, but I’m confident you’ll know where to find it.
Which wines to choose?
Carefully planning your Valentine's Day meal without forgetting the wine is guaranteed to create lasting memories of this day in the person you love.
If you’re just starting to fall in love with wines, then you may feel some insecurity in choosing a bottle, so I’ve pulled together a list of Cupid-approved combinations to help you.
Whites and sparkling wines, with poultry, fish or cheeses;
Roses, with Asian and Mexican cuisine;
Reds, with meats or heavy dishes;
Sweet wines (Port, Moscatel de Setúbal, etc.) and Semi-dry sparkling wines with dessert.
While these recommendations are valid, they’re not rigid or mandatory rules in many cases. In fact, if you always follow these recommendations, you could be missing the opportunity to find new and passionate harmonies. Some of the most memorable pairings are unexpected, such as French fries with sweet Late Harvest wine.
It's also important to keep your partner's taste in mind when choosing a wine for dinner. Even if a Touriga Nacional red wine is a perfect match for the matured Black Angus steak you planned to cook, it certainly wouldn’t be a good choice if your partner doesn’t like red wine or Touriga Nacional wines.
The good news is that Portuguese wines are easy to pair with to food and so very food friendly in general.
You’ll easily find an alternative, like a single harvest Brut sparkling rosé or another single varietal wine like the Touriga Franca or Alicante Bouschet. All equally interesting to pair with a dish of matured beef.
Remember that sparkling wines are the only kind of wine that goes well with all foods!
Out for dinner
If the Valentines Day meal for your loved one takes place in a restaurant and you want to impress, I highly recommend some planning.
There’ll probably be a pre-set menu alluding to Valentine's Day. Call the restaurant in advance to make sure you can bring a bottle of wine. Remember to inquire about a corkage fee.
This fee is a fixed price paid for each bottle you take to a restaurant. After all, the wine will be served as if it were wine from the Wine List.
You should also pay attention to transporting the bottle to the restaurant, especially if it’s an old wine. The sediment at the bottom of the bottle will easily mix in the wine if turned or rolled around.
If you plan to bring a bottle of white, rosé, or even sparkling, then don’t forget to chill the wine before in advance. When transporting the chilled wine, also use a sleeve or thermal bag. Otherwise, you may have to wait twenty minutes for your wine to chill before enjoying the wine.
Even if your better half isn't as passionate or knowledgeable about wine as you are, they'll deeply appreciate the dedication you put into planning the dinner.
No matter where your meal will take place, the wine will have to be celebratory.
And if you find yourself apart from your loved one(s) on Valentine's Day, please follow my suggestion and buy two bottles of wine. One for yourself and another delivered to your partner's address.
Then combine it him or her a virtual meeting and share the exact wine between exchanges of vows of love and a reunion soon.
Another suggestion of mine is for you to select a wine that you both don't drink regularly. A wine that when you do drink it, not even a single drop will be left behind to witness your fabulous Valentine's Day night.
Now, tell me, which wine are you going to get for Valentines Day?