You are out for dinner with a group, it is time to order wine, and then you hear the dreaded, “You love wine! Pick a bottle for us!” All of a sudden, the wine list is in your hand, and everyone is staring at you. What a responsibility!
This recently happened to one of our Winecouverites while she was out for dinner with a group at Vij’s. How was she going to choose a bottle that would satisfy all palates, pair well across the board of menu items, and also stay within budget? Just as she was about to have a panic attack, she remembered a tip from an excellent source (and fellow Winecouverite!) who lives in Napa and works in the wine industry: when in doubt, choose a Chateuneuf-du-Pape. These versatile red blends from Southern Rhone are known for their versatility with food pairings, general likeability, and fair pricing, making them a great table wine. Looking like a pro, she closed the menu and confidently ordered the Chateauneuf-du-Pape from Domaine de Cristia 2011. The verdict? Winer Winner! Everyone loved it. She survived the immense pressure of having been thrown this daunting duty and was now able to relax and enjoy a delicious glass of wine with her lamb popsicles, knowing that everyone else was too.
We had some troubles finding the 2011 from Domaine de Cristia in Vancouver retail stores to re-buy/re-taste (let us know if you find one!), however, the BCLDB carries a huge variety of Chateauneufs from the $30 range to the more baller $400 range (invite us to dinner!), and most come with excellent reviews/scores of over 90. With the Vancouver weather getting colder and crisper, we are all going to need a great go-to red for our upcoming holiday dinner parties, and these versatile red blends from Southern Rhone are a safe bet to please your guests and pair with a range of different foods and flavours.