Impress with local wines this holiday season

It's easier than ever to sip local this holiday season.

Wine tasting 101 with Kyle Schlachter None

KUSA - Whether you're ready or not, here come the holidays.

9NEWS teamed up with two local wine enthusiasts/experts to bring you tips and recommendations to impress your guests with vino this season. We caught up with Kyle Schlachter, outreach coordinator for the Colorado Wine industry Development Board, and owner of Infinite Monkey Theorum, Ben Parsons. 

This Thanksgiving or Christmas, it's easier than you think to bring some local Colorado wine to the table. We're here to show you how. 

WINE + FOOD: What pairs with what?


TURKEY -- Syrah and Rosé

Anyone hosting a Thanksgiving dinner knows the turkey is the entree we've waited all year for. Once you've got that down, it's time to find the beverage that will complement your bird best.

Kyle's pick: Syrah from Bookcliff Vineyards in Boulder

"I think a Syrah is a great wine to go with turkey because it's kind of got a roasted character and some good fruit notes that match the roastedness of the turkey." 

Ben's pick: Infinite Monkey Theorem Rosé

"I think the important thing to remember about Thanksgiving dinner is that it can be really quite heavy. So sometimes you need something bright and fresh and crisp that has good acid to cut through it. This roséis full of cherries and strawberries and amazing aromas and has enough acid to kind of cut through that dark meat in the turkey, but could also pair well with the cranberries or the stuffing."

9NEWS @ 9. 11/24/2016 None

POTATOES -- Traminette

Mashed potatoes, baked potatoes, roasted potatoes -- There's a good chance you'll have some of Idaho's finest on your table. 

Kyle and Ben's pick: Fox Fire Traminette

Kyle: "A traminette is kind of like Riesling. It's related to gewürztraminer, so you're going to get a little bit of spice with some peach and pear flavors that would go through the whole meal."

Ben: "When we're making mashed potatoes, we like to overload it with butter and cream and everything decadent and really rich flavors. So you need something that has balance and acidity to cut through it."

PUMPKIN PIE -- Spiced mead 

Kyle and Ben's pick: Rocky Mountain Vineyard Spiced Nektar Mead

All pies are great, but pumpkin pie (along with pumpkin spiced EVERYTHING) really has its time to shine during the fall and early winter. 

Kyle: "They use some spices that will kind of remind you of a pumpkin pie. I think this will be an interesting pairing for people who don't want a heavy port or a real sweet white. This would lend itself to pumpkin pie. Or people who aren't interested in wine generally."

Guest etiquette: Best wine to bring the host 

If you somehow got out of planning and hosting the holiday get together this year, you're not completely off the hook. It's customary to bring along a bottle of the best. We know those choices are endless, so here are two suggestions.  

Kyle's pick: Whitewater Hill Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon 

If you can't snag this exact wine, Kyle says pay attention to the word "reserve" on the wine label. But before you buy, do your research.

"Most of the time when you see reserve on a wine label, it really doesn't mean anything. But this time is the first time [Whitewater Hill has] done a reserve cabernet. If you see reserve on the wine label, it makes something a little bit better that the winemaker held back. That would be something to impress people at a party with."

Ben's pick: Infinite Monkey Theorum Bubble Universe sparkling wine

"It's bone dry and it's got these delicious, beautiful bubbles. Get the party started; crack open a bottle and enjoy yourself."

Pleasing the whiniest wine drinker

Maybe you're shopping for or hosting someone who isn't that into wine. Cider is great way to satisfy everyone. Also, it's gluten-free!

Kyle's pick: Colorado Cider Company Radl'ah Session Cider

"Cider is actually wine. It's just wine made from apples or pears. The Radl'ah is apple cider with lemon grass and lemon balm. So it kind of bridges the gap between beer and wine."

Ben's pick: Infinite Monkey Theorem Dry Hopped Pear Cider

"It's kind of a cross over product between a beer and a wine. This is really sessionable. It's bone dry. There's no residual sugar in this cider so it will really pair well with pretty much everything on the table."

We want your feedback. What's your go-to wine for the holidays? 



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