Funky Food and Wine Pairings: Another Year of Thinking Beyond Cheese
Remember when the pandemic first started and things came to a halt? Well, it was during these slow, confusing times that GM Dave challenged some of our TWC team members to come up with new experiences for our customers who would be more than ready to enjoy wine and have some fun when everything opened up again. My brain got to work, and I presented him with 12 months of food and wine pairings: cupcakes and wine, donuts and wine, popcorn and wine, farmers market fruits and wine. These were some of my ideas that he gently turned down.
But several (six, to be exact) got the nod. So, the first year of our “beyond cheese pairings” began on Halloween with a Halloween candy and wine pairing event. I paired five traditional Halloween candies with five of our best wines, making sure to feature all of our winemakers and offer a variety of different wines. For extra fun, I dressed as a Hershey’s Kiss and shared Halloween and candy trivia. We held a costume contest, and the winner received a bottle of wine. Things were off to a good start…though I did discover that there’s really no good wine pairing for a York Peppermint Patty.
Next up was our holiday cookie and wine pairing. This one was great fun for me because I partnered with a baker friend who created miniature versions of some holiday favorites, including sugar cookies, gingerbread cookies, and peppermint cookies. FYI: Lost Oak’s Holiday with gingerbread cookies is always a winner.
In early 2021, we got ready for some football by pairing Super Bowl snacks and wine. This one was a challenge for Chef Amber who created five savory bites, including a jalapeño popper pinwheel and a mini-sub. It was during this pairing that participants discovered the joys of rosé and Chex Mix. Trust me on this.
Early spring brings Girls Scouts to our doors (and inboxes) selling their famous cookies, so this was the perfect time to share a Girl Scout cookie and wine pairing. And this pairing segued nicely into an Oreo and wine pairing in early summer. Who knew there are so many different flavors of Oreos…with new flavors released every year?? In case you’re wondering (and you should be), the Birthday Cake Oreo pairs quite well with McPherson Cellars’ Sherry.
Finally, we ended this 12-month food and wine adventure and celebrated the start of school with a Little Debbie snacks and wine pairing. My teammates thought I was crazy to try this one, but honestly, it might have been my favorite.
So now we begin a new year of fun and unique food and wine pairings. While we’re keeping some of last year’s crowd pleasers, we’ve got some new ideas brewing. First up is our second Halloween candy and wine pairing on October 30, 2021, featuring some of our newest wines along with an updated selection of candies. A few seats still remain at 11:00am and 1:00pm. Want to join the fun? Visit our Events Calendar here, and get your Halloween costume ready! Mine is good to go