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Wines for Fall Festivities

October 31, 2011

What wine should you bring to Halloween, Day of the Dead or other ghostly ghastly or just plain fall festivities? In addition to Twisted Oaks “River of Skulls” Mourvedre and Ghost Pines Merlot (lovely with this super simple pumpkin soup!), here are some thoughts on some wines you might choose for Halloween dinner or for Dias de Los Muertos or other fall dinners.

Wines for Thanksgiving dinner to follow soon!

Our fall festivities have included camping at the beach and Zion National Park. Since I prefer to drink my vino in glass, I have found Reidel To Go which comes in its own cardboard tube. But for a group,  you can’t beat the plastic Govino for convenience, less worry, and WINE TASTES GOOD in GOVINO!

I’ve tasted several reds, whites and even champagnes and been very impressed. If you loan them out, however, you need to make sure people know these aren’t disposable. They’re about $13 for a box of 4.


Two Hands Gnarly Vines 2007 from the Barossa is what a glass of wine should be every time if you ask me–rich, balanced, flavorful, with lots of fruit but plenty of acid. It was all we could do to NOT drink it all before our dinner of filet mignon wrapped in bacon was ready! Whether camping in Zion NP on a beautiful fall afternoon or at home, this is a wonderful special occasion wine (unless $40 bottles are a daily occurrance in your budget!) . I am so glad that I brought this special bottle of wine for that meal because the day and the meal deserved it (I’m also glad I found it on sale for $23 instead of $46!)

Bacon wrapped filet-mignon + Two Hands Gnarly Vines Barossa Valley Shiraz + Fall Day in Zion National Park= ecstasy

The top photo shows some of the wines we brought to the beach campout in mid October. On the left, you’ll find 3 boxed wines. I’ve written before about the Carlo Rossi boxed wines and the Octavins; boxed wine is a convenient way to enjoy a glass of pinot or other wine when you don’t want a bottle because it stays good in the box for a month or more. We brought out the chardonnay  because this is a great way to have wine around to cook with–we used it in the clams that we cooked on the fire with garlic, basil, and mushrooms. Everyone who tries the Pinot Evil is surprised by how good it is–a box is about $20.

On top of the boxed wine is una calavera of tequila, a reposado from Kah. And yes, we lost our heads with that tequila we we used for a full moon toast over the fire near the close of the night. This is an excellent tequila in a wonderful handpainted vessel that retails for about $50; I got it on sale for $37.

Read here for discussions of:

The Dearly Beloved Forever Red Mendocino Red Blend

Bogle’s Phantom Ranch Zin and Petit Sirah (a spirited wine for $16!)

Henriot Champagne

Smoking Loon and other wines for Thanksgiving to follow soon!

DISCLAIMERS: I bought a box each of Govino red wine glasses and sparkling wine flutes; I later contacted Govino about supplying flutes for champagne day and they sent me samples of all three. The boxed wines were sent as samples as were the bottles of Smoking Loon and the Crusher Petit Sirah.

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