Darren’s Fall Picks

Perez Cruz Carmenere


Carmenere is a Chilean darling. The nose is full of red fruit and hinting at a little characteristic green pepper. Medium-bodied with flavours of cherry and raspberries and light aromas of green pepper combined with a flinty/smoky element. The marked acidity makes me dream of food with this palate pleaser. The light vegetal notes would mix well with vegetarian dishes, such as a hearty Moroccan Eggplant Tagine or a Ratatouille Gratin. Smoked meats and charcuterie would also be perfect pairings!


La Mascota Cabernet Franc


Harvest time is in the air. Fall for me is when my drinking preferences move to full-bodied wines, reds mostly, often with a mineral edge and complicated aromas. I like wines with restraint and finesse to pair them with the bounty of fresh ingredients we experience this time of year on the Island. This beautifully aromatic wine hails from the Maipu Valley in Mendoza. On the nose you are romanced with aromas of blackcurrant, cassis and a subtle floral element. The palate explodes with red fruit flavours with minerality, while your mouth is wrapped in a pleasing tannic embrace. This medium-bodied charmer would be amazing with grilled lamb with a minty herby drizzle of EVOO, charred/roasted veggies, eggplant parmigiana, or a mix of mature cheeses.


Graham’s 30 Year Tawny Port


As the cool weather sets in, I always feel the need to retreat to warmer climates. My palate is no exception, bring on the desserts (or at least the baking spices)! I love my tawny port as a digestif on its own or an accompaniment to a variety of desserts. Tawny’s offer complexity, balance and history of place, all in a tiny glass of beautiful sweet luxury. Graham’s 30 Year Tawny Port doesn’t disappoint. Intense aromas of figs and other dried fruit, notes of bread pudding and burnt caramel hint at the excitement that is awaiting me in the glass. The palate is resplendent with brandy notes, dark chocolate and honey covered charred almonds. This port has a smooth mouthfeel that bursts with baking spice and chocolate covered dried fruit. Pair with dark chocolate, chocolate covered fruit, spice cake, black forest cake. Serve slightly chilled.


Bud Light Seltzer Lemonade Black Cherry


Bud Light Seltzer Lemonade Black Cherry has a bubbly maraschino cherry flavour that tantalizes the taste buds. The black cherry and lemon flavours make for a satisfying sparkling beverage. Made with vodka as the base spirit, this is perfect for anyone looking for a gluten-free, low sugar and low calorie option.