Debbie’s Valentine’s Day Picks
Rossignol Raspberry Festival
Rossignol Raspberry Festival is produced using 100% local red and black raspberries that are harvested at Wheatley’s Raspberry Farm in Suffolk, PEI. Raspberries are one of nature’s intriguing sweet and tart fruits. The mouth watering tartness contrasts beautifully with the natural sugars and provides an excellent beginning for Rossignol Raspberry Festival. This award winning wine is richly textured with layers of raspberry jam and tangy acidity.
Rossignol Raspberry Festival is a wonderful alternative to dessert but pairs beautifully with many chocolate and fruit based desserts. Create a romantic ending to your Valentines celebration with a chocolate fondue featuring an assortment of fresh and dried fruit, cookies, and sweet breads.
Try mixing up a Cupid’s Kiss cocktail for your Valentine:
- ½ oz Raspberry Festival
- 4 oz Alberti Cremant de Bourgogne (or a sparkling wine or your choice)
- Raspberries to Garnish
- Pour Raspberry Festival into Champagne glass
- Top with Sparkling Wine and garnish with raspberries.
Makes 1 drink.
Anisette is a clear fennel or licorice flavored spirit well known in many European countries. The Matos Anisette is a unique and visually stunning product produced in St Catherine’s, PEI. The fennel is hand harvested in the fall and once dried is cut and inserted into bottles. A neutral spirit is added and the bottles are sealed for 2-4 weeks. The sugar crystals are formed naturally and like snowflakes no two bottles are alike. Interestingly, the sugar crystals remain after the anisette is consumed. A great idea to re-use the bottle and sugar crystals is to purchase Matos Bagaco (similar to Grappa) and add to the bottle. Seal and set aside for 2-4 weeks. The Bagaco will smooth out and pick up some of the anisette flavorings.
The Matos Anisette is best served at cellar temp or just slightly chilled. For a tasty Valentine’s dessert serve pound cake with ice cream, raspberries and mint. Drizzle with Anisette. Serve with a Love Potion Cocktail:
- 10 Strawberries
- 4 Basil Leaves
- Juice of 2 Limes
- Juice of 1 orange
- 2oz Gin
- 1oz Matos Anisette
- ½ oz Simple Syrup
- In cocktail shaker muddle Raspberries and Basil
- Add ice and remaining ingredients
- Shake until blended and strain into Martini glass
- Garnish with Strawberries.
Makes 1 drink.
Gahan Sydney Street Stout
The Sydney Street Stout has a smooth creamy mouth feel and almost smoky, bittersweet flavor from the variety of roasted malts used in the production. Cocoa, dark chocolate and roasted coffee show on the palate. There is subtle sweetness from crystal malts and a hint of aroma hops with a smooth full finish. It’s a smooth easy drinking stout that is medium bodied with light to medium carbonization.
The secret love affair between beer and chocolate has been gaining in popularity over the last few years. Stouts that feature aromas and flavors of chocolate, coffee and caramel tones mirror many of the same components that are found in chocolate. With food and beverage pairing it’s important to create complimentary flavor bridges between two elements.
The Sydney Street Stout with its notes of chocolate and coffee will pair well with chocolate dipped strawberries, chocolate torte or Hazelnut Espresso cheesecake. The carbonization from the stout cleanses the palate so each bite can be better enjoyed. The smoky richness of the beer will also pair with full flavored dishes including BBQ Ribs and Grilled meat.