Along with colder temperatures and changing leaves, fall brings a new set of decadent flavours to our plates. Chefs around the region are trading in light dishes for rich, bold plates sure to warm your belly on even the coldest days.
Fresh in-season produce like pumpkin and squash are paired with hearty meats and robust seasoning to create a truly indulgent experience that screams fall comfort. Of course, meals like these should always be paired with an accompanying wine. Luckily, full-bodied whites and light— to medium—bodied reds are the perfect complement to cooler weather and fall harvest fare. Take our advice and indulge your inner sommelier with these delectable pairing suggestions from local restaurants:
Nothing quite says comfort food like a hearty pasta steeped in tradition. Casa Carbone’s autumn menu features a new signature pasta “Bigoli al Torchio in Sugo D’anatra ed Arancia” (pasta in duck and orange sauce). This traditional dish is handmade with duck eggs and pressed through a bronze pasta press. Pair with Ellena Giuseppe Langhe Nebbiolo Doc, which has hints of mint and red cherries to compliment the duck.
233 Earl Stewart Drive, Aurora | casacarbone.ca
Lil’ Brew Hops
Bathed in a spicy nduja tomato broth, Lil’ Brew Hops’ mussels have been a long-standing favourite on the menu. But when paired with a glass of the Chilean Carmenère from Vina Echeverria, the dish is taken to new heights. The medium bodied wine, with notes of raspberry, cherry and black pepper, highlights the spice of the mussels and offers a long pleasant finish.
209 Main Street , Newmarket | lilbrewhops.com
Grown and produced on the grounds of a monastery in Puglia since 1922, indigenous grapes Aglianico & nero di Troia are blended. The result is a full and fragrant wine dominated by the aroma of stewed berries. Pair with our Pollo Cacciatore; a hearty slow roasted dish, composed of chicken, potatoes, heirloom carrots, infornate olives, and jus. The great structure and acidity of this wine creates harmony and balance.
14845 Yonge Street, Aurora 12981 Keele Street, King City | localerestaurants.ca
If ever there were a pairing that could transport you to a cozy living room with a roaring fire, it’s Cachet’s fall off the bone tender spareribs, paired with a glass of Leaping Horse Merlot. Full of juicy plum flavour and toasted oak aroma, this wine will hold its weight with the rich, saucy meat.
500 Water Street, Newmarket | cachetrestaurant.com
A favourite from past tasting events, Spero’s kitchen prepares a delicate snow crab with a Champagne cream, spinach, onion and crispy bacon. The dish pairs beautifully with a Lanson Black Label Brut Champagne from Loire, France to really bring out the flavour of the creamy sauce.
16655 Yonge St, Newmarket | speroristorante.com
If you’re more inclined to spend a cozy night in, why not stock up on a few of your favourite wines plus a few more you’ve been thinking of trying. Learning what wine you like best with different foods is a fun exercise for home.
An easy wine to pair at home is the light but savory Cabernet Franc. The lighter Californian version will pair perfectly with chicken dishes and white fish, where the heavier France-produced Cab Franc will complement rich meats such as steaks and lamb. White drinkers should pick up a bottle of young, unoaked Chardonnay to pair with a warm, creamy fall vegetable soup or a risotto with harvest vegetables. Not only will you get to put your culinary skills to the test, you may just fall in love with a new wine in time for the season of entertaining.