The beautiful game has descended on six cities across Canada, including here in Winnipeg, as the 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup is now underway. No matter who you’re cheering for (and it better be Canada!), you can still drink great wine while watching some footie. Here are three wines for summer soccer sipping...
The roots of the Konzelmann Estate Winery go back to making wine in Germany, a Group B World Cup favourite who have already trounced Côte D’Ivoire 10-0 in their first match. This sparkling wine made from Riesling brings fresh red apple and citrus notes on the nose and the palate, with a hint of sweetness and a splash of acidity keeping things fun and festive.
As the Women’s World Cup teams pursue football glory, SpierHead’s Okanagan-meets-Bordeaux blend of Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, and Cabernet Franc pursues (and delivers) great balance. Dark berry, plum, and cassis notes are ripe and plush, with dark chocolate and espresso notes complemented by lighter vanilla, spice, and black tea notes from 18 months of oak aging. The tannins are just right for drinking this full-bodied red now – perhaps with some grilled meat.
Success, whether on the soccer pitch or in the vineyard, requires hard work, attention to detail, and a lot of elbow grease – you know, the “giving it 110 per cent” shtick. This small-lot Pinot from the Lincoln Lakeshore appellation in Niagara takes plenty of hard work to make (as is hinted at in the name), but the results pay off. Classic Pinot complexity comes through in spades on the light-bodied palate: raspberry, mushroom, wet earth, dried cherry, tobacco, and leather notes are unmistakably Pinot.
Ben MacPhee-Sigurdson is the wine columnist and literary editor for the Winnipeg Free Press. He’s on Twitter and Instagram at @bensigurdson.