Experience Gifts

On my recent trip to Napa with my girlfriends, they gave me a great idea, experience gifts! After one our amazing visit to Chappellet, my girlfriends, Colleen and Liz gifted their in-laws/parents a wine tasting “experience”. They bought a few different bottles, which most could only be bought at the winery, and surprised them Christmas morning with not only the wines, but telling them that the big part of the gift was that they would be hosting a wine pairing night for them! This means they will be making different dishes that pair with the wines they gifted! I loved the idea so much that we ended up doing the same thing for Joel’s parents. They cashed in on their gift this weekend, check it out below!

The wines we gifted were the following:

  • Domaine Gassier Viognier – I tried a Viognier at Freemark Abbey in Napa and fell in love. For this wine, it paired well with buttery cheeses. I used a Saint Andre (always a go to for me), a truffle cheese on sale at whole foods, and Mimolette, not buttery, but provided a different texture and some dimension to the board! I used some spicy crackers for the cheeses and Proscuitto di Parma.
  • Chappellet Mountain Cuvee– As Chappellet themselves said, this wine doesn’t need food to taste amazing! But we paired this delicious red blend with short ribs I made in the slow cooker and a mushroom orzo side dish.
  • Orin Swift Mute– If you can get your hands on one of these, do it, you will not be disappointed. Dessert wines were definitely a trend when we were in Napa and this was my favorite. We paired this with a chocolate souffle which the sweetness of the souffle paired PERFECTLY with the Mute. So good, we finished the whole bottle!

Overall, everyone had such a nice time trying new wines, enjoying delicious food and spending quality time together! These last few weeks and the next few weeks coming up have been overwhelmingly busy, so to be able to take a break for a few hours to enjoy some of our favorite things was a real treat!

If you’d like to do something similar here are a few tips and recommendations:

  • Plan what you’d like to cook first, then plan your wine! Unless you have a particular wine in mind. In my case, the only wine I had picked out before hand was the Mute since I had brought it back from California.
  • Visit a local wine shop for good suggestions, as opposed to a big chain store. If you’re local in Miami, I highly suggest Sunset Corners. Anyone there can give you amazing recommendations and they usually have some things you may not find at a bigger store.
  • Do your research on the wines your serving. You may be surprised about what you learn!

A quick change of topic…I want to thank everyone who has joined this blogging journey with me and all the support you’ve shown in the last 15 weeks or so! The beginning of January will be a little quiet for LiveLoveFinds as I will be getting married January 11th and shortly after we will be going on our honeymoon! Expect lots of amazon finds and travel suggestions following that!

Can’t wait to catch up with you all in the new decade! Happy New Year!

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