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Wine column: Ooh la la bottles for Valentine's Day

Wine is sexy.

It's a social lubricant, a loosener of inhibitions, an aphrodisiac.

It's the go-to drink for a hot date, romantic dinner or cozy evening in.

Thus, wine is a must for whatever you're doing this Valentine's Day.

My wife, Kerry, pre-approved with me the six wines that follow as sweetheart-worthy.

</who>Pull out any one of these big guns for a romantic date, dinner or evening. From left, See Ya Later Ranch 2022 Pinot Gris ($20), Mission Hill Reserve 2022 Rose ($26), Blue Mountain Brut Rose 2019 ($40), Evolve Effervescence ($23), Chronos Syrah 2020 ($40) and McWatters Collection 2020 Chardonnay ($35).

Perhaps, the ideal wine for this day of love is sparkling rose.

Sparkling wine is automatically celebratory with its reputation for glamour, the gleam of the condensation on the chilled bottle and the festive pop of the cork.

Add to that the blush pink colour of a rose and the excitement is amped up for the foamy bubbles in the glass and the exotic taste of strawberries and cream.

Such a bubbly is the Blue Mountain 2019 Brut Rose ($40) from Okanagan Falls.

Drink it on its own as you stare into the eyes of your significant other or pair it with an array of sensual foods from chocolate-covered strawberries, oysters or lobster tail with melted butter.

Chardonnay, such as the elegant McWatters Collection 2020 ($35) from Penticton, is also a good match for lobster or any other seafood with its profile of crisp lemon turning to apple pie and caramel.

Back to pink, the Mission Hill 2022 Reserve Rose ($26) from West Kelowna with its alluring strawberry-and-rhubarb profile, is the perfect date night wine, whether your date is a new beau or long-time spouse.

If you're keeping it casual, go with a wine made of BC's most-planted white grape -- Pinot Gris.

A bottle such as See Ya Later Ranch 2022 Pinot Gris ($20) from Okanagan Falls has easy-drinking aromas and flavours of crunchy pear and zesty lemon.

It's a versatile wine that's the perfect prelude to a kiss on the couch or what you drink with delivered pizza.

Evolve Effervescence from Penticton is also casual with a $23 price point and loads of flirty bubbles.

Drink it as you do that aforementioned flirting or over dinner of chicken in cream sauce.

Red, the colour of the heart, is also the colour of the wine if the mood is dark, bold and sultry.

Uncork a bottle of Chronos 2020 Syrah ($40) for its cherry, violet and spice profile and a Valentine's dinner of medium-rare steak.

</who>Rara Avis, a fortified fruit wine, is like Port, which will go beautifully with anything chocolate you make be serving for Valentine's.

Fortified wine and chocolate

Or, for something different with your Valentine, try Rara Avis ($45) with chocolate.

Rara Avis looks, pours and drinks like a velvety and slightly sweet Port, so it will pair beautifully with anything chocolatey you may be having on Valentine's Day.

Rara Avis is actually the first-ever fortified wine in BC to be made with haskap berries.

Rara Avis is crafted at Kalala Organic Winery in West Kelowna by its winemaker, Tibor Erdelyi, for Echo Haskap.

It's available at the Kalala shop or online at www.kalala.ca and www.echohaskap.ca.

Happy Valentine's Day to you and your special someone.

Steve MacNaull is a NowMedia Group reporter, Okanagan wine lover and Canadian Wine Scholar. Reach him at smacnaull@nowmediagroup.ca. His wine column appears every Friday afternoon in this space.



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