The Fall Wine Pairing Guide
1. RAKING LEAVES
I know, I know. The go-to wine for raking Fall leaves has always been a Sangiovese. But I'm going out on a limb (is that a pun or a half pun?) and suggesting that the leaf raker uncork something refreshing and spicy. Put the rake down and pull out nicely chilled Gewurztraminer. Think about it. Not only do those multi colored yellow, brown, red and and green gewurztraminer grapes LOOK like fallen fall leaves, but when chilled and gulped, Gewurztraminer can quench a thirst that builds from all that raking.
2. DAVE BRUBECK'S "INDIAN SUMMER"
My new quintessential fall recording, not only for its name but for it's soulful and reflective tempo, Brubeck's "Indian Summer" recording is surely on anyone's playlist that appreciates jazz and the reflective nature that is Fall. This Fall recording calls for a contemplative wine. My suggestion is white Burgundy, preferably something 7 or 8 years into its life. The subtle mix of caramel, apple, lime, oak and herb you get with middle aged white Burgundy tends to stop you, like this Brubeck recording, and ask you to look deeper.
3. RAIDERS FOOTBALL
The idea here is understanding that it will be during the fall months that the Oakland Raiders confirm their nastiness; their terrible abilities; their disrespect for their fans by playing terribly. One needs something strong and bracing in order to remain a fan of the ugly efforts you'll see thoughout the Fall. You will need to pair the Oakland Raiders with a high alcohol wine. My suggestion is Napa Valley Cabernet. These traditionally 14.6% gems are many most certainly in the 15.4 or 15.6 range. A couple glasses and you'll be in the perfect mood to watch Jamarcus Russel confirm what everyone but Al Davis seemed to know.
4. FIRST COLD NIGHTS
The first cold nights that arrive in the Fall remind us that long, warm nights are temporary, at best. And while that little fact is seen by some as unfair and God's biggest mistake, the first cold nights remind us why courtship and romance should and often does lead to long term coupling. So, what wine goes with the act of scootching up close to your mate under a blanket? That's easy. Pinot Noir. Pinot Noir is the wine romance, love, courtship and the first cold nights of fall. And if you have to ask why then either you don't trust my recommendations or you've never drunk PInot Noir with someone you want to kiss.
5. IN STORE AND ONLINE SALES
The sales that come a 'callin during the fall and particularly between Thanksgiving and Christmas are undeniably impressive. That Peacoat you were looking at in April that went for $280 is now $99. So, what wine goes with walking the malls or surfing Overstock.com? You need something racy to match the adrenalin you feel when you see that amazing item at an amazing price. The answer is Gruner Veltliner. The nice, minerally, austere yumminess of the Austrian Gruner is the perfect companion for online shopping and pitstops between mall stores.