Although it is still 90 degrees outside, the marking of September 1st means it is officially Fall in the De Fatta household. Give me all the pumpkin spice coffee, cinnamon candles, pinecone inspired decor, and of course, a wine rack filled with ‘get in the festive mood’ favorites. Grab some butterscotch popcorn and a maple apple martini friends, and don’t forget to save this post next time you are at your local wine boutique.
Just like clock work, the first day of a new month has my taste buds craving something fresh and festive for the season ahead. When it comes to Autumnal wine, I like something light, sweet, and unique. Summer is always filled with tangy Sauvignon Blanc, thirst-quenching Rosé, and simple Pinot Noir. The coming of Fall needs to spice things up with complexity, but we are not ready for the tannic and bold reds of winter quite yet. Here are some of my ‘end of summer weather appropriate, yet spicy enough to pair with your pumpkin candle’ favorites.
- Chenin Blanc. The ripe acidity and subtle sweetness of a good Chenin Blanc has me racing to light a fire, put on an acoustic record, and bake pumpkin oatmeal cookies. Although this is a white wine that you drink super chilled, it gives me very much cozy vibes on a sunny Fall day. With tasting notes ranging from pear to nutmeg, you can understand why this is an underrated favorite amongst casual drinkers and Sommelier’s alike. The main reason Chenin Blanc is making it on my 2021 Fall favorites this year is its unreal ability to pair with Thanksgiving dinner. Why is there always basic red table wine served on turkey day when this genius combination of sweet and sour exists? Chenin Blanc is actually the ultimate mate with all the flavors of your traditional American Thanksgiving dinner. Prove me wrong.. if you dare.
- Syrah. The cozy wine you all have been waiting for. Syrah offers tasting notes like blueberry and black pepper, which will absolutely put you in merry mood. Syrah is extremely fruit forward rounding off with a savory finish which makes it the perfect culinary pairing with your typical Fall feasts. Hello charcuterie, how you doin’ BBQ, nice to see you again leg of lamb. When picking Syrah, I recommend going no younger than 3 years.. preferably 5 years of age on this extraordinary wine.
- Cabernet Franc. With the primary tasting note being cherry, this wine just makes me want pie. All the pie. And if any season is made for indulging in every sweet in existence, it is now. Guilt free, complex, and a perfectly balanced. Cabernet Franc is also a beautiful Thanksgiving wine – pairing well with poultry and lean meats. Refreshingly easy to drink, I recommend a glass or 3 after exploring your local pumpkin patch. Keep in mind that Cabernet Franc gets better with age so this makes for a great cellar wine. Anywhere from a 5-15 year vintage is going to be incredibly impressive.
- Beaujolais. Cranberry, tart cherry, mushroom, smoke, violet, and hints of bubblegum.. These notes describe Autumn in my eyes. Beaujolais is a high acid, low tannin wine, and is preferred served slightly chilled. Hailing from a French terroir, Beaujolais is a culinary dream and has several food pairings ranging from cheese to steak to vegetables. Don’t be afraid of the intimidating name.. Beaujolais is considered a low maintenance and easy drinkable wine.
- Chardonnay. I always save my Chardonnay recommendations for this time of year. With it’s oaky, vanilla flavor profile, and being a white wine, Chardonnay is perfection for September when the weather is still hot but you are craving the cozy vibes. Most Chardonnay tends to be too sweet for my palate, so I steer clear of the warm climates like California and stick to my cooler climates like France. If sweet is your thing, you have A LOT of stellar options coming from Napa Valley – which many say is the home of the greatest Cabernet Sauvignon and Chardonnay (arguably) in the world. Chardonnay is a beautiful pairing with seafood, grilled cheese sandwiches, and Fall snacks foods like popcorn and potato chips.
I hope you enjoyed my go-to wine varietals of Fall 2021. Comment below which wine you are enjoying this season! And as always, make sure you follow me on Instagram and Facebook to keep up with my daily posts, and tag me #pourstyles so I can see what you are drinking.