Around the World With Wine and Brad Pitt
Brad Pitt, who co-owns Miraval vineyard with Angelina Jolie, has announced the brand's latest release, a Rosé Champagne. Photo: Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagic/Getty Images
Around the world with wine. Yes, each sip can transport you to a place where the vineyards are, including right here at home in B.C. and Ontario. Take a trip (or sip) to New Zealand, Spain, California, Canada and beyond.
But let’s start in France, where Brad Pitt has announced the October release of his latest, a Rosé Champagne. Miraval vineyard, co-owned with his ex, Angelina Jolie, has been producing grapes grown with a focus on the art of rosé since 2012. Now, Pitt’s thinking pink a step further, adding bubbles to the mix, with the release of Fleur de Miraval.
It’s a bit of a departure for Pitt and company, as this wine is made in partnership with a winemaker in the Champagne region, which is north of Paris. Chateau Miraval, where the rest of the rosé wines are produced, is in the south, in Provence. But who doesn’t love pink bubbles, whether from the north or the south? Pitt’s banking on it, as at about $500 a (cork) pop, it’s almost the price of a one-way plane ticket to Paris.
Not ready to travel afar just yet? Let us take you around the world with some of these global and local wines, available in Canada.
From North America’s first Indigenous-owned and operated winery, the Nk’Mip Merlot 2018 is a blend of several different blocks of Merlot all located on Osoyoos Indian Band vineyards in south Okanagan. Winemaker’s note: This wine pairs beautifully with pork or veal roasts, stuffed peppers and bean dishes.
The Sandbanks Baco Noir Reserve was awarded the double gold medal at the All Canadian Wine Championships 2018. This red has aromas of dried mixed berries, mint, herb, spice with notes of creamy oak and tomato leaf. Winemaker’s note: Serve it with a hearty roast beef.
Kim Crawford Sauvignon Blanc from New Zealand is refreshing and the No. 1 selling wine in Canada. And the producers pour it into a golden bottle, just in time for the holidays. Winemaker’s note: It pairs well with steamed clams or mussels and grilled chicken.
Look for a white from the Rueda wine region in Spain, like the newly released Honoro Vera (look at the gorgeous label!). Known for producing the Verdejo grape, a 1,000-year-old indigenous grape for this region, Rueda is located northwest of Madrid, near the River Duero. Winemaker’s note: Think Pinot Grigio but with attitude.
The Prisoner red blend is now the most recognized in California’s Napa Valley. It leads the resurgence of blends by incorporating Zinfandel with unlikely mixes of other red varietals. Winemaker’s note: Aromas of cherry, dark chocolate, clove and roasted fig.
Ruffino Modus 2017 is a Super Tuscan that features ripe fruit flavours, is ready to drink right off the shelf but will cellar well and get more complex with time. Winemaker’s note: Pairs well with grilled meat, holiday roasts, truffle-infused dishes and pizza.
Wakefield’s Estate Shiraz is a good choice to serve with barbecue while we still have the sunny patio party season. Lightly chill both reds and whites on ice and look for the company’s no-brainer label to change colour indicating the perfect serving temperature. Winemaker’s tip: To maintain the perfect temperature when drinking on warmer days outdoors, serve wines in insulated wine tumblers.