Hoppy Easter, Calgary! Let’s face it, holidays are the best parts of the year. Getting together with loved ones and sharing good food, good wine and good laughs until some-bunny brings up a controversial topic before the green beans hit the table. All jokes aside, the endless Easter food options also mean endless Easter wine pairing options. We love to be a part of your holidays, however you celebrate. Follow along for an Easter wine and food pairing guide, designed to make your holidays eggs-tra special!

At Market Wines, we source quality wines from small family producers making them accessible and affordable, because we care about what you drink and where it comes from! Though Calgary isn’t the most ideal wine growing region, we love to support the little guys with good values from around the world. We host a variety of events from sit-down tastings to festivals for a fun and knowledgeable date-night, celebration, or just for fun! We’re all about sharing stories at Market Wines, and we love to be a part of your story through your family dinners, quality time with friends, celebrations or casual Tuesday nights. Our favourite part of the job is finding you the perfect wine for whatever the occasion, or lack thereof! 


Easter Brunch

Worried about being choco-late for Easter Brunch because you can’t choose a wine to bring? Good thing you’re reading this Easter wine pairing guide so you know exactly what you need! 


Bubbles and… Everything!

Let’s be honest, sparkling wine is all about the vibe. It always brings a celebratory energy to any room it’s poured in. Sparkling wine is the most versatile wine to pair with virtually anything, food or otherwise. Bubbles do hold a special place in the brunch scene, because did you really have brunch if you didn’t drink a mimosa? The best wine for mimosas is a dry Prosecco from Italy. The wine you use for your mimosas don’t need to be sweet because the juice you are mixing with will already have some sugar in it, and you may want to avoid your morning pick-me-up being too sweet. Pair a mimosa with any brunch food, or standing back while watching your kids go feral over chocolate eggs hidden in the bushes in your backyard.

The perfect mimosa Prosecco is the cheap and cheerful Treviso Brut Prosecco from Val d’Oca (https://marketwines.ca/products/val-doca-treviso-brut-prosecco/). Val d’Oca is a cooperative of growers in Valdobbiadene that allows a multitude of small grape growers to pool fruit and resources to craft a range of exciting Proseccos. The Treviso Brut’s frothy bubbles carry a wave of citrus, honeydew and pear on the palate followed by white flowers. Mix it with your orange juice, or say “cluck it” and drink it on its own or paired with eggs benedict.


Pancakes: Chardonnay or Cabernet Sauvignon

Are pancakes on the menu for your Easter Brunch? What better to pair those fluffy masterpieces covered in butter than a California Chardonnay? Chardonnays from California are often stylistically aged using oak barrels or using oak chips. This can give these full bodied wines notes of oak, hazelnut and butter. 

The Grayson Chardonnay from California is delightfully crisp with tropical fruit notes. It’s spent some of its life aging in French oak, which gives it warm apple pie and vanilla flavours. Mike and Kathy O’Connell, the founders of Grayson Cellars aim to remedy the rising costs of California wines by sourcing their fruit from vineyards around California. This keeps costs affordable and the wine high quality.

If your pancake preference includes chocolate chips and blueberries, you can pair your flapjacks with a dry and fruity red wine like Cabernet Sauvignon. The Beckstone Cabernet Sauvignon is a budget friendly cabernet from our friend Robert Larson in Washington. Beautifully balanced blueberry and cocoa powder on the palate with a lingering sensation of dark caramel and toffee makes this wine and chocolate blueberry pancakes two peeps in a pod.


French Toast: Moscato d’Asti 

Sometimes we like a little bit of sweetness in our lives, and what better way to indulge your sweet tooth than with French Toast and Moscato d’Asti. Moscato can be easily overlooked as a cheap wine that will give you an instant hangover, but this isn’t always the case when enjoyed with the right attitude. Moscato d’Asti is produced in northwestern Italy and is a sweet, slightly sparkling white wine. This way-too-crushable delicacy will bring out the cinnamon and compliment the syrup that your french toast is swimming in. Pelassa from Piedmonte makes an elegant version of Moscato that has notes of overripe peach, apricot jam, honeysuckle and lemon curd. The slight effervescence in the wine just elevates your Easter brunch and will make sure you’ll be licking your plate (and glass) when no one is watching.


Easter Dinner

Whether you like the traditional turkey or just something special for Easter dinner, there’s a wine for that!


Turkey: Riesling or Beaujolais

If you’re going traditional with your Easter dinner, the classic pairings of turkey with riesling and/or beaujolais are an egg-cellent option. Rieslings’ high acidity and minerality are a beautiful pairing with the softness of the turkey, and the fruitiness and lighter body of the Gamay grape found in Beaujolais compliment your cranberry sauce.

At the perfect value size, the German dry Riesling from Meiser comes in a 1L bottle, perfect for sharing with your favourite people. The Meiser family has been making wine for over 300 years and for good reason. This Riesling and your Easter turkey are like two peeps in a pod. Crisp, clean and easy to drink, this wine shows a chalky minerality that compliments its notes of green apple, lemon zest and juicy peach.

The Clos Roilette Fleurie Beaujolais is a crowd pleasing red option that is bursting with richness and more body than normal for a Gamay. Bright acidity balances notes of cranberry, dark cherry, clove and other spices, and won’t overwhelm your Turkey.


Ham: Pinot Grigio or Zinfandel

Opting for ham this holiday? You could opt for that same Riesling that you paired with your turkey, but you could also pair your pig with a Pinot Grigio. Pinot Grigio is a zesty Italian wine that has enough acidity to cut through the fatty meat, but is fruity and crisp enough to compliment the savoury dish. For the red lovers at the table, a Zinfandel would make a good match.

Kurtin Alkur’s Pinot Grigio is a unique wine that has similar characteristics to Pinot Gris (the same grape grown in France) which has a slightly softer style. Naturally fresh, this wine is soft and delicate with notes of white peaches, apricots, Meyer lemon and a wisp of baking spice. 

Though still considered a dry red wine, Zinfandel can come across slightly off-dry on the palate, making it a great option for a honey glazed ham. The Marietta Old Vine Red ‘OVR’ is a red blend that is predominantly Zinfandel. It’s full bodied and packed with ripe black fruits like plum and blackberry, mocha and wild mint.


Lamb: Barolo

If you are taking the red meat route this Easter, the best course of action is a big red wine. When pairing wine with a big hunk of seasoned red meat, the wine needs to match the energy. One of Italy’s most powerful players is Barolo, made with 100% Nebbiolo grapes. Barolo is deceptively light in the glass but packs heavy and dense tannins that stand up to a dish like lamb without overpowering it. 

The Marengo family makes some impressive Barolos coming from just 6 hectares of land in Brunate, Italy. This under-the-radar producer’s lineup is definitely worth checking out. Their Barolo Brunate offers a darker fruit profile with incredible balance and structure. Buy this wine now for Easter 10 years from now, or give it some time to breathe in a decanter while you’re dipping eggshells in food colouring.

Looking for pairings for everything on your table? Try pairing your greens like peas and brussel sprouts with a grassy Sauvignon Blanc or an herbaceous Cabernet Franc. Your cheesy scalloped potatoes would do well with a higher acid Chenin Blanc, and indulge in a White Burgundy with your bowl full of mashed potatoes. Obviously the best part of the meal are the dinner rolls, which you can drink with your leftover buttery Chardonnay you drank with your pancakes earlier in the day.  

That’s all for Easter Sunday, yolks! Hop in to any Market Wines location and chat with our Wine Eggs-perts about all things Easter. Don’t forget to shop the Easter Sale at all Market Wines locations and online where you’ll find all of your favourite wines for 20% off! You may even find some Easter treats (wines) in-store for up to 50% off, starting at $9.95. You’ll also find some fun things open at the tasting bar (which is always open, by the way). 

Want to have your own little Easter egg hunt? Find all of the Easter puns hidden in this pairing guide. There are so many it’s not even bunny!