With the party season nearly upon us, spend some time planning your event to make sure everything runs without a hitch. Consider your drinks menu carefully and prepare some tasty snacks to complement them.
The Italians make good wine, but they also make delicious food. Pasta and pizza are practically staples in the British diet now, and while they would go perfectly well with wine, don’t be afraid to branch out a little if you are celebrating. Some slices of fresh olive bread with olive oil and balsamic vinegar or another dip work well at a party, or maybe bread with a salami and mozzarella spread.
Cheese is arguably the most classic of all pairings with wine and is easy to serve at a party; cut a range of cheeses into cubes and serve them with toothpicks. With the quality and choice of cheeses available in all supermarkets, you might have as much fun choosing your cheese as you do the wines! Experiment with some different flavours and textures until you find a favourite, and prepare a range for your guests. Add some crackers and chopped vegetables and you have the perfect party platter.
The ultimate indulgence is chocolate and wine, and not just in front of your favourite movie on the sofa. Plain, dark chocolate works really well with both red and white wines, and richer truffle chocolates – if you are really willing to spoil your guests – are delicious with drier varieties. If you prefer a sweeter wine, don’t be afraid to pair a Moscato wine with some brownies or even sweets.
Try serving in nuts in small bowls around your venue. Bars serve beers and peanuts, but richer nuts like cashews work really well with wine.
For more ideas on delicious snacks to serve with your carefully chosen wine, see Wineware. Take time to choose your wine first, and then pick the snacks to go with them. There are some great online wine merchants in Northern Ireland such as http://thewinecompanyni.com/ who will stock a great range of interesting and unusual varieties.
Once you know how many guests you are expecting you can start to calculate how much wine you will need, and the volume of snacks. Careful planning beforehand will allow you the time to enjoy the party.