Disclaimer: I am a father and this column is indecorously self-serving.
Sunday is Father’s Day. What are you going to do about it, son/daughter/mother of our children?
Suggestion: chose a meal dad enjoys and pair the fare with quality wine. It doesn’t have to be a mortgage-the-homeplace pour, but pull cork/twist cap on something he likes but doesn’t get to drink on a regular basis. And don’t buy it on his credit card.
Obvious: big, rich steak and big, rich red wine. Napa cab is the cliché pairing, but it holds cliché status because it works so well. A California zin will give you more sweet, pepper and alcohol, an Aussie syrah will provide weight and body, and an Italian Amarone will provide star power, exotic ripeness and high alcohol, but none will deliver quite the same jammy fruit and fat-cutting tannins as a quality Cal cab. Consider: Jordan Alexander Valley Cabernet Sauvignon $51, Alexander Valley Cyrus $50, Davis Family Old Vine Zinfandel $32, Gaso Amarone Della Valpolicella $59.
Maybe your health-conscious dad favors fish. If you serve salmon, pinot noir, sauvignon blanc, and light-oak or un-oaked chardonnay are dad-gum good plays. Lighter fish pair with pinot grigio/gris or French chards. Consider: Row Eleven Pinot Noir $29, Enkidu Kick Ranch Sauvignon Blanc $27, Louis Jadot Pouilly Fuisse (chardonnay) $27, Kim Crawford Pinot Gris $20, Cenay TGX Vineyard Chardonnay $30, Charles Krug Carneros Chardonnay $21, Fess Parker Santa Barbara County Chardonnay $18.
Pop cork on sparkling if you want an effervescent celebration. Champagne/sparkling wines pair with almost everything, or they can be a festive way to begin or end a dad’s-day celebration. Consider: Gloria Ferrer Royal Cuvée Brut Vintage Reserve $30, Roederer Estate Brut Anderson Valley $25, Gruet Blanc de Noirs $16.
Whether dad really likes the wine you buy is not the most important part of this pour play. He may forget the wine. He will not forget the love. Neither will you.
Last round: Old Italian toast appropriate for dad—here’s to all who wish us well. And those who don’t can go to…