Nothing beats a barbecue after a day of fun in the sun. But hungry tummies aren’t always patient as the grill gets ready. A tasty Canadian cheese platter paired with some refreshing wine will help keep the wolves at bay. For the main course, I’m going to suggest one of my favourite Mediterranean-inspired meals, Grilled Pork Chops and Zesty Sauce Vierge with Feta. But first, let’s talk about our tasty cheese starter.

Serve the cheese one at a time, and pair it with the right wine as you go. For starters go with a semi-soft Victor et Berthold from Québec’s Lanaudière region, and match the cheese’s smooth, buttery and fruity flavours with a light, dry and fruity Pinot Noir from Ontario’s Chateau des Charmes. As a second course bring out a rich and creamy Pied-de-vent from the exotic Magdalen Islands. Complement the nutty and aromatic taste of this veined cheese with a glass of rich and fruity Merlot, such as a Gehringer Dry Rock Merlot from BC’s Okanagan Valley. Finish things off with a sharp-flavoured Ermite, a quintessential blue cheese known for its wonderful spicy flavour. Make sure to pair it with a wine that has plenty of body, like a robust, crowd-pleasing Shiraz from Australia’s Oscar’s Estate Vineyard.

When you are ready to move on to the main course, you can get the recipe here for Grilled Pork Chops and Zesty Sauce Vierge with Feta. This dish will be ready to eat in less than twenty-five minutes, including prep time, and will bring a fresh summery note to your gathering. Stay within the realm of red and enjoy the dish with a supple and fruity Domaine Gardiés’ Mas Las Cabes.

Here’s to a glorious summer full of warm evenings and good friends.