Pairing Canadian Wine with Poutine, Smoked Meat, Tourtiere

We’re back with more Canadian wines and dishes to help you celebrate your long weekend. Natalie, you’re taking us to Quebec next. What do you recommend?

We can’t talk about Quebec wine and cuisine without talking about poutine. Few Canadian dishes are as iconic as this bowl of crispy fries and squeaky cheese curds with a generous ladling of gravy over it.





I’d pair this dish with a Quebec Rosé that’ll cut through the wonderful richness of this dish and maybe even help clean out your arteries afterwards. This one from Domaine Pelchat in Quebec’s Eastern Townships has fresh notes of melon and berries. It’s racy acidity is a great counterpoint to the dish.






Domaine Pelchat Lemaître-Auger La Promise Rosé 2019
Quebec, Canada






What else do you have for us from Quebec?

Quebec is also famous for its cider made from more than sixty different types of apples grown in the province. Cider can be non-alcoholic or fermented to have alcohol like this one, in which case it’s called hard cider, though the alcohol is low at just 5.7% versus the average of 12-14% for wine.

This is a Rosé Cider from McKeown Cidrerie, also in the Eastern Townships. It has notes of pretty strawberries and orange zest. I’d pair this with Montreal’s bagels, baked in wood fire ovens.





Cidrerie McKeown Rosé Cider
Rougemont, Québec, Canada





Then I’d double-down with a Montreal smoked meat sandwich, beef brisket salted and cured for a week with various spices before it’s smoked and steamed. It’s usually served in rye bread though you could also put it on top of your poutine in case fries, cheese and gravy are just not enough for you.

Another Canadian meat speciality is peameal bacon, made from boneless pork loin that’s wet-cured and then rolled in cornmeal, which creates its yellow crust.

Finally, If you’re still standing, I’d pair this Rosé with tourtière, the savoury meat pie made from pork, veal, beef and game in a pastry crust.




Now we’re moving east to Nova Scotia, our stomping ground, Natalie.

Yes, I’ve been waiting to return home for a while now, even if it’s only through these wines. We’re going to start with Benjamin Bridge Rosé Sparkling and Brut Reserve, both crisp, fresh bubblies that would be ideal for Nova Scotia lobster rolls.





Benjamin Bridge NV Brut Sparkling Rosé
Gaspereau Valley, Nova Scotia, Canada








Benjamin Bridge Brut Reserve Sparkling
Gaspereau Valley, Nova Scotia, Canada





A freshly baked bun cradles the tender, buttery meat that’s mixed with mayonnaise, lemon juice and green onions, maybe with some chips on the side.

There’s actually a Nova Scotia Lobster Trail that you can follow around the province, and make pit stops to enjoy fresh lobster in all its glories, whether in a roll or freshly steamed and served with melting butter on the beach.

Another great pairing would be Digby scallops, succulent and fresh, from the Bay of Fundy. They’re served pan seared, bacon-wrapped, deep-fried or in a rich seafood chowder.





You have one more winery from Nova Scotia to tell us about.

The Avondale Sky winery once walked on water. It was formerly a church built in 1837, but when Avondale’s owners heard it was slated for destruction, they decided to buy the building and convert it into a winery.




The catch was that the church was 42-kilometres away from the land where the vines were planted. So they had the building lifted off its original location and moved by road to the shorefront of the Bay of Fundy, where it was loaded onto a ferry and floated with the world’s highest tides to its new location. Miraculously, every pane of stained glass survived.





I have with me Avondale’s Benediction Sparkling wine as well as their Burlington L’Acadie Blanc, a still wine made from one of Nova Scotia’s most iconic grapes.






Avondale Sky Winery Benediction Sparkling 2016
Annapolis Valley, Nova Scotia, Canada









Avondale Sky Winery Burlington 2016
Annapolis Valley, Nova Scotia, Canada





Both wines have a lime zest, ocean freshness that would be ideal with freshly baked bannock that my grandmother used to make. This is an unleavened, oval-shaped and flatbread that has its origins both in Scotland and in Canada as it’s a traditional recipe of our Indigenous people. It can be baked or fried.

I’d also pair these wines with oatcakes, another Scottish specialty, with their delicious combination of sweet and salty, chewy or crunchy.


You can watch our first segment on pairing Canadian wine and food here.





Published with permission from CTV.




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