The Best Holiday Books & Bottles for Gift Giving

The holiday season is right around the corner. Looking for a great book or bottle to give to someone you love or perhaps as a treat for yourself?

Here with her tips is Natalie MacLean, who offers Canada’s most popular online wine classes at

Welcome, Natalie.


Great to be here, Leanne!


What’s the first pairing you recommend?



We’re starting with one of my favourite authors, Dani Shapiro is known for her bestselling memoirs, especially Inheritance. Signal Fires is her first novel in more than 15 years, Signal Fires and it was worth the wait. It’s beautifully written and like her memoirs, dives into the haunting nature of family secrets.





Austin Hope Cabernet Sauvignon 2020
Paso Robles, California, United States




I’d pair this novel with an equally complex, layered Cabernet Sauvignon from Austin Hope in Paso Robles, California. This wine would also go well with a rare steak or meat lovers’ pizza.



What do you have next for us?



I have A Place in the World: Finding the Meaning of Home by Frances Mayes, also known for her bestseller Under the Tuscan Sun. This is a collection of personal stories on what home means, even when you travel as much as Frances does. It’s been described as lyrical, soulful and spellbinding.





Carpineto Farnito Cabernet Sauvignon 2016
Tuscany I.G.T., Italy




I’d pair this book with this seductive Italian wine, the Carpineto Farnito Cabernet Sauvignon that is the liquid embodiment of creature comforts at home. This wine would also go well with veal and roast chicken.


Let’s move on to your next book and bottle.



This is Beautiful Writers: A Journey of Big Dreams and Messy Manuscripts with Tricks of the Trade from Bestselling Authors by Linda Sivertsen. This is an essential resource for anyone who wants to improve their writing or dreams of writing a book. Linda masterfully braids her personal stories as a writer with tips from authors such as Cheryl Strayed, Dani Shapiro, Anne Lamott, Jenny Lawson, Tom Hanks and Elizabeth Gilbert among fifty-six others. What makes this stand out from other books about writing is Linda’s evocative memoir writing. It’s magical.





Creekside Sauvignon Blanc
Niagara Peninsula, Ontario V.Q.A., Canada




I’d pair this book with the Creekside Sauvignon Blanc from Niagara, which is zesty and refreshing, much like Linda’s take on writing. It would also pair well with vegetarian dishes and pasta in a cream sauce.




Sounds great! What do you have next?



I have Everything is Figureoutable by Marie Forleo, who is a dynamo business woman offering online business courses and her own TV show. The title of the book comes from Marie’s mom who once told her, “Nothing in life is that complicated. You can do whatever you set your mind to if you roll up your sleeves. Everything is figureoutable.” Marie offers can-do advice for everything from dealing with imposter syndrome to achieving your goals.





Cupcake Vineyards Light Hearted Rosé
California, United States




I’d pair her bestselling book with this vibrant Cupcake Rose, which is bursting with fresh berry notes. This wine would also go well with grilled chicken.


What’s your final pairing?



I have Cat and Nat’s Mom Secrets: Coffee-Fueled Confessions from the Mom Trenches by bestselling Toronto writers, Catherine Belknap and Natalie Telfer. These are hilarious and they know what they’re talking about with seven kids between them. They share their best parenting tips on tough topics, but in an engaging way.





Sea Sun Chardonnay 2020
California, United States




I’d pair their book with Sea Sun Chardonnay 2020 from the Wagner family in California. This wine is full-bodied sunshine, but has great depth of flavour – like Cat and Nat’s advice. It would also be terrific with roast chicken.


You can watch Part 2 of my conversation with Leanne here: 5 Great Holiday Books & Bottles to Give or Get


Find all of Natalie’s book and bottle pairings on her website at




Posted with permission of CTV.



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