Home News > April 2020 > The best wine pairings for Easter [including meat, vegetarian, vegan and dessert options]

The best wine pairings for Easter [including meat, vegetarian, vegan and dessert options]

With Easter coming around this weekend we would usually be starting to plan what we’re going to eat and drink, but this year Easter is feeling a little different. The sad fact is that these 2 Bank Holidays off work are having to be spent in isolation without family and friends. But we all have to stay strong and we will get through this together. #StayHome.

On a positive note, with more time at home, undoubtedly there has been a lot of cooking going on over the past few weeks, so we’ve put together a few recipe suggestions and wine pairings to get you through this Easter weekend. Have a go at one, two or even three of them, they’re all delicious.

Wines to pair with Easter meat

Roasted lamb with spring herb crumbs

Charles Heidsieck, Rosé Réserve NV, Champagne, France (£43.90 Liberty Wines)
‘Good stuff!’ began team leader Jan Konetzki, pointing out notes of ‘rhubarb, lemon sherbet, red apples and raspberry’ and finding it to be ‘dry and crisp, with fine bubbles and good length’. Fellow team leader Andres Ituarte described ‘peach and apricot, and a nuttiness, too’. ‘Refined, delicate and definitely gastronomic, this deserves to be drunk attentively,’ said Quentin Loisel of Restaurant Sat Bains.

Stuffed leg of lamb with rosemary and pine nuts

Domaine de Baccari, Première de Baccari, Rouge 2015, Meknes, Morocco (£24.29 Top Selection)
‘A rich, brambly, warm nose, with some cream and jam, too,’ began team leader Hamish Anderson, who described this as having ‘a rich style, under which lies brooding iron, meat and spice notes – a full and sweet wine with earthiness, and some grip on the finish’.

Crown roast of pork with onion and bread-crumb stuffing

Walter Hansel, South Slope, Pinot Noir 2016, Russian River Valley, California, USA (£31.92 Bibendum)
Balance and concentration seemed to be the buzz words around this Gold medal winner, with team leader Charlie Young describing ‘dark spices lifting to a ripe but well-layered palate’ and ‘great fruit definition and superbly judged oak ageing’. Beatrice Bessi of 67 Pall Mall loved the balance of ‘tart red fruits with savoury spice and herbs, like sage and rosemary’, adding: ‘This still has a long life ahead of it but is drinking now.’ For Olivier Gasselin of Hakkasan this wine was a balance of contrasts with ‘spiced cherry and orange zest, coated in chocolate’ balancing with ‘meaty, savoury, oak spiced ripe fruits’.

Honey-glazed ham

Santa Maria La Nave, Calmarossa, Etna Rosso 2015, Sicily, Italy (£32.22 Hallgarten & Novum Wines)
‘So aromatic and elegant,’ began impressed team leader Laurent Richet MS on discovering this clear candidate for Gold, going on to describe ‘complex cherry, cedar, dried meat and liquorice – dynamic and vibrant, with a silky texture’. Chiara Sieni of Bottles Group, meanwhile, enjoyed its ‘eucalyptus aromas, with ripe cherry and strawberry on the palate, leading to a charcoal finish’, while team leader Lionel Periner thought it ‘floral and smoky, with good acidity on a long finish’.

Wines to pair with an Easter vegetarian menu

Roasted vegetable quiche

Gusbourne, Blanc de Blancs 2013, Kent, England (£31.00 Gusbourne Estate)
This Gold winner was impressive both for its ‘delicate nose and more complex palate’, according to Savoy Grill’s Matteo Cali, who also described its ‘nutty character, some toast, and well-integrated acidity’, while team leader Sarah Jane Evans MW considered it to be ‘lifted and floral’ and ‘a zesty, mouthwatering wine – and ideal by the glass’. ‘Fresh citrus and minerality’ made this, for Paola Giraldo of Wiltons, ‘great as an aperitif, or with oysters’.

Creamy courgette lasagne

Domaine Yves Cuilleron, Condrieu La Petite Côte 2017, Rhône, France (£36.88 Enotria&Coe)
This took home Gold for its ‘charming fruit profile with pronounced intensity of apricot, tangerine, honeysuckle, honey and marzipan’, according to The Glasshouse’s Adam Michocki, who thought it ‘well-structured, with a round and creamy texture, as well as some spice’. Alonso Abed of Hide Above enjoyed its ‘fresh peach skin notes with camomile flower and fresh honeydew aromas’, while Sexy Fish’s Lucie Kalertova thought this all added up to a perfect partner for ‘aromatic Indian dishes’.

Honey-mustard baked salmon with vegetables

Château Ksara, Cuvée du Pape, Chardonnay, 2016, Bekaa Valley, Lebanon (£16.52 Hallgarten & Novum Wines)
Honami Matsumoto of House of Sake picked up ‘stone fruits, sweet spices and toasty tones’, and described this wine as ‘buttery, creamy, with a textured oaky palate and a distinctly savoury finish’.

Melanzane parmigiana

Tokara, Director's Reserve, White 2016, Stellenbosch, South Africa (£15.45 Awin Barratt Siegel Wine Agencies)
It was the ‘hint of petrol and hot tarmac, lovely core of chunky fruit, fresh acidity and good intensity’ that elevated this to Gold for team leader Angela Reddin, while Michael Fiducia of The Royal Automobile Club was impressed by the ‘warming nose of ripe gooseberry, with lime undertones’ and the ‘nuances of ripe brioche within the creamy rich palate’, suggesting a match with ‘grilled prawns’. Anita Vighova of Manor House Hotel also thought it would be ‘great to match with food’, and The Fat Duck’s Annamaria Juhasz described it as an ‘excellent wine’ that ‘needs some creamy seafood’.

Wines to pair with an Easter vegan menu

Vegan spiced whole roasted cauliflower

Carchelo, The Tapas Wine Collection, Cava Brut NV, Valencia, Spain (£8.25 Carchelo)
This bright and approachable Gold winner opened with ‘an intense nose of pear and apple, together with a round and creamy palate, making this a great value wine’, according to Matteo Cali of Savoy Grill, while Harry Ballmann of Wiltons found it ‘extremely refreshing, with blackcurrant leaf and apple notes’. Team leader Jade Koch added praise for its ‘really good acidity, with some grip too, leading to some good citrus weight to the finish’.

Vegan beetroot and shallot tarte tatin

Puklavec Family, Seven Numbers, Furmint 2016, Podravje, Slovenia (£12.00 Wood Winters)
As this Furmint took home a well-deserved Gold, tasters described an intriguing wine with ‘a richly intense nose of mature fruits, honey and white flowers’, according to Janusz Sasiadek of Bottles & Battles, who found it ‘well balanced with lovely acidity and minerality’. Team leader Andres Ituarte, meanwhile, enjoyed notes of ‘oolong tea and jasmine, as well as green apple and bruised peach, with enormous length of stone fruit and white tea’.

Vegan tomato and basil ragu with butter bean mash

Clos Clare, Riesling 2017, South Australia, Australia (£18.67 Hallgarten & Novum Wines)
Restrained elegance and refreshing minerality earned this a place on the Gold List, with Ieva Markaityte of Portuguese Concepts admiring the ‘delicate, floral nose, with its warm hints of ripe white peach’, adding: ‘The palate is well balanced and crisp with some stony minerality coming through and really good length.’ ‘Classy and balanced,’ thought Tanguy Martin of New Street Warehouse, while Guillaume Mahaut of ETM Group noted: ‘Restrained complexity with flowers and honey and soft acidity.’

Crispy vegan lentil meatballs in spiced pumpkin and tomato sauce

Shirayuri Winery, L’Orient, Katsunuma, Koshu 2017, Yamanashi Prefecture, Japan (£20.00 Shirayuri Winery)
Melania Battiston of 28-50 Wine Workshop & Kitchen found a ‘pungent nose of lily, asparagus and pears, with tart lime juice on the palate’, while for team leader Tom Forrest there were ‘dry, nutty, almond notes, reminiscent of a fino sherry’.

Wines to pair with an Easter dessert

Lemon curd, mascarpone & passion fruit tart

Framingham, Marlborough Noble Riesling (37.5cl) 2018, Marlborough, New Zealand (£12.99 Size: 37.5cl Liberty Wines)
As judges unanimously proclaimed this Gold, Street XO’s Raphael Thierry spoke highly of its ‘lemon curd nose with a rich, sweet and complex palate showing quince, lemon tart and Asian pear, leading to a long, balanced finish’. The Gilbert Scott’s Juan Manuel Marcos Perez found ‘ripe mango and lychee, with a beeswax finish’, while for Sunaina Sethi of JKS Restaurants, its ‘luscious, opulent tropical fruit’ made it ideal for serving with ‘mango and passion fruit pavlova’.

Peanut butter brownies

Fernando de Castilla, Antique, Pedro Ximénez (50cl) NV, Jerez, Spain (£24.50 Size: 50cl Boutinot)
‘The very essence of Christmas,’ said team leader Sarah Jane Evans MW. ‘With its velvety texture, melted chocolate and spicy silkiness this wine is astonishingly drinkable,’ she added, further describing it as ‘treacly but with such freshness it’s brilliantly balanced. Miraculous!’.

Vegan millionaire’s shortbread

Diren, Mahlep NV, Eastern Anatolia, Turkey (£7.94 Size: 50cl Taste Turkey)
‘So much going on!’ began an impressed Daniel Loughlin of 20 Stories as judges unanimously named this Gold, before going on to describe ‘earthy beetroot, dried roses, cinnamon, salted caramel’ and more, and praising it for its ‘balanced sweetness and fresh acidity’. Team leader Tom Forrest described ‘sweet, herbal fruit notes’ as well as ‘marzipan and toffee’, while Sunaina Sethi of JKS Restaurants found ‘eucalyptus, menthol and sweet spice, with a long finish of cherry and almonds’.

The ultimate cheese board

C. da Silva, Dalva, Late Bottled Vintage 2012, Douro, Portugal (£13.30 Size: 75cl Matthew Clark)
Team leader Carlos Ferreira found a nose of ‘dry figs and almonds with toasted vanilla and coffee’ and further described the wine as ‘well balanced and aromatic with a complex, beautiful finish’.

If you decide to try one of these recipes out this Easter, or even if you don’t, give us a tag on social and let us know what wine you’re drinking this weekend. Tag us on Instagram or Twitter. We’d love to see. Happy Easter everyone! #StaySafe.