Crisp mornings, cool evenings and shorter days … autumn is definitely here. This time of year, our tastes turn to cosying up with comfort food and close friends.
The days are still warm enough to get your buddies together for an al fresco lunch at home – and nothing beats an autumn BBQ, with seasonal foods, tasty wines and great conversation.
As the night sets in, you may want to take the party indoors and heat up something quick and easy before settling in for a movie marathon with your mates.
And when you choose one of our non-alcoholic wines, your friends can safely drive home if they’re not staying over. Better yet, there’ll be no headaches or slow starts the next day.
What’s your autumn wine style?
When it comes to daytime wines, you don’t have to leave the whites to summer – a well- balanced, full-bodied chardonnay is a refreshing accompaniment to autumn’s richer food flavours. An ever-popular rosé is also ideal for this seasonal crossover – try a youthful, still rosé, or if you’re celebrating a special occasion, go for a lively sparkling rosé.
Of course, with the cooler weather you may prefer heavier red wine styles, and for daytime, there are plenty of easy drinking light to medium reds to choose from. A subtle and sweet pinot noir, soft tempranillo or spicy Grenache are perfect for gatherings that carry through from day into evening. In these situations, look for low alcohol or alcohol removed wines – so you can enjoy the flavour and social benefits of wine with your friends, without the consequences.
For evening dining, a full-bodied red like a malbec or cabernet sauvignon, or a smooth shiraz pairs perfectly with richer meals.
Feasting with friends
You’ll need a hearty autumn menu to go with that wine, won’t you?
The chill in the air calls for something in between summer’s lighter dishes and winter’s full-bodied fare. Flans or frittatas served with salad and sourdough are great for your daytime gatherings. For a more substantial choice of side dish, opt for baked veggies or grain-based salads with autumn greens such as spinach, beans and broccoli.
When it’s time to come indoors, think casseroles, or easy one-pan oven-baked meals, served with crusty loaves of bread.
Keep it seasonal with foods that reflect autumn’s colours of red, orange and yellow. Try in- season tomato, pumpkin or capsicum-based dishes. Shareable Italian meals like lasagne and risotto are always a favourite. Curries are another popular option.
With a little planning ahead, you can prepare something in advance to just heat and eat so you’re not playing chef all day.
Then all you have to do is kick back, cosy up and enjoy the time with your friends.
Autumn with friends goes better with something from Edenvale’s alcohol-free wine range. Find a stockist near you.