Wines for Valentine’s Day without a valentine

McClatchy-Tribune News ServiceFebruary 11, 2014 

  • Highly recommended

    • Nonvintage Chandon Etoile Rose sparkling wine, Napa/Sonoma: (49 percent chardonnay, 45 percent pinot noir, 6 percent pinot meunier): salmon color, lots of long-lasting bubbles, aromas and flavors of red raspberries and spice; $50.

    • 2011 Champ de Reves Pinot Noir, Anderson Valley: powerful and crisp, with aromas and flavors of black raspberries, licorice and tobacco, full and creamy; $40.

    • 2012 Artezin Zinfandel, Mendocino County: aromas and flavors of red raspberries and black pepper, spicy, hearty, smooth; $18.

    • 2011 Grgich Hills Estate Chardonnay, Napa Valley: crisp flavors of ripe lemons and apricots, smooth and full-bodied, hint of minerals; $42.

    • 2012 Wente Vineyards “Riverbank” Riesling, Arroyo Seco, Monterey: hint of sweetness, aromas and flavors of pink grapefruit and minerals, crisp; $15.

    Recommended

    • 2012 Gavilan Chardonnay, by Chalone Vineyard, Sonoma: crisp and lively, with a hint of oak and tropical fruit aromas and flavors; $20.

    • 2011 Wild Horse Winery Cabernet Sauvignon, Central Coast: black cherries and black pepper, firm tannins, full body; $20.

    • 2012 Edna Valley Vineyard Sauvignon Blanc, Central Coast: aromas and flavors of white grapefruit and grass, full body, long finish; $15.

She/he just broke your heart. Or maybe you broke hers/his. Either way, you’re saying, “Bah, humbug” to Valentine’s Day this year. Returning fire at that chubby cherub with the bow and arrows.

I’ve got your back. What follows are some tips on getting some extra-good wines and throwing an “I Will Survive” party.

If you have some pals in the same boat, invite them over, but make it clear there will be no tears, no moping over the cad or cadess who done you wrong.

First, download some pugnacious songs like Gloria Gaynor’s “I Will Survive,” Katharine McPhee’s “Over It,” Shakira’s “Don’t Bother.” Sing along. Loudly.

Rent some movies. But no teary chick flicks, even if you’re a (forgive me) chick. Rent “Apocalypse Now.” Rent every “Star Trek” or “Star Wars” video you can find (it’s fun to look at the Starship Enterprise of the 1980s on hi-def TV and see how obviously it was made of plywood or some such).

Or every movie you can find starring Arnold, Bruce or Vin.

Or rent movies with tough female leads like the ones in “Hunger Games,” “Aliens,” “Mommy Dearest,” even that one with Jessica Rabbit.

The meal is obvious: big steaks for the women, bottomless cartons of ice cream for the men. Wait – do I have that backwards? Whatever: Let’s keep this gender-neutral.

Now for the wine: Without the expense of flowers, candy and fancy restaurant meals, you can splurge on some really nice wine (in moderation, of course).

You should pick the wines even more carefully than last year, when you were putting together a romantic dinner for your then-significant other. These wines are for you.

Here are some of the finest wines I’ve tasted recently. You should start, of course, with a nice bubbly to toast your newfound freedom and the infinite possibilities of the future.

You go, girl/guy!

P.S. Even if you don’t need this now, clip and save it. It could be handy for that trending new institution – the divorce party.

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