Chaska & Chanhassen Wine Shops
An extraordinary wine selection can enhance your holiday celebration when properly paired with whatever food you’re serving. Whether you’re planning a banquet or buffet, dessert or appetizers, local wine shops can offer expert advice on perfect wine pairings.
Even if you’re not hosting this year’s get-together, gift buying for special friends, colleagues and loved ones may still be on your to-do list. A distinctive bottle of wine is a consumable that doesn’t clutter. Check out these fabulous wine shop selections for serving, celebrating and gift giving.
Manager Bruce Marengo recommends Starling Castle Riesling ($9.99) for a holiday ham sit-down dinner. It comes in an attractive bottle that looks nice on the table and its taste is slightly sweet to offset salty foods like ham.
For a sweeter sipping wine, Marengo says Barefoot Moscato ($6.49) is a bestseller priced under $10.
Cheers is locally owned and specializes in affordable offerings with weekly and monthly specials as well as 10% off for seniors every Wednesday.
530 West 79th St. #100, Chanhassen; 952.949.6946
Wine Educator Mark O’Connor says Chenin Blanc Vouvray ($10-$20) is the single most food-friendly white wine in the world. It’s not too heavy as to cover the taste of food, which is sin number one in serving wine with food.
He adds that Port (price vary widely with style) is perfectly paired with chocolate and cheeses. The brand shouldn’t matter with true Port that comes only from the terraced hillsides of the Douro Valley in Portugal where producers must conform to style standards that provide flavor predictability.
Haskell’s is a proponent of wine education and offers free classes every Wednesday at 6:30 p.m. Their hope is that customers feel confident with their wine purchases by teaching them a bit about the varied flavors and styles in every recommendation they make.
19900 W. 78th St., Chanhassen; 952.345.1115
Dolce Vita Wine Shop
Owner Dan Keyport suggests Belle de Brillet Poire Williams with Cognac ($39.95 for a 750 ml bottle) paired with light and fruity desserts. It’s an intensely flavored and delicious blend of cognac and twenty-two pounds of Williams pears in every bottle.
When serving rich chocolates or caramel desserts, Keyport is keen on Malamado Malbec Port ($21.95) with its rich blackberry, raisin and chocolate flavors.
Dolce Vita’s location is historically charming in the renovated 100-year-old Chaska train depot. Their staff has tasted all of their wines offered by mostly smaller wineries.
3115 Chaska Blvd., Chaska; 952.361.0044
MGM Wines and Spirits
Owner Jason Kleinprintz says Deinhard Lila ($12–$14) sparkling wine is fun and popular for toasting in the New Year. It has a crisp, clean taste made from Riesling grapes.
For dessert, he recommends a dessert wine similar to port, Rosenblum Desiree ($15). It’s a Zinfandel blend from California with exotic chocolate undertones.
With locations in Chaska and Chanhassen, MGM Wines and Spirits attempts to stock a wide variety of beverages.
210 Pioneer Trail, Chaska; 952.361.9606; 7856 Market Blvd., Chanhassen; 952.937.9300
Century Wine & Spirits
Wine Buyer/Manager Michael Grabner thinks party hosts can’t go wrong with most sparkling wines to accompany hors d’oeuvres or tapas. For a value-oriented choice, he likes Cristalino Brut Cava ($6.99–$8.99) from Spain. Or to really kick off a party, he mentioned Nicolas Feuillatte Brut ($29.99), which is a bit more spendy but its bright, citrus, floral flavors are said to be a good value for French Champagne.
Century Wine & Spirits is a wine-centric establishment that includes an outlet with up to sixty wines on sale at all times. They try to get to know customers and help them select wines to fit both budget and menu.
2689 W. 78th St., Chanhassen; 952.401.9463
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