Southern Wine Pairings for the Holidays...

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     If there’s anything we do right in the South, it’s the holidays. After all, these are times we bring loved ones together, over food, and you’d be hard pressed to find a folk better at that than us. Am I right, y’all?      But between all the baking, stuffing, roasting, and mashing, it can be all too easy to forget the pairing -- wine pairing, that is. This year, don’t make wine an afterthought at your holiday gatherings. After all, what would Scarlett be without Rhett, or Blanche Devereaux without her sassy comebacks?      This year, get those pairings right. I’ll show ya’ll how: Green bean casserole: Amazing what some butter and cream to do to little ol’ green beans. Bring out the snap in those greens with a crisp Sauvignon Blanc that has vegetal notes...

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Sweet Tea

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     It wouldn’t be summer in the South without sweet tea. Perfect for sipping on porch swings, lake docks and the like, this refresher is often reported to have originated at the 1904 World’s Fair in St. Louis. Though the drink was popularized there, most culinary historians now agree that sweet tea actually developed in the South long before 1904.      The first tea plants in the US were harvested around Charleston, South Carolina in the late 1700’s. Shortly after, many American (and English) cookbooks began including recipes for serving tea cold, though most of the early recipes were for green tea to be brewed and served with copious amounts of booze for tea punches. Sweetened iced black tea recipes began appearing the latter half of the nineteenth century, most notably in The Kentucky...

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High Tea at Time Well Spent

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     I’d never been to high tea and I’d never been to Summerville, SC, so I did not know what to expect when my group finally arrived at Time Well Spent after a wee detour on our way home from a conference. We’d found the place online and made reservations for high tea earlier that day.      I admit I was skeptical when we arrived. The tea room sits toward the back of the property in a building that looks nothing like a tea room. I’ll also admit that Summerville reminded me of towns I grew up near that certainly were not towns that housed tea rooms. I reminded myself to keep an open mind, and we went in.      Upon entering, the place looked like a Victorian collector’s dream. Every...

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Springtime Lunch

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Whether you’re hosting Easter lunch or some other event, we’re bringing you recipes ideal for an early spring meal. Here are a new spin on pineapple casserole, a guide to making a perfect salad with in-season produce, some divine potatoes, and other special dishes to round out what may be your first outdoor meal of the season. Whatever your occasion, these delicacies will let your palate know spring has finally arrived. Menu Ham Pineapple-Cornbread Casserole Herb Roasted New Potatoes Layered Spring Salad with Dill Buttermilk Dressing Dill Deviled Eggs Strawberry-Lemon Shortbread Creams Photo credit: Amanda Odum Photo credit: Amanda Odum Photo credit: Amanda Odum Photo credit: Amanda Odum Photo credit: Amanda...

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Southern-bred Holiday Gift Wines...

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A true southern lady or gentleman never shows up empty-handed for a holiday dinner party. But what wine should you bring to wow your hostess or host? Forget Napa Valley and Bordeaux, y’all. Here are a few recommendations to help you pick out a delicious, affordable wine from down South. Malbec, from South America The Malbec grape makes a medium to full-bodied red wine that drinks as smooth as velvet. It’s an especially great choice for a party where steak or BBQ are on the menu, or for a host who loves hearty red wines like Cabernet Sauvignon. Some delicious Malbecs to look for are those by Dona Paula, Catena, Tikal, and Gascon. (Around $12-$30)   Chenin Blanc, from South Africa Have a host who loves Chardonnay? Kindly introduce them to Chenin Blanc, a...

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