What We’re Drinking to Keep Spirits Up This Week

Relaxing at home with a comforting drink
Getty Images

With much of the world in such a strange and unfamiliar state, we are all struggling to maintain some sense of comfort and normalcy.

For many, that’s a home-cooked meal or glass of something we love. After all, part of the beauty of food and drinks lies in their power to magically transport us. Pop a cork and you can be taken right back to cherished far-off destinations visited long ago. Or hours-long dinners of endless laughs with friends and family. Perhaps even milestones celebrated with the ones that matter most.

Wine can touch so many of life’s best moments, capable of connecting us back to those blissful occasions when we smell or sip that same seductive pour.

And so, in the search for warmth, positivity and even a sense of optimism for the future, our editors share some of their favorite pours—wines and beers and cocktails alike—enjoyed in recent days. Here’s to keeping spirits high and palates happy during difficult times.

Nils Bernstein, Contributing Editor

The Pour: Wine from Valley de Guadalupe
“Mexico’s Valle de Guadalupe is one of my favorite wine regions to visit. Drinking these wines while cooped up at home is a happy (and delicious) way to remember the people and places I can’t wait to visit again soon.”

Virginie Boone, Contributing Editor

The Pour: Mayacamas 2018 Chardonnay (Mt. Veeder)
“Having been up to the Mayacamas property and seeing its old stone winery, it’s just incredible to think what the structure has survived and how hard it would have been to build back then. It makes me feel the power of time marching on, and nature’s relentless resiliency even when we humans try to mess everything up. Plus, the wine is incredibly good.”

Lauren Buzzeo, Managing Editor

The Pour: I Magredi 2018 Sauvignon (Friuli)
“Italian wine always lends me a sense of comfort and familial connection during difficult times, and reminds me of my father and the special times we shared over many bottles. But now, especially with Italian white wines, which my in-laws love, I share another association that always lifts my spirits.

First, it always reminds me of the magical trip across the country they took me on so many years ago, my first to the country, long before my husband and I were even married. But also, of all the wonderful summers we’ve spent time together since in Montauk, New York, especially over linguine with clams (my father-in-law’s favorite), which I had to pair here to get the full heartwarming effect.

So, in one night, my heart went back to Italy, then spent some time in Montauk dining al fresco on a warm summer night, and I’m smiling again and excited to share more of those meals together with them soon.”

Sarah Daniels, Senior Associate Editor

The Pour: Domaine de l’OubilĂ©e Les Valseuses Blanc (Vin de France)
“This Chenin pĂ©tillant-naturel is simultaneously elegant and silly. It’s light and wooly, with waxy stone fruit and a dry finish. Suddenly tossed in the middle of so much world madness, the first sip brought on a slow, widespread smile. A simple joy, kind of like when a favorite song from high school that you’ve forgotten existed comes on the radio, and it takes you a minute to realize what’s playing.”

John Holl, Beer Editor

The Pour: Bell’s Two Hearted Ale American IPA
“Buying beer is an interesting experience right now. Dawdling in aisles is frowned upon due to curfews and social distancing, so last week when I popped into my local shop, rather than spending time looking at what was new and picking up cans for a closer inspection, I headed straight for the cooler and picked up a familiar four pack from Bell’s.

Right now, beer buyers aren’t necessarily picking up bottles for their cellars or cans to trade with friends. This is hunker-down time and you want a beer that is familiar, well made and elicits memories of happier times out in the world with friends.”

Anne Krebiehl, Contributing Editor

The Pour: Boeckel 2016 Extra Brut Chardonnay (CrĂ©mant d’Alsace)
“Traditional method fizz is my usual go-to comfort, my pick-me-up, my refreshment, my upper, my downer, my soother. And this one always hits the spot.”

Lauren Mowery, Contributing Editor

The Pour: Pio Cesare Alba Vermouth di Torino
“I first discovered how enjoyable drinking a good vermouth was in Spain. Every afternoon around 5pm, I’d enjoy a few sips by the beach in Barcelona. I forgot about that pleasure until a few days ago. Digging through wine boxes while “social distancing” in a cabin in Upstate New York, I found a bottle of Pio Cesare Vermouth di Torino. This bottle brought me back to Spain, took me through the vineyards of Piedmont, and has prompted a new daily ritual that’s delicious and comforting.”

Kara Newman, Spirits Editor

The Pour: Bamboo Cocktail To Go
“I’m missing the camaraderie of bars and access to all kinds of creative cocktails, but right now I’m taking comfort in the bars that are mixing up cocktails to go, some even available via delivery. I was glad to support one of my local favorites, Middle Branch, by purchasing a Bamboo to go…which I enjoyed at home, during a virtual happy hour session. It’s not quite the same as enjoying a drink at my local with a friend, but for now, I’ll take it!”

Kerin O’Keefe, Italian Editor

The Pour: Giuseppe Rinaldi 2010 Brunate (Barolo)
“We wanted—needed—something to soothe the soul and lift our spirits. This compelling wine did all that and more. Salute!”

Christina Pickard, Contributing Editor

The Pour: Mac Forbes 2017 EB41 Showdown 3 Pinot Noir-Nebbiolo (Yarra Valley)
“I’ve always loved the way wine can transport you to another place and time, and in these strange days of isolation and hibernation, it’s needed more than ever. So, on Thursday night, I kicked the kids out of the kitchen and, while preparing this heaping bowl of pasta (a family favorite), I poured myself a glass of Yarra Valley red from one of the region’s rockstar producers, Mac Forbes.

As it bounced across my tongue, like biting into a fresh cranberry, I was, for just a moment, back in Australia, the wild parrots screeching in towering eucalypts; the hot Aussie sun on my face. And even though my kids careened back into the kitchen just a few minutes later and shattered the illusion, I got to travel, even from the confines of my own home.”

Emily Saladino, Associate Managing Editor, Digital

The Pour: Hacienda La Lomita 2015 Pagano Grenache (Valle de Guadalupe)
“It can be hard to get your hands on these cool, crunchy Valle de Guadalupe wines in the U.S., so I brought this back in a suitcase last year and have been saving it for a rainy day. These past few weeks have been so tough on everyone in our industry. It’s important to celebrate everyday comforts wherever we can find them.”

Layla Schlack, Associate Managing Editor, Print

The Pour: San Martino Siir (Aglianico del Vulture)
“I always think that wine has the power to transport us, taking us momentarily out of whatever’s causing stress, more than it can comfort us. For me, a digital hangout with some of my oldest and best friends, accompanied by this earthy, juicy Aglianico was a glimpse of warmth, love and normalcy.”

Published on March 26, 2020
Topics: Wine and Ratings