3 Wine & Cannabis Pairings for the Holidays
Treat your party guests to the ultimate gourmet experience this December
With Christmas and New Year's Eve just a few weeks away, holiday party planning is in full gear. Your average soiree will, of course, feature festive cocktails, finger foods, and tasty dessert, but what else can you do to create an unforgettable event? Treat your party guests to the ultimate gourmet experience by offering a signature cannabis and wine pairing.
This week, The Herb Somm hosted an event with Eaze at Gracias Madre in Los Angeles that explored the similarities between wine and weed. In partnership with THC Design, a leading cannabis company that is focused on advanced cultivation practices and growing sustainable herb, guests were guided through a sensory aroma experience that perfectly paired the two.
During this exercise, we highlighted pairings that were balanced meaning the weight of the wine matched the weight of the cannabis. If you remember The Herb Somm B.I.T.E philosophy for pairings, weight in wine is determined by body and richness. And for cannabis, weight is determined by the strain’s side effects and potency.
To take this one step further, a golden rule to remember is refreshing white wines pair best with uplifting, energizing strains like Sativa-dominant varieties. Big bold red wines often pair best with relaxing, laid back strains like Indica-dominant varieties. Hybrid strains (which are a cross of Indica/Sativa) pair well with what we call “chameleon wines” such as Rosé. As many wine lovers know, Rosé has an amazing tendency to pair well with many different flavors and occasions. This is why people say, “Rosé all day” because it’s true! Rosé is an excellent match for any time of day. Hybrid strains are very similar in this way because they are balanced.
Great pairings are also created by matching aroma profiles. To determine the best combination, identify the most prominent character in the wine and match that characteristic to the cannabis. Pairing with terpene profiles is the main idea here whether it be wine, cannabis or food.
Now for our top three wine and cannabis pairing recommendations to feature at your next holiday party featuring THC Design’s signature strains.
Pairing #1: Sauvignon Blanc x THC Design XJ-13 Sativa
Why this works?
We’d recommend a classic New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc - a light-bodied white wine with fresh acidity and no oaky characteristics. Sauvignon Blanc often presents refreshing notes of citrus, guava, lemon, and lime plus green, grassy undertones which makes it a perfect match with THC Design’s XJ-13. This Sativa-dominant strain, which is THC Design’s most popular strain, is fresh and uplifting with notes of lemon, lime, tangerine and pine needle combining perfectly with the white wine’s bouquet. Lemon or citrus is the primary aroma match with this pairing due to the Limonene terpene and is a common scent found in both wine and cannabis. White wines naturally display a lot of citrusy characteristics, and Limonene also produces this same profile in cannabis.
Pairing #2: Rosé x Strawberry Banana Hybrid
Why this works?
Rosé wines typically have soft notes of strawberry. We’d recommend serving a crisp, light-bodied Rosé sourced from the Central Coast of California. Look for a blend of Grenache and Syrah. Rosé produced from these varieties often display bright acidity with ripe red fruit on the nose followed by soft citrus, but can also reveal some savory undertones due to Grenache and Syrah’s bold flavors. This type of wine is a perfect match for THC Design’s Strawberry Banana Hybrid. This strain exhibits bright strawberry aromas that later morph into subtle banana-like characteristics. It’s the sweet, savory combination that works well with this pairing. Similar to Rosé’s slight citrus notes, Strawberry Banana is high in Limonene which ties the two together nicely.
Pairing #3: Syrah x Kosher Kush Indica
Why this works?
For this pairing, look for a Syrah sourced from the Santa Ynez Valley in California. Syrahs typically display notes of dark red fruit, black pepper, and earthy undertones. This big, bold red deserves to be paired with a big, bold Indica-dominant strain such as THC Design’s Kosher Kush. With this pairing, the earthiness of the wine and cannabis is highlighted due to the strain’s seductive aromas of rich earth and fruit. This “earthy” characteristic is due to the Myrcene terpene. Keep in mind that some Kosher Kush samples have been tested with over 29% of THC, so this pairing is something you’d want to enjoy in a chill, relaxed environment.
Looking for more pairing ideas? Explore our Terpene Aroma & Pairing Guide for other holiday recommendations.
If you want to add some extra sparkle and excitement to your next gathering, try these pairings out. Remember to be adventurous with your palate - there are so many incredible pairings out there! Have fun, be safe, and enjoy the holidays.
Peace, Love & Cannabis,
The Herb Somm
December 5th event with Eaze at Gracias Madre, West Hollywood
Gracias Madre, West Hollywood