Pairing Wine with Motherhood
I consider this post to be the epitome of my blog. Parenting is no joke. It's beautiful, wonderful, joyful, heart-warming, hilarious, and at times it can also be one hell of a patience-testing, button-pushing, headache-inducing ride. Sometimes all within the same day! Yet, once the little is soundly asleep that night, you chuckle at the cute things that happened that day and forget the terrible 2-ings of just an hour prior. I get by with a little help from unconditional love....and wine. Behold, my favorite wines to pair with some very real-life situations of motherhood:
You've heard the word "no"
shouted roughly 3,000 times. Before 9am. In this situation, I like to choose something straightforward. An uncomplicated wine that tells you like it is, such as one made with the Sangiovese grape: Brunello di Montalcino or Chianti Classico
The Road Trip
You're trapped. You are the only adult in the car and your mini me is displeased by all your attempts to entertain them. You've craned your arm in strange backward positions to hand them various favorite toys while keeping your eyes on the road and maneuvering traffic like a beast, only to have the toys thrown to the side in anger. Most likely to an unreachable spot on the floor. He's made his way through all of his snacks, the songs on the radio aren't to his liking, you've exhausted all of his favorite conversation topics, and he hates your singing today. Eventually you just have to resort to tuning out the back seat tantrum with a clenched jaw and try not to focus on how much longer you both have to endure this. Does your head hurt just reading this? If so, then you've been there too. And a nice mellow wine is what you need, my friend. I'd go with a Muscadet sur Lie
Mom's arms and legs are apparently on the menu. Your child is feeling extra chompy for some reason and he won't stop doing it no matter the amount of scolding and real life sad face emojis. Rather than a contrasting pairing, I prefer to match wine and behavior with this one and pull out a meaty red, like a Syrah/Shiraz from California or Australia
Your child has recently discovered that his voice can reach a level very near to dogs being the only ones who can hear it....but it's just an octave low enough for it to leave your ears ringing. And he likes to use it often: excited, disappointed, angry, or just trying to get the cat's attention, it's the go-to outburst. In this case, I find that a quiet, brooding wine is in order at the end of the day: a Côtes du Rhône
The Discerning Palate
If your child is anything like mine, when they first started eating solid foods, they would eat everything that you gave them. Avocado, kale and peach puree, pears, sweet potato, butternut squash....I thought I had hit the jackpot with an easy eater! Until he was around 18 months old and learned that there are some things that taste a heck of a lot better than what he was eating. Now his meals consist of a select few dishes, I have to sneak vegetables into his diet, he likes to chew food then pull it out of his mouth and place it on the table, and his mozzarella must be fresh rather than deli sliced. Although I certainly can't blame him on the cheese preference, patience is the name of the game for now! Until his palate and table manners become a little more well-rounded, try pairing your chicken-nugget-free dinner with a wine that requires no patience - a white wine that is meant to be enjoyed right away: Sauvignon Blanc from New Zealand
Toys, hands, food, shoes...everything seems to be heading straight for your person today. Despite making him groundhog day what he just did until he can do it gently, he continues to find new objects or body parts to hurl in your direction. While this has certainly improved your reflexes, it's rather draining. I suggest something that you won't want to dodge: St. Emilion
Luckily, thankfully, and incredibly, this is the version of my little that I encounter most often. For the days filled with belly laughs, hugs, goofy playtime, clear communication, cuddly story times, and all the good things that you've always imagined parenting would be like, I suggest reaching for a white Burgundy or a Sonoma Pinot Noir. Heaven in a bottle is the perfect way to end days like these.
The Mom Victories
A victory always calls for something sparkly, yes? For those little moments throughout the week that make you give yourself a mental fistbump, a sparkling wine is in order.
- You've showered, are dressed in something besides leggings or yoga pants, and you're wearing makeup: Prosecco
- You finished your coffee before it got cold: Anjou Blanc
- You got your toddler out the door on time without a tantrum: Champagne
- You managed to work out 3 days this week despite your blistering schedule: Lambrusco
- Your child was on their absolute best behavior in the store: Cava
- You made it through 3 meals and 2 snacks without a speck of food getting on your clothes or in your hair: Moscato d'Asti
While it's not without its frustrations, being a parent is the most rewarding and fun job that I can think of and the good, great, and amazing moments far outweigh any bad behavior. I wouldn't be having another child if it was so bad, right? Put your game face on, keep your sense of humor, and remember that the tough moments will pass. Demonstrating proper behavior in the face of tantrums (instead of throwing your own) goes a long way too ;)
Mommin' ain't easy, but it's the best thing in the world. Happy Mother's Day to all of the other mamas out there!