Gong hei fat choy, friends! In many Asian cultures, what we eat / drink, especially during Lunar New Year, can serve as an invitation for the kind of energy or meaning we wish to give to our lives.
For example, the Cantonese word for vegetable, choy (cai in Mandarin), rhymes with the choy in gong hei fat choy, which means fortune. As a result, lots of leafy greens, particularly lettuce, are consumed during the festive season as a wish for wealth in the coming year.
Below are my top Lunar Libations for 2022's Year of the Water Tiger, which I shared on CTV Your Morning on February 1st.
Click here or the image below to watch the segment! (Please fast-forward to the 1:58:45 mark.)
- Bachelder Wines “Bai Xu” Chardonnay | VQA Four Mile Creek, Niagara | available across Canada, limited stock
- In the Year of the Tiger, the Northeast is supposed to be a great spot for good financial feng shui, so why not enjoy a glass of Bai Xu Chardonnay, made in the northeast of our continent? Thomas Bachelder is one of Canada’s best winemakers and the grapes in this golden coloured wine are from Jackson Bai, or Bai Xu, the Chinese owner and grower of one of Canada’s oldest vineyards. (You could also invite good financial energy by placing a gold object in the NE corner of your home.) A really beautiful, elegant wine to inspire many future fancy days ahead.
- Raymond Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon | Napa Valley, California | available across Canada
- For general good fortune all around, you cannot go wrong in any Asian culture by rocking some red and gold during Lunar New Year, the luckiest colours of all. This velvety Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon tastes as smooth as the label feels and would be an amazing host gift for any Lunar New Year celebration. Make this glass even more prosperous by pairing it with lamb chops, because lamb in Chinese is Yang, which rhymes with the Yang in ying yang, and means action and movement – kick off the year with Big Yang Energy!
- Ippakusuisei Tokubetsu Junmai Ryoshin (sake) | Akita, Japan | available in BC, AB, ON
- The element of Water is very important this year, as it’s the year of the Water Tiger. Water is also incredibly important to the flavour and texture of quality sakes that draw upon local sources, and in this case the character for Water is even part of the brewery’s name. In a very general sense this year’s Water Tiger might symbolize big changes, so if you want to welcome some movement into your life: job, partner, house… Start sipping! This is best slightly chilled, try it in a wine glass to better appreciate the aromas.
- Meukow Feline Cognac VSOP | France | available across Canada
- I can’t present drinks for the Year of the Tiger and not include any jungle cats! Meukow is a historic, very good quality Cognac whose signature animal has been the panther since the 1990s. Cognac is a wonderful after-dinner sipper and pitch-perfect gift for any Asian friends or clients this year. Those wishing to invoke the strength and power of a Tiger this year, this is your beverage!