fa to the la: how to unwind (hint: wine)


“Fa to the La” says a sassy new wine bottle bag on our gift it-and-go display, and that’s exactly the seasonal spirit we’re aiming for at Unwined. Let’s face it, one of the great things about being a grown up during the holiday-work-school hiatus is you can shop, serve, drink, and clink whenever you want to. As we begin to bid farewell to 2015 and think about all the ways we’ll be smarter in the New Year, let’s have the most fun mastering the all-day sip and nosh. It’s an art form after all, and naps ARE allowed.

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1) Start early but stay in your pjs
Whether your first sip is coffee or bubbles, do it in comfort and style. Grab your favorite mug or flute and treat yourself to a good old broadsheet newspaper read. My choice: Meinklang Prosa Frizzante and The Washington Post. Meinklang, a small, family run organic winery in southeast Austria, offers this limited production, crowd pleasing semi-sparkler. Prosa is a festive alternative to Prosecco and ever-so-slightly sweet with plenty of balancing acidity. Don’t forget to preheat the oven for homemade biscuits with Virginia’s own Surryano Ham and a drizzle of local honey. It’s the perfect pairing to this sparkling Rosé.

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2) Usher in the afternoon with a cocktail
While the kids dive in to their new toys and the adults catch up on sports (and life), it’s a great time to do a little pre-dinner prep and enjoy a simple and tasty cocktail that won’t knock you on your tush. If you already enjoy, or are simply Vermouth-curious, you’ll love this bittersweet Italian apertivo over a few ice cubes, adding as much soda or sparkling water as you like, and served with an orange slice. Cocchi Americano is an aromatized wine made continuously since 1891 from Moscato grapes and a secret blend of botanicals including gentian, cinchona, and bitter orange. Serve with a snack like our favorite triple cream cheese — Cowgirl Creamery Mt. Tam — and hazelnut Raincoast crisps. That should keep your family out of the kitchen until dinner time.


3) Night cap
This year marks a lot of firsts for Unwined but creating our very own label is one of the most exciting. 2013 Lanny Pinot Noir, named for my late father-in-law and from the extreme Sonoma Coast (Fort Ross-Seaview AVA), is special to us — honoring tradition and time with the ones you love. It is a must-have for Pinot fans and the perfect addition to any family gathering. Velvety and smooth, Lanny takes you from smoked fish and cured meats through to your main course: herb-crusted leg of lamb. Next the whole gang will want to snuggle up in front of a fire before calling it day. A very good day.

Visit us at either Alexandria location and we’ll help you uncork some of that special holiday cheer.

Secret sale for Stylebook readers!
We’ll let you in on a little savings secret: Every last Sunday of the month, Unwined offers a “Last Sunday Sale,” 20% discount on two bottles or more for our loyal email followers (cash or check only). Alexandria Stylebook readers can enjoy this savings Sunday, December 27th (just in time for New Year’s Eve!) with a one-time pay any way you like deal when you sign up to receive our weekly wine e-news. Stop in and say “sign me up!” or DIY at www.unwinedva.com.


  1. Avatar Jerri says:

    Thank you, Vanessa! That is all fun! Jerri

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