Gifts for the Cook i​n the Family​

City Wine Cellar: Give the Gift of Wine to Your Favorite Chef This Holiday

Gifts for the Cook i​n the Family​‘Tis the season for incorporating wine in holiday cooking. offers a few recommendations and ideal wines to gift the cook in your family this holiday season.

Did you know that choosing cooking wine requires as much care as choosing drinking wine? When you cook with wine, the alcohol evaporates, leaving the rest behind. Cheap cooking wines contain sodium and other additives that aren’t good for your health. Not to mention, the flavor of low-end wine degrades, rather than enhances, your food’s taste.
That’s not to say you should pour your most expensive wines into your food — go ahead and serve them with dinner. But keep in mind that the quality of the wine you use in your cooking is just as important as the quality of any of your other ingredients. If you wouldn’t drink a particular wine, don’t use it in your cooking.

Tips for Cooking With Wine
Cooking with wine seasons your dishes and adds moisture without adding unnecessary fat. Generally, you want to use white wines when cooking delicate, mildly flavored foods and white meats. Use red wines to cook heavy, boldly flavored foods and red meats.

  • White wines — like Bella Sera pinot grigio — are great for cooking fish, poultry and cream sauces.
  • Red wines — such as Chateau St. Jean Merlot Sonoma — are great for cooking red meats and pasta dishes.

When choosing a cooking wine, remember that its flavor will contribute to the dish. Sweet wines will sweeten a dish, whereas dry wines are less likely to overpower the other ingredients.

Gifts for the Cook i​n the Family​Wine Varietals to Try
If you know someone who likes to cook, consider a gift of cooking wine this holiday season. You’ll want to buy your favorite cook a few bottles of wine, because when you start cooking with wine, experimentation is a necessity.

Encourage your favorite cook to play with flavors, experimenting with varietals such as:

  • A splash of Kendall Jackson Grand Reserve Chardonnay added to Alfredo sauce.
  • A dash of cabernet sauvignon like Layer Cake Pure Cabernet added to lasagna sauce.
  • Complement the flavors in a robust dish with a dry and heavy red wine like Tait the Ball Buster.
  • Jazz up a mild dish with a Bartenura Pinot Grigio.

The subtle and varied food flavors found in wine make it a great way to spice up your cooking during the holidays — and all year round. Just make sure you buy a quality wine that truly adds to your dish. Help a cook you love discover the joys of cooking with wine; give the gift of cooking wine this holiday season.

About City Wine Cellar
City Wine Cellar was founded in May 2009. It is located in Staten Island, New York, and is one of the largest beverage e-tailers, offering more than 3,000 products. For more information, or to order cooking wine for your favorite chef, visit: and find them on Facebook and Twitter.