LCBO Food & Drink Holiday 2021

Welcome to the Holiday 2021 issue of LCBO Food & Drink.


The Holiday Issue




#KeepCrushingIt @BodaciousWine

Please drink responsibly.


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PLEASE ENJOY RESPONSIBLY Trademark of Canada Dry Mott’s Inc.


5 oz Canada Dry Premium TM L gh

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R m y u f v u k l gl ss w h s l d h fill with ice. Muddle cranberries with lime juice in a cocktail shaker. Pour in tequila, Grand Marnier and Campari, then shake until mixed. k l gl ss d p w h Canada Dry Premium TM Light Tonic Water. Garnish with cranberries and lime zest. S s l d

1 oz Grand Marnier

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Garnish: lime zest & cranberries


a great cocktail starts with a great mix



128 GOOD AND PLENTY By Jennifer MacKenzie Making big roasts for the holidays—plus sides and leftover meals too—is all a matter of planning. 136 DRINKS THAT DAZZLE By Christopher St. Onge Visually striking seasonal cocktails they’ll still be talking about next Christmas!


144 FESTIVE FEASTING By Michelle Lucas Larving

Dine like they do in Denmark with this traditional holiday dinner party menu. 152 FRESH STARTS By Eric Vellend A stunning array of appetizers to get your party going.

158 BRING ON THE BUBBLY By Chris Johns

Everything you need to know to choose, serve, pair and gift sparkling wine— in every style and for every budget. 168 ICE CAPADES By Marcella DiLonardo Cocktails, snacks and sweet treats to enjoy outside around the fire. 174 THE BIG FINISH By Christopher St. Onge Show off your skills with a show- stoppingly glamorous dessert centrepiece to wow the crowd.

ON THE COVER Assorted Brigadeiros, recipes on page 52. Photography by James Tse





Departments FOOD 49 flavours SWEET DELIGHTS By Soo Kim Chocolate treats to add to your baking and gifting repertoires. 63 Traditions FROM THE CHEF’S KITCHEN By Amy Rosen Four talented Ontario chefs share the holiday recipes that mean the most to them.

95 Entertaining TRADITION WITH A TWIST By Michelle Rabin Beloved Hanukkah classics are reimagined with a fresh, new approach everyone will applaud. 103 Festive HOUSE PARTY By Miranda Keyes Skip the gingerbread and try three spectacular houses made from unique sweet and savoury ingredients.

207 Basics WASTE NOT, WANT NOT By Christine Tizzard Tips, recipes and hacks for making the most of the food you buy. 217 Twists A BUNCH FOR BRUNCH By Michelle Lucas Larving A beautifully curated board is the answer for brunch, whether savoury, sweet—or both. 225 Plain & Fancy POUR IT ON By Heather Trim Any way you make it—quick,

241 Seasonal REMAINS OF THE DAY By Jesse Vallins Transform yesterday’s leftovers into today’s irresistible sandwiches.

79 better For You VITAL VEGGIES By Eshun Mott

191 baking COMFORT AND JOY By Lindsay Guscott

Delicious and nutritious, these go-to vegetable dishes will add to your culinary repertoire.

When all is said and done, nothing beats a richly filled pastry-topped savoury pie!

Shop the issue at fdholiday21

classic or deluxe—gravy enhances a holiday feast.



Please enjoy responsibly. La Vieille Ferme Cotes du Ventoux, LCBO # 263640.




drink 57 Entertaining

PITCHER THIS By Eric Vellend

Easy-to-make low-alcohol pitcher drinks are an ideal solution for no-fuss entertaining.

71 Gifting A LITTLE SOMETHING By Shawna Pereira and Tara Cochrane

Ready-to-drink products are also ready to gift, especially when you pair themwith something extra. 87 stocking up LOCAL ATTRACTIONS By Dick Snyder Ontario has all you need for stocking your bar and discovering fabulous gifts and treats.

109 Quick & Easy PLAYING FAVOURITES By Victoria Walsh

Top-selling wines we know you have on hand, paired with no‑stress recipes for easy mid‑week suppers.

183 Beer ROOM AT THE TABLE By Jordan St. John At feasts, by the fire and more, this is the year to welcome beer to the party.

231 Spirits BRANDY IS BACK By Charlene Rooke

117 Seasonal NIGHT SHIFT By Christine Sismondo and Irene Matys

199 Twists BOTTLED UP By Michelle P. E.Hunt and Laura Panter

Trendy new twists mean the great Christmas spirit is having a moment again.

Seasonal nightcaps and the perfect little snacks to enjoy alongside.

Make hosting—and gifting— easy with bottled cocktails you can mix ahead of time.

In every issue

283 RECIPE INDEX 284 The Back Page A SPLASH OF STOUT By Michael Elliott Dark, malty stout adds depth to an orange‑glazed spice cake.



25 I NSIDE SCOOP By Eric Vellend The latest bits, bites and sips to keep you in the know.





Make holiday magic year after year with Le Creuset.

Vancouver · Edmonton · Calgary · Winnipeg · Toronto · Montréal · Qu é bec · Halifax

Coming next issue Available March 2

A hint of maple Sensational new cocktails starring maple flavours Rhubarb revelations Scrumptious recipes for spring’s first crops Easter Sunday brunch Original dishes for a family celebration

Fries with that? Tips and secrets for perfect frites

Many of the products featured in this issue are available to purchase online at

Chief Marketing and Digital Officer, LCBO Vanda Provato Editor Jody Dunn Art Directors Karen Lim

Publication Assistant Piper MacFadyen Production Assistant

Everton Smith Food Stylists Lindsay Guscott, Eshun Mott, Christopher St. Onge Prop Stylists Christine Hanlon, Catherine MacFadyen, Andrea McCrindle, Shelly Shnier, Genevieve Wiseman Contributors

For general inquiries about Food & Drink magazine or information about LCBO products and policy, please contact helloLCBO online at, or call toll-free 800•668•5226 or 416•365•5900. TTY Only: 416•864•6898 or 800•361•3291. All advertiser applications are subject to the terms and conditions of the LCBO’s advertising agreement. Food & Drink is published five times a year by the Liquor Control Board of Ontario. Volume 29, Number 2. Food & Drink is printed on paper that contains 10 percent post‑consumer fibre. Food & Drink is recyclable in communities participating in magazine recycling programs.

Cathy Cicchini Drinks Editor Charlene Rooke

Food Editor Eric Vellend Content Editors Suresh Doss Victoria Walsh Publication Coordinator Leslie Bolter Graphic Designers Dominique Patafio Pat Turbach Production Coordinator Judy Haverkort

Publication Mail Agreement No. 40064521 Return undeliverable Canadian addresses to: Food & Drink , 55 Lake Shore Boulevard East, Toronto, ON, M5E 1A4 ISSN 1195-5988

James Chatto, Tara Cochrane, Marcella DiLonardo, Michael Elliott, Lisa Fielding, Lindsay Guscott, Michelle P. E.Hunt, Jessica Huras, Chris Johns, Miranda Keyes, Soo Kim, Michelle Lucas Larving, Jennifer MacKenzie, Irene Matys, Eshun Mott, Laura Panter, Michelle Rabin, Amy Rosen, Christine Sismondo, Dick Snyder, Michele Sponagle, Jordan St. John, Christopher St. Onge, Christine Tizzard, Heather Trim, Jesse Vallins Publisher Wayne Leek Advertising Sales

Not all of the wines, spirits and beers mentioned in Food & Drink will be available at all LCBO stores. Prices are subject to change without notice. Cette publication est également disponible en français.

Kirby Miller, Beaches Media Services



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From our President & CEO

Dear friends, Welcome to the Holiday issue of Food & Drink ! Whatever occasion and traditions you celebrate this season, I hope our magazine will provide all sorts of inspiring ideas as you safely entertain family and friends. It is a great time of year to include local Ontario products in your plans, while making sure, of course, to discover and enjoy responsibly. As always, we want you to find what you are looking for this holiday season and are working hard to make sure that global supply chain issues have as little impact on our selection of international products as possible. If you notice occasional prod- uct unavailability in the busy weeks ahead, know that your local LCBO teams are ready to help make alternate choices easy. Even as we look forward to the fun of the weeks ahead, I am also thinking back over the last year and the commit- ment the LCBO made to enhance our customer experience and to give back to the province. I am particularly proud of our Spirit of Sustainability (SoS) social impact platform, created to support Ontario’s social and environmental needs. The latest Impact Report on SoS’s achievements, including the over $13.6 million our dedicated employees and compassionate customers fund- raised to help create a positive impact in our communities, and news of future plans can be found in this magazine: it is well worth reading. Many other good things are on the horizon. Just in time for the holidays,

the LCBO will have launched our new loyalty partnership with Air Canada’s Aeroplan, providing market-leading value to our loyal customers and suppliers. Aeroplan members will be able to earn points on purchases at LCBO retail stores and redeem points for LCBO gift cards or any of Aeroplan’s travel and merchandise offerings. In 2022, we’re making some import- ant changes to Vintages to ensure more Ontarians have access to the very best wine the world has to offer. We are expanding our assortment of Vintages favourites that are ‘always available’ and introducing regular Vintages online exclusive releases which can be shipped to your store of choice or your home. We encourage you to visit in store and online to discover our extensive Vintages collection in the new year. At the same time, we will be launching the first phase of our e-Commerce transfor- mation with a new and improved website. This marks a major milestone in our journey to provide you with a best-in- class online experience, including improved search and browsing capability, increased product availability accuracy, a better cart and check-out experience, and a unified web and mobile experience. There is plenty to look forward to! With best wishes for a safe and happy holiday season,


George Soleas President & CEO, LCBO



Made with the ½nest ingredients from around the world, coupled with high levels of ½ne carbonation, our mixers are sure to make any occasion sparkle Fß èat extra holiday sparkle




Where to buy & cocktail ideas visit: @fevertreecanada | #mixwiththebest


Happy holidays from our team!

When we started planning this issue, we couldn’t know for sure (for the second year in a row) what the holi- days would look like. But if the past 20 months have taught us anything, it’s how to improvise, taking the best-laid plans and adjusting them to whatever the situation requires. We hoped this year would mark the start of a return to holiday hosting beyond our bubbles, and that is the optimistic approach that runs through these pages! One of my favourite stories in this issue is “Good and Plenty” on page 128. It features four holiday roasts that make perfect centrepieces for any feast—plus the ideal side dish to serve alongside. In addition to all that, I love that recipe developer Jennifer MacKenzie suggests carving off enough of the roast before you serve it to make a delicious dinner in the following days—such a tremendous idea at this time of year! Leftovers are one of the greatest perks of the holidays—they make future meal prep a snap—and you’ll find them starring in a couple of other stories in this issue too: “Remains of the Day” on page 241 and “Waste Not, Want Not” on page 207. Gifts are of course top of mind during the festive season, and there is nothing more meaningful than a homemade gift from the heart. First stop should be “Sweet Delights” on page 49. There you will find four dec- adent chocolate treats—including our cover stars—that are sure to please the chocolate lover on your list. For a more ambitious project, gather some friends

and plan a day of baking any of the savoury pies starting on page 191: all the lucky recipients will have to do is heat and serve on any cozy Sunday this winter. On the drinks side, there are bottles scattered throughout this issue that make perfect gifts (in- cluding all things local on page 87), but let’s pay special attention to the premade cocktails featured in “Bottled Up” on page 199. Pre-mixing big batches of cocktails makes good sense when hosting a party—meaning more time spent with guests and less bartending—but also make unique gifts to bring to a party or as tokens of appreciation throughout the holidays. Whether it’s nightcaps with small bites (page 117), delicious and nutritious dishes that will help keep your energy up (page 79) or a modern Hannukah dinner (page 95), we’ve tried to think of something for every holiday moment. Whatever the occa- sion or the size of your gathering, we hope you’ll be inspired—and please be sure to tag us @lcbofoodanddrink when you are sharing on Instagram— especially if you give any of the holi- day houses starting on page 103 a try. From all of us at Food & Drink , we wish you a happy and safe holiday season full of good cheer, good food and good friends!


Shop early to avoid disappointment You’ll find an amazing selection of wines, beers and spirits available on right now— including some unique holiday-themed products. If you see something you like, don’t hesitate to click “buy now”—limited release products tend to go quickly, and potential inventory delays mean




there may be some availability issues.



Host Happier

Everything you need to merry like you mean it. is a registered trademark of Indigo Books & Music Inc. and used under license.

Explore in store or at

Sugar, Spice and Craft Ice™.

Take your holiday drinks to the next level. LG’s Craft Ice™ maker produces elegant, slow-melting round craft ice. Have a peek at what’s in the fridge by knocking twice on the InstaView™ door to Ņnd the perfect Ņnishing touch ingredient. Once your drink is done, you can use the ThinQ® app to control key features from anywhere.

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Shape and clarity of ice may vary with settings, water supply and home use conditions.



Make your shopping simpler this holiday season with top-quality Vintages Essentials . It’s time to start that exciting annual hunt for wines with the “it” factor: sumptuous, stylish and as unique as the people you’re shopping for. The Vintages Essentials Collection is a perfect place to find a wine that fits the bill. These top-quality wines from top producers are vetted by our experts and cover the world’s best-loved styles, from lighter, crisp whites to powerful, velvety reds – think Pinot Grigio, New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc, Beaujolais, California Cab, Aussie Shiraz, Amarone and much more. On a budget? No problem! Great value is a defining quality of the Essentials: these wines start at just $19 (with options that ring in at plusher prices too). When you give a Vintages wine, you’re giving the history and passion of the people who crafted it; no matter the style or cost, it’s a gift that’s sure to impress.

Look for Vintages Essentials in-store or shop online at

Kilikanoon Killerman’s Run Shiraz Full-bodied & Smooth 925453 l (XD) l 750 mL l $19.95 A plush wine that makes a perfect holiday gift! Rich and velvety with notes of apricots, plum jam and mixed berries. Its modest price tag belies its quality.

Please enjoy responsibly.

Emiliana Coyam Full-bodied & Smooth 63891 l (XD) l 750 mL l $29.95

Francis Coppola Diamond Collection Ivory Label Cabernet Sauvignon Full-bodied & Smooth 521021 l (D) l 750 mL l $24.95 A California classic from a star producer, this bold Cabernet Sauvignon is an approachable crowd-pleaser loaded with flavours of fruit, herbs and toasty oak.

Frescobaldi CastelGiocondo Brunello di Montalcino Full-bodied & Firm 650432 l (XD) l 750 mL l $53.95 For the connoisseur on your list. This luxurious Brunello, crafted in the rolling hills of Tuscany, can be cellared for up to 10 years.

Louis Jadot Beaujolais-Villages Light-bodied & Fruity 365924 l (XD) l 750 mL l $18.95 If someone on your list loves Beaujolais, this one is sure to please. From one of Burgundy’s best-loved producers, it features floral, red plum and candied berry flavours.

Named for the oak forests in Chile’s Colchagua region, this elegant organic red with floral and cassis notes is a blend of Syrah and the country’s signature Carmenère.

Featured products are available at select LCBO stores. Prices subject to change without notice.



Final Touch® Smooth Move Corkscrew

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Final Touch® Revolve TM Spirits Glass | Roll & Spin! Sip your favourite gin, rum, tequila, whisky & other spirits from these 100% lead-free crystal glasses. Place glass onto side and gently roll or spin like a top, to create a natural liquid motion increasing the nosing of aromas. Available in 1 or 2 pack and ideal for tasting up to 2 oz (60 ml).

Final Touch® Champagne Cork Beverage Bin

What better way to keep your champagne or wine chilled than with an ice bucket shaped just like

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Final Touch® Hockey Flight Set Enjoy game night with this Hockey Shot Flight set. The 4 included skate shot glasses fit right into the solid wood hockey stick serving board for easy serving. Write directly onto the stick tape with chalk.



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Final Touch® Wheel’n TM Glass Collection

Final Touch® Cocktail Mixing Set This multi-function cocktail mixing set includes the essential tools for pouring, stirring and straining the perfect cocktail. Special: $29.99 | $19.99

Available in lowball, highball and beer glass sizes, these glasses are perfect for any automotive lover!

Use our free glass personalization tool & upload your own picture or design to create a one of a kind custom glass. Simply design, print & insert face up into the bottom of the glass.

Specials Scan or visit the link below to view our selection of exclusive deals for great holiday gifts.





Final Touch® GoSip TM 3-in-1 Straw Set Adjustable from 4.5 and 6 inch

lengths, to 10.5 inches, GoSip TM is a versatile reusable straw ideal for bars, restaurants, travel or workplace. Glass or stainless steel available.

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How to buy For more information & where to buy these products scan this QR® Code or visit this link:




Inside scoop The latest bits, bites and sips to keep you in the know.

26 Fun with small bottles 28 Rum 101 30 No strings attached 30 Quick ’nog 30 Vessel mania 32 Plant-based apps 32 Super fry 32 Knockout brunch 34 Glass act 34 Grateful bread eggnog cheat sheet, the latest ready-to- drink mixed packs and advice from a local chef on cooking the big meal. The holiday season is upon us, and it’s going to be extra festive this year. We’ve got plenty of gifting ideas, including Niagara’s finest icewine, gorgeous linen aprons and a next-level air fryer. We’ve also made hosting a breeze with an

By Eric Vellend | PHOTOGRAPHY by Maya Visnyei



34 Back in black 36 The mock-up 38 Ice, ice baby 38 Kwanzaa 38 Mix master 40 Persimmons 101 40 Man with a plan 40 Dongzhi Festival 42 The right ’tone 42 Simbang Gabi 42 Good catch

Grateful bread 34




Fun with small bottles Small bottles make great little gifts over the holiday season, especially when you present them in an imaginative way. They can also add a delightful and original touch to your entertaining décor. 8 things

By Genevieve Wiseman Photography by James tse

A cocktail Advent-ure A hanging shoe organizer becomes any cocktail lover’s inspirational “Advent calendar.” Use some of the pockets for bar tools and fill the others with small bottles such as St-Germain Elderflower Liqueur (LCBO 515205, 200 mL, $14.95) and Reif Estate Vidal Icewine VQA (LCBO 544791, 200 mL, $24.95) to fire the mixological imagination.

Bar in a jar Some brands offer festive sampler sets of miniatures (a great way to explore different iterations of Jack Daniel’s, for example). Put four or five different bottles in a suitably embellished glass jar and present them to the spirit lover on your gift list.

Sippable place setting Cut out a Christmas tree from a piece of felt to decorate each guest’s dinner plate. Cut two slits near the top and tuck in an elegant little bottle—we chose the Poli Grappa 5 Baby Barrel Experience set, sold in a mixed pack of five (LCBO 22070, 5 pk, $99.95).



Brunch in a box Small cans of bubbly, like Joiy Sparkling (LCBO 486456, 250 mL, $4.90), are one com- ponent of a pint-size brunch hamper. Just add orange juice, a mini jar of jam and a bag of freshly baked scones.

Alternative Christmas tree

Some miniature bottles are so pretty they can dou- ble as Christmas ornaments—we chose a sampler set of three different Mozart chocolate liqueurs (LCBO 624221, 3 pk, $19.20). Hang them from a sturdy fresh-cut branch set in a tall vase filled with twinkle lights.

Champagne display Have fun on New Year’s Eve using vases as ice buckets for your Champagne and surrounding them with smaller bottles your guests can use for toasting or take home as a gift for Mimosas the next morning.

Mull it over Here’s a great way to upgrade a small bottle of red wine you take to a party: Fill a plastic holiday orna- ment with mulled wine spices, and then tie it around the neck of the bottle with a fancy bow.

Comfort zone Give three pampering gifts in one—a pair of comfy slippers, two chocolate bars and a half-size of Gérard Bertrand Côte des Roses ( LCBO 11234, 375 mL, $10.95) in its charming embossed-glass bottle.




Rum 101 SEASONAL SIPS STYLE GUIDE Distilled from molasses or sugar cane juice, rum is produced mostly in the Caribbean and Latin America. Its flavour profile is greatly influenced by the colonization of the area in the 16th and 17th centuries. Let’s look at the three main styles.

From light, unaged Cuban to funky 12-year-old Jamaican, rum offers more styles than any other liquor. It stars in a wide range of iconic cocktails, and it has great value to boot. Here is a short guide to this special spirit.

Colour wheel While it’s difficult to neatly classify rum by colour, here is the basic trio.

Spanish Produced in countries such as Cuba, Puerto Rico and Vene- zuela, these rums are made in column stills and then heavily filtered, which yields a lighter, smoother, more approach- able spirit. There is a reason it’s the most popular style of rum! Havana Club 7 Year Old LCBO 53140, $36.95 English English-style rum is a combi- nation of column- and pot-still rums, with the latter lending more richness and spice. De- pending on the blend, these rums can range from light to bold, and they’re found in countries such as Guyana,

White Either unaged or lightly aged rum that has been heavily filtered. Top drink: Daiquiri

Amber Rum aged in oak barrels. It gets darker, smoother and more complex with time. Top drink: Mai Tai

Dark Rum aged in charred oak barrels, often with the addition of caramel or molasses. Top drink: Dark ’n’ Stormy

CACHAÇA 101 Distilled from Brazilian sugar cane juice, this rum-like spirit is the key ingredient in a Caipirinha.

Bermuda and Trinidad. El Dorado 12 Year Old LCBO 60608, $45.95


Spiced Daiquiri While a tart, green Daiquiri is an alfresco drink at heart, the versatile classic can be easily winterized for sipping by the fireplace. For our Spiced Daiquiri (recipe on page 254), we replace mild white rum with a robust aged variety, and instead of simple syrup, we use wildflower honey infused with mulling spices. The proverbial cherry on top is an aromatic garnish of a lime wedge studded with cloves. Shake up a few for cocktail hour, and pair them with our saucy Mini Tostadas with Pulled Chicken & Pineapple (recipe on page 257). Visit to watch this drink being made.

Jamaican While technically an English style, Jamaican rum has such a distinct funkiness it de- serves its own classification. It’s made in pot stills, which are responsible for its aggres- sive personality. The robust variety is often balanced with softer rums in cocktails.

Appleton Estate 12-Year-Old Rare LCBO 14355, $48.95



T he h earT O f r um


SEASONAL SIPS Quick ’nog To enjoy eggnog without the work and big-batch commitment, here’s a cheater’s guide to whipping up a delicious drink.


Vessel mania GIFTING When giving the gift of spirits, you’ll find a number of liquors packaged in bottles so beautiful the empties are objets d’art . Here are three worth seeking out. No strings attached More often than not, aprons are giv- en as gag gifts—puns over function. Not the aprons from Linen Way. Designed in Canada and made in Europe using top-quality linen, these aprons are stylish and comfortable, with big pockets and no strings around the neck or waist. “It fits most body types with great coverage, and it’s very simple to slip into,” says Kathie Jordan, who sells the aprons online and at her home décor shop, Kathie Jordan Design, in New Ham- burg, Ont. (just west of Kitchener). “They can even be worn as daywear over a T-shirt and leggings—they’re that nice!” The Cuisine line, which comes in 24 colours, is the most popular, and there’s even one for kids. Linen Way Aprons, $48 to $88,

Base Many local dairies make high-quality eggnog for the holiday season. Our favourites include Kawartha Dairy (, Hewitt’s (, not shown, and Harmony Organic (

Alcohol Rum, brandy and bourbon are egg- nog’s big three. But if you want to mix things up, try Smirnoff Peppermint Twist ( LCBO 465278, $29.20), a minty vodka, or Kahlúa Vanilla ( LCBO 21619, 375 mL, $16.95) for a hit of coffee flavour. (Since Kahlúa is a liqueur, you might need an extra splash of cream to balance its sweetness.)

Garnish To give the drink that made-from-scratch look, top it with a dollop of whipped cream and a cinnamon stick. Or go with a festive flourish, like a mini gingerbread man or a rim of crushed candy canes.

Mazzetti Grappa di Nebbiolo da Barolo in Decanter LCBO 348011, 700 mL, $169.95

Isle of Harris Gin LCBO 16100, $88.50

Gold Bar Whiskey LCBO 11689, $64.95

Shop the issue at




CrEaM LiQuOr


Vodkow cream is a delicious blend of fresh Canadian lactose-free cream and Vodkow vodka made frommilk sugar. Enjoy it on ice, in coffee or as the perfect canvas for creamy cocktails.

$3 OFF NOV 29-JAN 2 LCBO # 18224


Knockout brunch MATCHMAKER Brunch is an opportunity to serve a wide variety of drinks—beyond the usual pot of coffee. To help, we’ve put together a handy chart outlining the right matches for your favourite midday dishes. For inspiration in the kitchen, check out our brunch boards feature on page 217.


Plant-based apps

Soft Drink


Beer or Cider


If you’ve got vegetarians coming over for a cocktail party, plan on serving them something more festive than crudités and chips. Fortunately, that’s become much easier with the increasing number of plant-based meat substitutes. The latest is from Vancouver-based TMRW Foods. Their products are a touch lighter, without the greasiness and aftertaste that turn some people off modern ersatz meats. Try TMRW Ground in cocktail meatballs or Hickory Maple Sausage in faux pigs in a blanket. Available at Whole Foods and Longos; to find a store near you, visit



Off-dry cider





Chardonnay or dry sparkling wine

Pilsner or wheat beer

Scotch & Soda

Sparkling lemonade


Bloody Mary

Unoaked Gamay or Chardonnay

Amber or brown ale

Sparkling water

SHOULD I BUY Super fry

One of the biggest complaints about air fryers is they’re too small. Cuisinart got around the problem by fusing one with a full-size toaster oven, and the resulting appliance can cook up to three pounds of food at a time. Yes, it does an excellent job on wings and fries, but its bigger capacity allows you to take on more ad- vanced recipes, like doughnuts and fried chicken. This model also has low settings for proofing dough and dehydrating. Cuisinart Digital AirFryer Toaster Oven, $449.99,

Kir Royale

Rosé sparkling wine

Pear cider

Apple juice


PUNCH FOR BRUNCH Light, fruity and low in alcohol, any of the pretty pitcher drinks in “Pitcher This” (page 57) would make a memorable start to the midday meal.




Please enjoy our products responsibly.




Grateful bread Sure, a magazine subscription is a nice gift, but have you ever given a bread subscription? Here are a few options for the carb lover in your life.


Glass act

Give a one-of-a-kind gift or take your holiday table set- ting to the next level with handcrafted glassware from these Ontario artisans. By Jessica Huras

Dear Grain The Breadwinner subscription at this Hamilton bakery has a lot of flexibility: You can choose from four styles of rustic sourdough and have them delivered every one to four weeks anywhere in Ontario and Quebec.



1 Infinite Glassworks Working in Flesherton (south of Owen Sound), Kate Civiero creates pieces that are beau- tiful yet functional—she pays close attention to how shape and colour impact the drink- ing experience. Her tumblers and hexagonal glasses (ideal for beer, cider and cocktails) feature bright hues and geo- metric silhouettes.

2 Gray Art Glass This collection includes beer mugs, wineglasses and tumblers, many featuring distinctive swirl patterns around their bases, which add an elegant pop of colour. Set up in Merrickville (south of Ottawa), owner Michael Gray works mainly freehand, and his pieces are extra-durable thanks to their thickness and his expert craftsmanship.

3 Artech Studios Couple Terry Craig and

Nat’s Bread Company This bakery offers three kinds of

Jennifer Wanless-Craig give new life to recycled glass bot- tles in their Tory Hill studio in Haliburton. The result is a quirky array of upcycled beer glasses, tumblers and decant- ers that bring a little whimsy to your glassware collection while reducing our collective

biweekly subscriptions in one-, three- or six-month commitments for delivery in the Ottawa area. The Baker’s Choice gets you sourdough, soft pretzels and two surprise loaves.

carbon footprint.

Back in black If you’re looking to add something new to your holiday cookie tin this year, direct your attention to our Black Cocoa Shortbreads (recipe on page 253). The star of these delicate biscuits is black cocoa pow- der, which undergoes a heavy Dutch processing that removes most of the acidity and turns it dark as night. In addition to a dramatic colour, it gives baked goods a deep, chocolatey flavour. (If you’re a fan of Oreos, you know what we mean.) Black cocoa is available at specialty baking shops and Bulk Barn ( COOKIE OF THE SEASON

Blackbird Baking Co. If you live in central Toronto, this be- loved bakery offers three packs—Indi- vidual, Family or Bread and Pastry—for weekly delivery. You can also choose different add-ons every week, from flaky croissants to homemade granola.



C elebrate

For many the best part of the holidays is gathering with the ones they love and sharing a feast – often with a golden roasted turkey at the centre of the celebrations.

Even if your guest list is smaller this year, choosing a whole turkey means you can enjoy delicious leftovers. Or you can buy your favourite cut of turkey, roast it with fragrant herbs and spices, and fill your home with that familiar, delicious holiday aroma.

Our Herb Rub is a classic combination of rosemary, sage, thyme, salt and garlic powder mixed and rubbed under the skin.

Visit for this and other great recipes!


The mock-up In a spirit-free cocktail, mixology’s golden rules need to compensate for the missing taste, warmth andmouth feel of alcohol. Start with a 4:1 ratio of mixer to tart or sour ingredient, and then try half as much sweet as sour (being mindful that your mixer might contain sugar too). Add splashes or dashes of strong or bitter, if desired, plus something to give it texture. Finally, a garnish appeals to all the senses! By Charlene Rooke SEASONAL SIPS

Mixer Plain or flavoured soda water; tonic water (Fever-Tree, Fentimans); sparkling citrus soda (San Pellegrino); coconut water; a ginseng drink (Farmaroot) Sour Lemon, lime or grapefruit juice; muddled blackberries or cranberries; brine; white balsamic or apple cider vin- egar; a flavour like tamarind, rhubarb or hibiscus Sweet Fruit juice, agave nectar, honey, maple syrup, flavoured syrup (cinnamon, vanilla), orgeat (beet, carrot); spice (chili or black pepper, ginger, nutmeg); alcohol-free spirit (Sobrii, Spiritliss) Bitter: Cocktail bitters, coffee or tea, tonic water, hop water, bitter Italian soda (Brio), alcohol-free amaro (Novaro) Texture Carbonated drink; blended ice or frozen fruit; coconut milk; egg white, chickpea liq- uid or pineapple juice, shaken to create foam Garnish Flavoured sugar or salt rim; citrus twists or wedges; fresh or preserved fruit; pickled asparagus, beans or peppers; olives; cucumber ribbons; fresh herbs Strong or Bitter Strong: Vegetable juice

Tonic water

Agave syrup

Celery bitters


Grapefruit juice

Grapefruit twist


bitter lemon soda + lime juice + pineapple juice + pickled jalapeño brine + jalapeño slice

sparkling coconut water + white cranberry juice + mint syrup + lime wedge

unsweetened tea + lemon juice + maple syrup + cocktail bitters + fresh mint

For a collection of seasonal mocktail recipes, visit




WHAT’S NEW Mix master

While stocking your bar for entertaining, jump on the ready-to-drink trend with a variety of large mixed packs. Don’t hesitate, as these holiday exclusives go fast.

Kegs aren’t just for beer anymore!

Cottage Springs Blood Orange Vodka Soda Mini Keg LCBO 21901, 5 L, $29.95

Ice, ice baby GIFTING Made from über-ripe grapes left to freeze on the vines, icewine is Ontario’s most famous oenological export. It also makes a fabulous gift. Local icewine usually features

White Claw Variety Pack #2

LCBO 21938, 12 pk, $28.95

VQA (LCBO 447441, 375 mL, $49.95) uses Riesling grapes, which give the wine more stone fruit flavours and a balancing acidity. The sweet, rich elixir is excellent with fruit or custard desserts, blue cheese or foie gras. If you get one as a gift, you can also use it to sweeten a Brandy Old Fashioned, to soak cake layers for trifle or as a dip for stollen and panettone.

SoCIAL LITE Holiday Edition

Party Pack LCBO 21909, 15 pk, $35.95

Vidal grapes, like the intense, honeyed Château des Charmes Vidal Icewine VQA (LCBO 565861, 200 mL, $28.95), which comes in a small bottle at a more affordable price. Cave Spring Riesling Icewine

Black Fly Get Cozy Holiday Mixer Pack LCBO 21910, 12 pk, $30.90

TRADITIONS Kwanzaa When: December 26 to January 1 What: A seven-day celebration of African- American culture. Similar to Hanukkah, a candle is lit every night on a kinara, and a feast called Karamu is held on the sixth day. Essential Dish: From jerk chicken to jollof rice— any dish from the African diaspora.

Smirnoff Ice Life of the Party Pack LCBO 21902, 12 pk, $28.95




PAIR WITH WHITES, REDS, TINSEL AND hOLLY. Decorate your Holiday charcuterie board with Black River Cheese. Crafted from the finest of local ingredients, for the most festive occasions. Toast the season with our latest pairing suggestions at


Man with a plan ASK AN EXPERT

Since running a restaurant is like throwing a huge dinner party every night, we asked Mark Baker, chef-owner of Merk Snackbar ( in Hamilton, for tips on hosting the big holiday meal.

There are somany steps to planning a holidaymeal. Where do you start?

First, make sure you know how many people are coming, as it could help reduce costs and time. Second, plan your protein, because it’s the centrepiece. Whether it’s turkey, ham or beef, source that as soon as possible. Then decide on veg and starch, and you’ll have a list by the end of it. What task is best delegated to family and friends? Cleanup. Many people use their best china during the holidays—10 people can lead to 40 dishes. That’s a lot of dishes! Plus there are cooking pans, serving platters and more. But make sure you get all the plates scraped and on the counter by the sink, so they can just come in and do the dishes. They’re still guests. What are a few tips on prepping dinner? I do all my chopping the night before and put food into containers so it’s ready to go. Any sauces or gravies: Make those ahead of time too. Peel and put potatoes in water in the fridge so you can just dump them in the pot. All that chopping takes time and space; you need that for dinner. Howdo you get around the challenges of putting out a bigmeal in a home kitchen? Use your barbecue as an extra full-scale cooking space—grill some vegetables, heat up the po- tatoes. Use all of the things you have available. And throw your drinks outside, even on a back balcony. One of the coolest things I discovered as a teenager was keeping drinks in the snow. That’s genius! Any final advice? Accept that you’re not going to be a part of the party. You’re the host, making sure everyone else is having a good time. You will celebrate at the end.

Persimmons 101 IN SEASON

From fall into early winter, deep-orange persimmons show up in the produce aisle, laid out in boxes like shiny jewels. Here’s the scoop on this mysterious fruit.

tards and cookies. Fuyus are usually thinly sliced and added to wintry sal- ads with strong cheeses and nuts. Howdo you use them in cocktails? The flavour of persim- mons works well in a wide range of cocktails with many different spirits. Ripe Hachiyas can be muddled into drinks, whereas Fuyus are bet­ ter cooked into simple syrups or a purée. For a garnish, a thin slice of Fuyu is best.

and need to fully ripen before eating. (Biting into an unripe Hachiya is trau- matizing.) To hasten the process, place them in a paper bag with a banana. They’re ready when the skin can barely contain the jelly-like flesh. Crisp Fuyus look like a squat tomato and can be en- joyed when firm. Sharon fruit are eaten like Fuyus. Howdo you cook with them? Hachiyas are more com- monly used in desserts, where the silky flesh is mixed into cakes, cus-

What are they? Low in acidity, with a honey-like sweetness, persimmons are tree

fruits that have been culti- vated in China for millen- niums. Most persimmons imported into Ontario are from California, though you can often find the Israeli cultivar Triumph marketed as Sharon fruit.

What varieties are available?

The two basic varieties are Hachiya and Fuyu. Acorn-shaped Hachi- yas are loaded with mouth-puckering tannins

Look for recipes featuring persimmons at

TRADITIONS Dongzhi Festival When: December 21

What: A millenniums-old Chinese holiday to celebrate the winter solstice and days of longer daylight to come. It’s a time for families to congregate and pay respects to ancestors. Essential Dish: Tangyuan, a multicoloured glutinous rice dumpling served in a sweet or savoury broth.




T H E Foreign Affair


NOV. 29 - JAN. 2



Treat your friends and family to a glass of something truly extraordinary this festive season. Made in the old-world ripasso style of Italian wine-making, The Conspiracy 2018 offers rich aromas of red cherry, raspberry and black pepper with full fruit flavours that are sure to keep the holidays merry and bright.


VINTAGES #149237 . Please enjoy our products responsibly.



PRO TIP: “If you forgot about your panettone and it went stale, make bread pudding or French toast. In a bakery, everything has

From the Feast of the Seven Fishes to oysters on New Year’s Eve, seafood plays a big role during the holiday season. Here’s a quick guide to pairing a few favourites with popular drinks.

a second life.” Bianca Mazzi

Salmon Robust, fatty salmon allows you to bend the rules and serve red wine with fish—choose something light and acidic, such as Gamay or Pinot Noir. If you prefer white, go with a barrel-aged Chardonnay from Ontario, B.C. or California. Shrimp It’s hard to think of the holidays without the ubiquitous shrimp ring. The chilled crustaceans pair brilliantly with a wide range of white wines, from South African Chenin Blanc to dry Ontario Riesling to bracingly cold Prosecco. Try pilsner or the most famous oyster pairing, Guinness. well with a number of dry, tart white wines, including Muscadet, Chablis and New Zea- land Sauvignon Blanc. Beer is also terrific: Caviar Champagne is most commonly poured with these luxurious fish eggs, but it should be bone-dry and crisp, such as a “zero-dosage” or Blanc de Blancs. Vod- ka, served straight from the freezer, is another excellent choice. Oysters Raw oysters work

A wall of beautifully boxed panettone is a familiar sight at supermarkets this time of year. Yet they’re all baked in huge quantities meant for a long shelf life. Well, not quite all. There is a movement among local bakers to make Italian Christmas cake the old-fashioned way: by hand, in small batches, using the best ingredients. But it’s not easy. The right ’tone LOCAL

around it to make sure the panettone is just right.” Sometimes that means going in for a midnight baking session. Once they’re baked, the stress isn’t over. “Within not even one minute of coming out, they have to be hung upside down, or they will start sinking,” says Mazzi. “If something goes wrong, like too much fat, they will be beheaded.” She’s referring to when the tops fall off, a deflating moment to cap a three-day process. Between the time, risk and expensive ingredients, artisanal panettone carries a hefty price tag, but it’s more than worth it. You can taste the patience, love and tradition in every bite. Small-batch panettone is also avail- able at Bread by Us ( in Ottawa and Golden Hearth Bakery ( in Kitchener, Ont. Terroni (, which makes them at their bakery arm, Sud Forno, in Toronto, will ship anywhere in the province.

Traditional panettone is naturally leavened by a finicky sourdough starter called the “madre,” which needs to be fed regularly with flour and water to keep it alive. “The window at which she works perfect for panettone is so tight,” says Bianca Mazzi, referring to the madre’s ability to leaven the butter-rich dough. Mazzi, along with her life and business partner, Rodney Alléguède, makes acclaimed panettone at Goûter (, their mini chain of patisseries in Toronto. “You have to structure your day

TRADITIONS Simbang Gabi When: December 16 to 24 What:

A nine-day series of dawn masses for Filipino Catholics leading up to Christmas. It’s also known by its Spanish name, Misa de Gallo , or “Mass of the Rooster.” Essential Dish: Puto bumbóng, a steamed purple rice cake served with butter or margarine, coconut and muscovado sugar.





Nothing brings family and friends together more than the holidays.

The speed of sensor microwave cooking, combined with the flexibility of convection cooking, make the SMD2499FSC Smart Convection Microwave Drawer the must- have luxury for your modern, smart home. The dual convection fans and dedicated heating elements provide turntable-free baking, roasting, grilling, and air frying. If used as a secondary cooking appliance, you can bring a meal to the table even faster.

Designed for your dream kitchen …and for the busy holidays.

For recipe ideas, visit our blog at

© 2021 Sharp Electronics of Canada Ltd. All rights reserved. Sharp, Microwave Drawer and all related trademarks are trademarks or registered trademarks of Sharp Corporation and/or its affiliated entities. Product specifications and design are subject to change without notice. *Requires Sharp Kitchen app to enable the smart features. **SMD2499FSC MW Drawer shown with an optional SKCD24U0GS pedestal. Sold separately.

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Inspiring, audacious, unique, the wines of Portugal bring a new dimension to your holiday entertaining WHATEVER THE SCALE of your celebrations this year, the idea of getting together with family and friends will be front and centre in the coming weeks. And fromcasual gatherings to elegant dinner parties, wine plays a starring role. It’s the perfect moment to explore the vibrant, versatile wines currently being created in Portugal. You’ll be delighted by what you find. Old knowledge and long experience have come together with fresh ideas and the latest technology to create a new generation of Portuguese wines that are renowned for their quality and full of expressive personality. Portugal’s wine-growing regions are amazingly diverse. Climates range from the cool, moist Atlantic breezes of Vinho Verde to the sun-parched heat of the Douro valley; vineyards flourish among themountainous pine forests of Dão e Lafões, on Alentejo’s cork oak plains and all through Lisboa’s multiplicity of coastal landscapes. The country is also home to over 250 indigenous grape varieties, traditionally used in a countless variety of blends. It’s true that Touriga Nacional, Arinto and Castelão may not be household names in the rest of the world, but these varieties have long and noble histories – superbmaterial for today’s more avant- garde winemakers. What does all this mean to wine lovers in Ontario, heading into the holiday season? A wonderful opportunity to discover the diversity, quality and exceptional value of Portuguese wines! From fresh, delicate whites to profound, full-bodied reds, there is a wealth of food-friendly choices for everymood and occasion – and for every budget.

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