Joy to the World Holiday Wine Match

First wine awards to crowdsource great holiday wines under $25 via an international battle of the bottles on social media

OTTAWA, Nov. 13, 2013 /CNW/ - The search for the best holiday wine and food pairings launches today with the Joy to the World Holiday Wine Match at Canadian wine drinkers will crowdsource the ultimate holiday shopping list of wines under $25 so that they can pour like Santa, but save like Scrooge.

"Whether you want a delicious dinner party wine or a special bottle to give as a gift, this is a list that you'll be checking more than twice for both the naughty and the nice," says Natalie MacLean, editor of Canada's largest wine review site at

Unlike traditional competitions judged by experts, the Joy to the World Holiday Wine Match allows wine lovers themselves to choose their favourite pairings via social media and real-time, online voting. The Twitter hashtag is #WHWM.

Wine lovers can nominate and vote for their favourite wines under $25 as pairings for six international holiday dishes: latkes, the Jewish holiday dish of potato pancakes to celebrate Hanukkah; baccala, the Portuguese and Italian dried and salted fish dish for Christmas dinner; Moroccan lamb, the slow-cooked savory stew to celebrate the end of Ramadan on the Islamic calendar; collard greens, the African dish that's part of the feast for Kwanzaa; roast turkey, the centerpiece of Canadian and American holiday tables; and fruitcake, the United Kingdom dessert made from candied fruit and nuts.

Nominations and voting close November 21 when the top five wines in each category move to the finalist phase for just 12 days, as the holiday countdown begins. Wines from each country will vie to be named the best wine with a particular holiday dish.

Winners will be announced December 3, giving Canadians suggestions for the best wines under $25 to crack open during their holiday gatherings and meals.

"We're going to deck the halls and tables with bottles of holiday wine to help celebrate the spirit of the season," says MacLean. "I think we can all drink to that."


Competition details

About Natalie

Canadian journalist Natalie MacLean is the only person to have won both the M.F.K. Fisher Distinguished Writing Award from the James Beard Foundation and the M.F.K. Fisher Award for Excellence in Culinary Writing from Les Dames d'Escoffier International. She is the author of the bestsellers Red, White and Drunk All Over and Unquenchable: A Tipsy Quest for the World's Best Bargain Wines.

Natalie is the editor of Canada's largest wine review site and gathers together the largest Canadian wine community on Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, LinkedIn and Google + Video Hangouts. She launched the first Canadian mobile wine app, now the only one on all three major platforms (iPhone, Android, BlackBerry), and the only Canadian wine app that Apple features in its Pocket Sommelier Essential Apps.

Natalie will not be nominating or voting for wines in the Joy to the World Holiday Wine Match. Instead, she will be moderating the competition, including coast-to-coast wine video chats using Google + Hangouts.

Image with caption: "Joy to the World Holiday Wine Match. (CNW Group/Natalie MacLean)". Image available at:

Image with caption: "Joy to the World Holiday Wine Match. (CNW Group/Natalie MacLean)". Image available at:

SOURCE: Natalie MacLean

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