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Oct 30, 2017

Halloween is, by far, our favorite holiday so this year we're reviewing fun traditions from around the world and matching wines with them. From the blood of Jupiter to drinking wine from a skull, we've got a spooktacular tradition for you to adopt!

 

Here are the 7 traditions we cover and the wines to match:

  1. SAMHAIN: IRELAND AND SCOTLAND
  • Ireland is the birthplace of modern Halloween. 
  • Origins were in Celtic and Pagan rituals and a festival called Samhain or Samhuinn (end of the light half of the year)
  • DRINKS: Scotch, Irish whiskey, Chilean wine – the most popular wine type in Ireland

 

  1. DÍA DE LOS MUERTOS: MEXICO
  • From November 1 to November 2, Mexico and parts of Latin America celebrate Día de los Muertos, which combines Aztec rituals with Catholic ones.
  • Offerings are left for weary ghosts. For the souls of children, families leave out toys and candy, adults get shots of mezcal and cigarettes!
  • DRINKS: Mezcal or Mexican wine from Valle de Guadalupe or Spanish wine to honor the roots of Mexico drunk out of a skull, the symbol of Dia de los Muertos

  

  1. KAWASAKI HALLOWEEN PARADE: JAPAN
  • At the end of every October for the past 21 years, there is the Kawasaki Halloween Parade. It's huge and elaborate: In 2016 more than 130,000 people attended.
  • DRINKS: SAKE, Champagne/Cremant

  

  1. PANGANGALULUWA: THE PHILIPPINES
  • On night of All Saints’ Day – November 1st -- children go door to door, often in costumes, to ask for prayers for those in purgatory.  
  • DRINKS: Tropical fruit, rice, sugar cane and coffee make "wine" in the Philippines, so so something with big American oak that has coconut flavors– Rioja or Zin in American oak will do!

  

  1. THE HUNGRY GHOST FESTIVAL: Hong Kong/China
  • The hungry ghost festival is a month or two earlier than Halloween but has similar traditions! Chinese people make efforts to appease restless ghosts, and feed their own ancestors. Food and drink are left out to sate the appetite of the hungry ghosts. 
  • DRINKS: French wine, since it’s the most popular wine type imported into China. Either Bordeaux or Burgundy, especially the 2015s which have been exceptional!

 

  1. OGNISSANTI: Italy (called I Santi on 11/1 and I Morti on 11/2) 
  • Halloween is becoming more popular in Italy but many still celebrate All Saint’s Day. Italians visit the graves of loved ones who have passed, place a red candle in the window at sunset, and set a place at the table for those spirits they hope will visit.
  • Every year the Catholic Church reminds people that Halloween is a “heathen tradition” but it's still becoming more mainstream!
  • Halloween-y wines: Aglianico del Vulture, anything from Sangiovese (blood of Jupiter),

 

  1. ALL SAINTS' DAY AND ALL SOULS' DAY: Germany
  • Similar to all Christians, on this day Germans honor the lives of the saints who died for their Catholic beliefs, as well as the souls of dead family members.
  • But they have an added tradition: hiding their kitchen knives so that returning spirits won't be accidentally harmed (or use the  knives to harm the living)...Hear M.C. Ice's theory on this one in the 'cast! 
  • Halloween-y wines: Walk a knife’s edge with high acid Rheingau Riesling or emulate blood with Apätburgunder from Rheinhessen

 

Happy Halloween!