How to Throw a Wine-Friendly Game Day Party

You don’t have to be a wine lover to Throw a Wine-Friendly Game Day Party. With 5 easy tips, you’ll be sure to impress your wine-loving guests while cheering on your favorite team for a big win!

This post has been sponsored by ​Dark Horse Wine​. All thoughts and opinions are my own. This content is intended for readers who are 21 and over.

While football watching and beer go together well, wine and football is my favorite paring! While I love my wine, I don’t expect everyone to be a wine expert. I’m here to help your next game day celebration be wine friendly.

When you don’t drink wine, it can seem fussy and mysterious. There are lots of so-called rules of wine drinking, most of which are completely silly. We don’t need a 5-step tasting ritual before we can enjoy a glass of vino, and you aren’t expected to be a sommelier.

5 Tips for a Wine-Friendly Game Day Party

#1 Wine Glasses are a MUST – Glassware does matter to wine drinkers. No one wants to drink wine from a plastic cup, but don’t get hung up on investing in a variety of different shaped wine glasses. Watching the big game is always an exciting celebration with lots of movement and activity. Avoid messy spills and broken glasses by choosing stemless wine glasses instead. You can find a basic, inexpensive standard-shaped stemless wine glasses in most stores and online.

How to Throw a Wine-Friendly Game Day Party

And to give your glasses a football flare, use a chalk marker to embellish them (it will easily wash off after the game). Your guests can also use the chalk marker to write their name on any glass to avoid any mix-ups!

 #2 Don’t worry about Pairing Wine and Food – While there are absolutely wines and foods that go together better than others, no one is expecting you to offer a wine tasting during the big game! Serve all your normal game day fare and let the wine drinkers worry about how picky they are when it comes to pairing.

These tips are just for game day parties, they are the easiest way to make any gathering wine-friendly.

But just so you know, the rule of thumb is lighter colored wines go best with lighter flavored foods and darker colored wines pair best with bold flavors. Game day foods cover all bases!

My go-to game day snacks are charcuterie, chips & salsa, popcorn, veggies with homemade ranch dip and BROWNIES!

#3 Serve GOOD Wine – Choosing a good wine can be difficult, even for avid wine lovers. Most people assume that good wines always come with a hefty price tag, and while I suggest avoiding the cheapest options, there are MANY that are budget friendly.

That’s why I love Dark Horse Wines! They take the guess work out of picking out a good bottle, whether for a celebration at your home or to give as a gift.

How to Throw a Wine-Friendly Game Day Party

What I love about Dark Horse is that it’s a premium wine that’s affordably priced!

“It’s no secret we do things a little differently here. We’ve got a renegade winemaker who brings her balance of classic technique and game-changing innovation to every. single. bottle. The result is a collection of bold, flavorful wines that consistently breaks the cardinal rule of the swirling, sipping world: If it’s not expensive, it’s not good wine.”

I couldn’t say it better myself! The truth is, kickass flavor doesn’t come from a price tag. It comes from a winemaker who’s obsessed with quality. We think everyone should get to enjoy that.

#4 Serve BOTH Red & White Wine – Wine drinkers typically fall into 2 basic categories: red or white wine, so offering both is the safest bet.

My recommendation for a red is Dark Horse Cabernet Sauvignon. It’s a “full-throttle bottle” that perfectly balances big fruit flavors with deep, dry notes. Love this instant sensation for all my parties!

My recommendation for a white is Dark Horse Chardonnay. A little untraditional from your classic Chardonnay thanks to Dark Horse Winemaker, Beth Liston. You won’t be disappointed!

How to Throw a Wine-Friendly Game Day Party

Another suggestion is to also grab a Dark Horse Rosé for guests who prefer something a little sweeter, and maybe even keep a bottle of Dark Horse Sparkling to have on hand to toast a big win!

How to Throw a Wine-Friendly Game Day Party

#5 Chill the Wine –You’ve probably heard that different wine is best served at different temperatures; while it’s true, it’s not critical. About an hour before your guests will arrive, put your wine on ice. White, Rose and sparkling wines are best kept down in the ice for more chilling. Then, just rest the red on the top so it’s just lightly chilled.

I also like to keep a bottle of sparkling water in with my wine so that guests can opt for wine spritzer to avoid over indulging if the game goes into overtime!

How to Throw a Wine-Friendly Game Day Party

#6 Wine Bottle Opener – If you don’t already have a wine bottle opener in your kitchen, don’t forget to pick one up. Most places that sell wine will also sell openers. Nothing would be worse than having wine for your guests but nothing to open it with!

No need to fuss with a fancy gadget, just grab a traditional opener and leave the bottle opening to the wine drinkers.

These tips are just for game day parties, they are the easiest way to make any gathering wine-friendly.

These tips aren’t just for game day parties, they are the easiest way to make any gathering wine-friendly!

And promise to at least try a sip of the Dark Horse Chardonnay and Cabernet Sauvignon when serving them at your game day party. Who knows—you might like it more than you think! And make things easy and add all the items you need to your list below!


Yours in Health,

Hayley Ryczek

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