Forget Dry January. Veganuary continues with organic tacos paired with a beautiful sparkling rose wine from Spain.
Disclosure: The wine in this post was provided as a media sample. All opinions are my own.
Have you ever partaken in dry January?
According to a study by the National Health Institute, many adults reporting drinking more alcohol at the start of the pandemic.
During the seven weeks between 1 March and 18 April 2020, there were large increases in alcohol sales in the U.S. Data from the week ending 21 March indicated that alcohol sales for off-premise locations (e.g., liquor stores) had increased by 54% and online alcohol sales had increased by 262% compared to sales data from the same week in 2019.
As a result, Harvard Medical School recommended that "you might want to start 2022 on a healthy note by joining the millions who abstain from alcohol during Dry January."
Among their tips for success, they recommend purchasing non-alcoholic drinks, avoiding temptation, creating a support group, and checking your feelings.
Another popular new year trend is Veganuary, where you try a vegan diet for 31 days. In that spirit, I thought i would try some making some plant based tacos.
Plant Based Tacos with 2 Fillings
I made two plant based fillings for the taco "meat": 1) organic chickpeas fried with taco seasoning and 2) Mexican crumbles made from the organic tofu company, Hodo Soy.
I topped each taco with avocado slices, fresh pico de gallo, and a squeeze of fresh lime.
While tacos are typically paired with sugary margaritas or fizzy cervezas that cut through meat and grease exceedingly well, I thought a lighter, refined sparkling wine would do well with these lower fat taco fillings.
2019 Naveran Brut Vintage Rose Cava
80% Pinot Noir and 20% Parellada, 12% ABV, $16
Details: Organically grown grapes from vines planted from 1975-1999. Located in the Alt Penedes subegion of Penedes wine region (Zone 5). Tended in clay and limestone soils at an elevation of 1,312 ft. Fermented on the lees in the bottle for 18 months.
Winery: Located 30 minutes outside of Barcelona, Bodegas Naveran only uses organic estate grown grapes. Currently, the estate has 272 acres of land in the town of Torrelavit.
Recommended pairings: Soft cheeses, fresh fruit, white meats (pork and chicken) and even richly flavored red meats. "This Cava is great for sipping on its own, especially for receptions and other “standing up” events" per the tasting notes.
Visual: Lollipop peachy pink
Aroma: White peaches, watermelon, strawberries
Taste: Candied oranges, apple Jolly Ranchers, pineapple. Rich, deep, and structured with a long finish.
Pairing: So good with both tacos. It cut through the creaminess of the beans and tofu fillings just like a good Mexican cerveza beer. Especially nice with the tofu, becoming more floral and lollipoppy sweet.
It did not do so well with the spice in the taco seasoning on the beans. Next time, I would just lighten up on the taco chili heat and also avoid spicy salsas.
The Last Drop
While plant based tacos may not be on your regular rotation, they are worth giving a try and pairing with a nice sparkling wine like Spanish