Scotch might be a highlander’s libation of choice, but when a wee dram isn’t available, Outlander has proven that wine is a perfectly acceptable substitute. Since Jamie Fraser (Sam Heughan) even did a stint overseeing his uncle’s wine business in Season 2, it makes perfect sense that the show now has its own limited edition wine collection, courtesy of Lot18.
If you’re lucky enough to snag one of the 2500 bottles available for each of the four labels (or if you’re a wine aficionado and can track down a similar blend), we’ve figured out the perfect pairings for four of the most gut-wrenching scenes on the show, since each one is guaranteed to make you want to drink your feelings.
So grab a friend, a bottle and some tissues and take a trip back in time with Jamie, Claire (Caitriona Balfe) and Frank (Tobias Menzies) just remember to drink responsibly; a hangover definitely won’t ease your heartache.
The Wine: NV Claire Randall Vin Blanc
Tasting Notes: An incredibly balanced white blend of Viognier and Pinot Gris. The vibrant flavors of white peach, ginger and baking spice are focused by a minerally core.
The Scene: Season 1, episode 6, “The Garrison Commander”
Many Outlander scenes could be described as a punch to the gut, but this one is literal just when Claire feels like she might have gotten through to Black Jack Randall and uncovered a hint of humanity beneath his polished exterior, the cruel captain floors her with a vicious and unexpected blow. It’s hard to stomach, but it definitely shows us what kind of man our heroes are up against.
The Wine: 2015 Frank Randall Vin de Pays d’Oc Cabernet Sauvignon
Tasting Notes: This densely colored red reveals both fruit and floral aromas. Black currant, black plum and dark cherry flavors are accompanied by violet and dried herb notes. These characters repeat on the palate and are supported by balanced acidity and moderately firm tannins.
The Scene: Season 2, episode 1, “Through a Glass, Darkly”
After a traumatized Claire returns from the past, her husband Frank is eager to pick up where they left off, but he soon comes to realize that their relationship has been irrevocably changed by her time away, especially when she reveals that not only has she fallen in love with another man, she’s also pregnant with Jamie’s child. The anguish on Frank’s face in those moments is heartbreaking, but we see the real impact when he retreats to Reverend Wakefield’s shed and proceeds to destroy the contents in a fit of impotent rage and grief. That performance is definitely worth raising a glass or two for.
The Wine: 2015 Claire Fraser Willamette Valley Pinot Noir
Tasting Notes: Fruit forward, with ripe black cherry, black raspberry, light cola and a hint of underbrush. A crowd-pleasing style of Pinot Noir.
The Scene: Season 2, episode 7, “Faith”
Forget about raising a glass, this one requires a full bottle. A tour-de-force performance from Caitriona Balfe makes “Faith” one of the most unforgettable episodes of the series so far, and the moment when Claire sees her stillborn daughter for the first and last time and sings her a beautiful, devastating lullaby will remain etched in our hearts forever.
The Wine: 2014 Jamie Fraser Paso Robles Red Blend
Tasting Notes: Displaying many of the characteristics found in the red blends of the Southern Rhne, the wine is concentrated and extracted, featuring an elevated acidity and minerality that provide lift and focus.
The Scene: Season 1, episode 16, “To Ransom a Man’s Soul”
Liquid courage was invented for the harrowing encounter between Jamie and Black Jack Randall at Wentworth Prison, anchored by two of the most courageous performances ever committed to screen from Sam Heughan and Tobias Menzies. Jamie (and our hearts) may have been broken by his ordeal, but we never doubted that Claire could help put him back together. Slinte!
Outlander Season 3 will return to Starz in 2017. Seasons 1 and 2 are available on DVD, digital and Blu-ray, including the newly released Season 2 Collector’s Edition.