Christmas Dinner Wine Recommendations

Christmas is all about family time and no more so than gathering around the table for Christmas dinner. Preparations can go on for days beforehand but often we can neglect to put thought into what wines we’ll be drinking on the big day.

Getting wines that pair well with your Christmas dinner can seriously enhance your enjoyment of both the foods and the wines, so we’ve put together a couple of suggestions for some seasonal pairings.

Starters
Shellfish or seafood - a classic combination is a Riesling either on the sweeter side such as the Bladen Riesling from Marlborough in New Zealand or a drier style such as Sipp Mack’s Riesling from Alsace.

For something different why not try an Albarino from Rias Baixas in Spain. The Terre de Asorei will be a brilliant match and for those of you that don’t drink red wine, it will work well with poultry or pork for the main course.

Pate needs something a little richer and possibly off-dry. Vouvray demi-sec from Domaine Darragon matches perfectly here and will certainly bring your starter to life.

Smoked Salmon can be slightly oily so something to cut through this is perfect. Petit Chablis from Domaine Vrignaud pairs well as does the Domaine Darragon Vouvray demi-sec which we discussed for the pate.

Another alternative would be a Sauvignon Blanc and here we would opt for a Loire Sauvignon such as a Sancerre or Pouilly Fume but also a New Zealand special such as Tin Cottage Sauvignon from Bladen Wines in Marlborough.

If you’re having parma ham or Serrano ham, with a salty edge then something crisp and dry is needed here. Gave from Tenuta la Marchesa makes a great partner as does a white Rioja such as Sierra Cantabria’s white.

If you have any vegetarian’s coming, a chestnut-stuffed mushroom is a tasty seasonal offering and the Pares Balta Blanc de Pacs works seriously well and not only is it organic it’s also certified vegan too.

Main Courses
Turkey is the first thing that springs to mind and this is suitable for both white or red wines. This doesn’t need to be a heavy red and we’d suggest either a Beaujolais Villages from Didier Desvignes or if budget allows, maybe a Fleurie from Alain Coudert.

For a white wine, something from southern Burgundy would fit the bill so either a Macon Peronne from Domaine du Bicheron or a Pouilly Fuisse from the Chateau du Fuisse.

Red meat eaters may consider some Roast Beef. Burgundy is the obvious choice but this can be expensive so maybe a Syrah would be a better selection. We’d recommend the Buzzard’s Kloof Syrah from Rustenberg Estate in Stellenbosch.

A new World Pinot Noir would be a better value alternative so have a look at either the Paul Cluver Pinot Noir or Bouchard Finlayson’s Gilpin Peak Pinot Noir.

Salmon is a popular choice for non-meat eaters. Try either a white Burgundy which again can be a bit on the pricey side or the Reserve Chardonnay from Glenelly Estate in South Africa.

Cheese
Whether you have this before or after the pudding, if there’s Blue Cheese to be had, you’ll need something sweeter and port is the traditional pairing. However, if you fancy something a bit off-piste, try the Maury wines from al come du Roy in the Rousillon.

Pudding
Christmas Pudding is the traditional option and you’ll need something sweet for this. Straw Wine from Rustenberg is a good value option that filled with raisin fruit. Another suggestion is the red Recioto della Valpolicella from Luigi Righetti.

Trifle is another popular choice and the Straw Wine would be good again. But our preferred option is the Moscato Spumante from Astoria Vini. This is a fully sparkling wine like a Prosecco but with more residual sugar. Just like a fruit salad in a glass.

Whatever you’re eating over the holidays, enjoy the food, enjoy the wine and never forget the company.

Have a wonderful Christmas from everyone at Gerrard Seel.