Festive wine matching
Team the right wine with your turkey, pudding, stilton and more with our expert tips
We all know the white for fish and chicken, reds for red meat guideline but if beyond that your wine choosing ￼￼tends to veer towards nicest label… or even countries you’ve had the best holidays (just me on that one?) then fret not, helps is at hand.
We asked the experts at Muddy Award-winning South Downs Cellars, which has branches in Hurstpierpoint and Lindfield and also sells online, for their favourite matches to some festive food.
BEST WINES TO PAIR WITH CHRISTMAS DINNER
For the most popular Christmas Day meat we recommend either a full-flavoured white wine or a medium-bodied red with low to medium tannin and relatively high acidity to accompany the light, low-fat meat, such as:
2016 Bourgogne Pinot Noir, Domaine Fichet (Burgundy, France) Light to medium bodied with red cherries and strawberries with a slight savoury aspect.
2015 Chateau Macquin, St Georges St Emilion (Bordeaux, France). Fruit forward in style with concentrated ripe red fruits alongside tobacco and subtle hint of sweet oak spices.
Or try something a little different…2016 Pouilly Fuisse, Ch. de Chaintre (Burgundy, France). The late harvest period has given this Pouilly-Fuisse a lovely balance between purity, minerality and complexity.
A much fattier, richer meat than turkey, the wine choices also need to be bolder – either a complex white which can cut through with its acidity, or a medium-bodied red that favours fruit over tannin:
2016 Cotes du Rhone Villages Rouge, Guillaume Gonnet (Rhone, France). Red and dark fruits, cherries, spices and liquorice on the nose and palate.
2017 Mount Horrocks Watervale Riesling (Clare Valley, Australia). Bracingly fresh, lemon zest and juice mineral and flint-like palate, bone dry and with crunchy vitality.
Or try something a little different…2014 Barolo “Albe”, G D Vajra (Piedmont, Italy). Delivers juicy Marasca cherry, star anise and an almost salty note alongside taut, polished tannins and racy acidity.
If you’re looking for something light and fresh to go with smoked salmon or other fish offerings, try the following:
2017 Macon Lugny Les Charmes, Camille Paquet (Burgundy, France). Notes of green apple, ripe Meyer lemon and spring flowers, it’s medium to full-bodied, with good concentration, amplitude and freshness
2016 Sancerre, F. Girard (Loire, France). White currant, nettle and elderflower notes, with a fair amount of richness to balance out the crisp acidity
Or try something a little different…2017 Assyrtiko, Lyrarakis (Crete, Greece). Pure floral aromas with ginger spices and delicate notes of ripe citrus.
BEST WINES TO PAIR WITH CHEESE
It’s impossible to match one wine to a wide variety of cheeses but if the obvious choice of Port is too heavy try the following with traditional blue cheeses, particularly Stilton:
2016 Felino Malbec (Mendoza, Argentina). Blackberry aromas, together with notes of graphite, tobacco and vanilla, make it very elegant.
2012 Herdade do Portocarro (Peninsula de Setubal, Portugal). An attractive, lingering palate with balanced aromas of preserved fruit, toast, green coffee and sweet spices
Or try something a little different…2015 Vendanges d’Autrefois (Saussignac, France). Golden in the glass with aromas of botrytis, apricot, vanilla and peaches, but also some spicy aromas.
BEST WINES TO PAIR WITH SWEET FOOD
Whether it’s with your Christmas pudding, mince pies, Christmas cake, or the cheeseboard or even a rich, smooth pate, these are indulgent tipples to savour in front of the fire!
Muscat de Beaumes de Venises, Guillaume Gonnet (Rhone, France). Finesse and with a certain elegance and aromas of peach, apricot and leeches.
San Emilio Pedro Ximenez Sherry (Jerez, Spain). Sweet with intense flavours of dried fruit and a long, unctuous finish. Liquid Christmas Pudding!
Or try something a little different…Show Liqueur Muscat, de Bortoli (South East Australia). This wine tastes like liquidised, chilled toffees, nuts and raisins.
For the G&T lover who has everything we suggest the exclusive 2018 Autumn/Winter gin from the award winning Cambridge Distillery. Limited to just 200 bottles and only just released you can guarantee they won’t have tried this outstanding rich and robust siping gin. It features base notes of fennel, heart notes of rosemary and sage, with a lively citrus top note derived from lemon thyme and with have it £5 off until 31 December.
We also have a Christmas selection of three seasonal beers in a gift box for just £10.
Pre-Christmas we also have our exclusive Sussex Gin Advent Calendar for £89.95 and Craft Beer Advent Calendar for £69.96 available in stores and to order online right now!
FOR A PARTY
Sussex sparkling has taken the world by storm and there is no better glass of fizz to raise a toast with this Christmas! We’re currently offering the delicious Hindleap Sparkling wines from Bluebell Vineyard in Furners Green at over 15% off. These well-balanced, fruit forward wines offer zest on the nose and a lingering finish. Get your party off to a sparkling start with six bottles of the Hindleap Classic Cuvée for £147 and six bottles of the Hindleap Rosé for £150.
Wine tasting event
All the wine and spirits above and many others, will be open for trying at South Downs Cellars’ Hurstpierpoint Christmas Tasting at Hurst Bowls Club 2pm-6pm on Sun 25 Nov. Tickets are £15 per person from in store or online. Discounts are also available online.
************COMP CLOSED – WINNER – Susan Lewis ***********
WIN A BOTTLE OF SUSSEX SPARKLING!
Win a bottle of the sparkling 2014 Hindleap Rosé from Bluebell Vineyard courtesy of South Downs Cellars in our festive prize draw.
How to Enter
It’s easy peasy! All you have to do is:
LIKE the Muddy Stilettos Sussex page on Facebook, (the PAGE not just the post) and then, in the comment box under the pinned post about the prize draw, name one of the two villages with a South Downs Cellars store.
Not on Facebook? Just send an email with WINE in the subject line to email@example.com along with your answer and we will subscribe you to the weekly Muddy Stilettos newsletter instead.
The closing date is midnight on Wed 28 November 2018.
T & Cs
The winner will be the first out of the hat after the closing date.
The prize is non-transferable and there is no cash alternative.
The draw is not sponsored by, nor endorsed by, Facebook.