Must have wines for Christmas!
Wine Importer | Wine List Consultant | Speaker
I know what you are thinking, what on earth are we going to drink at Christmas right? I know that's all I really think about. The food will take care of itself...the most important thing is how you are going to get through the hectic day with family and friends in the classiest way possible. The key to not getting too boozy at Christmas is to make sure you are eating enough and drinking really good wines. The better the wine, the easier the hangover...
Here is my list of MUST HAVES to make your Christmas party the most memorable one yet!
If there is any time to bring out that good bottle of Champagne, Christmas is the time. I highly recommend buying something a little special, a wine that offers a story that you can tell the family and friends. Why do you want something with a story? Simply, it creates a deeper level of connection to that wine in that moment. You and your friends will always remember the story of the Champagne House you choose to drink at Christmas time simply because it's a day where emotion is almost at it's peak!
Try a Prestige Cuvée such as Sourire de Reims by Henri Abelé!
If you are having a Christmas Lunch in the Australian sun, ensure you start your lunch with Rosé. To me, rosé is the perfect wine to drink before you start drinking. It's refreshing, good with canapés and a light way to start the day. IF there are more than 5 people at your gathering, invest in a Magnum of Rosé. I've spoken about rosé before and at Christmas, it is a bit of a novelty and a good ice breaker. People start mingling, taking photos with it, having a joke about it. Even better if you can get your hands on a Jeroboam but Magnums should suffice. Between 5 people, magnums will give you 2 glasses each so it's a good start.
3) White Wine
In Australia, prawns, oysters and various seafood is quite a staple at Christmas so I believe it's important to have a well-rounded white wine to satisfy this...especially if you have run out of Champagne by this stage. Aim for something interesting (once again, to break the ice and start a conversation) or aged. Find something aromatic and dry that can satisfy everyone from Sauvignon Blanc to Chardonnay drinkers. I prefer to drink French whites as I find them well integrated between oak, acid, texture and fruit weight.
4) Red Wine
If it's time for the Christmas ham to come out, it's time to bring out the big guns. Let's bring out some reds. Satisfying red wine drinkers is always an interesting experience. What if they want Pinot Noir? Shiraz? Do they like Oak? No Oak? Are they allergic to tannin? OH NO!! What to do?
Personally, I'm more of a Champagne and Rosé drinker at Christmas but if I were to serve red, I'd be looking for a Tempranillo or Malbec. Light, fruity, crowd pleasing and easy to drink rather than big and oaky... they are more likely to satisfy everyone rather than a couple of people.
Of course, if you are just having a Christmas dinner, maybe it's time to raid the cellar for something a little more special! Recently, I drank a 2006 Brunello di Montalcino and it was incredible and something to talk about... that's what Christmas is all about right? Creating experiences with good food and great wine.
5) Vin Santo del Chianti DOCG
Whether you have a Panettone or a sticky date pudding for Xmas dessert, nothing is better than a glass to Vin Santo del Chianti to finish off your dinner. It's sticky, smooth and sweet. It's definitely something to try and you haven't already. The Italians drink it with a cantucci but a piece of sticky date is fine too!
Give Sensi Vin Santo del Chianti a try!
So, hopefully, that gives you an idea of where to start for your Christmas wine shopping. In terms of how much to buy, remember 5 people = 1 bottle of wine so if you know your family and friends love wine and aren't driving, calculate 2-5 glasses per person before you shop! Especially if it's a whole day affair.