There are so much choice on the shelves for drinking with your Christmas dinner. Want to put something different on the table but not sure what? Here is a loose guide as to how best to match your wines to your meal…
Fish – A white with a medium to fuller body goes very well with fish as a general rule of thumb. A Chablis, a viognier, gruner veltliner, fiano or a zesty vermentino would be great with seared scallops & lightly grilled white fleshed fish. Want something a little rounder, then something like a lightly oaked sauvignon blanc. Those stylish French on the Riviera know that rosé will suit pink fleshed fish considering how well the two go together. Choose a dry pink rather than an off-dry or sweeter style and you can’t go wrong. Don’t forget – bubbles!!!! A non-vintage Champagne is a fine match to lighter flavoured fish and seafood, a prosecco or cava is good too. For pink fish, an Australian sparkling wine or any Brut or dry rosé fizz.
Turkey – is a richly textured dish but alone, without the sauce & stuffing, is not powerfully flavoured. You need something equally as rich but high in refreshing acid & this is where the modern Chardonnays and Pinot Gris come into their own. Don’t serve them too chilled, these should be chilled lightly to keep them in balanced. And you can still drink bubbles here too!! Why not try a vintage champagne or a Franciacorta.
Ham – Or if it just has to be red for your Turkey, then best to have something that is lighter in texture like a Sangiovese (Chianti), an elegant Pinot Noir or a Joven or Crianza Rioja. Big powerful wines such as Zinfandel from the USA or a big Barossa Shiraz are best left for conversation afterwards. Bubbles? A rich style of fizz such as Moet et Chandon, Roederer or Gosset will work with a baked ham. Or an Australian sparkling shiraz.
Pudding – Pudding is a tough act to match, usually it calls for a well fortified wine. An Australian Liqueur Topaque or Muscat are great companions for Christmas pudding. Alternatively, a chocolatey PX Sherry is also great or a tawny port. Basically, my philosophy is that if you can drizzle it over ice-cream, you can have it with pudding!! Here, I would leave the fizz til after the pudding. Let your bubbles be a course unto themselves!!!!
Merry Christmas & Happy Holidays!