ARE you dreaming of a wine Christmas?
We have just the bottles for you this festive season.
Tesco, Asda, Sainsbury’s, Morrisons, Majestic, Lidl, Aldi, M&S and Waitrose put forward bottles – both budget and blowout – for six Yuletide drinking situations.
Then we got wine expert Jilly Goolden to pick the best – and explain her choices.
She said: “You’re likely to have lots of different people round and want something everyone will enjoy. I’ve picked wines that deliver on the label and look great – but also on flavour and are warm, mellow, comforting and engaging.”
Here, we toast Jilly’s 12 wines of Christmas.
Pre-Christmas drinks party
Blowout: M&S Mount Bluff Brut NV, £13.50 – buy now
M&S Mount Bluff Brut NV is a wine with personality that teams up well with nibbles[/caption]
IF you spend a bit more on party wine, you want wow factor. This has it.
The smell is peachy, so richly Chardonnay. It’s creamy with toasty elements. Like baking biscuits. It’s rich but not sweet, no hard edges.
It stands up to canapes. I would not team it with cheese but with nibbles it’s great.
It’s wine with personality – and people will be sure to notice it.
Budget: Majestic Loves Fizz, £5.99 – buy now
THE daft label, showing someone opening a bottle which explodes in their face, gets you in the party mood right from the start.
This wine smells soft and floral, just off dry. Brilliantly bubbly, easy, sort of tastes like prosecco.
What is there not to love? Just glug it down. It doesn’t touch the sides. It’s a perfect party wine at a magnificent price.
Red for Christmas dinner
Blowout: Asda Orbitali Amarone Della Valpolicella, £14 – buy now
HAS an absolutely delicious, sweet, come-onish cherry scent. So inviting.
Rippling through in tandem you’ve got a gorgeous fruitiness and mysterious backbone.
It’s strong but deliciously fruity so a real crowd-pleaser. It’s a classic wine but with a modern style.
Budget: Lidl Dame de Clochevigne Rasteau, £7.99 – buy now
WITH Christmas dinner you can opt for red or white – but what you want is something smooth, velvety and comforting, yet with enough guts to stand up to what you’re eating.
This has rich, fruity notes, like a Christmas cake, but also has an earthy grounding so will work with all the trimmings. Nothing will donimate it.
Pudding wines and port
Blowout: M&S LBV Port 2013, £11 – buy now
FOR when you move on to the Christmas pud, and maybe cheese, this is port with incredibly generous berry flavours but serious backbone. Simple cheddar goes great with it.
And if you’re not on a bender you can put the cork back in, it’ll last a fortnight and you can go on enjoying it. Great to drink while sitting by a roaring fire.
Budget: Sainsbury’s Taste the Difference 12-year-old Pedro Ximenez Sherry, £8 – buy now
THIS delicious sherry tastes of coffee and chocolate combined. It’s both syrupy and rich to the taste – and this means it will partner really well with Christmas pud or cake. And do you know what else? It would also taste just fabulous with a great big wedge of Stilton cheese. If that’s your thing.
Boxing Day leftovers wine
Blowout: Morrisons The Best Chablis Premier Cru, £15 – buy now
YOU may feel a little bit bruised the day after Christmas and want comforting. This is peachy and coaxing but also subtle. It’s not an in-your-face Pamela Anderson wallop.
Would go beautifully with most Boxing Day fare – lovely with turkey, lovely with a rice salad, lovely with a curry or a leftovers sandwich.
Budget: Majestic loves Montepulciano 17, £6.99 – buy now
A FAINT aroma of tea here, as lots of Italian wines have. Spicy, with a kiwi fruit smell.
It’s a very light, fresh wine with cherry and melted ice-lolly flavours. It’s very easy drinking.
Because it’s a streamlined red, it would go well with cold turkey on Boxing Day, but it’s versatile so would match with a range of foods and is great to drink on its own.
Something to sip on the sofa
Blowout: Tesco Finest Vina del Cura Rioja Gran Reserva, £11 – buy now
LOOKS smart on the table. Gran Reserva is top-notch rioja. It’s 2012 so a wine with ancestry.
It’s a dark, dense-looking tipple and smells hauntingly mysterious, with a slight whiff of roast dinner.
Light, enticing plum and loganberry notes with a bit of spice. Best sipped, not glugged, so perfect with a film.
Budget: Asda Solato Lambrusco, £6.50 – buy now
LAMBRUSCO like you’ve never known. This is the real thing, a serious red wine with a bit of fizz.
If you’re snuggled up on the sofa and fancy a red but something a little different, this is it. It’s so dark it’s black, and smells deep and interesting.
Its fizz is exciting. It’s red but with surprising bubbles. Chill it and it’ll feel like a party on the sofa.
New Year’s Eve bubbles
Blowout: Aldi Veuve Monsigny Champagne Brut, £11.49 – buy now
POPPING the cork on New Year’s Eve is always a very special moment and, if you feel that you want to have champagne on the label, then this is the one to get.
It’s quite mature and has a bit of age to it, which is good. This means that, rather than being raw, and a mouth-attack, it’s mellow and soft.
most read in money
Budget: Tesco Finest 1531 Blanquette de Limoux, £9 – buy now
SMART bottle, smart label. A wine with history. Not a made-up, Johnny-come-lately affair, it’s a proper wine.
It’s what you expect from a delicious fizz. It smells of toasted crumpets and tastes like baking apple pie. Appley, crumbly, it just delivers.
A very smart party wine, class act but friend to a budget.
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