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The main event. What to drink (or try) with the alternative Christmas table – whatever your fish or vegetarian dish!
I remember a friend saying that for a change they did an oven steamed wild Sea Bass for Christmas Day one year and it was a revelation – and slightly surreal with the crackers! And it’s easy to forget that many fish and shellfish are in plentiful supply (and at their best) in the winter such as Brill, Hake and Mackerel, Mussels, Oysters and Scallops.
2012 Muscadet Sévre et Maine Sur Lie Grand Fief Domaine Gobin Vieilles Vignes, France – £9 per bottle – although as old as the hills, a good Muscadet really does work well with mussels
2010 Sybille Kuntz Estate Riesling, Germany – £15 per bottle – a great aromatic white, works well with spicy dishes and smoked salmon!
2011 Domaine Naudet-Moreau Chablis, France – £15 per bottle –the classic partner to many shellfish
2012 Bourgogne Blanc Domaine Bachey-Legros, Franc – £15 per bottle – for richer fish and butter sauces
2012 Gewürztraminer, Rolly Gassman, France – £17 per bottle – could work well with that old seasonal favourite Scottish smoked salmon, but best with any spicier dishes
2013 Grosset ‘Polish Hill’ Clare Valley Riesling, Austria – £26 per bottle – another great aromatic wine
2012 Puligny-Montrachet Les Levrons, Domaine Berthelemot, France – £35 per bottle – perfect treat for richer fish and sauces
I often think the key to this is does it include tomato? If so, the naturally high acid in tomatoes requires a high acid wine to compliment which could be red as well as white!
2014 Percheron Chenin Blanc Viognier, South Africa – £6.50 per bottle – fantastic value, lovely with asparagus
2012 Canicatti Nero d’Avola La Ferla, Italy – £7.50 per bottle – a lively red, perfect with cooked tomato based dishes
2013 Viognier Tabali, Italy – £12 per bottle – again great with asparagus and crudités
2013 Domaine de Villargeau, Coteaux de Ginnois Rosé, France – £12 per bottle – a star recommendation for the ever popular beetroot!
2012 Il Passo, Nerello Mascalese, Vigneti Zabu, Italy – £14 per bottle – very smooth red – at its best with roasted vegetables
2012 Rosa dei Frati, Ca dei Frati, Italy – £15 per bottle – great with chargrilled vegetables
2012 Sequillo White, Eben Sadie, South Africa – £18 per bottle – Great with crunchy vegetables and mayo or even better Aioli!
Coates and Seely Brut Rosé NV – £25 per bottle – an exemplary English sparkling wine
Nick Adams MW