This is truly the only holiday wine guide you will need to understand wine during the season. If you don’t have time to read anything else right now because you are already drowning in coupon codes and managing evite responses, remember these three:
- Burgundy (light meats & fishes)
- Bordeaux (red meat)
- Bubbles (everything)
There. You’re done. Because honestly, if you show up with any of those (and I’ll list my favs at the end), you will be invited back again. And don’t be intimidated by the French names. That’s the great thing about the internet. You can order online or show a clerk the label. As my sister says, my Starbucks order is so complicated she would be too embarrassed to place the order in person. So, use the mobile app.
Care to learn the nuances behind these recommendations? Read on!
If you know your friend loves wine, but you don’t know which one to get, you can’t go wrong with a nice Burgundy. You can spend anywhere from $25 to $125 and hit the mark. These are dry red wines from eastern France made from the pinot noir grape and the white wines are made from Chardonnay grapes. Don’t think about the 127 calories a glass. Just think about the ancient vines popping these grapes out for centuries. De-lish.
I know I said Christmas and not holiday because the rule is “write what you know,” and I know Christmas dinners — of all shapes and sizes. From red Solo cups to autographed Waterford crystal, these spreads usually have one thing in common: fats.
You can cut through though fats with a crisp sparkling wine from Napa or a Champagne. You can also pair those hefty red meats with a juicy Bordeaux, which is a mix of cabernet and merlot. It’s that tall, dark, mysterious creature that attracts you and you’re not entirely sure why. It’s a full body wine with more tannins and usually more complex flavor profiles like blackberry, spice, and/or smoke.
Holiday Party Hosting
Here’s an interesting answer: having a ton of people over? Great. Don’t get Bordeaux. In fact, just get Chardonnay and Merlot and call it a night. Hosting a more intimate gathering? You could Pinterest it up with Instagram-worthy cocktails. Or, you could just put your bubbly in fancy glasses.
And because pinot noir wines come in such a range of weights, you could start with a lighter one (literally) and open the darker ones as the evening progresses. With some of these now offering a yummy jammy explosion, this wine can even act like an appetizer itself. Choose one from the United States to kick things off. Sure, the West Coast has the best labels, but you can find new brands from Virginia holding their own.
Okay, to reward those who are still reading, here is my suggestion for items to add to your shopping list:
Read more from our wine expert, Rebecca, HERE.