A traditional champagne…

Champagne Geoffroy Pureté Brut Nature NV

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The champagne choice at Christmas bewilders with discounts and promotions galore. So remember: a far better deal than an anonymous brand is a grower champagne like this, made by those who grow the grapes. “Brut nature” means the driest style of champagne with no added sugar, while the Geoffroy house style is minimal intervention, so this blend of pinot noir and pinot meunier is all about purity and freshness, but has enough creamy complexity in the mix. Absolutely fabulous; for Christmas Day and for New Years Eve.

£25.00 armitwines.co.uk;  £28.15 thewhiskyexchange.com

An English sparkler….

Lyme Bay Blanc de Noirs

Lyme Bay, actually a bit inland from the Bay itself in the Axe valley in Devon, has been producing meads, ciders and fruit wines for many years but has entered the sparkling arena only recently and with a bang: a superlative, award-winning wine, made in champagne style, entirely from pinot noir, full of the freshness of a West Country morning, with subtle red fruit flavours and a touch of toast. Ideal with any shellfish, preferably that from the West Country.

£24.50 lymebaywinery.co.uk; £26.50 greatwesternwine.co.uk  

An unusual sparkling rose…

Santa Digna Estelado Sparkling Rosé NV

It is very difficult to choose something distinctive from the oceans of prosecco and cava on the shelves at Christmas, so why not try something a little different with a back story: a Chilean rosé sparkler made from the indigenous pais grape, ignored for decades and spectacularly revived by the Torres brand. As recommended before in this column, it is delightfully vibrant and elegant, with delicate red fruits and citrus flavours. Gorgeous for parties or with crustacea.

£10.99 robertsandspeight.co.uk or £9.99 as part of mixed six bottle purchase; £10.99 dylanswine.co.uk

A white for parties…  

La Belle Angele Sauvignon Blanc 2016

As cheerful and fun as the retro label which celebrates an artistic muse, this is an easy drinking and refreshing regional French white, packed with characteristic apple and gooseberry flavours. Far less assertive and bracing than New Zealand sauvignon blancs, therefore it is an ideal wine for guzzling at parties or as an aperitif.

£8.99 majestic or £6.99 if bought as part of mixed six bottle purchase

A white for all occasions...

Petri Spatlese Trocken Weingut Grauburgunder 2016 

This column lauded the charms of pinot gris a few weeks ago, but saved the best for here. This is a stunning value wine: bracing, steely acidity, clean flavours of citrus and apples, with a whiff of smoke and spice just in the background and great length. Ideal with prawns, crab or smoked salmon but with enough body and structure for a roast chicken and even pork belly, if that’s your festive thing.

 £13.50 leaandsandeman.co.uk

A serious white for serious fish…

Simonnet Febvre Vaillon, Chablis Premier Cru, 2015

A prime white for prime fish, whether it’s a baked turbot or salmon or a plate of oysters, is a seasonal delight and a white burgundy is an obvious choice. So why buck tradition? From an excellent producer, a benchmark, flinty chablis, with mouth-filling but precise mineral flavours of green apples and a hint of citrus that linger long on the palate. Restrained and satisfying.

£28.99 waitrosecellar.com

An all-purpose red…

La Garnacha Salvaje del Moncayo 2015

What we need here is a wine that will not break the bank but not disgrace the table, equally at home as a wine for quaffing at parties and as a companion in front of the fire, with a supper plate of leftovers… From old Garnacha vines, grown in the Aragorn mountains of central Spain, the high altitude contributes a freshness into the smooth, plump, brambly, berry-fruit flavours. Wonderfully drinkable and terrific value. 

£7.95 thewinesociety.com; £9.99 majestic.co.uk or £8.99 if bought as part of mixed six bottle purchase

A red for turkey and pork…

Il Cascinone Rive Barbera 2014

From family-run cooperative in Piedmont in north-west Italy, this is a generous, full-flavoured wine in an elegantly fashioned bottle. The solid reassurance of the bottle translates through to the wine, where the barbara grape delivers fabulously ripe and opulent flavours of black cherries and plums with notes of chocolate and oak and a touch of spice, all balanced with an underlying fresh acidity. Able to match big flavours of turkey, pork and lighter game.

£15.99 virginwines.co.uk ; £13.99 henningswine.co.uk

A big red for big meats…

Valserrano Rioja Gran Reserva 2010

For richer meats like goose or beef – but also fine for turkey or white meats – a gran reserva rioja such as this is a great choice, with the same deep flavours, smooth tannins and structure as a fine claret, but representing better value, in my book. Coming from a very traditional bodega in the Rioja Alta, made with a touch of graciano to lighten the tempranillo, the wine has dark black fruits, notes of cedar and sandalwood from oak ageing and a long finish. Decant well in advance to let the flavours expand and develop.

£31.50 davywine.co.uk

A tawny port for Christmas pudding and blue cheeses…

Kopke Colheita Tawny Port 2000 75cl/2003 37.5cl

Founded in Portugal by German immigrants in 1638, Kopke is said to be the oldest port producer still in business. Although not well known in the UK, where the big names of the still-British owned ports such as Dow’s and Taylor’s dominate, this is well worth discovering: an oak aged single-vineyard vintage tawny delivering complex, intense flavours of caramel, honey, orange and nuts with just a hint of spice. For Christmas pudding and cake, mince pies and blue cheeses, particularly stilton. And the fireside…

2000/75cl: £30.00 Marks and Spencer; 2003/37.5cl: £16.99 majestic.co.uk)

An Australian-style “sherry”…

De Bortoli Black Noble NV

Australia is not the first port of call for dessert wines, but De Bortoli uses methods that acknowledge their Old World origins. Made from botrytised semillon grapes, fortified with both grape spirit and brandy, oak aged for up to 10 years, the final blend combines old and new wines using sherry’s Solera system. Immensely complex with concentrated notes of toffee, baked fruits and chocolate. Ideal for Christmas pudding, but also to drizzle over vanilla ice cream or sip with hard cheeses and chocolate-based desserts.

£22.80 hedonism.co.uk; £22.98 amazon.co.uk

A luscious sticky for fruity desserts…

Pellegrino Pantelleria Passito Liquoroso 2015 

From Italy’s southernmost winemaking region, on the island of Pantelleria close to the North African coast, is this wine made in the passito style. The zibbibo grapes are sundried to concentrate the flavour but the maritime climate leavens the wine, turning it light and ethereal, rather than heavy and cloying. The luscious apricot and marmalade flavours are a perfect match for fruit-based desserts.

£11.50 oddbins.com; £11.59 wineman.co.uk

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