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Champagne, white Burgundy, Châteauneuf-du-Pape… All terrific choices for any Christmas lunch or dinner. But what if you fancy something different this year, knowing full well you would enjoy these traditional wines but pining for something with a little swagger?

Well, these alternative suggestions will wow your guests and are a fitting tribute to the ‘alternative’ year that was 2020!


Peter Lauer Riesling Sekt 2016 – $66 

Perfect with seafood, smoked salmon, pretty well anything… A homage to Champagne. Produced Methode Champenoise, from Riesling in the steep, slate vineyards of the Mosel. Deceptive with its bright acidity and almost soft, subtly cream. There is a real breadth on the palate, deep fruits, minerals and spice. Impeccable balance, suggesting a very long life.

Julian Haart Mosel Riesling 2019 – $41

Perfect with a seafood platter. Julian’s riesling has enough flavour and texture to match most seafood, including oysters, smoked trout/salmon, crab and prawns. Terrific choice with the ham too.​

Georges Descombes Beaujolais Blanc 2018 – $52

Perfect with Turkey. There isn’t much Beaujolais Blanc around, but if you want a wine of finesse and cleansing acid cut, then this is it. The fruit is pulpy and succulent, but the wine’s profile is sinewy and mineral. Fascinating.

La Rioja Alta Vina Alberdi Reserva 2014 – $55

Perfect with Ham and Turkey. Plenty of fruit and oak, perfect for the strong flavours of both dishes. The wine is pretty rich, but the acidity is so succulent and lip smacking.

Tue Boeuf La Guerrerie 2019 – $56

Perfect with Turkey and Ham. A total contrast to the big reds with sweet fruit and luscious tannins that would normally be recommended. La Guerrerie is medium bodied with fine tannins, persistent acidity, spice and a compote of red, black and blue fruits. It has the ability to stand up to the food, and refresh.

Disznoko Tokaji Late Harvest Furmint 2017 – $42

Perfect with dessert, which in our house is Pavlova. Will also work beautifully with blue cheese, chocolate orange, nuts, dried fruit and Christmas cake. Extremely versatile and not the sort of wine most of your guests will be familiar with. But they’ll love it!

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