Happy Holidays to everyone. I hope that this season finds all of you guys happy and healthy. This month I wanted to focus on the wines for Christmas dinner. There is a variety of foods that may make an appearance on your dinner table this Holiday Season with a range of flavor profiles.If you are having the same basic meal as you did for Thanksgiving then please refer to last month’s blog for those pairing ideas. Let’s get started!
Wines for ham: It doesn’t really matter what type of ham you are serving, whether smoked or baked, etc., these meats cries out for a little hint of sweetness. That being said you still need a little acidity to help with the fat in the ham. I love German Rieslings that have a bit of residual sugar and that have a good acidity. If you can’t find a good German Riesling look for Alsatian. IF you are more of a red wine drinker then I like Beaujolais as my first choice and If I can’t find what I want there then I look to a Pinot Noir. I like more of a medium body Pinot and will choose a Williamette Valley or Sonoma Coast option. If heavier reds are more you thing then Zinfandel is your best bet.
Wines for Duck: I love duck and this is a Holiday that duck can shine. Be careful here as you have to take into consideration the unique flavors with duck. Fatty and a bit gamey can be difficult. I look to the classics here. French culinary minds have been dealing with duck for a long time. I go to them when I go to duck. If I am serving a white I enjoy a beautiful Sauternes. Sweetness that just brings the flavors together. Sauternes may not be easy to find for you so look to a Gewurztraminer. When it comes to red for duck I look to Red Burgundy. This is a classic pairing. If you are not a fan of Burgundy then a nice Bordeaux will work as well.
Wines with Goose: Here is the pairing that I think I enjoy the most. Wines with a Christmas goose. I am not someone that typically drinks whites with goose but if you want to then I stand with Riesling again. For me it is red and I find that a nice Barolo is my favorite red with goose. Acidity is the key here and I find it in this wine from Piedmont goes best with the richness of the meat.
I hope this helps. Happy Holidays to you and yours.