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Christmas and New Year Drinking Thread 2019

This one sounds right up my street, @NickFoster!

Have you, by any chance, tried the Deutsche Sekt (also from the Pfalz) currently on a ‘wigig’ sale in Lidl? I’ve been wondering whether to stock up on a few bottles… :thinking:

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Kicked off the festive season with this:

Disappeared rather quickly while watching the kids demolishing pizza at @JamesE’s house. Tears began (kids’, not mine), heralding departure before we could get stuck into the Bourgogne Blanc that was opened next, but first impressions were positive :yum:

Present wrapping duties occupied last night so after a quick steak and some of this (brought by a friend, no idea where it was purchased), scissors and sellotape were wielded with great success (ie no more wrapping!)

Nice, approachable Syrah from South Africa, smooth tannins, fresh fruit, with a lovely zip to it.

Was as great an accompaniment to wrapping presents as eating steak, meaning I forgot about the sherry in the fridge I’d intended to open.


Might be a good party fizz, I do remember a very bad sparkling Tokaji at Lidl, so I’m a bit cautious at that price. Might be worth trying a bottle to find out.

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I think I saw one of those last time I was in.

It looked sweet

I was eager to try another South African Cinsault…

…picked up in Waitrose earlier in the day. Medium bodied with earthy red fruit flavours it was a pleasant and good value drink but lacked the compelling complexity of the Natte Valleij wine drank previously. It should be said, my expectations, even for a £7.50 wine, may have been unreasonably high.

Then this, with steak and chips…

…a Saint-Joseph ‘Poivre et Sol’ 2010 from Villard. Savoury and supple with plenty of, slightly feral, red and black fruit flavour and a hint of black olive / tapenade. Its fragrant and complex bouquet reflects those flavours. Astonishing value all things considered too.


Kicked off the Christmas hols with Beef Bourguignon Pie and a wonderful Côte du Rhône that was gifted to us; Les Dauphins 2018. Had the high acidity and fruitiness that you would expect, but a wonderful pairing for hearty food. Reminded me of the Society’s Côte du Rhône. Yum :yum:


Many thanks again for the heads up, I wish I had another bottle though !

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How was the Port? I’ve got a bottle of that waiting for Christmas Day … possibly Christmas Eve actually, depending on how impatient I am.

Re DrEM, I’ve never come across ginger beer in rum punch before. In Trinidad we always followed the maxim; “One of sour, two of sweet, 3 of strong and 4 of weak”. To this was added a substantial slug of Angostura and some grated nutmeg. The 4 of weak was usually all ice on the basis that a jug was made ahead of time so the ice would have partially melted by the time it was poured. All garnished with citrus and other fruits.
In the 60’s you could have a very good party for not much money. A gallon of Old Oak cost £3. The steel band played for free on one gallon and the other gallon was turned into rum punch for the guests!


I thought the port was really good. Some floral notes, sweet black currant jam, milk chocolate & some spiciness.
There was a slight hit of alcohol at back of throat on the finish, though this might blow off with a decant perhaps?

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Hi @johnkp, we recently kicked back in Antigua and enjoyed a rum punch on a kon-tiki bar with this recipe. The ginger beer was a little float on top of the rum onto which the cinnamon was sprinkled… the wise recommendation was to “sip it slowly”.

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The weekend before Christmas got off to a good start with meals at friends on Friday and Saturday- so no cooking so far! We took and enjoyed a Brazin 2015 on the Friday and on Saturday we took nice wine but none of it was opened. Not a problem as the wines opened by our very good friends were magnificent - a 2014 Chateau Baudan from Listrac and a Katie Jones Fitou 2012.

Tonight we will try this with salmon fillet influenced by comments from this Community

And on Christmas Eve we will have halibut fillet. I really want to drink this over Christmas and am thinking of having it with the halibut. Anyone think it will be a good, bad or indifferent match?


@JayKay I broached my mixed box of three recently and started with the 2007. It was truly delicious! The 2008 might have been slightly better, but there was nothing in it really. I think that halibut would be a good match - the wine is flavoursome and rich, but with a fresh edge. This Albarino would cope admirably with most sauces or accompaniments too. A lovely wine and worth the money. Enjoy!



This with some pasta with pesto genovese

Will open this for later, the bottle I had a couple of years back was delicious!


Thanks very much @VinoVeritas! That is encouraging news and will give it a go.

Tonight is the first candle of Chanukah:

Rather than my usual latkes, I decided to make some sweet potato patties - for a bit of change. We had these with some fizzy Grillo, which was a nice match.

The main meal is going to be wild salmon baked in coconut, spices and crème fraîche paste - so opened this 2017 Grauburgunder from Weingut Bercher:

A truly lovely wine- one that I will definitely buy again. Style-wise, it is creamier than an Alto Adige/Friuli Pinot Grigio, but fresher than an Alsatian PG - finishing quite dry, with less of an oily texture. The nose is wonderful - orchard fruit, but also orange, hazelnuts, ginger and white pepper; the palate has a nice balance of freshness of fruit (pear, tangerine, even peach) combined with zesty orange and a tingle of spice on the finish. There’s an underlying minerality to it, which I absolutely love. Perhaps the volcanic soil of the Kaiserstuhl is coming through. Or maybe I’m swayed by the association.

This part of Germany is very familiar to me, and I have a very soft spot for it - so the wine also speaks to me of a place in the world I truly love.

Chin chin! :clinking_glasses:


Happy Hanukkah Inbar! I googled it to learn what the festival is all about and found this very educational video on YouTube. I hope it isnt blasphemous. I learned a lot :slightly_smiling_face:


Oh, @jaykay, this was brilliant!! made me and the other half laugh out loud! :joy:
No blasphemy, either! Other than the idea of baking latkes, rather than frying them!! :scream:


Friends over for lunch today so opened this with roast pork:

TWS tasting note spot on. The creaminess from the oak is reminiscent of a Chardonnay and the zingy acidity keeps it fresh. A nice drop.


I’m a bit late to reply, Joy, but I think that would be great with halibut. I have a 2009, and am also trying to work out when to drink it!

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