Your preparation is complete, the roast potatoes are crisp and fluffy, the sprouts are melt in the mouth and your gravy is rich and ready to pour over your golden turkey. As you lean back in your seat and admire a job well done, what should you have in your glass to toast your efforts?

Let’s take a look at the best wines for Christmas dinner. We’ll look at the contenders for the best wine with turkey, Christmas themed wines that you should stock up on, and let you in on some of the wine special offers you can find this Christmas at selected local convenience stores.

All prepped for the big day? If you need a hand with your Christmas dinner planning, read our Christmas Dinner Checklist.

*Please drink responsibly. Click here for the facts.*

Best Red Wines For Christmas

Red wine plays a prominent role in Christmas tradition and as such, there are many reds which are defined as ‘Christmas wine’. But which are the best wines to serve with Christmas dinner? You won’t want bold, dark reds that will overpower poultry. Instead, opt for some medium, lightly tanned reds like these:

Pinot Noir

This is one of the best red wines for Christmas because it’s so versatile, and as it’s one of the days of the year where your diet is far more varied than the rest of the year, this is an ideal choice. The rich fruit, chocolatey and floral flavours you get from a Pinot Noir mean it is a sweet accompaniment to meat, salty snacks and sharp cheeses eaten throughout the day.

It’s long been a considered a classic match with duck, so if your starter is duck pâté you’re definitely on to a winner! But we’ve already said it’s a versatile choice and many feel that as one of the lighter reds, Pinot Noir is a great festive choice, as it doesn’t risk overpowering the subtle buttery and nutty flavours of turkey. With a meat that varies so much in texture from light to dark meats, you will need a flexible wine. A handy accompaniment when the cheese board comes out, too! Christmas dinner match: 9/10.

Recommendation: Wildflower Pinot Noir. Learn more about this wine in our wine tasting notes.

Merlot

Next up is Merlot. Like Pinot Noir, it tends to have subtle flavours thanks to low levels of acidity and medium tannins (learn more about tannins and their impact on food pairing in our wine pairing guide). Being right in the middle of the red wine flavour spectrum, it pairs well with the majority of foods, as long as there isn’t too much spice or dominant flavours to swallow it up. Its flavours are of dark fruit, such as plums and raspberry – seasonal tastes mean it firmly belongs in the Christmas wine category.  

The subtle flavours mean that Merlot can match well with the rich flavours of your pigs in blankets to the tartness of your cranberry sauce. A safe wine to serve with turkey and even better, certain Merlots can display herbal or earthy finish that supports those sprouts and your stuffing. You should definitely consider serving this wine with your Christmas dinner. Christmas dinner match: 9/10.

Recommendation: Brindle Ridge Merlot. Learn more about this wine in our wine tasting notes.

Malbec

Smooth and rich – we’re not just talking about your gravy. These are the characteristics of Malbec too. This heavy wine is known for accompanying lean red meats. But finding a contrast is a school of thought for wine pairing, which is why many like to pair with lighter, lean meats like poultry – making it one of the best wines with turkey. Particularly the dark meat! Intense fruity notes like cranberry are a typical festive flavour and natural accompaniment.

However, we will have to mark this one down slightly as we probably wouldn’t want this alongside our dessert. It is a bit rich and fruity and could clash too much with Christmas pudding! Christmas dinner match: 8/10.

Recommendation: Rio de los Andes Malbec, one of our selected Christmas wine offers available at selected stores.

 

The Christmas White Wine Winners

We’ve recommended some reds, now onto the whites. Not as aligned with the traditions of Christmas as red, it’s a common choice when selecting wines to serve with poultry. It’s always worth having both options in the centre of the Christmas dinner table.

Sauvignon Blanc

The flavour profile associated with Sauvignon Blanc is likened to green herbs. Parsley, rosemary – ingredients that are likely to feature on your Christmas plate, or at least inside your turkey. With its citrus notes on offer too, including lime and orange, this is a sharp and bold contrast to the savoury flavours on your plate.

The dry, crisp nature of Sauvignon Blanc works as an ideal palate cleanser between courses. It’s renowned for working well with seafood, so if you are offering a prawn cocktail starter this is the pick for you. However, it may not stand up so well with a rich winter pudding, where many of the reds thrive. Christmas dinner match: 9/10.

Recommendation: Fern Hills Sauvignon Blanc, pick up a bottle for less with our 12 deals of Christmas offer, in selected stores this festive period.

 

Prosecco

It’s a time of celebration, so bring out the fizz! But still try and keep it delicate and light to not overpower your feast. Prosecco fits the bill perfectly. The bubbles are delicately light, frothy and less gassy than some sparkling wines. The crisp and refreshing flavours of citrus, with after notes of hazelnut, vanilla and honeycomb are soft on the palate and enrich the savoury flavours of your main.

Prosecco is an ideal Christmas white wine. It has all the celebration and the theatre of the cork pop, but the soft crisp flavours that work so well with poultry and the array of sides. Working well with fish and of course pasta, it opens up plenty of possibilities for starters or fish courses on the day. Moderate alcohol and a hint of sweetness, this one should be on your Christmas wine wish list. Christmas dinner match: 9/10.

Recommendation: SPAR Valdobbiadene Prosecco. Naturally such a show stopper is part of our wine special offers this Christmas.

 

Chardonnay

It’s often a safe choice for those that aren’t big wine connoisseurs. Packed full of citrus fruit, crisp and refreshing and is light enough to sit alongside delicate meats including turkey. It has enough richness to work with the dark meat of the legs and enough fizz and lightness to cut through the crispy skin, and the goose fat that adorns your golden roast potatoes.

A fuller bodied Chardonnay is an ideal wine for Christmas dinner as the creamy lactic acid will help to moisten what can sometimes be dry turkey breast, particularly if roasting a whole bird rather than a crown. The extra minerality and strong acidity will help to enhance the contrast of flavours on the plate and between courses. This one would definitely be a winning Christmas white wine recommendation from us. Christmas dinner match: 10/10

Recommendation: Jean-Marie Garnier Chardonnay – elegantly creamy with a gentle nutty flavour. Read more about this wine in our wine tasting notes.

Unwrap the Christmas Wine Offers at SPAR

We’re in the giving mood this Christmas, with our 12 deals of Christmas providing everything you need to have a Christmas season to remember, for less. Find quality food, snacks, drinks and of course wine special offers at your local convenience store. Whatever wine you choose, have a wonderful Christmas, with SPAR.