SPIT OR SWALLOW
With Christmas just around the corner, we are all sure to go booze mad. People who don't normally drink wine may find themselves uncorking a bottle or two. and those who normally do may try something more adventurous. Below are some bottles typical of a festive meal and aperitifs/digestifs.
Champagne Oudinot Non Vintage (£9.99. was £213.99) Champagnes at the 5210 mark have often been overlooked in fav0ur of Champagne-style sparkling wines from elsewhere in the world. This. however. is a bit of a cracker. in a young fresh style. with plenty of bubbles (not such an obvious statement as you may think), and a lean, citrus finish. A perfect example of a pre-dinner drink before you go onto the stickier ones below.
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Christmas Dessert Wine 2000 (France. 24.99 SOcl) Dessert wine is not everybody's cup of tea. but this style is quite an exception. It's known as a vin doux naturel which is a fortified style of Muscat. It clocks in at 15.5% alcohol but is not as heavy as you'd imagine. Actually it's a relatively delicate style with up-front fresh grape aromas and light perfumed honey overtones. A real delight for those who don't like the heavy Syrupy style of sweet wine.
Vintage Character Port pf“?! ‘ _ Ir ($35.49 75d) A very basic Christa) g" r . style of port known as a desseﬂ mm ruby port will normally set L...“ "f you back about $6. This however is a more advanced style of ruby with the blended wines being slightly more mature than normal. And amazingly. it's cheaper than a basic ruby. It's got everything you'd want from a budget port: delicious layers of sweet fruit and a welcoming and warming 20% alcohol. Perfect served with the cheeseboard. just before the brandy and cigars.
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,--_¢%)l( Rich Cream Sherry (€4.99 75cl) Maybe if Granny is about or yOu're feeling adventurous you could try this. f”)’€(( I” Sherry has long been assOCIated with the older generation. but recently has enjoyed a bit of a comeback. This is not a namby pamby. slightly sweet affair. but a full-blown, really rich. nutty Style that c0uld easily be substituted for port. Try some over the Christmas pud. and some more in a glass with it. Fantastic. Go on. it's cheap and it tastes amazing. (Gordon Haggartyi
I All wines available from Marks and Spencer.
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