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The Wine Tipsters Top Tips On


We’ve explored the must-have bubbles this festive season and now Neil Phillips ‘The Wine Tipster’ and Jockey Club Catering’s resident wine expert returns with his advice on what still wines deserve a seat at the table this Christmas.




You’ve got your Christmas food list in order, but what wines work best across all the different occasions and culinary delights? December can often feel overwhelming, so I’m here to help with my 2022 Yuletide selection offering a mix of quality all-rounders and classic festive food pairing wines.



This fabulous fortified white wine from Spain has been making a well-deserved comeback for several years, evidenced by the chic sherry bars popping up in trend-setting cities. Best served chilled, it’s incredibly versatile making it a great all-rounder for festive nibbles.


If you enjoy a lighter and fresher style of sherry, then Croft Original Sherry from Sainsburys (£12.50, currently £10.50) is a superb choice. This fantastic fine pale cream sherry blends the dryness of a quality Fino, with the added depth and body of a Cream sherry. It’s beautifully balanced, versatile and a real crowd pleaser. Offering a clean, crisp taste and aromatic sweet finish, this sherry is fantastic as an aperitif and equally as delightful with mince pies, pâtés and salmon.










If you’ve got guests dreaming of an approachable and deliciously fresh white wine, Greece always delivers. Greek wines are deservedly growing in popularity and Thymiopolous White 2021, Imathia, Macedonia is an absolute winner. This fabulous all-rounder, available from Majestic (£13.99 or £10.99 for a case of six), is an approachable dry blend of Xinomavro and Malagousia grapes. It’s delicious alone, but also with light dishes including prawns, oysters, crab, fish and chicken.


If you love Chardonnay and are interested in trying an alternative at the premium end, then awarding-winning Oldenburg Vineyards Chenin Blanc 2021, Banghoek Valley, South Africa from Jeroboams (£17.95) is for you. This high-class, subtlety oaked, exotically fruity, complex and fresh Chenin Blanc is ideal for fish dishes in a creamy sauce, and with turkey. This 100% Chenin Blanc wine can also be bought as a part of a fabulous Oldenburg Vineyards mixed case.


Another great choice for the festive season is Louis Latour Mâcon-Lugny 2021, Burgundy, France. Available from Majestic (£16.99 or £12.99 for a case of six), this white Burgundy (Chardonnay) is lovely on its own, as well as with salty finger foods and roast turkey. It’s a really good-value Burgundy and has been one of Majestic’s best sellers for 30 years.



A top-selling wine at Christmas, rosé is no longer enjoyed only in the summer months. French Provence rosé continues to lead its pacey renaissance, with Château Léoube Rosé de Léoube 2021 a winning choice. Available in Daylesford and The Great Wine Co (£22, currently £18.85), this elegant organic dry rosé is both stunning and beautifully crafted. It’s fantastic with seafood, raw and lightly cooked shellfish, grilled fish and goats’ cheeses.







I always recommend having a mix of light, medium and full-bodied reds to see you through every festive occasion.


Bolney Estate Dark Harvest 2020, Sussex, England is a top-choice light and easy-drinking red. Available from Waitrose (£11.99), it comes from one of the UK’s top English still wine producers. Sure to wow anyone who enjoys an easy drinking red over the festive period, it’s also great with cold turkey.


Zinfandel wines are brilliantly versatile and there are plenty of stunning expressions out there, like Canyon Springs Old Vine Zinfandel 2019, California, USA. Available in Aldi (£7.99, currently £6.99), this fantastic value medium-full bodied red is a crowd-pleasing all-rounder that’s delicious with roast lamb.


When you’re ready for a fuller-bodied red, BenMarco Malbec Susana Balbo 2021, Mendoza, Argentina is the perfect choice. Winemaker Susana Balbo has had a massive influence on the Argentinean Wine Industry and produces a range of brilliant Malbecs. Best enjoyed decanted, BenMarco is a top-class wine offering superb complexity and length. Available from Majestic (£14.99 or £12.99 for a case of six), this wine stands up to a myriad of Christmas favourites like turkey, beef and game roasts with all the trimmings, through to flavoursome and hearty vegetarian dishes.


My top choice for Christmas Day itself? There are so many, but this year I’m going with Château Beaumont 2019 Haut-Médoc Cru Bourgeois, Bordeaux, France. Available from Co-op (£16.50), this fantastically priced Médoc (made from Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Cabernet Franc grapes) is an excellent festive red to enjoy with turkey, lamb, beef, venison and cheese.



The festive table is fully complete when there’s a stunning port on offer – a popular fortified sweet wine from Portugal. Tawny port is the most versatile style for the festive season and you’re in fabulous hands with Tesco’s Finest 10 Year Old Tawny Port, which is fantastic value at £12.50. It’s ideal as an aperitif and with Christmas cake and cheeses such as brie and cheddar.



Having top-quality sherries, whites, rosés, reds and ports covers every base at Christmas, but with such a wide range of occasions there are so many more I could recommend! I hope you enjoy savouring my whistlestop 2022 Yuletide selection; there’s something for everyone that will see you right through the festive celebrations.


So, sit back and enjoy catching up with loved ones at this truly special time of year – Happy Christmas and New Year, cheers!

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