It’s that time of year again! The holiday season is a time where tables are full of especially good food and wine. Treat yourself this year by checking out this wine guide to make the most out of your food and wine pairings throughout this festive season. 

What's On Your Holiday Table?

by Matthew Lorman

It’s that time of year again! The holiday season is a time where tables are full of especially good food and wine. Treat yourself this year by checking out this wine guide to make the most out of your food and wine pairings throughout this festive season. 

Start with a Toast

No festivity is complete without a bottle of bubbly and some appetizers. Start off your meal with some small bites and bubbles to lift the holiday spirits. For a quick snack, serve baked brie with a cranberry jam alongside a bottle of Champagne or Cava. The puff pastry crust is the perfect complement to toasty notes in the wine. For a fresh and fun alternative, pop open a bottle of prosecco to pair with a simple charcuterie board. Remember the point of the holidays is to relax and enjoy time with the ones you love, not spending countless hours in the kitchen. Check out this guide for the perfect charcuterie board for a simple idea perfect for any holiday celebration. 

Winter White Wines

Long gone are the days of only drinking white wine when the weather allows it. There are great wines meant to be enjoyed regardless of the season. Check out fuller-bodied white wines for a cozy option that will have you feeling warm and fuzzy on the inside. Chardonnay, Viognier, and Pinot Gris are great comforting options to pair with those heartier dishes. These wines cut through the richness of the dishes, making you want to take just one more bite. Try pairing these wines with holiday classics like glazed country ham, citrus roasted salmon, or potato latkes. If you’re cooking up seafood this holiday season, pair it with something light and crisp like a Sauvignon Blanc from New Zealand, or a Verdicchio from Italy. These wines pair perfectly with clam linguine or white wine poached scallops.

Cozy Up to a Glass of Red

Stoke the fireplace or watch this one on Youtube. Whichever you prefer, make sure you snuggle up to a glass of red wine this holiday season. The colder months are perfect for those bold, fuller-bodied reds that make you feel all warm and fuzzy on the inside. A glass of Tannat, Cabernet Sauvignon or Carmenere is perfect for the occasion. These wines go great with dishes like a roasted rack of lamb, red wine braised short ribs, or basically anything that brings you feelings of warmth and comfort. Whether you enjoy them on their own or paired with food, these wines are sure to bring the holiday cheer.

‘Tis the Season for Something Sweet

You can never go wrong with dessert wines. When serving a dessert wine with something sweet, a general rule is to ensure that the wine is sweeter than the dish it is being served with. If the food is sweeter than the wine, the wine may feel too acidic on the palate. For a simple dessert, serve an Italian Vin Santo or Recioto della Valpolicella alongside almond biscotti. Desserts without an overly pronounced sweetness, like a fruit tart, make a great accompaniment to Sauternes or Tokaji.

You don’t always have to serve sweet wines with sweet foods. Get creative and don’t limit yourself; try sweet wines with your favorite charcuteries and cheeses. The sweetness and acidity of these wines make it a great contrast to savory and salty notes in some meats and cheeses. For a classic flavor pairing try Sauternes with pate or duck rillette

Which wines are going to make it on your holiday table? Let us know by taking to Instagram and sharing your favorite holiday wine picks (@DCanterwines). Stop by DCanter and let us help you pick out something delicious for the holidays. Cheers!