How to prepare an unforgettable Christmas dinner accompanied by the right wines

How to prepare an unforgettable Christmas dinner accompanied by the right wines

The tradition of the Christmas dinner in the Christian home is held to commemorate the birth of Jesus, at least in a great part of families around the world. Many countries around the world, with Christian beliefs, have been synchronized to celebrate Christmas Eve.

What everyone knows for sure is that every year, Christmas is a beautiful opportunity to spend time with family or among friends and relatives, to sit that night at the table, dressed in the best clothes to delight yourself with delicious and special dishes.

It is the date that beyond gastronomy, there is the sublime fact of meeting with family or friends to celebrate a universal date of great importance in the Christian calendar. It is a date of peace, of unity, of brotherhood, of forgiveness, of mercy, and most important, love.

We know that each family is a world and that customs in one house might be immutable and immovable, in another can be transformed, reinvented or altered in a totally opposite way. However, if we had to choose a categorical truth around this date, it is that everyone wants to have a good time around a good menu and wines worthy of Christmas.

A rehearsal preview for the Christmas celebration is a good idea

Christmas without friends is not Christmas! And the pre-Christmas celebration meetings are getting closer, and certainly for all moments, there are wines to choose from. If it is a barbecue you can try a Malbec, it is light, silky, with very delicate tannins, along with notes of mango and crunchy plum, or if it is a quieter plan where the gastronomic proposal of the night goes hand in hand with a good plate cheese or a fondue, stick with a Chardonnay or a great champagne to go in style.

A good wine to accompany the celebration

For dinner we will need a good wine to accompany our delicious dishes, the idea will be to select the ideal drink that pairs with the ingredients used. A good white wine for this occasion might be Sauvignon Blanc, known for its citrus-based flavors that can be surrounded by herbs or mineral nuances, it is a good candidate to combine it with turkey and mashed potatoes. There is also the Riesling, which can be completely dry or very sweet, it is excellent with spicy, salty or sweet dishes.

The Riesling's flavors of apple, apricot, honey and its acidity make it a good combination with potato, turkey meat, and spiced dishes. Gewurztraminer, has the aromatic taste that manages to highlight the spiciest tastes, highlighting the best of the turkey. A highly recommended option is Ribera del Duero wines.

As for red wines, we have Pinot Noir, which has very subtle earthy nuances, the flavors of the grapes in this wine recall some flavors that are similar to mushrooms, it is perfectly complemented with turkey and stuffing.

And now is time for the pairing to accompany the dinner menu!

Wine pairings at Christmas are almost as important as the food itself, since they can make the difference between a good dining experience and an unforgettable one. In fact, some foods are capable of enhancing the pleasures that wine provides, and vice versa. But; How to choose them?

We know that red combines well with meat. For fish, a white wine is better. But… is this always the case? Are there exceptions? Frankly the options are almost limitless, depending on the menu of the night and the tastes or preference of the hosts. There are many gastronomic options for a Christmas evening.

In general, we usually find ourselves with a snack or appetizer, starters, a first course, a main course, dessert and, of course ... The arrival of the sweet on the table. Now, we’re going to classify the possible components of the Christmas dinner menu and recommend which wine would be best for each case.

Appetizers and starters

Appetizers are usually received with some eagerness, since it is the first batch of food that arrives at the table and, in most cases, our diners are hungry. Well, it is better not to saturate this moment with foods that are too numerous or have a strong body, since it may confuse the palate.

The ideal is to opt for simple combinations, such as ripe cheeses with fresh ones, an Iberian shoulder and, perhaps, some trays with seafood. For this occasion, sparkling wines tend to have a better reception, especially if they are fresh and light, since they combine better with the variety of foods we have on the table.

Fish or shellfish

Do you want seafood or fish to be one of the main courses? Then you have different options to choose the wine pairings at Christmas. If you are going to serve as a first course, it is possible to continue with the wine of the starters; our Rosé or a similar product: versatile, smooth and sparkling ...

If you decide to change your wine, it is advisable to go for a somewhat brighter, tastier, more powerful option. One that does not go unnoticed among the flavors of the previous batch and that, if possible, allows us to intensify the organoleptic sensations little by little.

Salads or creams

Perhaps you have opted for a lighter and healthier dish first, such as a vegetable cream or a rich salad. In this case, it will depend on the presence of vinegar: if it is more noticeable, the ideal is to compensate with a rosé wine, the same as in the starters, or with a white bottle as well.

The latter could also be combined with fish or shellfish, as we said before, assuming that these dishes are present at the table or reserved for the second course. For a smooth flavor and a creamier touch, we recommend choosing a fruity, full-bodied red wine.

Red or lean meats

Meat is a big favorite at Christmas. If, for the main course, you have in mind a succulent piece of red meat, such as beef, veal or lamb ... As well as rabbit or quail, there is no doubt: they are intense, aromatic, tasty meats and, therefore, it is time uncorking a red Reserva or Gran Reserva.

If, on the other hand, you are thinking about lean meat, how to prepare a turkey with a good garnish of vegetables, potatoes or dried fruits ... for these cases you will find varieties such as Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot or Graciano: choose the wine that seduces you the most.

The sweetest moment of the night arrives

Let's not forget the sweetest part of the evening: desserts such as fruits, yogurt with nuts, cakes, nougat, chocolates, dark chocolate ... There is always a site in your stomach for the icing on the cake and, of course, for wine accompanying it. The wine pairing for Christmas dinner can be concluded successfully if you opt for a simple, sweet aged red. A delicious finishing touch to an unforgettable evening, which will not go unnoticed by any of the guests.

On the wine store, we can advise you on the purchase with one of our experts, which will ensure the success and charm of this traditional annual evening.

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  • Fabianni Posteraro