Wine: Two for the Meat. One for the Sweet
I have been dipping into SuperValu’s 12 wines for Christmas and reckon these three are ideal companions for the season. The first can match most desserts while the others will go well with your roasts, including the turkey. All are reduced from the 10th of December until the end of the month.
Vinha do Foral Moscatel de Setubal (Portugal), 17.5%, €12.00 SuperValu
The beautiful amber colour catches your eye and the aromas (orange skin, honey) are quite intense. On the palate, this sweet wine, well balanced and not at all “sticky”, is crisp and fresh, enough sweetness to pair with desserts (even the Christmas pudding), yet dry enough to shine as an aperitif, maybe even as an apres digestif. Either way there is a prolonged finish. Oh, by the way, it seems you can have it with two or three ice cubes. I haven’t tried that.
Made by the Cooperativa de Pegoes from one hundred per cent Moscatel grapes, this is a Very Highly Recommended. Do note the higher alcohol content. Like Port, this is a fortified wine.
|Right bank ahead. Crossing the Garonne|
Chateau Sissan Grande Reserve 2011, Cadillac Cotes de Bordeaux, 13.5%, €10.00 SuperValu.
This is a relatively new (2008) denomination and covers a narrow strip on the right bank of the Garonne, more or less across the river from Barsac and Sauternes. According to the World Atlas of Wine, the area produces “toothsome reds”.
And this one certainly is toothsome! It has a lovely ruby robe and, on the nose, has lots of red fruit aromas, some spice too. A well made wine with superb ripe soft fruits on the palate and again hints of spice; it is full bodied, mellow and with a lingering finish.
Blend of Merlot (55%), Cabernet Sauvignon (40%) and Cabernet Franc (5%). Very Highly Recommended.
Finca Labarca Reserva 2007 (Rioja), 14%, €10.00, SuperValu
Rioja, and its Tempranillo, is a favourite here, so this was welcome when it arrived and even more so after opening. It may well be seven years old and the red may not be as deep as early on but there is no shortage of fruit on the palate and there is lively spice as well (quite a match for the local spiced beef!). The oak has been well integrated, the tannins are soft, the finish long. Another wine for the Christmas where its versatility will be a bonus. Very Highly Recommended.