The Perfect Pairings to Your Holiday Menu

The Perfect Pairings to Your Holiday Menu

Be it for a holiday feast for a large group or an intimate dinner for two, the holidays are a great time to get creative with food and wine pairing. We have chosen to focus on five of our favourite Christmas dishes and to share our recommendations about wines to pair to each. 

HORS D’OEUVRES: Devils on Horseback

24068819_10155410465404055_4420960629188091507_oAn indulgent hors d’oeuvre indeed, no holiday party is complete without tray of delicious devils on horseback. This classic appetiser combines the crunch and porcine zest of bacon with a smoothness and rich natural sweetness of plump dates. For an extra bit of texture, try stuffing the pitted date with a toasted almond.


Perfect Wine Pairing: Billecart Salmon Brut Rose

Looking for the perfect wine to pair with this classic holiday appetiser? Why not add some bubbles for festive flair?
We suggest the Brut Rose from Billecart-Salmon to cut through the richness of the crispy bacon and the sweetness of the dates. This blend of Chardonnay, Pinot Meunier and Pinot Noir is vinified in red, offering delicate bubbles and a beautiful persistent foam you will want to get lost in. The nose offers a luscious bouquet of red fruits and citrus zest, followed by a strawberry-scented finale on the palate. Available in large formats, perfect for your holiday party!

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FIRST COURSE: Green Beans Almondine

23905609_10155410466724055_6913444075342312807_nDuring a holiday feast, the whole becomes more than the sum of its parts. A spread of side dishes come together to support the centrepiece and together they create a harmonious, fulfilling experience that guests remember for the rest of the year. And that’s why we simply cannot overstate the importance of dishes like Green Beans Almondine, a wonderful recipe combining tender haricots verts with the crunch of toasted almonds.

Perfect Wine Pairing: Penfolds Bin 311 Chardonnay 2015

Green beans are one of our favourite Christmas dishes, but – like many vegetal dishes – they can be quite tricky to pair with the right wine. Try this rich Chardonnay from Penfolds, a wine with just the right amount of acidity to balance the buttery beans and almonds! This wine, produced in the Tumbarumba appellation of Australia’s New South Wales, is aged for 9 months in French oak. It reveals on the nose touches of citrus, apple, cucumber and floral notes, followed by flavours of fresh nectarine and white fruit on the palate. The finish offers a wonderful minerality, an elegant accompaniment to a simple, yet classic, dish.

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MAIN COURSE: Roast Turkey with Chestnut Stuffing

24059634_10155410450954055_267826386060695152_oA show-stopping main course and the single most talked about dish at the table is the traditional Christmas turkey, roasted to the perfect point where crispy skin stretches tightly over steaming, juicy meat. Our favourite recipe features a rich and moist chestnut stuffing, seasoned with autumnal spices, like fragrant sage and thyme.


Perfect Wine Pairing: Xavier: La Reserve VII IX X

But what to pair with the magnificent centrepiece of your Christmas table? A golden brown roast turkey deserves a complex wine, like the Xavier: La Reserve VII IX X. This unusual Chateauneuf-du-Pape – a combination of Grenache, Mourvedre and Syrah – blends three different vintages, resulting in a full-bodied wine with intense raspberry aromas and a refreshing acidity to balance the richness of the stuffing. Xavier Vignon is an expert consultant and winemaker with a very interesting story, the man to know in the wine world of the Southern Rhone Valley. Impress your guests with this fascinating choice!

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CHEESE BOARD: Lancashire Cheese

24312916_10155425094469055_6092658567753424922_nCreamy, tasty or crumbly – Lancashire cheese is a wonderful choice for your holiday cheeseboard! This English cow’s milk cheese was first produced by the wives of Lancashire dairy farmers from leftover milk, which was curdled each day and added to a batch. The cheese is thus a blend of two or three days’ curd of varying maturity, giving the cheese its distinctive character.



Perfect Wine Pairing: Maison Trimbach “Reserve Personelle” Pinot Gris 2010 

And to pair with this rich and buttery cow’s milk cheese, we recommend the Maison Trimbach “Reserve Personelle” Pinot Gris from the Alsace region, whose indulgent notes of apricot and ripe pear will make for the perfect complement. Trimbach is arguably the most prestigious wine producer in the Alsace region, a family business dating back to 1626. Their “Reserve Personelle” wines are produced only in the best years from grapes selected from the best plots after having reached the perfect level of maturity. The taste of this Pinot Gris is sure to satisfy with its bright, rich and juicy character, refreshing acidity and long finish.

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DESSERT: Classic Christmas Pudding

24300950_10155425786754055_6336527584554994717_nThere is arguably no holiday dessert as widely beloved as traditional Christmas pudding (or “pud” as it is so affectionately called). This delectable, dome-shaped dessert combines a daunting list of ingredients, including dried fruits, candied citrus peel, almonds and baking spices. Add a dramatic touch by flambéing with sherry table-side to the amazement of your guests!

Perfect Wine Pairing: Quinta do Noval Vintage Port 2007

And to pair with the delicious dried fruits and spices flavouring this indulgence, we recommend something sweet from Porto. Try the Quinta do Noval Vintage Port 2007, whose crisp demeanour and powerful, elegant mid-palate will perfectly match this classic dessert. A truly decadent and satisfying way to end your holiday feast!

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Happy holidays and “Bon appetit!” from the Millesima team!


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