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With three weeks until Christmas Eve it’s time to think about wines to enjoy with Christmas dinner. A traditional British Christmas dinner has lots of flavours and the wine needs to be able to cope with them because there is nothing more disappointing than wine which is delicious before food but then turns acidic when you add food. I have chosen a lightly oaked Californian Chardonnay called Original Dark Horse Chardonnay 2015. In the glass it was a bright, beautiful pale gold colour with fresh lychee, gorgeous toasted coconut and lime on the nose. On the palate it was soft, rich and full bodied with flavours of lime, almond and butterscotch which were subtle and delicious and then vanilla came through on the finish. It was perfectly balanced. You might think that the butterscotch and tropical fruit would render the wine sweet, but it was not. It coated the palate with a texture of lychee and grapes as it prepared it for food. Don’t over chill this wine or you will lose the subtle flavours. Two hours is enough.
I served Original Dark Horse Chardonnay 2015 with roast turkey, pigs in blankets, homemade sage and onion and sausage meat stuffing, roasted potatoes, parsnips and chestnuts, boiled Brussel sprouts and swede mashed with butter. The buttery swede brought out the vanilla in the wine which was beautiful. It was also delicious with gravy, made from the meat juices. Even at the end of the meal the wine retained its freshness.
I purchased Dark Horse Chardonnay 2015 from Asda and it cost £7.98. An absolute bargain for such a good food wine. It is also available at Waitrose, Sainsbury’s and at Tesco. Ensure that your bottle is Original Dark Horse Chardonnay 2015 and not Dark Horse Chardonnay as there is a difference and drink it in one sitting because it doesn’t keep well, even overnight.
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Read my wine and food column in the Bournemouth Echo on the first Saturday of each month.