Three wine styles to feature on your holiday wine list

By Alex Powell and Priya Rao
November 30, 2015

The holidays are on the horizon. There’s a reason it’s called the most wonderful time of the year: your guests are cheerful and celebrating, bonuses are coming in and most people have saved all year to be able to splurge on good times, including exciting wines.

The holidays are a great time to introduce your guests to exciting new vinous experiences and to tempt them with more obscure and unique fine offerings to distinguish you from the crowd, because let’s face it – your guests get around! Many Canadians dine often and all across their cities, and while they may not all be wine connoisseurs, they will recall seeing the same names on a list if subjected to them over and over.

Here are three areas where you should bring in exciting new wines and really make an effort to push them, as unique options won’t sell themselves in the absence of marketing.

Powerful, sunny, spicy reds

We all want something warming for the cold weather, something to provoke our memories of sunnier days. Forget about featuring a cabernet, Shiraz or zinfandel, and expose your guests to powerhouse bottlings from the south of Italy and France, or exotic coastal priorats from Spain. Take this Vinosia Taurasi Santandrea 2009, for example. It’s the king of Southern Italian wine: rich and brawny with fruitcake, sweet basil, balsamic and clove notes, with ample depth and finesse at a very reasonable price.

Bubbly!

Sure, New Years’ Eve is the easiest night of the year on which to sell champagne, but in my experience you never sell as much as you expect, especially by the glass. Why? Possibly because guests are tired of Moet and Veuve Clicqout, and have lost their desire to pay two to three times the price on mediocre champagne that’s available everywhere, all year round.

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