By: Natalya Jones
It’s the holiday season, and your planner is chock full of Ugly Sweater parties, white elephant gift exchanges, and awkward family reunions. You’re ecstatic to go to these (who doesn’t love when distant family members question why you’re STILL single?), but there’s a slight problem: your wine knowledge consists of browsing Publix for anything under $10 (Lucky Duck, anyone?). While I can’t promise anything particularly tasty under $10, I can give the top holiday wines under $25 from my assistant manager’s perspective, Karen Cornack, from Weston’s Libation, the Love of Wine.
So what constitutes a holiday wine from just any ol’ wine? Cornack says it’s “something that looks festive in a glass…going out of the box. Something a little bit more money.” Labels of wines include the typical Christmas colors: gold, red, silver, and green. Pairings are also taken into consideration (ex. Turkey is eaten a lot more during the holidays, and thus should have different wines paired with it) as well as the taste. “[Holiday wines are] bubbly, seasonal, great for sharing with friends, [making] toasts, and New Year’s Resolutions,” Cornack adds.
Lo Duca [Mamertino; Red Frizzante; Italy]: $19.99
“You gotta do a bubbly [wine] for the holidays,” states Cornack. And bubbly you shall get with Lo Duca Mamertino. With its festive red label, it just screams “Christmas”. This “off-dry”, fruit forward wine is packed with tastes of cherries and raspberries and great when paired with appetizers such as provolone cheese and crackers.
Bitch 2009 [Grenache; Spain]: $14.99
This wine is exactly what it sounds like – sass in a glass. Cornack says it’s a fun wine to give someone because of the “whimsical label”. Cornack adds, “Someone opens a bottle of bitch; everyone’s going to giggle.” Packed with tastes of fruit such as raspberries, peach, and strawberries, this light hearted gift is great when drank with heavy meats such as beef or steak and rich desserts like chocolate cake.
Georges Dubceuf Beaujolais Nouveau [France]: $15.99
Exclusivity is one of the factors that make a holiday wine a holiday wine. With Georges Dubceuf’s limited dates (it doesn’t come out till the third Thursday of Novemeber), it certainly is a holiday wine. Dubbed a “Thanksgiving wine”, it certainly does not get better with age. “This is kind of a limited edition…it’s like a really light, bad pinot,” Cornack says. Beaujolais Nouveau is best with the stereotypical holiday foods: turkey, poultry, cranberry sauce.
Luigi Scarani [Moscato; Italy]: $21.99
This slightly sweet wine has the power to “appeal to a lot of people…even those who are not wine drinkers.” With its festive label, it’s a perfect fit for company over the holidays. Cornack describes it as a “nice big bottle….it looks great in a gift basket.” Aromas in this particular bottle include not only flower-patterned scents but apricot and peach blossoms as well. This wine is great paired with cheeses such as asiago, brie, cheddar and mancheggo.
Dr. H Thanisch Riesling 2010 [White Mostelle Wine; Germans]: $17.99
The German wine is perfect for the holidays. Semi-dry with a medium body, Cornack describes it as a “sit down dinner” kind of wine. This white wine is delicious when paired with poultry such as turkey and duck.
Karen Cornack is an assistant manager at Libation, the Love of Wine, located in the Weston Town Center in Weston, Fl and has been managing there for 5 years. Come in for delicious food, 72 different wines poured from self serve wine machines, and make-out friendly ambiance.
1722 Main St Weston, FL 33326