The best wines to pair for Christmas lunch from the best sommeliers

Planning the best Christmas lunch or dinner can be complicated and complicated, but if your menu is sorted and you want to pair it with the best wine, why not take the suggestions of the country’s Best Wine Sommelier, Wikus Human?

Human received the award in 2021 and is the head sommelier of The Marble Group. He has helped us with his top suggestions on the best wines to pair with your Christmas lunch or dinner menu.

The best wines to pair with Christmas lunch and dinner

Meat: Gammon

wine: Red Wine, lighter reds such as Pinot Noir or Cinsault

Reason: Human explains that reds tend to have a higher acidity that cuts through the richness of the gammon. “Gammon lends itself to white meats, similar to poultry, so you don’t want to dominate the flavor of the meat with the body or tannin of the wine.”

Top sommelier Wikus Human. Image: supplied

Wines to choose from:

Crystallum Petermax Pinot Noir

Waterkloof Seriously Cool Cinsault

Meat: Lamb

Wine: Red wine, medium-bodied reds such as Merlot or Syrah.

Because: Top sommelier says medium reds tend to have medium body and tannin. “Christmas lamb roasts usually differ quite a bit from traditional lamb chops as the roast tends to render all the fat.

“You don’t need a heavy wine to hold the fat, opting for a medium-bodied wine will be much more suitable so as not to overpower the lamb.

“Because roast lamb tends to have a lot of spices and herbs, it can influence the choice of wine,” so medium-bodied and aged Syrah would be more appropriate, says Human.

Wines to choose from:

Almenkert Merlot

Kermont Syrah

Meat – Turkey

Wine: 2 White wine or MCC

Reason: “If you’re roasting turkey, MCC would be a good partner. If you’re roasting turkey, a wooded chardonnay will lift the complex textures of a turkey, while a cooler style of chardonnay will offer a more delicate mouthfeel for to the lighter turkey meat.

Wine or MCC to choose from

Colmant Brut Reserve

Vergelegen Premium Chardonnay

Bouchard Finlayson Sans Barrique

Meat – beef

wine: Black wine

Reason: For this meat, it depends on the cut of beef. Human says, “for leaner cuts, a lighter or medium-bodied red like Pinot Noir, Merlot, or Syrah will be more appropriate so as not to overpower the flavor of your beef. For fattier cuts, maybe look at a full-bodied red like Cabernet Sauvignon where the tannin will soak up all the fat and richness of the meat.”

Come to choose:

Mira Merlot grape

Gabriëlskloof Syrah on stoneware

Thelema Cabernet Sauvignon

Meat – Chicken

Wine: White wine

Reason: “An oaked Chardonnay or an aromatic white wine like Viognier will pair well with the buttery crispy chicken skin and complement the spices and chicken stuffing. It’s very important not to serve these wines too cold, as these wines tend to come out better at a slightly warmer temperature.”

Come to choose:

Groote Post Kapokberg Chardonnay

Lismore Age of Grace Viognier

The best wines to pair with desserts

Festive desserts range from traditional fruit pudding or Christmas cake to South Africa’s favorite mallow pudding, peppermint to trifle.

Human suggests Dessert wine Natural sweets or straw wines will work well with most desserts. “The most important rule for pairing dessert wines with desserts is to try to match the level of sweetness of your wine with the dessert.

“Be careful not to have too sweet a dessert wine to avoid too sweet an end to your meal.”

He says that for chocolate rather combine it with Ruby portos and sweet cherries.

Come to choose

Keermont Fleurfontein

Mullineux straw wine

Boplaas Ruby Port

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