July 20, 2024

John Wilson: My Christmas picks from Dunnes Stores’ wine sale

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Wines for the holidays: Two whites, two reds, plus a few extra bottles worth checking out

Of the major supermarkets, Dunnes Stores is probably best in class when it comes to wine. It runs fewer deep discounts (although it has 20 per cent off all wines), but prices generally are keen and its range, in major stores at least, is comprehensive. It has many wines that are exclusive, with France a particular strength. Here are my picks from its Christmas selection. The prices here include the 20 per cent discount, which naturally rewards those who spend a little more.

For Christmas I would certainly start off with something sparkling, and Dunnes has the excellent Lombard Champagne Grand Cru Blanc de Blancs (€36) or, alternatively, the Jacobs Creek Sparkling Rosé (€14.80). 

As well as the two whites mentioned below, if you want something crisp and refreshing, the Chablis Pierre Ponnelle (€14.40) has racy green apple fruits and would go perfectly with oysters and salmon dishes. If you prefer a richer white the Mâcon-Lugny 2020, Joseph Drouhin (€12.20) has delicous textured peach and apple fruits. It would partner nicely with turkey as well as prawns or smoked salmon, as would the very well-priced Riesling Grand Cru Florimont (€14).

Pinot Noir goes well with turkey, duck and goose, and Dunnes has a nice line-up, including a German rosé, the Pinot Noir Rosé 2019, Kalkstein, Reh Kendermann, and, from the same house, the light toothsome red Terra Quartär Pinot Noir 2019 (both €9.20).

From the south of France it has the Solas Pinot Noir Réserve (€8) and Réserve de Luch Pinot Noir 2020 (€8), both aromatic and juicy with ripe cherry fruits.

I wrote about the light and fragrant Domaine Carillon Bourgogne Pinot Noir (great value at €13.20) earlier this year, alongside the same producer’s elegant concentrated Pommard (€36). If I were having beef, lamb or venison I would look at the Chateau Bois Pertuis 2018, Bordeaux (€10) or from Spain, the rich, full-bodied Téofilo Reyes Ribero del Duero (€14.40)

Les Courtelle Picpoul de Pinet 2020, €8.80
Light, fresh and fruity, a good easy-going wine to serve to friends who drop in, or to drink with lighter salad and fish dishes. Sometimes called the Muscadet of the south, it is often served locally with shellfish.

Rapaura Springs Dillons Point Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2021, €11.20
Fresh and aromatic with excellent racy green fruits and lime zest. A stylish aperitif, or serve it with smoked salmon or prawns.

Ventoux 2019, Terroir Daranton, €8
Medium to full-bodied with smooth ripe strawberry fruits. Great with turkey, ham and all the trimmings.

Chateau Haut-Canteloup 2015, Cru Bourgeois Médoc, €15.20
Ripe blackcurrant and cassis fruits, with an earthy touch and a savoury, dry finish. One to serve alongside beef, lamb and firm cheeses.

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