18 December 2018 by Jessica Boston
Christmas drinks: French favourites to go with your Christmas Lunch
When it comes to planning the drinks to accompany your Christmas meal, France has everything you need! From a sparkling start to cosy end here are the French wines and spirits we’d recommend for your traditional Christmas Lunch.
It goes without saying that Champagne is the drink of choice for celebrations.
Mix with Chambord raspberry liqueur made at the famous Chateau of the same name for a decadent Kir Royale – the ultimate aperitif to get the party started. Pair Champagne with smoked salmon starters or drink it straight through your festive feast – Rosé Champagne works very well with a traditional roast turkey!
A crisp Chablis or Muscadet is the ideal partner to a seafood starter. And for the main event a buttery, full bodied White Burgundy goes down well served with turkey and all the trimmings.
A Rose wine is a good all rounder that looks beautiful in the glass and can be an ideal pairing for Christmas turkey. However, it’s important to choose a dry, crisp rosé with enough acidity to balance the richness of the meal. Look for a Rosé from the Provence region and you won’t go far wrong.
For those who prefer red wine with the roast turkey a Beaujolas is a great choice. Not too full bodied or overpowering, Beaujolas Villages wines are made from the Gamay grape and are characterised by a bright light flavour and cherry fruitiness making it a lovely accompaniment to your Christmas feast. Look out for Beaujolais, Fleurie or Morgon on the label.
You could also go for a stronger red like a Burgundy or mature Bordeaux – quality is key here as you want a delicious, smooth wine without bitter tannins that will overwhelm a poultry based meal.
France offers some of the best dessert wine in the world and that’s exactly what you need to go with a traditional Christmas Pudding! Choose a honey sweet Sauternes from Bordeaux, a citrussy Muscat from the Rhone Valley or a wonderful apricot scented sticky Ice Wine from the French Alps.
French Cognac is the only choice to flame your Christmas Pud! Use it to make a decadent Brandy Butter too, and make plenty; any leftovers will be a sublime accompaniment for mince pies!
After the meal, when you’re full to bursting, the French would probably recommend a ‘digestif’ to round off the meal. Traditional favourites include the apple brandy of Normandy called Calvados, or perhaps an Armagnac from Gascony, but if you’re feeling adventurous a festive green Chartreuse made using 130 types of herb by monks in the mountains of Grenoble might be just the thing! Cheers!