2009 Nicosia Fondo Filara, Etna Bianco, Sicily
Even allowing for my unashamed Sicilian bias, this is a delightful and very good white. Aromas of lime, peach and apple, then a flavour that is closer to pears with a dash of spice; medium-weight with a silky-soft texture and a fresh, bright finish. 13% abv.
£10.95, The Wine Society
2005 Château Ricaud, Bordeaux Supérieur
Nicely evolved, modern Bordeaux, perfect for drinking now. Sweet, fleshy fruit rounded out with soft oak against a background of spicy cedar and supple tannins; polished, dry finish. Good value, unlike so much Bordeaux. 13% abv.
The Wine Society.
Noval 40 Year Old Tawny Port
One of this Christmas’s most enjoyed and admired wines chez nous. Sumptuous, complex, rich yet fresh 40 year old, with flavours of spicy fudge, dried figs, coffee and candied peel. Like liquid panforte, but better. Fabulous on its own, but concentrated and complex enough to stand up to cheese, including stilton (or a particularly good Colston Bassett anyway) and dark chocolate. 20% abv.
£81.99–£85, simplywinesdirect.com; onlinespirits.co.uk; Berry Bros & Rudd.