Subscriber OnlyFood Month

Drinks to cover all eventualities during the festive season

John Wilson: This week I’m focusing on crowd-pleasing white wines and Irish cider

This week and next, I have a few suggestions for drinks to cover all eventualities during the festive season; a glass with friends who drop in unexpectedly, a large gathering, or a gang of friends around for dinner. I also include a few blowout wines if you feel like spoiling yourself and your friends. All of today’s drinks can be drunk with or without food, including the cider.

Next week, I’ll focus on red wines and beer, this week it’s white wines and cider. I try to support Irish cider and usually buy either Highbank Proper or Cockagee, two great ciders. However, every once in a while, I treat myself to a bottle from Eric Bordelet, one of the world’s great cider producers.

The Percheron is an old favourite that offers incredible value for money. It is rich enough to drink alongside many foods, yet light enough to enjoy solo. Alternatively, the Specially Selected Muscadet from Aldi (€9.99) is another great budget friendly all-purpose wine. The two more expensive wines are worth the price, wines to be shared with a few select friends.

Eric Bordelet Sidre Nouvelle Vague (Biodynamic)

6%, €6.50 for a 33cl bottle.

A wonderful cider with depth and real concentration; off-dry with intense red apples and fresh acidity. Drink it by itself or with pork, chicken, buckwheat crèpes, and anything in a creamy sauce.


From; Latitude 51, Cork; 64 Wine, Glasthule.

Percheron Chenin Blanc Viognier Western Cape €13.95

This would go nicely with salmon, chicken and pork or even turkey if you are celebrating Thanksgiving or planning ahead for Christmas.

From; Blackrock Cellars; Cass and Co, Waterford; Grainstore, Ballymaloe; MacGuinness, Dundalk; Green Man, D6W; Martins, D3;; 64 Wine, Glasthule; World Wide Wines, Waterford.

San Lorenzo Marche Bianco ‘di Gino’ 2022

13.5%, €22-22.50

Utterly gorgeous fresh crisp white with mouth-watering peach and apple fruits and subtle hazelnuts. Drink by itself, with lighter pasta dishes, or herby fish recipes.

From Sheridan’s;; 64 Wine, Glasthule; Clontarf Wines; Strandfield, Co. Louth; MacCurtain, Cork; The Store Next Door, Westport; Lilith, D7.

Chignin Bergeron Les Cerisiers 2022 Fabien Trosset 12.5% €27

12%, €27

Vibrant succulent pineapple, peach and apricot fruits underpinned by a cleansing fresh acidity. This is a great wine. Enjoy by itself, with firm cheeses, chicken and pork dishes as well as grilled white fish.; 64Wine, Glasthule; SC grocer, Deansgrange; Green Man, D6W; Ely Store, Maynooth.