We look at the best festive wine selections in Manchester
What’s red and white and makes Xmas merry?
Wine of course. The festive season is an excuse to treat yourself and your loved ones to some extra special bottles.
Baubles to the supermarkets, buy your Christmas wine case from your local wine merchant who will really appreciate your custom as well as providing far superior wine.
Here is our pick of local indies doing crackers of Christmas wine cases.
Where: Ad Hoc Wines
What: Bespoke box of six
The newest wine store in the NQ will put together six wines of your choice in a gift box for Crimbo. Their recommended selection includes a bottle of Krone champagne, a Swartland old vines white, a bottle of Cotes De Nuits Villages Pinot Noir and a Vire Clessé Chardonnay both from Burgundy, a Spanish red and a bottle of port but you do you. There's plenty of craft beer in here too. Well worth a visit.
What: Festive selection
How much: £103 for six
This wonderful little Spanish tapas bar has had it harder than most during the pandemic as its restaurants are tiny and some weren’t able to open with social distancing rules in place. It adapted quickly to takeaway tapas and opened an online wine shop that is still going strong. This festive case is, in Spanish style, all about the Cava with FOUR bottles of the stuff, two white, two rosé, as well as a couple of bottles of Reserva Rioja.
Where: Garrigue Wines
What: Festive six-bottle selection
How much: £120
Named after a kind of scrub vegetation that grows on limestone soil (many a grape's favourite), this new wine shop is the latest project from Kimberley McBride who has worked as a sommelier for the likes of The Creameries and Erst as well as being the wine expert of choice for Plattfields Market Gardens. You can't go far wrong letting Kim pick your Xmas wines for you. This festive selection has a focus on natural and byodynamic wines and comes in a reusable wine carrier (because you never know when you might need to transport some bottles). Wines include a Beaujolais (a perfect pair for turkey btw) and a lightly sparkling rose from Meinklang Klub in Germany.
What: Christmas Wine Selection
How much: £120 for six bottles
As sommelier at Where The Light Gets In Caroline Dubois knows a thing or two about wine - especially of the natural, low intervention and biodynamic variety. Her wine shop and deli Isca in Levenshulme has an exciting range of un-mucked-about-with wines all year and Caroline has put together a special surprise case for Xmas featuring two bottles of bubbles, one orange, one white and two red wines. You can get a mixed cheese and wine box from them too.
Where: Le Social
What: Ultimate continental hamper
How much: £75 for two bottles plus extras
Another one for lovers of natural and low intervention wines, this uber-hip wine merchants in Ancoats is another one going down the hamper route this year - though there is a wide range of wines by the bottle you can mix and match if you prefer. The Ultimate Continental Hamper features the natty-lovers' favourite: pet nat - which is a little more delicate in fizz than champers - as well as Viognier, Bourgogne Rouge, port and sherry. There is a whole host of frou-frou snacks too including Marcona almonds and duck rillettes, ooh la la!
Where: Reserve Wines
What: Christmas party case
How much: £150 for twelve bottles
Didsbury darlings and one of our favourite places to nip for a drink in Mackie Mayor. Reserve’s head honcho Kate Goodman is also BBC2’s Food & Drink show’s drinks pairing expert. This Christmas party case (main pic at the top) contains plenty of crowd-pleasing new and old world reds and whites (everything from delicate Chablis to intense Italian Neropasso - not a million miles away from Amarone but less pricey) as well as a couple of bottles of fizz, a Sauternes dessert wine and a Nierport LBV port. If you want a smaller version (pictured above), there is a Xmas day case of 6 bottles each with food pairing suggestion - buttery Chardonnay with your turkey, Neropasso with the cheese. Reserve also does festive tastings and has a new subscription option which would make a very generous gift for the wine lover in your life.
What: Mixed Fizz
How much: £95 for six bottles
If there's ever a time for fizz, it's Xmas - and especially this year. With bubbles in the shape of Cava, Prosecco and Champagne (of course) this box is more bubbly than Michael Buble and is sure to put a twinkly light in everyone’s eye. Salut has also launched Christmas hampers this year which include cheese, charcuterie and nibbles as well as bottles of red and white - they come in various options including vegan ones. Ideal for a Xmas Eve gift from you to you.
Where: Tiny's Tipple
What: Super Fancy Xmas Selection
How much: £198 for six bottles
This bijou Chorlton wine shop has put together a corking Xmas bundle fit for the fanciest celebrations. This extra special collection includes Lallier Champagne, a rich Chenin Blanc from Touraine in the Loire, a bold Argentinian red, the Xmas pudding in a glass that is Pedro Ximenez sherry, an LBV port and some Armagnac ideal as a nightcap - or for making Champagne cocktails. Certain to guarantee a good night’s sleep, probably starting midway through the Xmas film at around 6pm.
Want more? Here are some other local wine shops who would be happy to talk to you about festive bottles
Blossom Street Social - Ex-Hanging Ditch Ancoats wine bar
Carrington's - Didsbury OG that does great wine and booze
Cork Of The North - Award-winning wine tastings too
Corks Out - Warrington wine wallas
Flawd - Ancoats natural wine bar and shop from the team behind Higher Ground
Grape To Grain - Prestwich wine merchants famous for fun tastings
Harvey Leonards - a Glossop favourite
It's Alive - Another natural wine specialist that also does a nice line in glassware
Kerb - More natty in Ancoats
Kwoff - Bury's koolest wine store
Nordie - Beer and natural wine in Levenshulme
Salvis - Italian specialists
Sam’s Chop House - Wines and tastings from a Manchester institution with a top sommelier
Sicilian NQ - Our beloved NQ Sicilians
Tipples of Mcr - Teeny booze boutique off Albert Square
The Vineyard- Ramsbottom's treasure trove of wine and other boozy delights
Wandering Palate - Monton's top wine, booze and deli shop
Whalley Wine Shop - Award-winning Lancashire wine shop
and there's always Manchester Wine School for wine tasting vouchers
Competition: Win a year of wine in 2022 from Le Social
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