£9.75, Tesco, £11, Sainsbury's, £9.99/£14.99, Majestic
The juicy, sweet fruit and almost tannin-free suppleness of a good New Zealand Pinot Noir make it an ideal red to have on standby throughout Christmas. Avowed white wine drinkers will often drop their guard with Pinot Noir and it’s a wine that can cope with the richly flavoured turkey stuffings and trimmings which often trip up more austere, classical reds. It can equally well be served with a rib of beef or gammon and Boxing Day cold cuts. This one, from Central Otago – famous as the setting for the Lord of the Rings film – is packed with ripe red berry and cherry flavours delicately edged with spicy oak. If you’re late stocking up for Christmas, it has the advantage of being widely available.
Mud House Pinot Noir 2014, Central Otago, New Zealand
£9.75, Tesco, £11, Sainsbury’s; £14.99, or £9.99 when you buy any 6 bottles, Majestic