Image by Artem Kniaz

Great Wines for the Festive Season

Guest Post by Shafiq Jamal

As we get closer to a very different holiday season, I thought I’d share some of my top wine picks for your drinking pleasure.


I’ve been studying wine for a few years now, though my wife might term it something different…😊 Anyhow, I’ve done my Level 1 WSET training, and am hoping to eventually get to Level 4. 


So, from wines that go with a traditional turkey dinner, to wines to warm your insides on a cold winter night, read on and I hope you’ll find something to meet your needs. 


Oh, and I’ve tried to recommend wines that don’t hurt the wallet and are easy to find at the BCLDB.


First up is a perennial white favourite, a Riesling called Selbach. It’s from Northern Germany in the Mosel Valley, considered the best place for Riesling in the world. I find it to be a great example of this grape varietal, and a versatile food wine, especially given the variety of mains and side dishes that go into a turkey dinner.


Next up is a great Pinot Noir, Meomi, from California. A sumptuous, fragrant, and velvety red, it’s the complete opposite of what you’d expect from California, especially as far as the bolder reds from Napa go.


Speaking of California, gosh, there’s so much to choose from! A tried, tested, and true performer for me, and one that’s consistent year-in, year-out, is Ravenswood Zinfandel. I have a particular affinity for this type of wine, as it blends smoky notes with chocolate, pepper, and blackberry aromas.


Next up is an awesome full-bodied red from Washington State, called Wines of Substance. Produced by Charles Smith, Wines of Substance, is an elevated, fruit forward, rich, and delicious wine.


Finally, while I prefer reds, I’ve been quite taken with an excellent example of Sauvignon Blanc from New Zealand, which has a reputation for producing great Sauvignon Blancs. I first enjoyed the Whitehaven (from a region called Marlborough), at a Greek restaurant in North Vancouver and what stayed with me were the herbal/grassy notes combined with the white peach and citrus notes.


Enjoying wine is always a very subjective experience, so, I hope you find something that tickles your fancy––go forth and enjoy, responsibly of course!