These ports go well with many of your favourite Christmas treats—

My first wine press trip was to the Port house of Quinta do Noval, where I trod grapes and tasted their famous Nacional Port – liquid nirvana. The 2016 Nacional is in Hedonism for an eye-popping £936, but happily there are plenty of decent-value alternatives. For concentration and complexity, there are few wines as exhilarating as vintage Port. For similar bottles for far less cash, hunt Late Bottled Vintage Port.

Of course, Port with Stilton is a classic combo, but nibble on dark chocolate and behold enlightenment. With Christmas pudding or mince pies, Tawny Port is irresistible – serve chilled and unleash its cascading slick of spicy sultanas. For refreshment at parties, White Port and tonic is class (treat it like a G&T). But for an all-rounder, my Ruby Port pick offers the keys to paradise.


GET FRESH: Taylor’s Chip Dry White Port (50l, 20%), £9.99 Majestic. Gorgeous refreshment served with tonic, ice and a citrus slice in the manner of a G&T.

CHILL OUT: Maynard’s 10 Year Old Tawny Port (20%), £10.99 Aldi. Amazing quality for the price – serve chilled with mince pies, Christmas cake and Christmas pudding.

SPICE UP YOUR LIFE: Quinta do Noval 2012 LBV (20%), £17.95* Ocado. The baby version of Noval’s vintage Port. Glory in a glass – spicy and splendid. *until 1 Jan.

POWER UP: Vintage Port 2011 (20%), £27 M&S. Stunning value for this powerful, spicy top of the tree vintage Port. Call your local store to reserve yours now.


Morrisons Ruby Port (19%) £7. Sweet, sleek and superb value to pair with Stilton this Christmas. Sheer scrumptious ness and a total steal.

This column was originally published in EVENT Magazine, Mail on Sunday, 23rd December 2018