Staff Christmas Picks Part One

Team Corks’ Festive Picks


Uggiano, Governo Toscano Method, Tuscany, Italy

A drier appassimento style that has amazing value and taste. I also find myself drawn more to Italian wines this year. A similar wine making technique to Ripasso but showing lighter fruity notes and a distinctive savoury touch of black cherry, dry herbs and sundried tomatoes.


Balla Geza, Feteasca Regala, Minis, Romania

This is a versatile white that would work its magic around a Turkey feast Christmas lunch or just as an aperitif. It also reminds me of a wonderful part of the world! Showing an aromatic, fresh and mineral tone, akin to young Chardonnay from the southern edges of Burgundy, yet distinctive enough to place around the realm of Transylvania.


Sam E:

It’s just not Christmas without a little festive fizz and my top pick this year has got to be the fantastic Grand Cru Brut from Paul Déthune. There are hints of buttery brioche and quince on the nose and a lovely fruitiness on the palate whereby lemon zest and pink grapefruit lead to refreshing minerality and an undertone of toasty decadence. This is a Champagne to be enjoyed as an aperitif, alongside your Boxing Day cheese board or simply with something nibbly – perhaps try our range of Brets crisps, I personally find the Cépes flavour to be the perfect pairing!



Christmas for me is all about family and tradition.  My choices are things we’ve stocked for years and never fail to deliver. We always have fizz (would be rude not to!) and with every selection I take to family, the one that always hits the mark is Vigneau Chevreau Vouvray Petillant. It is fresh yet with some weight, textured apples and a hint of apricots. It has become a firm family favourite over the years.


Domaine de l’Espiguoette Cotes du Rhone also always appears at some point over the festive period. Soft, silky and a touch spicy it goes really well with big flavours and just a lovely wine to sip through the evening. Later into the night, games being played and conversation more animated, out come the spirits.  Again, two firm favourites are Dupont VSOP Calvados and Ragnaud Sabourin No 4 Cognac.  The Calvados is super elegant with fresh and stewed apple laced in vanilla.  The Cognac, whilst still very elegant, is weightier with notes of nougat, stone fruit, toffee and spice.


Sam O:

Mossburn Island Blended Malt Whisky

For me, there’s little more comforting than a warming dram as the long cold nights draw in. The evocative and transportive quality of Scotch whisky. The Mossburn Island blend brings to mind wind swept isles, and a sense of being formed by the land with it’s robustly peaty and phenolic character.

This is a whisky of real integrity, bottled at 46%, without chill-filtration or the addition of colour, and complexity, given its re-aging in a cask of bespoke composition. The core of the whisky is still fresh, driven by orchard and citrus fruit, with some sweetness, smoke and spice coming from the cask composed of American Oak, ex-Bourbon cask, and heavily toasted heads.

Jever Pilsner

Certainly less of a seasonal choice and on the fresher side of things, however, classics are classics for a reason. Refreshment should be a priority at all times of year, and this North German pils has the assertive bitterness that keeps you coming back for more. Dry, piney and bitter, perfect for any festive parties and even on Christmas morning to get the party started.