8 great drinks to match with mince pies
Mince pies are not that different to Christmas pudding and Christmas cake so you could drink much the same sort of wine with them. But tradition obviously plays a part in terms of what most people expect and they do pair particularly well with fortified wines like port, sherry and madeira
* Mulled wine - Never mind the match it’s just what you offer the carol singers on Christmas Eve isn’t it? To tell the truth - whisper it - mulled cider is just as good. Find my favourite recipes here
* Sweet sherry - again a traditional pairing and I think a good one. One of my favourites is Matusalem but own label cream sherries are perfectly good.
* Sweet madeira - less traditional than sherry, but just as delicious. Basic blended madeiras like Blandy’s Duke of Clarence, currently on offer at £9.99 at Waitrose, are fine otherwise look for a Bual or Malmsey
* Tawny port - you may be used to drinking a ruby port like a Late Bottled Vintage but why not try a nutty 10 Year Old Tawny for a change? Otima is a modern interpretation that goes particularly well with mince pies - Waitrose again at £11.99
* Sweet port-like wines from the south of France like Banyuls, Rivesaltes and Maury - maybe a little harder to track down but ideal if you want something different
* Barley wine - not, as I’ve mentioned before, a wine but a strong, sweet-tasting beer. Any indie with a decent beer range should have one. One of my local brewers Bristol Beer Factory does one.
* Christmas ales - I'm never totally convinced about Christmas ales with savoury food - except perhaps ham - but they're great with Christmas baking.
* Black tea Which you might think hardly bears saying but try making it from loose leaf tea, in a pot rather than with a teabag and taste the difference.
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