If ever there’s a time for a glass of good wine, it’s Christmas. These unmissable wines and ingenious wine accessories are the perfect Christmas gifts and additions to any wine-lover’s festive fun.
Australia has developed a real passion for wine, being blessed with so many excellent wine regions around the country. Our fascination with wine means a bottle or two under the Christmas tree just makes sense.
We’ve put together some of our favourite wines, as well as a few incredible tools, accessories and fun wine-based products that we think make awesome gifts for Christmas.
So it’s not just a list of wines here. You’ll find decanters, wine preservation systems and even ‘decorations’ for the Christmas lunch table here. And even some non-alcoholic ideas too.
This is part of our digital guide to Christmas gifts – Hint Magazine – which you can see here.
Wine time at Yuletide
Small but perfectly formed, these 200ml bottles of one of Australia’s finest sparkling wines are a stroke of tiny genius.
Each one is individually boxed in its own bonbon, so rather than bad jokes and landfill toys, this year’s Christmas dinner will be full of bubbles!
There’s nothing other than size that separate these bottles from the full-size version from Grant Burge.
The traditional blend of Chardonnay and Pinot Noir grapes bringing a beautifully balanced sparkling wine with exceptional bead size and luxurious body.
Tasmania’s sparking wines are amongst the best in the world and Pirie’s vintage collections deserve a seat at this table.
An unsung ‘brother brand’ of Tamar Ridge, these sparkling wines offer incredible body and structure along with delightfully fine bead bubbles.
The 2017 vintage offers a crisp apple crunch alongside moreish biscuit notes from both the 48% Chardonnay and 52% Pinot Noir grapes staying on lees for three years. This bright golden sparkling wine is the perfect Christmas Day party starter.
From the creators of one of the best and most diverse non-alcoholic spirits range in the world comes a whole new way to get the party started.
Lyre’s non-alcoholic sparkling has all the bubbles, nose, palate and texture of a classic Champagne, Prosecco or Sekt but none of the ‘I can’t drive home now’. Watch this space for more non-alcoholic wines from these guys too.
Have you ever opened a bottle of Champagne, poured out into glasses then put the bottle back in the fridge with a spoon in the top to keep it fizzy? Bad news: that doesn’t work.
What does work – and will keep your bubbles bubbling for up to four weeks – is the Coravin Sparkling.
This latest evolution in wine preservation systems charges Carbon Dioxide into the void of the Champagne bottle through a specially designed cap that locks over any sparkling wine bottle neck. It’s a work of genius!
We put the Coravin Sparkling through a four-week test to see if it really could keep a bottle of Champagne fresh and fizzy for a month.
Perfect for the wine-lover, Coravin is a wine preservation system that injects inert argon gas through the cork or specially designed screwcaps into the void in the wine bottle allowing wine to flow out into your glass without oxygen getting to the rest of the wine.
This allows you to enjoy just a single glass of that special bottle you’ve been holding onto and still have it in your collection for years. Coravin creator Greg Lambrecht has evidence of wine lasting 15 years like this.
You can read more in our review of the Coravin Model 6 here.
Rightfully referring to themselves as Pinot Noir makers first and winemakers second, Tamar Ridge create some of the most outstanding iterations of this tricky varietal.
Harnessing all the elegance and structure of Pinot Noir, this Tasmanian wine offers remarkable richness, concentrated fruit notes and a finish that lasts a lifetime.
Drinking well now, this Tamar Ridge Reserve Pinot Noir 2019 will also cellar well for the incredibly strong-will for up to 10 years.
Put away the old board games and Pictionary aisle, this is how Christmas Day evening should be spent. It’s a wine-tasting activity pack that goes way beyond the usual sniff, sip and make a note.
Using four wines from their new Impressionist Range (Pinot Grigio, Riesling, Tempranillo and Shiraz), family-owned winery Millon Wines have created a box kit of that also comes with a full sensory experience that takes you to the vineyards of South Australia.
With the wines comes four beautifully produced varietal guides that talk about each wine type, a wine-tasting notepad for identifying the flavours, aromas and colours of wines, and a booklet with a professional wine-taster’s answers against the four bottles in the pack.
The sensory experience also includes a specially created Spotify playlist for each bottle, a tea towel that gives you food pairing recommendations, and most impressively a virtual reality headset with links to 360 degree videos of the Millon vineyard.
Individual bottles of the Impressionist range are $18.00 RRP.
There’s a lot to be said for decanting. Not only does it aerate the wine, allowing it to breathe, smooth out tannins and awaken those hidden sleeping flavours, it also brings real elegance and theatre at your dinner party.
And when the decanter is as beautiful as Waterford Crystal’s Lismore Nouveau Decanting Carafe, the wine is elevated to a whole new level. The elegant cuts in the broad and satisfyingly heavy base create glints of light across the table, while the slender neck makes for smooth, easy pouring.
Ok, not wine, but a great way to finish this list, Naked Life is a new Australian alcohol-free spirit range that’s really making waves. If you’d also like to see our spirits gift guide, click here.
Naked Life’s impressive (and still growing) range of ready-to-drink alcohol-free cocktails are here to save Christmas. Crafted with distilled botanicals, de-alcoholised, then blended with the other components of each cocktail, these drinks are great representations of their alcoholic namesakes. They’re also sugar-free.
There are currently 11 in the range, which you can find in packs of four in Woolworth’s and selected Coles:
Classic G&T, Wimbledon Spritz, Yuzu Sake, Negroni Spritz, Italian Spritz, Scottish Sour, Margarita, Aussie Cane Spirit (kind of like rum) and Cola, American Malt Spirit (kind of like Bourbon), Canadian Rye Spirit with Dry and Lime, and Spiced Caribbean Spirit with Dry and Lime.
Check out our Christmas gift guide Hint Magazine here: