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Your Guide to the Best Holiday Wines For Entertaining (& Painting)

Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, New Year’s Eve—there’s so much to celebrate this time of year! A glass of your favorite wine can add a festive air to any occasion, especially holiday parties. Ever wondered what to serve and when, though? We’re here to help with a holiday wine guide! Dive in to learn which wines go best with familiar holiday treats and get inspired with wines that complement our December paintings.

Entertain in Style: Your Holiday Wine Guide

Whenever you’re choosing a wine to serve with holiday meals, your goal is to have the flavors of your wine and food enrich one another. Choosing the best holiday wine with your celebratory meals can truly elevate you and your guests’ dining experience, and as the host, it can make you look like a real culinary rock star!

If you’re not sure where to start when choosing a holiday wine, begin with this basic rule of wine pairings: Traditionally, white wines pair best with light meats and foods (like poultry and fish), and red wines pair well with flavor-infused, heavier meats (like beef or lamb).

Of course, there are many variants to consider if you want to go deeper into choosing wine for the holidays, but it’s hard to go wrong when you use that basic rule of thumb for holiday wine pairings. In the end, the best wine for holiday dinners is always something you and your guests will enjoy drinking! Learn a few rules and read recommendations, but keep personal tastes and preferences at the forefront of your mind to keep holiday guests happy. It’s a good idea to offer both a white and red wine with your holiday meal so guests can choose. Not sure what varieties might go well with your meal? Read on!

The Best White Wine for the Holidays

White wines tend to have acidic flavors that need to be balanced with food. When choosing the best white wine for holiday meals, consider what recipes you’re making. A good rule is this: if you would add lemon or lime juice to a dish to give it more flavor, pair it with an unoaked white, like Albarino or Sauvignon Blanc. Making potato latkes for Hanukkah? Go for a crisp Chardonnay. Need something to go with your fancy Christmas dessert? Choose a dry white (like Pinot Grigio), so you don’t overwhelm guests’ taste buds with sweetness.

For upbeat, vibrant celebrations like New Year’s Eve, champagne can’t be topped! For a touch of color, opt for a sparkling rose or fruity sparkling cider. ANY wine is made better with the company of loved ones, so gather all your friends and make a toast to the new year!

The Best Red Wine for the Holidays

Red wines tend to have a bitter flavor, which can be balanced with foods high in fat—think cheesy dishes and red meat with ample flavoring from natural fats. Malbec, Merlot or Cabernet Sauvignon are all versatile choices if you’re serving red meat as your main course. Although lighter meats are usually paired with a white, red Pinot Noir goes well with lighter proteins like chicken or turkey. If you’re making a creamy, chocolaty dessert, Port is a lovely choice. It’s revered for beautifully complementing cocoa flavors in sweet dishes.

Painting and Wine: Always a Perfect Pairing

A bottle of wine is best enjoyed with those you love, right? Why not join your friends and family and make memories together this holiday season? We’ll raise a glass to that! Enjoy a wine and paint night with your friends for the ultimate pairing. Sip on a rich Zinfandel while you paint with vibrant reds, greens, and golden hues, or channel snowy vibes with a chilled Riesling as you create a wintry scene. For many of our paintings, you can choose whether you paint on canvas or wood board for a different look and feel. Your custom painting can add cozy holiday charm to your home (or to a loved one’s home if you decide to give it as a gift), and you’ll always remember the laughter and sweet times you had creating it!

Have Your Own Holiday Wine and Paint Night

Don’t feel like entertaining in your home? Want to try something different for a holiday celebration this year? Pick up a bottle of wine you’ve been dying to try, gather up your loved ones, and head to Painting with a Twist for a holiday wine and paint party! Paint, drink, and be merry at a BYOB painting studio near you today. Happy Holidays!

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