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The Sunday Times

Published:  23 July, 2008

JOANNA SIMON also provides her pick of the wines for the festive season. She suggests not leaving it to the last minute, otherwise readers will end up with boring brands and tired old names'. She commends Thresher's three-for-two deal and Majestic's reduction on two bottles. Simon touches on alcohol levels, saying that in allowing a half to three-quarters of a bottle per person, a host should bear in mind that the average alcohol level in a bottle of wine is 13% and that wines from hot climates, such as most New World countries and the Mediterranean are generally more alcoholic. She recommends: 2005 Ayler Kupp Kabinett Margarethenhof (8.5%, 5.99; Majestic); 2005 Erdener Treppchen Riesling Kabinett (9%, 9.99; Marks & Spencer); and 2004 Finest Denman Vineyard Semillon (11%; 7.99 Tesco)