Wine and Drinks for your Dinner Party

So you’ve planned the menu for your dinner party and now need to select the right wine to serve.

How Much wine to Buy

On average you should expect a dinner guest to drink half a bottle of wine (approximately three standard glasses), but perhaps you know your guests better and may decide to cater more than this. It’s always better to have wine left over, than run out mid-way through your meal. Don’t forget to consider those who may be driving home and make sure you stock up on a selection of non-alcoholic drinks as an alternative.

Which Wine to Serve

Depending on the occasion, you may decide to serve champagne to your guests on arrival, but to reduce expense you could also select one of the excellent range of sparkling wines available. Most guests won’t notice the difference or won’t be offended if they do.

You may wish to consider a a seasonal drink such as Pimms in the summer, or mulled wine at Christmas. Chilled dry sherry is also excellent served as an Aperitif. Your guests will appreciate the extra effort.

White Wine with Fish, Red Wine with Meat?

Wine GlassesWhile this adage is true in many cases, there are exceptions. You would not wish to over-power the flavour of a delicate fish dish with a full-bodied red wine, and the subtleties of a white wine may be lost if served with a rich beef casserole.

Dessert Wine / Pudding Wine

Sweet dessert wines are perfect partners for most desserts. Look for a classic Sauterne or perhaps an Ice Wine from North America / Canada. These wines are traditionally served in small quantities and consequently a half-bottle will easily serve 12 glasses which should be ample for most meals.

Grape Varieties


White Wine

Red Wine

  • Cabernet Sauvignon
  • Gamay
  • Grenache
  • Merlot
  • Pinotage
  • Sangiovese
  • Syrah/Shiraz
  • Tempranillo


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