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Uncork the cheer: 16 wines to give — or get — for Christmas

Gifts » Experts highlight 16 wines — and match each to the type of drinker who would love to find it under the tree.



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For the sweet tooth » Lustau "Old East India" Sherry, Spain, $14.29 (375-ml bottle). One of the best — and most underrated — wines in the world is sherry, Grisley said. "Many people are either scared of it, or have only tasted one style and have written it off as not for them." But sherry runs the spectrum of wine styles, from bone dry to sweet with the viscosity of molasses. This particular bottle is sweeter, with notes of maple syrup, brown sugar, and exotic spices. It’s a great dessert wine by itself or — for an "insanely sweet treat" — drizzle it over vanilla ice-cream with almonds and raisins for dessert.

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For the dinner host » 2010 Joguet Chinon Rosé, France, $22.95. Dry rosé wines have become more popular in recent years as consumers have learned to separate this favorite European table wine from the sweet, low-quality white Zinfandel and "blush" wines that were produced in California in the 1970s and 1980s. This particular bottle originates is Chinon in Touraine, Loire Valley, and is made from the Cabernet Franc grapes. Rosé wines pair with many foods, including the holiday ham, says Utah wine broker, Gus Magann, of Vine Lore.

For the meat lover » 2008 Chateau Tour Bayard from Montagne-Saint-Emilion, France, $21.99. This red, from France’s famed Bordeaux region, "would be fantastic with your Christmas Prime Rib dinner," said Sheral Schowe, a Utah wine educator and owner of Wasatch Academy of Wines.

For the skeptic » 2010 Louis Latour Corton-Charlemagne Grand Cru, France, $96. The aromatics in this wine "are meant for the holidays; hazelnuts, roasted pears and touch of butterscotch," explains Jim Santangelo, wine educator and owner of The Wine Academy of Utah. It "will give someone the feeling they’re tasting Chardonnay for the first time from a grape they’ve had a million times before. This happens with Grand Cru white Burgundy."

For the historian » 2005 Stag’s Leap Wine Cellars ‘Cask 23’ Cabernet Sauvignon, Napa Valley, $190. This Cabernet has notes of sweet black fruit and cloves, says Santangelo. It comes from the same winery that competed — and won — the 1976 "Judgement of Paris," a blind taste test between French Bordeaux wines and Napa Valley Cabernets.


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For the art lover » 2010 Stemmler Nugent Pinot Noir 2010, Carneros, California, $34.99. This bottle combines art and wine, says Liz Lister, with Double L Beer and Spirits Brokerage Co. The artwork on the label portrays a portion of the famous Vendages Tapestry, a depiction of the grape harvest woven in Flanders in the late 15th Century, which now hangs in Cluny Museum in Paris.

For the organic eater » 2006/2007 Volker Eisele Cabernet, Napa Valley, California, $33. This wine is 100-percent certified organic, said Lister, with all the fruit grown on the estate vineyard.

kathys@sltrib.com; Twitter @kathystephenson; and Facebook.com/kathy.k.stephenson



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