But what do you do if you realise you have already tucked into your Christmas wines and there is a chance of running dry over the festive break?
There is no hope of getting a supermarket delivery slot and going out shopping is difficult so your best bet is to call up your local independent merchant.
They have been working to the edge of exhaustion through the various lockdowns and tiers but still they carry on, delighted to bring you wine to your socially distant porch or shed.
If you are more used to selecting from your tried-and-tested supermarket wines you might be daunted by some of the different names offered by the indies but each wine has been hand selected by the person on the end of the phone so he or she can tell you how it tastes.
Best of all, if you have a particular favourite wine, just tell them and they will choose the nearest equivalent. That way you might discover a new favourite.
Most of our Yorkshire independent merchants are working until Christmas Eve, although if you want your wines delivered you probably need to get on their delivery schedule this weekend.
Oy Here are a few suggestions from some of our best independent wine merchants.
At The Wright Wine Company in Skipton, (www.wineandwhisky.co.uk, 01756 700886) the delightful dogs, Ardbeg and Bowmore (pictured below), have been helping proprietor Julian Kaye with deliveries, which are free within a 20-mile radius of the shop. If you just want to call in to find a good bottle of whisky or wine, then the shop is open until 4pm on Christmas Eve and again on December 29. Julian’s suggestions for Christmas drinking include Liberator No5 Chenin Blanc (£11), which featured in this column a few weeks ago. It is fresh and dry and will go wonderfully with baked salmon. If you are planning red meat for the main event then Ch. Musar 2016 (£16.50), the legendary wine from Lebanon, will be a perfect match, while their Pinot-dominated house champagne, from small producer Lombard (£23), makes a perfect start to Christmas Day.
Bon Coeur Fine Wines based in Melsonby (www.bcfw.co.uk, 01325 776446) will deliver across Yorkshire until Christmas Eve and will also be offering their own daily “click and collect” service from their warehouse. They reopen on December 29. From their huge range, I recommend their excellent house champagne Jacques Boncoeur Brut Réserve, currently on offer at £22, with white burgundy Saint-Aubin Champ Tirant 2018 from Gérard Thomas (£21.99), which is drinking like a mini-Meursault. A choice of clarets is difficult from their huge range, so head for the mature, elegant Ch. Tronquoy-Laland from St. Estèphe (£29.50).
In Ilkley and Bingley, Martinez Wines, (www.martinez.co.uk, 01943 600000) will be open until 6pm on Christmas Eve and reopen on December 27. New Year opening hours are still being finalised so ring the shops to find out nearer the time. They are offering free local delivery for orders over £50 and suggest the fabulous Muga Reserva Rioja 2016 (£16.79), Whispering Angel Provence Rosé 2019 (£17.99) and Luis Pato Maria Gomes Espumante (£13.59) as their choice for Christmas.
David Lawson at Chez Vin in Otley (01943 466143 [email protected]) must have driven thousands of miles during the current crisis, each week publishing his delivery route as well as the wines he has in stock. He doesn’t have a website but his list is extensive and well worth a look. His shop will close at 3pm on Christmas Eve and will be delivering until December 23. His suggestions for Christmas include De Wetshof Bon Vallon Chardonnay (£12.99), which comes from the gorgeous Robertson Valley in South Africa and the excellent Ch. Argadans (£15.99) from Bordeaux.
At Penistone Wine Cellars (www.pcwine.co.uk, 01226 767310) they have a drive-through service called “honk for wine”, which means you can order by phone and it will be put in your boot so there is no need for any contact. They also offer free local delivery. The shop will be open until 3pm on Christmas Eve and will reopen between 10am and 3pm on December 29. Best choices include the elegant Mâcon-Lugny Les Genièvres from Louis Latour (£16.25); the gorgeous Cavalchina Santa Lucia Bardolino Superiore (£17.40) and Rully Rouge from Louis Latour to go with the turkey (£22.25).
In York, Field and Fawcett (www.fieldandfawcett.co.uk, 01904 489073) will be open until 4pm on Christmas Eve and are generally open until 7pm in the run-up to Christmas. They are offering free delivery for any size of order for all YO postcodes and will reopen on December 29. Suggestions for Christmas drinking include Joseph Perrier Champagne Cuvée Royale (currently down from £34.95 to £28.95). This has long been a favourite of mine but is difficult to find. Jean Loron’s Macon-Villages Rift 71 (£13.55) has been made with no addition of sulphites and so will be good for any guests who might be allergic to them. A choice of red is the Old Vine Garnacha from Monfils (on offer at £7.95), bursting with concentrated raspberry and blackberry fruit.
In Sheriff Hutton, York Wines, (www.yorkwines.co.uk, 01347 878716) was one of the first to offer “click and collect” and will continue until they close at 5pm on Christmas Eve. They reopen on December 29 and suggest some great-value wines. The rosé version of Prosecco has only just been approved by wine authorities in Italy and its light pink colour and strawberry fruit brings a burst of sunshine. York Wines has the Di Maria Prosecco Rosé at £9.95, perfect for a Christmas morning buffet.