No matter what type of New Year’s Eve celebration you’re hosting, wine could- and maybe should- absolutely be a part of the festivities. Chances are though, you’ll want to make different selections based on the makeup of the guests at your party. While some parties are perfect for that expensive Champagne you’ve had aging, others might do just fun with a bottle of table wine. Here’s what we mean-
Alone- All by yourself this year? Hey, sometimes it happens. Doesn’t mean you shouldn’t celebrate, too. In fact, even though wine drinking is generally considered a social activity, sometimes the best wines can be even better when enjoyed all on their own. Think about it. Without chatter and noise to distract you, you can really focus on the wine itself. So, if you’re drinking alone, splurge on a nice wine. And then take the time to drink it slowly, and enjoy the silence around you. You might find this experience to be deeply rewarding.
Couples- Clearly the emphasis here is romance. While sparkling wines are the obvious choice, you don’t need to feel like you don’t have options. A sweet Riesling, or delicate Ice Wine go a long way, too. In general, focus on sweeter wines with fruit undertones. Think whites, pinks, and bubbles when shopping. Still a lover of red wines? That’s doable as well, just focus on fruit bouquets and rich undertones.
Parties- The focus here is on social interaction and fun. It’s important to offer a red and a white so as to be inclusive to a large variety of palettes. Don’t get too fussy or overthink things. A basic red and a basic white will do just fine. Be careful to choose wines with a lower alcohol content, though. Keeping it under 13% alcohol volume means people won’t get drunk too quickly in a party setting. If your party is formal, plan on spending around $20 per bottle, and if it’s less formal, anything in the $10-$15 range should work.
Families- Maybe not the obvious choice for a drinking party, but just because there are kids around doesn’t mean you have to sip on fruit punch all night, too. If your New Year’s Eve plans include minors, you’ll want to choose light wines that allow you to indulge without becoming overly intoxicated. A crisp Zinfandel is a delightful choice, as it pairs well with most snacks and many boast a lower alcohol content.
Now, on NYE, champagne or some sort of bubbly is almost a must no matter who you’re celebrating with. Plan on having a chilled bottle or two of something that fizzes for midnight, and maybe some sparkling cider for kids, too.