This fatty meat demands a red wine, but you can experiment with light to full-bodied depending on how you cook the meat. Decanter's tasting team gives some advice for serving wine with lamb this Christmas...
Lamb may not be the obvious choice of meat for the table on Christmas day, but it is a great option for anyone getting tired of turkey.
Often cooked with strong flavours of garlic and rosemary, and served with all the trimmings, it is important that both the wine and meat have a chance to show themselves at their best.
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If you plan to serve lamb pink, it is best to pair a lighter wine with it to avoid overpowering the delicate flavours and aromatics. The Jürgen Hofmann Appenheimer Spätburgunder is a deliciously approachable Pinot Noir that fits the bill, with light red fruits, spice, and an acidity that can cut through the fat in the meat while preserving its tender texture.
Serving lamb closer to well-done will enable you to make a step up in body and intensity, something like the Peter Sisseck Psi or E Guigal Brune et Blonde Côte-Rôtie. The elegant balance of tannins and acidity will work well with the structure of the meat, while the more intense flavours in the wine will suit the heightened flavours of the lamb from a longer roasting time.
If you intend to slow roast your lamb or use mutton instead, choose a full bodied red with high acidity. Wines with an emphasis on savoury, meaty flavours can work really well, so we recommend the Bisceglia Gudarra Aglianico del Vulture and the Casas del Bosque Pequenas Producciones Syrah.