$15 or less
WHAT : Yvon Mau Sauvignon Blanc 2005 (white) Rating: NNN
WHERE : Midi-Pyrenées, France
WHY : Whoa to the ho ho ho. Shut the holly-jolly music shit off, remove that greasy old Santa hat and just act like a normal human being for a second. Eat some non-festive food and drink some non-festive wine like this very reasonably priced bright and lively bottle. It'll go well with all sorts of unseasonal goodies.
PRICE : 750 ml/$8.95
AVAILABILITY : At selected liquor stores (product #19653)
WHAT : Chateau Pey La Tour Bordeaux Supérieur 2004 (red) Rating: NNNN
WHERE : Bordeaux, France
WHY : Maybe you're anti-Christmas or maybe you're with the majority of the world's population who profess no allegiance to Baby Feelgood. If you're more interested in an imbibable story than a Bible story, try this informative and enjoyable introduction to the Bordeaux style - lighter in texture but rich and full in flavour.
PRICE : 750 ml/$21.95
AVAILABILITY : At selected Vintages outlets (product #925859)
Sips and nips
WHAT : Weston's Christmas Gift Pack Cider Rating: NNN
WHERE : Herefordshire, England
WHY : I give up. Yes, it's a gift box, but at least it's different. The Weston family has been making cider since the 1800s, and their combination of traditional and modern techniques yields up some tasty stuff that makes a nice change from beer and wine. The Vintage is the best in the three-pack, but there's also an organic.
PRICE : 3x500 ml/$11.50
AVAILABILITY : At a limited number of liquor stores (product #4648)