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Winter 2012 - Newsletter

¡Feliz Navidad! 
Christmas is nearly here and each day gets just a little colder, so what better time to cook up a warming winter dish, listen to some festive songs, and curl up in front of the fire with a glass of Rioja? In this issue, we’ll be recommending the best wines for your turkey, plus we’ve got a case of Rioja wine to give away in time for the big day.


Gran Reserva Rioja & delicious roast turkey

It's almost time to start writing out the Christmas shopping list and don't forget the main ingredient to accompany your turkey...Rioja! Gran Reserva is Rioja’s flagship wine – aged at the winery for at least five years and only released when ready to drink, this wine ranks amongst the world’s greatest, making it the perfect choice for the big day. Gran Reserva wines are exceptionally complex, full of dried fruit and spice nuances which will stand up to all the contrasting flavours of a Christmas dinner, yet mellow enough not to overpower the turkey and all the trimmings. Even more importantly, Rioja is a real crowd pleaser so whether there's just a few of you or the whole family, it's bound to go down a storm this Christmas!

- 1 turkey, about 4kg, giblets removed
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 1 lemon, zested and cut into quarters
- 1 garlic clove, crushed
- 2 onions, cut into wedges
- Salt and black pepper
- 250-300g Chestnuts
- 500g Brussels sprouts
- 125g Serrano ham
- 4 shallots, peeled, halved and thinly sliced

1. Preheat the oven to 180°c (160°c for a fan oven)
2. Mix the olive oil, lemon zest, garlic, salt and black pepper in a small bowl
3. Pat the turkey dry with kitchen paper and rub the mixture over the skin of the bird
4. Place the lemon quarters inside the turkey cavity and the onion wedges around the turkey
5. Cover the turkey with foil and cook in the centre of the preheated oven for 1 hour 40 minutes
6. Take the turkey out of the oven, remove the foil, turn up the oven temperature to 220°c (200°c for a fan oven), and cook for a further 30 minutes
7. Remove the turkey from the oven and using a skewer pierce the thickest part of the bird. The juices should run clear.
8. Loosely cover the turkey with foil and allow to rest for 30 minutes or more before serving
9. Preserve the juices and cooked onions to make a gravy
10. Why not give a Spanish twist to your festive trimmings by sautéing some Brussels sprouts with Serrano ham, and adding some chorizo and chestnut to your stuffing

Serve with a complex oak-aged Gran Reserva such as Faustino I or Beronia

Celebrate the festive season like a Riojan!

Christmas is a month long celebration in Spain, beginning with the Feast of the Immaculate Conception on 8th December. The most important holiday event takes place on La Noche Buena (Christmas Eve) which is an opportunity for families to gather and celebrate around the 'nacimiento' (nativity scenes) in their homes – with lots of lovely Rioja, of course!

New Year’s Eve is celebrated by eating 12 grapes as the clock chimes midnight – one for each chime of the bell. But children in Spain traditionally still have to wait until 6th January for their presents when gifts are delivered by 'Los Reyes Magos' (The Three Wise Men), who fill shoes with presents.
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