With winter in full swing and the holidays fast approaching, it is easy to feel overwhelmed. The stress of finding the right gifts, deciding where to celebrate New Year, planning menus and, for many ex-pats, trying to get everything done before a long-anticipated visit home can take all the joy out of the festive season. However, one thing that need not be a source of anxiety is choosing the right wine for your cold-weather and holiday dinners.

While it is easy enough to choose a favourite food and wine and put them together, there are some guidelines to help you find a more successful pairing. The first thing that comes to mind, of course, is the colour red. Hearty winter fare, not to mention cold nights, seems to defy a well-chilled white. Secondly, remember to pair heavy with heavy and light with light. You don