Sam Wylie-Harris rounds up her top wine-rack picks - and there's still time to enjoy them.

Trying to narrow down your best-loved style of wine is a little bit like favouring one child over another.

You love them all, each one makes you happy, you want to spend more time getting to know them and delight in their idiosyncrasies.

And so it is with wine. So hard to choose - and a delicious conundrum we think can be solved (in part, at least) by picking some stunners that caught our attention and tantalised our tasted buds in 2018...

1. Chapel Down Classic Brut, NV, Kent, England (£22, Ocado)

Official wine partner of the Oxford & Cambridge Boat Race, Ascot Racecourse and the Royal Opera House, Chapel Down is deliciously dependable, approachable and fruit forward, with toasty aromas and hints of red apple, pears and citrus fruits. It's light and makes for easy drinking, with refreshing English acidity that works so well with finger-food and mini fish and chips with tartar sauce.

2. The Palm By Whispering Angel 2017, France (£13.50, orders for new vintage available from 2019,

Who wouldn't want an endless, secret supply of the artfully-named Whispering Angel? It's one of four ravishing roses from Sacha Lichine, proprietor of Chateau d'Esclans, who have set the benchmark for seriously stylish rose.

And whether the name is inspired by Palm Springs or Palm Beach, you don't need to have just moored a yacht where palm trees are an everyday sight to enjoy this latest release. Fresh, dry and elegant, with subtle fruity notes and exceptional length, it will taste just as delightful with or without a glimmer of sunshine.

3. Taste the Difference Cotes Du Ventoux, Rhone Valley 2016, France (currently reduced to £8.50 from £10, Sainsbury's)

A lovely surprise, this is a generous red that wraps its arms around you and brings a smile from the very first sip. A rhapsody of raspberry and spice, the peppery bouquet tickles the senses and the velvety smooth palate is saturated with lush berry fruits, with a spike of earthy liquorice on the sweetly ripe finish.

4. Banfi Col di Sasso Sangiovese Cabernet Sauvignon 2016, Tuscany, Italy (£12.50,

A postcard from the rolling hills of Tuscany, this deep ruby red brings together the best of both worlds, with the floral, violet character of the sangiovese grape bolstered by the fullness and roundness of cabernet sauvignon (70%).

A gorgeously drinkable medley of velvety raspberry fruit, with traces of plums and spice lifted by some cranberry freshness on the finish, it needs time in the glass for the flavours to really shine before diving into a rich spaghetti bolognese.

5. Chateau Moulin du Terrier Bordeaux Rouge 2016, France (£11.99, Virgin Wines)

Cited as a blockbuster vintage, put any thoughts aside that Old World Bordeaux can't produce rich, ripe, juicy reds with a drink-me-now New World deliciousness. Utterly gorgeous from the word go, the just crushed berry bouquet keeps on giving, with sumptuous blackcurrant fruit laced with cassis and sweet peppery spice on the polished palate.

6. The Hedonist Shiraz 2016, McLaren Vale, Australia (£14.49, new vintage available late January, 2019, Waitrose)

This IWC Gold medal-winner is an inky black beauty from the flourishing, verdant vineyards of McLaren Vale. Made from biodynamic grapes (processed organically and sustainbly), this velvety smooth shiraz is marked by a deep bouquet of dark berry fruits, with a core of intense black fruit preserves laced with pepper and spice. To add to its kudos, it's made by Walter Clappis, one of Australia's most talented winemakers.

7. Marks & Spencer Grillo 2017, Italy (£7, Marks & Spencer stores)

With an 'R' in the month for the foreseeable future, the New Year still signals shellfish for seafood lovers - and what could be nicer with your spaghetti linguine than a super Sicilian that's not only deliciously refreshing, but brings a drop of Mediterranean sunshine to the table?

The grillo grape gives this wine honeyed aromas of lemon, lime and dried herbs, which gather momentum as they glide along on the smooth, creamy palate, with well-balanced acidity and a delightful, spicy note on the finish.

8. Yealands Estate Sauvignon Blanc 2017, New Zealand (currently reduced to £11.50 from £12.75,

A pungent style of sauvignon blanc, intense blackcurrant leaf and grassy aromas meet an elegant, polished palate of passion fruit and herbaceous flavours. Behind the scenes, the wine is shaped by specific vineyard parcels - one warmer site which lends the wine its expressive aromatics, while a cooler, coastal block gives the wine its minerally backbone and length.

9. Hill-Smith Estate Eden Valley Chardonnay 2016, Australia (£11.99, Waitrose)

With an impressive balance of flavour and intensity, this chardonnay is brimming with a tropical fruit basket of pineapples, juicy pears and peach, which leads to a burst of nectarine and citrusy fruits overlaid with hints of vanilla. And while the fruit is very pure, textured and well ripened, the flavours are backed by fresh acidity on the finish. Serve with poached salmon or rotisserie chicken.

Note: This is billed as 'wild ferment', which means the wine contains naturally occurring yeast from the grape skins, instead of cultivated yeast - a lot of winemakers champion it and love the extra element it brings.

10. Berry Bros & Rudd White Burgundy 2017 by Collovray & Terrier, France (£12.50, Berry Bros & Rudd)

An upmarket own label offering great value for a wine this good. With plenty of vibrant fruit, the peachy, citrusy flavours are elevated by brisk acidity pushing the flavours forward, with a stony minerality that characterises this style of chardonnay. With dainty floral scents, subtle oak and a crisp, lingering finish, it's a natural with crab cakes and seared scallops.