RIESLING is perhaps the most famous, unappreciated, abused and generally misunderstood wine of all time and it’s probably also the one most of us cut our teeth on many years ago.

If you were anything like me, that first taste was probably a cheap piersporter or, even worse, a bottle of Iceberg but your first glass is always special and perhaps Christmas is the season to rekindle an old romance.

Germany will always be Riesling's spiritual home but if complicated labels and words that look like they’ve been lifted from the Game of Thrones don't float your boat, there are plenty of crackers from the New World these days so here’s a quick look at what to expect.

Germany is still the place to go if you want to explore the full plethora of styles from bone dry to don't tell your dentist but, personally, I don't stray too far from the Kabinetts of the Mosel and Rheingau. I love the medium style and waxy mouth-filling apple flavours with their wonderful ability to be all things to all men. Served chilled to the bone, these wines make cracking aperitifs but they are equally at home paired with fish or light meats such as pork.

I tend to find California and South America produce a similar waxy style wine but the palate lacks some of the complexity of their Germanic cousins while South Africa should stick to Chenin or Chardonnay until they can make a Riesling that doesn’t smell like a paraffin lamp.

If tropical fruit is your thing then the Rieslings of Australia and New Zealand are definitely for you. The Antipodeans tend to put the word "dry" in front of Riesling but don't let that fool you into thinking they are anything like the bone-sucking dry wines of Alsace. So there you are folks, Riesling is the way to go if you fancy a taste of nostalgia.

Dr Loosen Estate Riesling, Mosel

Loosen is still the benchmark for affordable, good-quality Rieslings. Apples and peaches on the nose with a soft waxy palate. It makes a superb aperitif and pairs really well with crab dishes.

Alexander Wines £11.15

Exquisite Claire Valley Riesling, Australia

Grapefruit and lime on the nose with hints of tangerine on the palate. A superb wine for the price.

Aldi £6.99

Gerard Richardson