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Around the Christmas Table with Sebastian Schmidt

With Christmas just around the corner, we are partnering with different tastemakers to bring you their foolproof tips and tricks for festive hosting.

Clos19 talks to Sebastian Schmidt (, Cologne-based blogger and German-language and literature teacher. We discuss Christmas essentials, from table settings to pairings and lots of champagne.


What is your foolproof dish for the holiday season?

I love to go either classic with roasted goose, red cabbage and potato dumplings or modern with a creative soup and a special pasta dish.

What is your drink of choice for the holiday season?

Definitely champagne as an aperitif. To me special occasions require special champagnes like Ruinart or Moët & Chandon. And I like cognac as a digestif. Generally I prefer classic drinks, they’re perfect for the holiday season.

Do you have a favourite winter cocktail?

Yes, I do! Horse’s Neck with 5 cl Whiskey (try Glenmorangie or Ardbeg), 2 dashes of Angostura Bitters and top up with Ginger Ale.


What is your favourite food and wine or champagne pairing?

Chestnut soup with scallops or trout fillet paired with champagne or white wine. The nuances complement each other perfectly. Everything tastes very delicate and intense. It is my personal tip for the starters.

Christmas table setting: modern or traditional?

I love to combine both modern and traditional elements. The most important thing to me is that it looks very festive and special. I like to work with candles and olives, fig or eucalyptus branches. And when it comes to Christmas baubles, I like to mix gold and silver with lots of white.

What are some of your Christmas table setting essentials?

I would say candles, branches, very Christmassy decorations and festive tableware.