Bone hotpot can be healthy, economical and delicious, especially if you make the soup base yourself, without monosodium glutamate. Simmer marrow bones and pig trotters with water, ginger, spring onion and any other aromatics you may want. Add ground white pepper, or, better still, whole white peppercorns, for depth and warmth. The richness of the soup comes from quality meat, bones and tendons cooked for a long time - about two or three hours, depending on the size of the pieces. Chicken feet can be included to enrich the broth and add even more of a gelatinous quality. The best wine with hotpot made from bone stock needs to have good fruit, a bullish direction and layers of complexity. Amisfield pinot noir 2006, Central Otago, New Zealand Central Otago is producing some amazing pinot noir. The region - along the southern hemi- sphere's 45th parallel - is one of the sunniest places on earth. This sunshine stimulates the growth and flavour accumulation in the grapes, and the snowcapped mountains give the vines plenty of tasty water. The diverse climate defines not just the fruit-driven style but also sub-regional identities. This Amisfield is the per- fect wine to serve with bone hotpot; the pinot noir is rich and elegant, with just enough tannins to caress the palate. The wine's crisp and lively acidity contrasts well with the sweet bones and tendon in the soup base. The wine is modestly oaked - it's all about fruit and more delicious fruit. Available for HK$360 from Altaya (tel: 2523 1945). Calera Mt Harlan viognier 2005, Central Coast, California Bone hotpot brings out the extremely complex flavours in this wine. The soup base and the wine have layers and tones that will keep each other company mouthful after mouthful. The rich stone fruit-like viognier and the soup's stickiness marry well and stretch the time and intensity of the combination. Don't serve this wine too cold; the slight oak fermentation can easily be missed. Look for a bone with lots of creamy marrow - this is the viognier's best friend. Available for HK$286 from Golden Gate Wine (tel: 2891 8121). Kumeu River Mat?'s Vineyard chardonnay 2007, Kumeu River, New Zealand The roundness of lesser chardonnays can sometimes be either a bit overwhelming or taste just a little flat. The Kumeu River Mat?'s (pronounced ma-tay) Vineyard grows chardonnay that is not only stylish but layered with tones of complex fruits. The wine is only lightly oaked and the oak used mixes in well. The chardonnay's lively freshness and zingy acidity make it a good match for hotpot with a bone and tendon soup base, especially if it contains chicken feet, the sticky tendon sweetness of which provides a platform for this classy wine to shine. Available for HK$264 from Wine'n'Things (tel: 2873 5733).