Note This recipe is adapted from Stephanie Alexander's ginger cake in The Cook's Companion. Clotted cream is available from select delicatessens. If unavailable, substitute double cream.
If you're thinking about what kind of sweet wine to drink with an aromatic, spicy fruit cake like this, consider a late-harvest or even botrytis-affected riesling. The beauty of the riesling variety is that it has high natural acidity; even if the grapes are picked very ripe, late in the season, when they resemble little shrivelled bags of golden syrup, they will still have enough of that riesling acid to stop the resulting wine from being too cloying in the mouth. Riesling grapes also retain their aromatic quality long into autumn, so even wines from berries covered in botrytis - the "noble rot" that desiccates the fruit and contributes its own distinctive apricot and honey-like character - can still be deliciously perfumed and refreshing. Depending on personal taste, look for labels that mention "late-harvest" or "auslese" (these are sweet but not overly so) or try a wine labelled "botrytis-affected", "noble" or "beerenauslese" (much more sweet and luscious). Serve the cake with a small glass of the wine and perhaps a cup of fragrant black tea.