Thanksgiving is an occasion to share our precious time with loved ones, celebrate the bounty in our lives, and be grateful for all that what we have. As it sparks the beginning of the holiday season, it is also a fitting time to reflect on our communities and share with those in need. Given the recent devastation from Hurricane Sandy, we will donate 20% of the net proceeds from sales made through Thanksgiving weekend to the American Red Cross.
Now on to the delicious details…
The typical lead character in the meal, turkey, is actually quite a clean canvas for pairing, making it an easy date for wine. However, since there are so many other components to a family-style Thanksgiving meal, our approach is to find the most versatile partners that won’t over power the food and also won’t be diminished by the food. That said, we noted some suggestions on pairings for specific dishes where appropriate.
The secret is in the sauce…
- Cranberry sauce pairs well with a light, aroma filled red.
- Darker the sauce, the darker the color of the wine that goes with it.
- A savory white goes well with giblet gravy.
- A fruity glaze deserves an off-dry wine (slightly sweet) partner.
Versatile Wine Partners
Most people think of sparkling wine as solely for receptions and parties, but they are among the easiest to pair with disparate dishes. Just make sure you don’t serve any that are too sweet. Better to stay with Brut or Extra Brut unless it’s for dessert.
NV Coutier Brut Tradition Champagne Grand Cru
This Pinot rich Champagne has deep fruit richness and a lovely mouth feel, but the 30% Chardonnay that is added brings a lift, a freshness that keeps the wine from being too heavy, making it a delight for any Thanksgiving dish.
NV Drusian Extra Dry Spumante Rosé, Rosé Mari
Sparkling rosé made of 100% pinot noir is an excellent aperitif to enjoy while you’re cooking and during the meal. This is a dry rosé that provides both the right amount of fruit flavor and refreshment to cleanse the palate.
NV Billecart Salmon Brut Rosé
Hands down one of the best and most elegant examples of Brut Rosé. What's their secret? No one knows, but it's been passed down for 7 generations. This charmer will brighten anyone's day.
Avoid white wines that are overly oaky and instead opt for wines that are refreshing with higher acidity and balanced fruit flavors.
2011 Enkidu Chardonnay, Tin Cross Alexander Valley
This is not your typical buttery California Chardonnay. In fact, it’s more like Chablis – high acid, mineral driven, with lemon curd flavors. The crispness of this wine makes it a great standalone beverage, but the texture and structure of this wine also makes it very food-friendly.
2011 Yves Cuilleron Roussanne
The combination of stone fruit and savory flavors, noticeable complexity, and body make this wine a great partner to a variety of dishes on the table that are both sweet and savory. Great with yams and stuffing!
2011 Meulenhof Erdener Treppchen Riesling Kabinett
This off-dry Riesling has a touch of sweetness which complements dishes that have some level of sweetness such as sweet potato casserole, stuffing with dried fruit, and apple or pumpkin pie.
ROSE / RED
2011 Bergerie de l Hortus, Pic St. Loup
Rosės are not just for summertime enjoyment. This blend of Grenache, Mourvedre, and Syrah has the right balance of delicate fruit and structure to hold up well to any part of a Thanksgiving meal.
2011 Arnot-Roberts Trousseau, Luchsinger, Clear Lake
A fantastic light red wine that shows the perfect balance of funk, fruit and herbs. The lushness of the palate with juicy fruit is tempered by the floral tones and elevated acidity that give it a nice elegance. This pairs well with dishes that have greens, root vegetables, or an herbal component. Serve it slightly chilled.
2010 Dominique Piron Morgon Cote de Puy
This Cru Beaujolais is light and dry with fresh, fruity flavors. While it’s on the lighter side, it still has great depth and can hold its own with savory fare. The fresh fruitiness of this wine would go well with cranberry sauce. Serve it slightly chilled.
2011 Bishops Peak Pinot Noir
A very reasonably priced American Pinot Noir that has a great combination of red fruit and earthy flavors. Think New World fruit with Old World savory sensibility. We recommend decanting this wine and giving it some air.
2005 Cascina Val del Prete Nebbiolo d Alba
This is a savory and complex wine with some grip, but not too much to vacuum your taste buds. For a Nebbiolo, this wine is pretty juicy and a great partner to dark meat and dark gravy as well as savory casseroles. We recommend decanting this wine and giving it some air.
Cheers to a delicious feast! If you have any specific questions on pairings or anything wine or entertaining related, please don't hesitate to comment here or email us directly