It’s time again to think about some Thanksgiving wines.
We stand by what we’ve said before about pairing wines with turkey and the rest of your holiday meal, but here’s a quick yet comprehensive guide for which red and white wines will pair best with Thanksgiving dinner:
(and be sure to check out our wines-under-$25 selections at the bottom of this page!)
Zinfandel (but not with too high an alcohol %!)
Or a nice red cuvee which may include a splash of Cabernet Sauvignon, Zweigelt or Blaufrankisch
Dry Golden Muscat
As a general note, we would recommend avoiding the big wines: that means anything too heavy, too overtly oaked, or too high in alcohol. This is why we don’t recommend a Cabernet Sauvignon or a Chardonnay, which both tend to see a lot of oak before arriving on your table (there are, of course, exceptions). The Thanksgiving meal is mighty enough on its own: what you want is a lighter bodied wine whose flavors can stand up to the flavors on the table, but which also has the ability to cut through those heavy dishes and cleanse the palate. You want a wine that you keep reaching for; a wine that animates the meal. Skip the wines that will make you drop like a brick by the end of the meal.
All that said, we of course have some specific recommendations for Thanksgiving 2006: wines that are peaking right now, and that would make for spectacular turkey day pairings this year. We do offer two special flights of wines to make it easy to get what you need delivered to your door (and onto your table). Each has a bottle of red, white and dessert wine which have been selected to pair perfectly with your meal: the Thanksgiving Wine Sampler ($68 – includes Pinot Noir, dry Riesling, and a cuvee dessert wine) and the Holiday Pairing Flight ($75 – includes Pinot Noir, Gruner Veltliner, and a Riesling Beerenauslese). These flights are also a great idea as a send-ahead housewarming/thank you gift if you are spending the holiday with friends or family. This is especially true if you are flying anywhere this season, as you won’t be able to bring that bottle in your carry-on!
Otherwise, here are our single bottle Thanksgiving wine recommendations:
St. Laurent (think of it as Pinot Noir with a wild side):
Braunstein Goldberg St.Laurent 2004 ($32.99)
Tschermonegg Pinot Blanc 2003 ($9.99)
Neuburger (a dry white wine with a hint of nuttiness- perhaps the perfect pairing):
Gritsch 1000-Eimerberg Neuberger Select 2003
AFTER DINNER / WITH DESSERT
Heiss Acacia-Barrique Sauvignon Blanc Beerenauslese 2001 ($19.99)
Velich Muscat-Ottonel Beerenauslese 2001 ($29.99)
Feiler-Artinger Pinot Cuvee Ruster Ausbruch 2001 ($36.99)
SELECTIONS UNDER $25!!!
Braunstein Goldberg St.Laurent 2003 ($22.00)
Wenzel Bandkraften Blaufrankisch 2001 ($24.99)
Preisinger Zweigelt 2005 ($16.00)
Kalmuck Gruner Veltliner 2005 ($12.99)
Donabaum Riesling 2006 ($16.99)
One last tip? Try brining your bird this year, and use this recipe for Riesling Gravy (scroll to the bottom of the article).